Drew Bledsoe recalls believing Tom Brady would never be a starter

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When Drew Bledsoe first began working with Tom Brady during the 2000 season, Bledsoe never would have believed that Brady would supplant him as the Patriots’ starting quarterback.

In fact, Bledsoe never thought Brady would start for any NFL team, ever. In a recent interview with ESPN, Bledsoe said he viewed Brady as a kid he’d take under his wing and make sure he didn’t blow all his NFL money, because he’d only be making backup money in his career.

“When he was on practice squad his rookie year, I actually called my financial advisor about him,” Bledsoe recalled. “I was like, ‘I really like this kid. He’s never gonna be a starter. He’s gonna be Jason Garrett or one of those guys who’s just going to be around forever. You’ll really like the kid.’ And we really liked the kid, we kind of brought him in, he was over at our house for dinner probably once a week. I really liked the kid, and still do. But nobody, outside of maybe Tom himself, would have ever predicted that he would go on to be a starter in the league and be in the conversation as maybe the greatest of all time.”

Bledsoe’s memory isn’t quite right; Brady was never on the practice squad. But Brady was, at the start of his rookie season, the Patriots’ fourth-string quarterback, and not many people believed he was a future starter. If Bledsoe hadn’t been injured during Brady’s second season, there’s no telling how long it would have taken for Brady to get his opportunity. Bledsoe didn’t think it would ever happen.

88 responses to “Drew Bledsoe recalls believing Tom Brady would never be a starter

  1. The reason Drew couldn’t see it is because Brady has all the things Bledsoe never did.

    Drew was the prototype QB — 1st overall pick, tall, rocket arm. He was a scout’s dream. But when it came right down to it he couldn’t make plays in crucial moments.

    Brady was willing to train harder, study more, and outwork everyone else around him. He was able to bridge the gap in physical tools and once he got his chance he showed the intangibles and clutch that Drew never had. Things you can’t predict just by scouting a guy’s height and arm strength.

  2. He got one thing right, and that is Brady was going to be around forever. May be Brady will be around longer than George Blanda, without needing to be a field goal kicker or a backup.

  3. Just goes to show that with a little hard work and a lot of cheating, even a 6 rounder can succeed, (as long as you don’t mind the loss of integrity.)

  4. I am certain Bledsoe is telling the truth pro scouts did not see it either hence Brady was drafted very late. But it is hard to read determination and will, also some young men develope more rapidly than others. Hard work and study, the ability to read the field and intelligence are not readily read

  5. Brady out played Bledsoe in camp in 2001. Drew’s replacement was inevitable, even if it wasn’t by Brady. Bledsoe proved this quickly with the Bills and Cowboys.

  6. Could always tell Drew is still not completely over losing his job in NE to Tom. Guess I can’t blame him.

  7. Drew was the prototype QB — 1st overall pick, tall, rocket arm. He was a scout’s dream. But when it came right down to it he couldn’t make plays in crucial moments.

    ——
    Eh… he did alright in the AFCCG vs Steelers in relief of Brady. Considering he hadn’t played at all since week 2.

  8. If Bledsoe doesn’t get hurt… or even if the tuck rule wasn’t called on Brady
    and they lose that game… or if they lose the Steelers or Rams games… Can’t see them making the QB switch that they did at that time but maybe they do eventually. Or not. Maybe the shelf life of the Greatest Show on Turf goes a bit longer who knows?

    Crazy how the destiny of the Pats and entire league turned just like that.

