End of an Era
On February 1st, 2023, the NFL world was shocked by the news. Tom Brady, the man who had taken the league by storm in 2002, whose reign of dominance was like no other in the football world, had officially announced his retirement. After 7 Super Bowls and 23 years of pure dominance, he finally was hanging up his cleats.
Throughout his entire career, Brady has made a significant impact on everyone in the football world and right here at Edgemont. Since we are in New York, many of us support one of the three New York teams, the Jets, Giants, or, albeit less frequently, the Bills. Both the Jets and the Bills shared a division with Brady, and what followed was some of the most painful years of both franchises.
Those two franchises are used to pain and misery as the Jets have the longest active playoff drought in the league and the Bills went 0/4 in the Super Bowl. After those 4 appearances the Bills struggled to stay competitive and only managed to regain their relevance just a few years ago with the arrival of Josh Allen. Although he has done plenty for the franchise, some delusional Bills fans call him the next Tom Brady, which sounds absurdly premature. However, such a comparison also shows just how prominent a figure Brady truly is. Whenever a young star emerges, especially at the quarterback position, he will always be compared to Brady.
Nevertheless, the reality remains that Brady owned the Bills. He played them 35 times throughout his career and only lost three of them. Bills fans were probably ecstatic after he departed from the league.
The one team that was most affected by Brady’s reign was the New York Jets. Wins against Brady were scarce for an organization that desperately needed them. While Tom Brady counts his rings on both his hands, Jets fans just pray that they can get more than one hand full of wins that year. They may even dare to hope that they can finally go to the playoffs again. It was actually looking very good for them this year until they choked at the end of the year. It is almost fitting that in Brady’s last season, the Jets played so poorly.
On the other hand, the New York Giants have done what the Jets could only dream of doing. They beat Brady twice in the Super Bowl. The organization will forever have a sense of superiority over what may be the greatest football player that ever lived. When he seemed almost impossible to beat, the Giants somehow came through.
Now, there will always be those who dismiss his achievements. Some say that the only reason he won all those Super Bowls was his defense. However, every Super Bowl team needs to have a strong defensive core. Football is a team game. People conveniently forget that fact whenever they talk about Brady.
Nevertheless, Tom Brady’s rise in the NFL can inspire us all. He was a 6th round pick, yet he reached the pinnacle of his sport. He has earned everyone’s respect, and reigns as the undisputed GOAT.