The ballsiest kicker of all-time
What’s the difference between Jim Kelly and Tom Brady’s first Super Bowl appearance?
Well, nothing’s different when it comes to each QB. In fact, both QBs actually drove the ball down the field and put their respective teams in position to win Super Bowls.
The only difference, one that’ll last a lifetime to the casual fan, is that one kicker choked while the other thrived under pressure.
Scott Norwood‘s wide-right will live in infamy, playing out on the winning side for then defensive coordinator Bill Belichick (video above).
Vinatieri, on the hand, drilled a longer field goal with ease:
He then did the same exact thing two seasons later:
Brady and the Pats were incredibly fortunate to have the most clutch kicker in the history of the game on their side.
During the first three championships, Tom Brady wasn’t a stud. He was a guy who managed the team and rode a great defense and coaching staff to glory. It wasn’t until Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts beat them in the 2006 AFC championship game that Belichick decided he needed to take his team in a new direction, an offensive direction that would suddenly jive with the free-flowing rule changes of the NFL.
If you claim Tom Brady is the greatest quarterback of all-time, I won’t argue. It’s almost impossible to argue.
The only thing I would say is, “Be careful.”
In today’s day and age, we’re so quick to throw out those four letters of GOAT. We feel the need to crown and gather instant gratification.
Montana was a perfect 4-0 and 11-0 TD-INT while Unitas put up monster stats during an age that saw the passing game not fully developed. Brady started thriving only when the rules changed in a more offensive direction.
Let’s face it: quarterbacks these days have it easy and when Bill Belichick is on your side, it’s doubly-simple.
In any event, Tom Brady is, arguably, the best who’s ever laced them up. But don’t think for one moment that he also hasn’t been the luckiest.
He and his New England Patriots have been the most fortunate team in Super Bowl history.