  9. Drew thought the same thing as 99% of the NFL did at that time, so don’t go hating on him. It’s easy discount Bledsoe now, but Brady was a 6th round QB. How many of them have this kind on success in the NFL? Ah, none. NE gets a lot credit for drafting Brady, but it was pretty much a crapshoot, as one NE official said, if we thought he would be this good, we certainly wouldn’t have waited until the 6th round to get him.
    Brady actually benefited from the team playing harder for him than Drew. Reminiscent of early Ravens’ teams where the defense knew they couldn’t give up any points due to lesser than average QBs at the helm.
    Brady also benefited from a dumbed down version of the offense when he took over. He was asked to do a lot less than Drew. And before you call this Brady hate, this came straight from the mouths of NE coaches.
    While I do not like the Patriots, I love the way they approach the game. Too many teams go for the home run on every play, but NE’s goal is to get 10 yards in 4 downs and then another 10 yards until you reach the endzone.
    That’s also the reason I think Brady is not in the same class as Manning, Rodgers and Marino when it comes to QB play. He can’t make the same throws and he was pretty much a game manager in his first 6 NFL seasons. It was appropriate to say that back then, but now your called a Brady hater, if you do. And let’s not act like we haven’t seen QB after QB have success in the NE system.
    The Brady run NE offense has been one of the best in NFL history, but that does not make him the best QB ever, in my opinion. Brady benefited greatly from superb coaching and team philosophy, very fortunate occourences and favorable situations that quite frankly no other team gets on a consistent basis.
    I look at the Brady NE combo much like Emmitt Smith with the Cowboys. Most regard Barry Sanders as a better RB than Emmitt. While that may but true, I would take Emmitt with the Cowboy system, but without the system, I would probably choose Barry as the better runner. Much like Rodgers is a better QB than Brady, I would still take Brady over Rodgers, if his NE system came along with him. 10 yards is all you need…

  10. Bledsoe proved this quickly with the Bills
    ——-
    Bledsoe was replaced by JP Losman in Buffalo after IIRC taking the Bills to 9-7 and within a whisker of the playoffs. I think they would have liked to have that decision back at the time.

  11. collectordude says:
    January 27, 2020 at 7:26 am
    bledsoe will only be in the HOF as a paying customer.

    ——
    A few years ago I would have agreed but it seems that the hall is turning into the Hall of Very Good. I think his odds to get in are better than they were.

  12. He’s not wrong. Even NE had no idea how good he’d be. But someone commented above that one can’t grade heart and determination. That’s what separates Brady from the rest. He worked harder and did more with less as far as measurable .

  13. He tells the truth and everyone gets their panties in a bunch. Some of y’all act like you knew in 2000 that Tom Brady would do what he did. Bledsoe was a good QB. Brady turned out to be incredible. But don’t knock Bledsoe because he didn’t think Brady would be a starter at the time. Belechick didn’t think so either!

  14. i wonder how Drews pro stats would have turned out had the cheating started when he was QB in NE ??

  15. And let’s not act like we haven’t seen QB after QB have success in the NE system.

    You haven’t.
    Matt Cassel put up half the production Brady did the season before
    Jimmy G played 1 and a half games
    Matt cassell had a better season 2 years later in KC

  16. Meanwhile #NeverForget Blatherin’ Bill Polian had a first round grade on the guy but didn’t draft him in any of the first six rounds because reasons lol…most overrated GM/talking head ever.

  17. If they didn’t cheat…
    If Bledsoe didn’t get hurt…
    If the tuck rule…
    If they lose the Steelers or Rams games…

    If if’s and but’s were candy and nuts, we would all have a Merry Christmas.

    The fact is well established beyond all reasonable doubt that Brady is the GOAT, and that also includes the fantasy about Rodgers. Brady has proven it repeatedly over a very long time, whereas Rodgers and everyone else has proven they can’t compete with Brady.

    As for Emmitt Smith and Barry Sanders, two great running backs and a close second and third to the greatest of all; Walter Payton who did it in and era and with teams that were just plain awful.

  18. onebuffalove716 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 7:51 am
    He’s not wrong. Even NE had no idea how good he’d be.

    —-

    And yet Bill Polian now claims he had a 1st round rating on Brady

  19. Sigh. The narrative that Brady would never have supplanted Bledsoe had it not been for Mo Lewis is simply false. Many of the beat writers covering the 2001 training camp were writing articles about how quickly Brady was progressing, how Bledsoe was still making the same mistakes he’d make early in is career, and how Bledsoe might get Kosared (my term) in a few years. It probably would not have happened until until 2004 or 2005, when the cap hit for the new deal Bledsoe had just signed became easier to swallow, but it was going to happen.

  20. Flash1211 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:10 am
    And let’s not act like we haven’t seen QB after QB have success in the NE system.

    You haven’t.
    Matt Cassel put up half the production Brady did the season before
    Jimmy G played 1 and a half games
    Matt cassell had a better season 2 years later in KC

    ——
    Yup.

    16-0 to 11-5 is the same drop off as 11-5 to 6-10. Nobody would be calling the latter a good season.

