I don't know about any of you, but I'm really excited for this bye week. As much as I love watching the Patriots play, it's nice to get a break from the stress and give myself the opportunity to recharge and just enjoy Sunday's slate of games for what they are as opposed to worrying about whether the Pats will win or not. Plus, New England's bye week also allows me the opportunity to do what I do best on this site: write ridiculous, irrelevant, borderline nonsensical articles that don't really have anything to do with anything and serve primarily as an excuse for me to blow off work for a little while longer. So in that grand tradition, I thought I'd take a minute to wax poetic about one of the finest pieces of work the NFL has done in a very long time.
If you have yet to see the nfl.com video of Tom Brady mic'd up for last week's matchup against the Broncos, do yourself a huge favor and click on Rich Hill's fanpost this morning. You won't find many better ways to start your Thursday than those five or so minutes of Brady being Brady. Of all the Tommy B videos I've seen over the years, this one ranks right up there in how much it illustrates Brady's love for the game, this team, and his teammates. Why is is a consummate leader and unquestioned team captain has never been more apparent. Well worth the watch.
A few of my personal favorite moments:
- 0:13: Right after the temperature -in the 30s with a sub 30 wind-chill - is announced, you immediately hear Brady say "This is beautiful. What's wrong with this weather?" Taking the elements and embracing them. Loving the cold. Excited about the wind chill. He then goes on to tell Josh McDaniels "the wind's not bad at all." Just give the man a football and let him go to work. Nothing else matters.
- 0:28: As he enters into the first huddle of the game, to his offense: "hey...let's go answer the bell." All business, time for joking around is done. I almost stopped the video right there and got right to work. Almost.
0:45: After Julian Edelman's touchdown (a touchdown that was eventually called back), Brady runs into the end zone -thanks for the slo-mo guys - and playfully asks "hey... can I spike it?" He eventually gives it to Gronk, as he knows who the spiking authority on this team is, and it ultimately didn't even matter, but what a perfect transition from work to play. The offense's job is done, now it's time to enjoy it. He also got about 5,657 high fives after that play, which I'm sure was a huge point of emphasis in the offseason.
- 2:00: Brady runs as fast as he can, screaming like an animal, into the end zone to celebrate with Julian Edelman after he sets a franchise record for punts returned for a touchdown. Later, Julian asks if he really came into the end zone after the play, to which Brady says, "yeah...gotta go see my guy!" before the two share a genuine fist bump. That's love right there.
- 3:18: Peyton Manning just hit Julius Thomas in the end zone to cut New England's lead to 27-14. Brady, standing on the sidelines, does an almost flawless Bill Belichick impression when he deadpans "great throw," before taking a deep, clearly exasperated breath. He then comes right out in the huddle, tells his offense, "hey, let's go put the nail in the coffin," and then comes out to lead a touchdown drive that ended with a Rob Gronkowski circus catch and easy reception against Von Miller for the dagger.
4:05: Brady, seeing Gronk lined up against Miller, simply nods at him before hitting him on the gimme slant that sealed the game. Running into the end zone to celebrate - again - he laughingly throws his hands into the air and says to Gronk, "hey...what are they thinking??" before going back to the sidelines to gush more about what a ridiculous catch Gronk made.
- 5:00: Belichick angrily reminds the team that seven games gets you exactly nowhere in this league, it isn't even close to enough, and anybody that loses sight of that can just eat it. But go ahead and enjoy the win.
I feel like everything you would ever need to know about our quarterback can be found in that video. The drive. The passion. The determination. The leadership. The love. Everything that makes Tommy B the greatest quarterback of his generation and one of the greatest players of all time. He's in his element when he's on that field, when the pressure is on, when the world is watching. There is nowhere else in the world he would rather be - and considering who his wife is, that's a remarkable statement.
This man is going to play football until his arm falls off, and I'm going to be watching every single snap.