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Grading Tom Brady: Strengths and Weaknesses

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Tom Brady is under the microscope- what can we learn about him from last season's performance?

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Robert Cianflone

ESPN and Pro Football Focus combined to start the off-season storyline of Tom Brady's decline. Their primary focus was on how he adjusted and handled pressure and how his ability to handle pressure has disappeared over the past few seasons.

Pro Football Focus now, on their own, has been running through their numbers and have self-published some facts regarding Brady's 2013 season- and there's plenty of positives to take away.

Some highlights:

Brady was best in the league on second down and mid-range to go, likely an impact of the short-passing game that the offense employs.

Tied for the league lead in performance during the fourth quarter and overtime.

Best in the league when passing on slant routes, second best to post routes.

Struggled more and more the longer he was forced to stay in the pocket.

One of the quickest to throw the ball in the league.

Third fewest attempts in the league thrown to tight ends.

Stayed in the pocket more than any other quarterback in the league.

Just as much of the positives and the negatives can be attributed to the make-up of the offense. He thrives on quick throws and routes due to the emergence of Julian Edelman, and because that's how the offense is structured. He struggled the longer he had to stay in the pocket because receivers struggled to get open- and Brady wasn't able to buy them time by leaving the pocket.

Additionally, we see Brady thrive when throwing to the left and center, while struggling throwing to his right- a phenomenon that we've reviewed in the past. Perhaps the emergence or introduction of a more competent receiver corps will improve Brady's ability to spread the ball around the field (or maybe Brady just isn't as accurate when throwing to the right).

You can come to your own conclusions when you read the numbers, but I highly recommend you venture over and make your own evaluation.