    Brissett also got shut out at home vs Buffalo (although he was injured and shouldn’t have been playing at all)

  21. Anyone old enough to remember that time period knows what he is saying was the thought of everyone (except maybe Michigan fans and even they were 50/50 on Brady vs Drew Henson) and everyone was just as surprised that the Patriots didn’t lose every game with Brady as well when he came in.

    It’s hard for the younger generation who grew up with the guy as a superstar to understand but think of Tom Brady becoming one of the greatest QB’s ever like Garrett Gilbert becoming the greatest QB ever. If you’re reading this and going “who’s Garrett Gilbert”…exactly. He is currently a third stringer in the NFL who was drafted in the 6th round whose only real playing time was in the AAF.

  22. Belechick didn’t think so either!

    —–

    The former team MD (When Brady was a backup) lives in my town. I heard him say (at a lecture) “I called Bill to tell him that Drew would be out for quite a while. He said to me ‘Don’t rush him back, doc.'”

    Did that mean he was worried about Bledsoe, or knew TB’s potential?

  23. bearssuck says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:09 am
    i wonder how Drews pro stats would have turned out had the cheating started when he was QB in NE ??
    —-/
    If the cheating started when Brady was QB the Patriots would win every game 100-0

  24. nflequalswwe says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:14 am
    Meanwhile #NeverForget Blatherin’ Bill Polian had a first round grade on the guy but didn’t draft him in any of the first six rounds because reasons lol…most overrated GM/talking head ever.

    0 1 Rate This
    _________________________________________

    Considering he drafted Peyton Manning who just came off turning the Colts to a playoff team when Brady was in the draft not sure what good drafting a QB he gave a 1st round grade would do to help the Colts.

  25. Sour grapes from Drew who still obviously hasn’t forgotten/forgiven that Brady took his job and last chance at a Super Bowl. Bledsoe was healthy for that 1st Super Bowl but the coaching staff stayed with Tom and the rest is history.

  26. riverhorsey says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:44 am
    Tom will be back with New England another year or two and will probably play in another Super Bowl.

    3 1 Rate This

    ———————

    If that’s true two things need to happen:

    1. Brady needs to play 1 of the 2 years at lesser money than he’d like.
    2. It can only be a 2 year deal, not 3.

    The rumor is there is a deadline on him, so there is likely a contract on the table as we speak, but under BB’s terms. If this rumor is true.

  27. thecape15 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:34 am
    Belechick didn’t think so either!

    —–

    The former team MD (When Brady was a backup) lives in my town. I heard him say (at a lecture) “I called Bill to tell him that Drew would be out for quite a while. He said to me ‘Don’t rush him back, doc.’”

    Did that mean he was worried about Bledsoe, or knew TB’s potential?
    _________________________________________________

    I think that would be a bad take for Bill. I mean he thought Brady was better than Bledsoe, but couldn’t pull the trigger without an injury? That just seems very anti “Patriot Way”.

  28. SWFLPC.INC says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:16 am
    onebuffalove716 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 7:51 am
    He’s not wrong. Even NE had no idea how good he’d be.

    —-

    And yet Bill Polian now claims he had a 1st round rating on Brady
    ———————————
    Also every patriot fan had a first round rating on him too

  29. “Even NE had no idea how good he’d be”

    Understatement. Brady wasn’t just their 6th round pick. He was the second selection they made in that 6th round after Antwan Harris.

    And about a dozen picks before Brady was selected, the Cleveland Browns chose the legendary Spergon Wynn.

  30. bam5239 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 9:09 am
    thecape15 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:34 am
    Belechick didn’t think so either!

    —–

    The former team MD (When Brady was a backup) lives in my town. I heard him say (at a lecture) “I called Bill to tell him that Drew would be out for quite a while. He said to me ‘Don’t rush him back, doc.’”

    Did that mean he was worried about Bledsoe, or knew TB’s potential?
    _________________________________________________

    I think that would be a bad take for Bill. I mean he thought Brady was better than Bledsoe, but couldn’t pull the trigger without an injury? That just seems very anti “Patriot Way

    He had to know something, he kept 4 QBs on the active roster.
    Who does that ?
    He knew if he put Brady on the practice squad he would be picked up because of the way he played in the preseason

  31. I think that would be a bad take for Bill. I mean he thought Brady was better than Bledsoe, but couldn’t pull the trigger without an injury? That just seems very anti “Patriot Way”.

    =====

    I wonder what he meant. Maybe he saw the potential, which may not have been enough to bench Bledsoe. But with Bledsoe down, BB had more options.

