It’s always humbling when the icons of your youth become “classic”. The songs you liked in school start showing up on throwback playlists. The movies you laughed at are heavy hitters at drive-in movie theaters and barbecues where you set up the projector in the backyard after the sun goes down. And, of course, the sports heroes that you grew up with posters on your wall and jerseys in your closet eventually decide to hang ‘em up.
So in that spirit, when Tom Brady retired again this week, exactly 365 days after retiring for the first time, it kind of had the feel of this iconic opening scene from Big Daddy:
“We wasted the good surprise on you!”
Despite almost all of us getting all the feels out last winter, though, the accolades and tributes continued to roll in from fans and players alike when Tom Brady declared he was actually done, for real this time. And one of the simplest, and best, came from the kid that more than a few people have already decided has the best chance to, one day, succeed him: Patrick Mahomes. Sometimes you can say it all with just a few words, and by words we mean the only emoji befitting of Tom:
February 1, 2023
Not that this should be surprising, of course; if anyone can appreciate just what a Herculean task it is to even make it to a Super Bowl, never mind both the ecstasy of finally winning it and the agony of coming so close just to end up covered in the other team’s confetti, it’s Patrick.
Nevertheless, let’s just say it, because we’ve all lived it lately; everyone from casual fans to the most hardcore of Chiefs Kingdom to whoever’s on all 37 of the indistinguishable Embrace Debate sports shows on TV anymore has been tripping all over themselves to crown Patrick Mahomes as the Once and Future King or whatever. The same as they did with Aaron Rodgers before him, and Cam Newton before him, and even Peyton Manning before that. Ever since Brady’s 4th Super Bowl victory in 2014, there’s been a high-school-crush infatuation with the next OMG-did-you-just-see-that quarterback who wasn’t wearing #12 in blue and white, and a rather annoying obsession with crowning a new GOAT.
Fortunately, Mahomes knows exactly what it takes to assume that mantle, and got to talk a little about what he thought made Tom Brady the greatest QB that football has ever seen:
“He has the Jordan in him — that will to win and that will to be the best,” Mahomes explained. “I think that’s what makes Tom so great. Even though he might not have the best arm or the best mobility, he’s still really good at both of those things and moving within the pocket and arm strength. And then his will to bring his teammates along is special. And his will to be great and be the best is special.”
“That’s something that whenever I talk to Tom I try to learn as much as possible. He’s more than willing to give me some advice, which I think is pretty cool because he is the GOAT and someone I want to try and chase. But I know it’s a long ways away for me and I have to just continue to win football games.”
Here’s the full interview, courtesy of First Things First:
Best of luck to Patrick in the Super Bowl next weekend.
(what, you didn’t think this blog can seriously condone rooting for the EAGLES, did you?)