NFL players must have a high degree of self-confidence. Sometimes, that confidence crosses the blurred line into delusion.
“I knew that [Brady] was better than me in my first day in the NFL,” Garoppolo told Joon Lee of BleacherReport.com. “Naturally, you’re the rookie and he’s the veteran, but you have to have that mindset, that you want to be the starter.
“Even when I was a little kid, my brothers, whenever we would play, I would literally always think I was going to win. I wouldn’t, but I would always think that. It’s like when I go to New England, when I first got there, I thought in my head, ‘I’m better than this dude.'”
Garoppolo then was asked to clarify that he regarded himself as better than Brady.
“It was always a quiet confidence,” Garoppolo said in response. “I would never speak that.”
Again, Garoppolo was asked to confirm that he believed he was the best quarterback on the team.
“Yeah, you believe in yourself,” Garoppolo said. “That’s the best way to put it.”
While Garoppolo never articulated his belief to Brady directly, Garoppolo admitted that they were competitors.
“We got along, but there were always times where we wanted to kill each other,” Garoppolo said. “It was a healthy, competitive relationship.”
The key word is “was.” Garoppolo now plays for Brady’s favorite team of his youth, and Garoppolo could be on the front end of putting together the kind of career that eventually could see him being compared favorably to Brady.
If that’s going to happen Garoppolo needs to get to work; he’s entering the fifth year of his career. By the time Brady had played five years, he had three Super Bowl rings.