  32. Most overrated QB in the history of the NFL. A game manager in an EXTREMELY easy system (matt cassell won 11 games in this system- anyone can win there). He can throw screens and slants- referred to as “high percentage passes” b/c they are EASY. He doesnt have footwork, he doesnt get out of the pocket, he doesnt read through progressions, he doesnt throw it deep, it isnt tough or gritty. His skill set is 3 step drops and quick screens. There is a reason he was a 6th round pick, not even a full time starter in college, and why he was a 4th stringer to start his career. That doesnt jut change overnight, its the system. Tim Tebow would have 8 super bowls in that offense if he came out in 2000 and joined them.

  33. In the future Brady the legend will be the gold standard at the quarterback position in all of NFL history. There will never be another like Brady. 6 titles and counting.

    Most clutch passer EVER. Most wins. Most playoff wins. Most championship games most super bowls most titles. Near top all career passing records.

    A LEGEND and GREATEST QB of ALL TIME. Period. No Arguments. Brady slayed them ALL

  34. “Considering he drafted Peyton Manning who just came off turning the Colts to a playoff team when Brady was in the draft not sure what good drafting a QB he gave a 1st round grade would do to help the Colts.”

    Ron Wolf school of thought that you always take a QB if you believe they can be a starter; to say nothing of an (honestly) 1st round graded player at any position being available in the 4th or later…showcase him in the preseason and garbage time and flip him ala Jimmy G (but hopefully for more).

  35. Bledsoe was way, way better than some here are giving him credit for. He wasn’t all tools and no talent like some kind of draft bust. He was throwing for 4,000+ yards when that was still a huge benchmark. He took a team to the Super Bowl. He’s 16th all-time in passing yards. He played 14 seasons with four Pro Bowls. We’re not talking Jamarcus Russell here.

  36. mrfrostyj says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:39 am
    _________________________________________

    Considering he drafted Peyton Manning who just came off turning the Colts to a playoff team when Brady was in the draft not sure what good drafting a QB he gave a 1st round grade would do to help the Colts.
    __________________________________________

    Trade bait… I think Garrapolo and Brisset have more than shown the superiority of the drafting by value and not need system.

  37. Why all the disparaging comments on Bledsoe? He’s basically saying that he liked the guy and as anyone might say way back then “Who’da thunk it”.
    Brady has done a remarkable job. But also give Bledsoe a break here, he was a starting NFL quarterback, which makes him possibly one of the 32 best at his job in the world at some point in his career- not bad either.

  38. Tom Brady was a 6th round draft pick. Players drafted in those rounds rarely are given the opportunity to fail. Meaning first round QBs are generally given 2-3 seasons to mature, get game experience, and if they fail they get cut and still have another team willing to give them another shot…ussually as a backup or salvage projects. Late round QBs though are disposable. They get only a handful of chances to show what they can do. Which makes what Brady did fairly amazing.
    And anyone getting on Bledsoe for speaking the truth is probably suffering from a case of revisionist history because when Bledsoe went down hardly anyone expected much from Brady. Very few knew who he was and they just hoped he would be a good game manager until Bledsoe came back (which ironically Bledsoe was a very good game manager his first couple of seasons in the league)

  39. If Belichick was the head coach of the 96 Pats I think they upset the Packers and Bledsoe has a ring. GB had no answer for Curtis Martin in the second half. I’m sure he wouldn’t have switched out the double team that was very effective against Reggie White until the 4th quarter.

    Parcels was already out the door and his demeanour after the game admitted it.

  40. @ oscarxray

    “It shouldn’t be a shock a guy from Michigan is better than one from Washington State.”

    Right…… Because Michigan is known for being a powerhouse when it comes to producing NFL-ready QB’s. Brady is the only one who really deserves mention, IMHO. Bob Griese, Drew Henson, Chad Henne, Elvis Grbac, Jim Harbaugh….. How did they fare in the pros? Need I say more?

  41. hailtothenamechange says:
    January 27, 2020 at 10:10 am
    Bledsoe was way, way better than some here are giving him credit for. He wasn’t all tools and no talent like some kind of draft bust. He was throwing for 4,000+ yards when that was still a huge benchmark. He took a team to the Super Bowl. He’s 16th all-time in passing yards. He played 14 seasons with four Pro Bowls. We’re not talking Jamarcus Russell here.

