Death, taxes, and Tom Brady playing in the Super Bowl.
The 41-year-old quarterback continues to defeat father time while solidifying his spot as best quarterback ever. This past Super Bowl win adds a sixth ring to Tom Brady’s resume. This now puts him two ahead of the next closest quarterbacks (Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana). While many NFL fans despise Brady, it is hard not to admire what he has done in his 19-year career. Brady finds himself in the top five of every meaningful passing statistic while dominating in wins.
However, what if Tom Brady lost the last six Super Bowls he played in? Would he still be the GOAT? Here is how close Tom Brady came to only having three Super Bowl rings.
The first two of the hypothetical six losses actually came against the Giants in Super Bowls XLII and XLVI. In Super Bowl XLIX, the Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks due to one of the worst play calls in football history. Pete Carroll called for Russell Wilson to throw the football instead of handing it off to Marshawn Lynch on the goal line. This resulted in an interception to end the game. If the Seahawk simply ran the ball, this game likely has a different outcome. Loss number three.
In Super Bowl LI, the Patriots completed the most historic comeback in Super Bowl history, defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34-28. If not for the biggest meltdown in Super Bowl history, the Falcons soundly defeat the Patriots. Once again, the Patriots were given the opportunity to win by terrible playcalling and teams abandoning the run. Loss number four.
Super Bowl LII was an actual loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. This loss was in large part due to the Eagles sticking to run game and grinding for 164 yards. Loss number five.
Brady’s most recent Super Bowl win came this year against the Los Angeles Rams. Sean McVay, who was an offensive genius throughout the regular season, stepped away from what the Rams do best, running the football. Todd Gurley, arguably the best running back in football, was given only 10 attempts while rushing for 35 yards. Holding the Patriots to under 14 points usually results in a win for the other team. The Rams offense was held to under fourteen points just once this entire season. If they played like they normally do this game has a different outcome. Loss number six.
But three of those losses are just hypothetical. It is nice to dream.
Moral of the story: if you are playing the Patriots in the Super Bowl; run the ball.