Tom Brady flipped the football world on its head when he announced he was leaving the New England Patriots and heading to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It’s still unclear just how big of an impact Brady’s decision will have on the NFL, though it’s sure to be a massive one.
It will also help football fans answer an age-old hypothetical question they’ve pondered for years: who is more likely to win a championship without the other, Brady or Pats’ head coach Bill Belichick? Only time will tell which one of them will fare better, but there’s substantial evidence that Brady has more motivation to win than Belichick.
Tom Brady career overview
Brady’s career had humble beginnings. A marginal NFL prospect at the University of Michigan, Brady was a sixth-round pick of the Patriots. In his second season, he came off the bench to replace an injured Drew Bledsoe. Brady never relinquished the starting job, leading New England to a title that year and three Super Bowl wins in four years.
After a decade-long drought of Super Bowl victories, he won three more over the Seattle Seahawks, Atlanta Falcons, and Los Angeles Rams. During the 2019 season, Brady’s Patriots struggled to put up big offensive numbers on their way to a first-round exit.
Bill Belichick career overview
Much like Brady, Belichick’s head coaching career didn’t start so well. His first head coaching gig lasted five years with the hapless Cleveland Browns. Belichick’s reign there was largely mediocre. He led the team to the playoffs once but couldn’t get them over the hump into contender status.
He got another opportunity to coach in the league a few seasons later, spurning the New York Jets to take the Patriots job. The rest is history — Belichick led the team to six Super Bowl victories in nine appearances.
It’s clear that both men were successful with each other. But why is it Brady has more reason to want to win another title?
Why Tom Brady probably wants to win more than Bill Belichick does
While both Brady and Belichick no doubt want to win a championship badly, Brady probably wants it more for a number of reasons.
Belichick is often referred to as a football genius. While Brady gets his fair share of credit, in the past he’s been called a system quarterback — the implication being that he’s benefitting greatly from being under Belichick.
This is no doubt true, but Brady likely has a lot of motivation to prove that those championships in New England had more to do with him and his play than people give him credit for. Brady has big contract incentives to win in Tampa including $2.25 million if the team wins the Super Bowl.
A Super Bowl win for the Buccaneers would be historic. It wouldn’t be the franchise’s first Super Bowl victory, but it would mark only the second time in history that a quarterback has won a Super Bowl on two different teams. The other quarterback to do it? Brady’s friendly rival, the great Peyton Manning, who won with both the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos.
Winning a seventh Super Bowl would only cement Brady’s legacy as the greatest quarterback of all time. No quarterback is even close. As someone who seems inspired to pursue greatness, adding a seventh title would truly help Brady stand out from his peers.
Belichick and Brady are both consummate competitors. They made a great team for 20 years together. Now that they’ve gone their separate ways, it’s a certainty that each wants to prove they can win one without the other. Belichick may have the same competitive fire as his former quarterback, but there’s no doubt that Brady has more motivational fuel.