    6 0 Rate This

    ——————–

    Absolutely,. He was decade-challenged in a sense the slow footed big QB with the big arm, started to struggle with the speed of the game. The classic drop back passer was fading, which is why he and Marino for example, started doing a lot of shotgun work in the 1990s.

    Anyway, his numbers rival that of Dan Fouts and Bledsoe actually helped NE to two SBs, getting one ring. In fact, his TD/INT ratio is slightly better than Fouts’s.

    You could easily argue he should be in the HOF if Namath, Fouts, etc, are in. And, if wittle Eli does get in, Bledsoe should get consideration.

    If you put Bledsoe in an era any time pre-1990s, he’s absolutely a HOF QB.

  42. GoodellMustGo says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:31 am

    16-0 to 11-5 is the same drop off as 11-5 to 6-10. Nobody would be calling the latter a good season.

    Brissett also got shut out at home vs Buffalo (although he was injured and shouldn’t have been playing at all)

    24 5 Rate This

    Nope lmao Brisset definitely should have been playing. Would you rather have had Edelman take over and risk getting injured? He made the correct and selfless decision by playing

  43. Kevin Lanflisi says:
    January 27, 2020 at 11:06 am
    GoodellMustGo says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:31 am

    16-0 to 11-5 is the same drop off as 11-5 to 6-10. Nobody would be calling the latter a good season.

    Brissett also got shut out at home vs Buffalo (although he was injured and shouldn’t have been playing at all)

    24 5 Rate This

    Nope lmao Brisset definitely should have been playing. Would you rather have had Edelman take over and risk getting injured? He made the correct and selfless decision by playing
    ——
    That was on Jimmy. Team expected him to play but he backed out close to the game. Team reportedly wasn’t happy about it and Brissett with a busted thumb on his throwing hand had to play. One of several reasons why I was not as high on Jimmy as a Patriot as many Patriot fans were.

  44. Not sure why people bash Bledsoe (except for the post SB plane ride). He was just having an honest discussion. As one commenter noted, not many saw great promise in Brady at the beginning. Not at Michigan, not in the draft. Teams are full of overlooked success stories: Brady, David Andrews, Jeff Saturday, Danny Woodhead. First round draftees don’t always click. Heck, NE picked Bledsoe over – who was that guy – Rick Mirer! LOL. Remember him? Me neither.

  45. SI put out an article about Tom Brady years ago regarding the road he took to becoming what he’s accomplished so far in his career. The rigorous workouts regarding
    footwork,arm strength, etc.his coaches advised him to improve on. He was intelligent enough to take the advice being offered. Smart man.

  46. The fact that Brady was a 6th round pick tells you no other teams liked him very much. If Bledsoe didn’t get injured, who knows, the Patriots might have drafted another young QB the following season and waived Tom. Since no other teams liked him enough to draft him, chances are he wouldn’t have been picked up by anybody else.

  47. Most overrated QB in the history of the NFL

    +++++++

    This reminds me of the two Rams sitting on the bench in the ’02 SB saying the same thing!

    By now, you should realize that time has proved you wrong.

  48. Right…… Because Michigan is known for being a powerhouse when it comes to producing NFL-ready QB’s. Brady is the only one who really deserves mention, IMHO. Bob Griese, Drew Henson, Chad Henne, Elvis Grbac, Jim Harbaugh….. How did they fare in the pros? Need I say more?
    __________________________

    Geez, how are grading QB? Newsflash, not every QB that steps into the league is going to be Brady, Brees, Marino, Manning. With Brady, that is a quality group indeed. What college is better? Miami, Maryland, Wash State, USC? I think Michigan stacks up pretty well. 2 SB champs!

  49. Ugadogs21 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 10:22 am

    LOL! How is it that Jason Garrett was on his radar?

    =============

    Garrett was a Cowboys’ backup QB for 6 years, and then switched to the Giants in the same role. He was pretty well known during this time, as this included the Aikman SB years, which lined up with Bledsoe’s career.

  50. I was a huge Bledsoe fan, and was not happy when the Patriots chose Brady over him during that SuperBowl run. Shows how much I know, but there is not a single bad word than was or can ever be said about Drew Bledsoe. Guy is pure class, and he deserves some credit going his way for the rebirth of football here in New England. Brady took the team over the hump, but Bledsoe helped lay the foundation.

