After the New England Patriots won their fifth Super Bowl — a stunning 34-28 comeback victory against the Atlanta Falcons in February 2017 — NFL Network premiered its latest Top Ten list. The show’s subject was the greatest quarterback of all time, who had just won his record fourth Super Bowl MVP award: Tom Brady, whose best ever games were defined and subsequently ranked.
Back when the show aired, the list looked as follows:
10. 2014: Week 5 against the Cincinnati Bengals (‘On to Cincinnati’)
9. 2009: Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills
8. 2014: Divisional round against the Baltimore Ravens
7. 2003: Super Bowl 38 against the Carolina Panthers
6. 2009: Week 6 against the Tennessee Titans (‘59-0’)
5. 2013: Week 12 against the Denver Broncos
4. 2014: Super Bowl 49 against the Seattle Seahawks
3. 2001: Divisional round against the Oakland Raiders (‘Tuck Rule Game’)
2. 2001: Super Bowl 36 against the Los Angeles Rams
1. 2016: Super Bowl 51 against the Atlanta Falcons
The ranking was first unveiled two years ago, but it already seems outdated given Brady’s performance over the last two seasons and the success he enjoyed: he led the Patriots to the Super Bowl twice, winning one of them, and also earned another league MVP trophy in the process. Safe to say that there are plenty of games to choose from to get included in an updated version of the show.
His five-touchdown comeback performance against the Houston Texans in week 3 of the 2017 season deserves to be mentioned, as does his outstanding but ultimately unsuccessful Super Bowl outing the same year. Two games have an even stronger claim for inclusion among the future Hall of Fame quarterback’s best ever, though: the AFC Championship Games in both 2017 and 2018.
The 2017 AFC title game against the Jacksonville Jaguars saw Brady lead the Patriots back from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit against the best defense in the league— despite having lost Rob Gronkowski to a concussion earlier in the contest. 2018’s conference final might have been even better, especially considering the setting: New England was the underdog going into the Kansas City Chiefs’ Arrowhead Stadium, but still managed to defeat the AFC’s top seed 37-31 in overtime.
Ultimately, there are too many great games to choose from to cut them down to just ten. The game against the Chiefs deserves to be included, as do the ten games ranked on the original list. What NFL Network could therefore do is to simply update the show to bring the games presented to the appropriate number when it comes to Tom Brady: twelve.