Boston has a strong claim to the title of America’s best sports town, at least this century. Since the dawn of the new millennium, all four of the city’s teams in the major sports have captured titles — 11 in total: the New England Patriots earned five trophies, baseball’s Boston Red Sox four (among them the city’s latest title earned earlier this year), and basketball’s Boston Celtics and ice hockey’s Boston Bruins one apiece.
Since 1977, the non-profit Sports Museum at Boston’s TD Garden has made it its mission to tell the story of the city’s professional sports teams and those that have participated to its writing. Among them is former Patriots wide receiver Deion Branch, who will receive the Sports Museum’s Football Legacy Award tonight for his contributions to the region’s pro football organization and the city in general.
Branch, one of six people to get honored, spent a combined seven seasons in New England after getting selected by the Patriots in the second round of the 2003 NFL draft. He went on to become quarterback Tom Brady’s go-to receiver and helped the team win two Super Bowls after the 2003 and 2004 seasons — the latter of which ended with him being named title game MVP after catching 11 passes for 133 yards.
After a 4.5-year stint with the Seattle Seahawks, Branch returned to his former team midway through the 2011 season and promptly helped New England reach another albeit unsuccessful Super Bowl. After the 2013 season, he ended his active career — one that saw him catch 384 passes in a Patriots uniform for 5,149 yards and 28 touchdowns.