  51. Drew started the turnaround with the Kraft era so he will always be remembered. His return in the Pittsburgh AFC game (subbing for Brady) was emotional. Unfortunately Drew was purely a pocket passer and got happy feet with decision making. Announcers used to speculate who would win in a footrace between Drew and Frankenstein.

    No one saw Brady’s career coming. It’s amazing how many people like Polian retroactively say they knew it.

  52. Most overrated QB in the history of the NFL. A game manager in an EXTREMELY easy system (matt cassell won 11 games in this system- anyone can win there). He can throw screens and slants- referred to as “high percentage passes” b/c they are EASY. He doesnt have footwork, he doesnt get out of the pocket, he doesnt read through progressions, he doesnt throw it deep, it isnt tough or gritty. His skill set is 3 step drops and quick screens. There is a reason he was a 6th round pick, not even a full time starter in college, and why he was a 4th stringer to start his career. That doesnt jut change overnight, its the system. Tim Tebow would have 8 super bowls in that offense if he came out in 2000 and joined them.
    ____________________________

    Wow! Even I, a staunch Brady critic, would not go that far. Yes, overrated, but still a great QB nonetheless, in a QB friendly manageable system. A few things you have wrong. Brady has great footwork and pocket presence, maybe the best I’ve seen. Not tough? Really dude? You don’t get tougher than Tom Brady. Tom will run through a brick wall, if would get him a win. Brady was actually better than Henson in college, but Drew was a local product, so Brady didn’t get his fair shot. What’s up with Bady and QBs named Drew? Sorry Bledsoe, not this time.

  53. FootbalFanz says:
    January 27, 2020 at 9:48 am
    Most overrated QB in the history of the NFL. A game manager in an EXTREMELY easy system (matt cassell won 11 games in this system- anyone can win there). He can throw screens and slants- referred to as “high percentage passes” b/c they are EASY. He doesnt have footwork, he doesnt get out of the pocket, he doesnt read through progressions, he doesnt throw it deep, it isnt tough or gritty. His skill set is 3 step drops and quick screens. There is a reason he was a 6th round pick, not even a full time starter in college, and why he was a 4th stringer to start his career. That doesnt jut change overnight, its the system. Tim Tebow would have 8 super bowls in that offense if he came out in 2000 and joined them.

    ——-

    Apparently you didn’t watch Brady lead a 4th quarter comeback and throw two TDs in the SB to beat the Seahawks. Then you also missed possible the greatest SB of all time where Brady brought the Patriots back from a 28-3 deficit late in the 3rd quarter to beat the Falcons. Even in the two SB losses against the Giants, Brady led drives to give his team the lead only to be let down by the defense.

    Brady has 30 postseason wins, 9 AFC championships and 6 SB wins. No other player even comes close.

  54. I always thought Michael Bishop would supplant Bledsoe. There was a 4th QB carried too. Remember “the veteran John Frieze?” Can you remember a time the name John Frieze was uttered without the word “veteran” attached?

  55. shutiggyupdotcom ,

    This is how I remember it too. Not only the beat writers but I remember coaches being relayed off the record about how they liked him better than Bledsoe because of how quickly he got the ball out of his hand as opposed to Bledsoe coming out of his second training camp and how that made the offense go better. People seem to forget that Bledsoe had gone 5-11 in back to back years and started off 1-3 that year when he got hurt. I thought it was a joke that people were actually questioning Belichick when he wouldn’t put Bledsoe back in after he healed up in light of that. Belichick definitely had soured on him but maybe didn’t have the juice to bench him earlier because he was the first $100 million QB and had taken the Patriots to the Super Bowl 5 years earlier.

  56. Bledsoe was a very good, not HOF level, NFL QB. He took losing his job to injury with the utmost class. Inside he was probably fuming. He could have died, if he went home that night.
    Brady might have been a 6th rnd pk, but the Pats knew they had something almost immediately. That’s why they kept 4 QBs. Unheard of. That was Dick Rehbein and Charlie Weis. Brady had the quick release, the quick decision making and pinpoint accuracy that was perfect for Weis’ offense. None of those things were Bledsoe’s strong suit. They weren’t even afraid of trading Bledsoe within the division. The Raiders had plenty of chances to win after the correct Tuck Rule call. They could have taken a knee against the Rams, like Madden recommended, and went OT when their D was leaking oil. But, Brady got Vinitieri in FG range. The rest is history.

