For two decades, Tom Brady dominated the rest of the NFL as the starting quarterback for the New England Patriots. Along the way, he earned numerous individual awards while leading his team to six Super Bowl titles. And while he may have left Foxborough for Tampa, Brady just received a major honor from his former team.
Tom Brady became a living legend in New England
Despite getting selected 199th overall, Tom Brady defied his draft status to become the greatest quarterback in NFL history. Drew Bledsoe’s gruesome injury opened the door for Brady to take over as the Patriots’ starting quarterback.
Of course, the former Michigan signal-caller led New England to three Super Bowl titles in a four-year window. Throughout his dominant two-decade run with the Patriots, Brady turned ordinary players into valuable contributors. His ability to read defenses, find the open receiver, and make plays in the clutch helped him earn the coveted GOAT title.
In particular, Brady’s postseason heroics made him a living legend in New England. He carved up a historically-dominant Seattle Seahawks defense in Super Bowl 49. Two years later, he engineered a record-setting comeback against the Atlanta Falcons to win his fifth ring.
And in Super Bowl 53, Brady connected with Rob Gronkowski on a key fourth-quarter completion to set up the game’s only touchdown.
Brady just received a major honor from the Patriots
Though his final season in New England ended in bitter defeat, Tom Brady still threw for 4,057 yards and 24 touchdowns despite not having a great cast of weapons. In 285 regular-season games, he racked up 74,571 passing yards, 541 TD, and a quarterback rating of 97.0. Brady also won NFL MVP honors three times and earned 14 Pro Bowl selections.
As a testament to his stellar career, the current Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB just received a major honor from his former team. On Thursday, the Patriots Hall of Fame announced its All-Dynasty Team. And to no one’s surprise, Brady earned the quarterback spot on the star-studded squad.
In addition, familiar faces like Richard Seymour, Vince Wilfork, Willie McGinest, and Tedy Bruschi earned spots on the team. A few current Patriots also made the cut. Stephon Gilmore, Dont’a Hightower, Devin McCourty, and Patrick Chung all appear on the All-Dynasty Team. Julian Edelman, James White, and Joe Thuney also got selected.
However, one of Brady’s most reliable receivers got snubbed from the list.
Who got snubbed from the All-Dynasty Team?
Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Troy Brown, and Edelman got named as the four wide receivers on the Patriots All-Dynasty Team. However, Deion Branch—who won Super Bowl MVP honors for his outstanding performance against the Philadelphia Eagles—did not even get a shoutout as an honorable mention.
A second-round pick in the 2002 NFL draft, Branch developed into one of Brady’s most trusted weapons. In two stints with the Patriots, he racked up 328 catches for 4,297 yards and 24 TD. He totaled 56/852/4 in 14 postseason games. Not including him on the team seems like a mistake given his contributions.
So who else should have made the cut?
Like Branch, Antowain Smith played a significant role in New England establishing a dynasty. The big-bodied running back totaled nearly 2,800 rushing yards and 21 TD in 45 games with the Patriots. Plus, he racked up 456 more yards and 2 TD in six postseason games. Smith’s powerful running style helped New England capture its first two titles.
On defense, Jerod Mayo should have been included over Roman Phifer. The 2008 first-round pick racked up more than 800 tackles and captained the defense in 103 games with the Patriots. The two-time Pro Bowler only received an honorable mention.
Meanwhile, Phifer only played 59 regular-season games for Bill Belichick and never earned a Pro Bowl selection. He does have the edge with three Super Bowl rings, which certainly had to play a factor in his inclusion on the All-Dynasty Team.
Ultimately, a few players certainly have strong cases to be included on the squad. And at the end of the day, that reflects strongly on Belichick’s ability to find the right pieces to establish a dynasty.
All statistics courtesy of Pro Football Reference.