New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady just signed a two-year extension, making him a member of the Patriots through the 2019 season. That's a minimum of four more seasons for Brady in a Patriots uniform and brings the quarterback to the age of 42 years of age.
It also sets up Brady to own every single quarterback record in existence. Well, most of them anyways.
While Brady possesses all of the playoff records, the regular season records are under the auspices of Peyton Manning, who is expected to retire this offseason. Manning spent the better part of the last two seasons passing Brett Favre in the record books.
Now there are some records that are out of Brady's control, like Manning's seven 1st Team All Pro or his five Most Valuable Player awards- although Brady could pass Manning in Pro Bowl nominations if he gets the nod in each of the next four years.
Besides, Brady's gotten the short end of the MVP stick more than anyone not-named Jerry Rice or Randall Cunningham, so that's just not in the cards. But the records Brady can control are going down.
Here are the records that Brady will probably take down over the next four seasons.
This is the most important stat, right? Brady, Manning, and Favre are the only quarterbacks with more than 150 wins in the regular season. Manning and Favre are tied with 186 regular season wins, while Brady is in third with 172. John Elway and Dan Marino are in fourth and fifth with 148 and 147, respectively, and Drew Brees is in sixth with a mere 124.
Brady needs 15 regular season wins to pass Manning and Favre for the regular season title, which will probably take two seasons to accomplish. The Patriots would need to average 3 wins per season over the next four years in order for Brady not to take the record.
However, when you factor in playoff wins, the record will go down early next year. Brady's 22 playoff wins are an NFL record, while Manning's 14 are a distant third, behind Joe Montana's 16. Favre has 13 playoff wins of his own.
This means that Manning achieved 200 career wins with the Super Bowl victory, while Favre is in second with 199. Brady has a much smaller hill to climb, with 194 total victories. That means that Brady will have the All Time Wins record with seven victories in 2016. Hopefully that happens before midseason.
Brady currently has 428 touchdown passes, in a tie with Brees for 3rd most all time. Manning leads with 539, while Favre is in second with 508. Brady and Brees will need 112 touchdown passes to exceed Manning. While that sounds like a lot, the pair would just need to average 28 touchdowns per year over the next four to claim the title.
Brees has thrown for 28 or more touchdown passes in each of the prior nine seasons, dating back to his 2nd season in New Orleans in 2007. Unexpectedly, the last time Brees failed to throw for 28 or more touchdown passes, he was named First Team All Pro in 2006, in his first year with the Saints.
The question with Brees is whether or not his success is sustainable. His touchdowns have declined in each of the past five seasons, from 46 to 2011, to 43, 39, 33, and then 32 in 2015. These are still great totals, but it is something to watch with regards to Brady because the Patriots quarterback has been as consistent as ever.
Brady led the league with 36 touchdown passes in 2010 and he led the league again in 2015 with 36 touchdown passes. If Brees continues to decline in production, while Brady remains constant, the Patriots quarterback will hold the record at the end of the day.
If Brady hits his five-year average of 33 touchdown passes, he will enter the final season of his contract needing 13 touchdown passes to pass Manning.
I will also note that Brees' situation is far worse than Brady's because the Saints are horrible at cap management. That said, the Saints have a pretty promising wide receiver duo in Brandin Cooks and Willie Snead. Their development will be crucial to Brees' continued success.
3) Game Winning Drives
A game winning drive is defined as an offensive drive in the 4th quarter or overtime that "puts the winning team ahead for the last time." Essentially, it's the game deciding drive to lead a team to victory, even if it's a tie game before the drive.
Manning holds the NFL record with 56, including playoffs, while Marino is 2nd with 51 and Brady is 3rd with 48. Manning actually just collected his 2nd career playoff game winning drive against the Steelers, when Denver marched down the field on a 13-play, 6:52 drive to overcome a 13-12 deficit.
Brady needs 9 game winning drives to pass Manning and has averaged a little over 3 per season over the past five years. He'll likely pass Manning at some point in 2018.
4) 4th Quarter Comebacks
A 4th quarter comeback is defined as an offensive drive that helps a team overcome a one-score deficit in the 4th quarter, but only counts if the team wins or ties. These are less frequent than game winning drives, which also includes late drives in a tie game.
Manning leads the record with 45, while Brady is 2nd with 37. Brady also needs 9 more to pass Manning in this tally, but has averaged a hair under 3 per season over the past five years. He'll likely pass Manning at some point in 2019.
Manning holds this record with 71,940 passing yards, just a smidge ahead of Favre at 71,838 yards. Dan Marino is 3rd with 61,361, Brees is 4th with 60,903, and Brady is 5th at 58,028, needing 13,912 for the record. It's very likely that this will ultimately be Brees' record, but Brady can also pass Manning for good measure.
Brees needs 11,038 passing yards to overtake Manning and he's a yardage monster. He's led the league in passing yards in four out of the past five seasons and has averaged 5,127 passing yards per year over that span. I should mention that the single-season passing yardage record was 5,084 yards by Dan Marino until Brees shattered it in 2011- and then passed the mark in 2012 and 2013.
Yes, Brees is averaging more passing yards over a five season span than the prior record mark for a single season. He's a beast that will probably claim the record in early 2018.
Brady needs 13,913 passing yards to pass Manning, which is 3,478 passing yards on average over the next four seasons. Brady has averaged 4,657 passing yards over the past five years (roughly 500 fewer per season than Brees, but still the 2nd best mark in the NFL. Oh yeah, and Brees missed a game).
Brady would claim the record mark at the end of the 2018 season if he is able to keep up his yardage pace. It's more likely that he'll pass Manning in early 2019.
The NFL records for attempts and completions are still under the control of Brett Favre, with 10,169 and 6,300, respectively. Manning ranks second in both, needing 790 attempts to pass Favre (likely would need two more seasons), and 175 completions (one more season).
Brady will be jockeying with Brees for the rest of their careers for these rankings, just like with yards and touchdowns.
Brees holds the edge in attempts with 8,085 to Brady's 7,792, but both also trail Dan Marino at 8,358. Both are likely to leapfrog Marino during the 2016 season, but will need four more years to challenge Favre atop the rankings.
Brees also holds a commanding lead in completions over Brady, with a 5,365 to 4,953 lead. Marino is sandwiched between the two at 4,967. Brady will pass Marino in the 2016 season opener. Brees is likely to pass Favre for the lead early in 2018 as he needs just 936 completions and has averaged 444 over the prior five years.
Brady has averaged 391 completions over the prior five years and likely won't challenge Favre until the middle of the 2019 season.
If Brady is going to hold all of these records ahead of Brees, he will likely have to suit up for one more season than Brees does over the remainder of their careers.