  57. It was actually Dick Rehbein, a coach with the Patriots who pushed them to draft Brady that year, Drew was also getting pretty beaten up by the lack of a decent offensive line as engineered by bobby Grier which led BB in his first year to discard any number of them resulting in the 5-11 record. I think BB had seen enough by his second year that he knew he had to replace Drew as he had gotten happy feet

    BTW Rehbein passed away the next year and Drew stepped up and paid Rehbein’s daughter’s tuition to a local Catholic high school. Drew, as always a class act.

  58. Imagine all these Patriots fans busting on their own reasonably successful QB because he wasn’t Tom Brady. Life’s about to get a whole lot tougher.

  59. Most overrated QB in the history of the NFL. A game manager in an EXTREMELY easy system (matt cassell won 11 games in this system- anyone can win there).

    ———————————-

    #1, the schedule in 2008 is as easy as the first half of 2019 season that jets, Bills and Dolphins won 19 out of 30 against non-divional teams. Anyone who use 2008 season to prove anything is clueless.

    #2, Tell your favorite QB to game manager 440 points in 16 games. Please don’t claim you favorite QB is a moron who refuses to do the thing that is good for his team.

    #3, “Throw the balls at the earliest possible time”, it is Brady’s sytem.

  60. pologroundsvet says:
    January 27, 2020 at 10:04 am
    Well, now we know why Bledsoe’s not a coach! (Hope he is well)!
    ———————————
    Actually Bledsoe is a coach for a local high school…

  61. Kevin Lanflisi says:
    January 27, 2020 at 11:06 am

    Nope lmao Brisset definitely should have been playing. Would you rather have had Edelman take over and risk getting injured? He made the correct and selfless decision by playing
    ———————–
    Brissett was playing with a broken throwing thumb and needed surgery. He shouldn’t have been playing. Period.

  62. realfootballfan says:
    January 27, 2020 at 12:31 pm
    People seem to forget that Bledsoe had gone 5-11 in back to back years and started off 1-3 that year when he got hurt
    ————————-
    They forget it because it didn’t happen. Bledsoe went 9-7 in 1999 and 5-11 in 2000. 2001 team went 11-5 and won the Super Bowl.

  63. RamblinRandall says:
    January 27, 2020 at 2:23 pm
    One of the worst quarterbacks to ever play the game
    =====

    At this point, 20 years and 6 SB later, comments like these are exposed for what they are.

  64. They forget it because it didn’t happen. Bledsoe went 9-7 in 1999 and 5-11 in 2000. 2001 team went 11-5 and won the Super Bowl.
    __________________________

    Plenty teams have done a 180 without a QB change. It was NE’s time.

  65. RamblinRandall says:
    January 27, 2020 at 2:23 pm
    One of the worst quarterbacks to ever play the game
    ——

    Who? Bledsoe? Uh… no.

  66. If everybody is nice to Brady he might retire. But as long as they keep talking him down he will wanting to rub noses in it. He has the biggest chip on his shoulder and it doesnt matter how many rings he has. So be nice

  67. Bledsoe wasn’t knocking Brady, he was knocking himself for not seeing Brady’s potential.
    Other players from the 2000 NE team have said they saw nothing in Brady. Who saw Brady’s potential….Belichick.
    Belichick had Brady rated as a 3rd round pick, but they already had 3 QBs under contract, including the highest paid QB in the NFL, Bledsoe. NE carried 4 QBs in 2000, which everyone thought was nuts, but Belichick was afraid another team would steal Brady if he put him on the official practice squad.
    Brady’s number one advantage over other QBs is his BRAIN and work habits. Brady is able to see things, before and after the snap, that other QBs can’t see. Brady has an average NFL arm and no legs, but he is the most effective QB in NFL history because of his thought process.
    In the ESPN doc “The Brady 6”, Belichick stated that Brady outplayed Bledsoe in the 2001 preseason games, but he started Bledsoe because of his experience. So, Bledsoe’s days were numbered even without the injury.

  68. realfootballfan says:
    January 27, 2020 at 12:31 pm
    shutiggyupdotcom ,
    This is how I remember it too. Not only the beat writers but I remember coaches being relayed off the record about how they liked him better than Bledsoe because of how quickly he got the ball out of his hand as opposed to Bledsoe coming out of his second training camp and how that made the offense go better. People seem to forget that Bledsoe had gone 5-11 in back to back years and started off 1-3 that year when he got hurt. I thought it was a joke that people were actually questioning Belichick when he wouldn’t put Bledsoe back in after he healed up in light of that. Belichick definitely had soured on him but maybe didn’t have the juice to bench him earlier because he was the first $100 million QB and had taken the Patriots to the Super Bowl 5 years earlier.
    ——————————————
    To refresh your memory a little. In 2000 the Patriots went 5-11, but in 1999 they went 8-8 not 5-11. In 2001, yes the Patriots started 1-3, but Bledsoe got injured in week 2, they started 0-2 with Bledsoe. Brady started week 3 against the Colts in old Foxborough stadium, the first time he walloped the Peyton Manning-led Colts 44-13. 3 weeks later he did it again in Indy 38-17 to make the Patriots 3-3.

    I think BB’s major problem with Bledsoe was that he was the inside source for the Boston sports media. I think we all know by now that BB prefers to control the info given to the media and he didn’t want Bledsoe talking out of turn.

  69. be in the conversation as maybe the greatest of all time.”
    ———————
    in the conversation?? maybe??? hey drew – denial is not a river in egypt.

  70. Pats staff from those days has said BB wanted to start Brady from camp in 2001. Drew has always had a chip on his shoulder about Brady, who is just a far superior QB to Drew.

  71. “Sigh. The narrative that Brady would never have supplanted Bledsoe had it not been for Mo Lewis is simply false. Many of the beat writers covering the 2001 training camp were writing articles about how quickly Brady was progressing, how Bledsoe was still making the same mistakes he’d make early in is career, and how Bledsoe might get Kosared (my term) in a few years. It probably would not have happened until until 2004 or 2005, when the cap hit for the new deal Bledsoe had just signed became easier to swallow, but it was going to happen.”

    ——————————————–

    Sportswriters have been writing those articles about every quarterback since the dawn of the typewriter. We’ve read this about others. I guarantee you just Bengals’ writers alone will net you a slew of them. Cam Newton and Will Grier is another you can bring up now. They write this stuff a lot. Thing is, everyone gets bad or retires eventually, so saying that Brady would have supplanted Bledsoe inevitably is not true. What is true is this: “Bledsoe would have been supplanted eventually”. Would it have been Brady? We don’t know. Brady is like the first guy he went up against the SB-Kurt Warner. Why? because the dude was a fourth string QB. Fourth string. He came out of nowhere (almost nowhere, considering that he at least managed to get drafted), did his job for a few years until he got the trust to be the franchise guy. Nobody thought that would happen. And if the Pats hadn’t won those games they did, they probably would have gone back to Bledsoe when he got healthy and drafted a new guy high. But Brady won and the pats won some big games that showed that he could be trusted. It wasn’t inevitable. That’s why it’s enviable.

  72. Bledsoe had the talent. Then again every time things got tight he tried to make a homerun. Brady listened to belichek and didn’t make the big ego reaches that ruined bledsoe.

  73. GoodellMustGo says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:31 am
    Flash1211 says:
    January 27, 2020 at 8:10 am
    And let’s not act like we haven’t seen QB after QB have success in the NE system.

    You haven’t.
    Matt Cassel put up half the production Brady did the season before
    Jimmy G played 1 and a half games
    Matt cassell had a better season 2 years later in KC

    ——
    Yup.

    16-0 to 11-5 is the same drop off as 11-5 to 6-10. Nobody would be calling the latter a good season.

    Brissett also got shut out at home vs Buffalo (although he was injured and shouldn’t have been playing at all)

    ————-

    By this logic, Brady was worse than Cassell because he went 10-6 the season after Cassell went 11-5. The point is that the Patriots machine kept rolling, even with Cassell. Want to take bets on whether or not the Pats win with a different QB in 2020?

  74. Nite2al: Drew thought the same thing as 99% of the NFL did at that time, so don’t go hating on him. It’s easy discount Bledsoe now, but Brady was a 6th round QB. How many of them have this kind on success in the NFL? Ah, none. NE gets a lot credit for drafting Brady, but it was pretty much a crapshoot, as one NE official said, if we thought he would be this good, we certainly wouldn’t have waited until the 6th round to get him.
    Brady actually benefited from the team playing harder for him than Drew. Reminiscent of early Ravens’ teams where the defense knew they couldn’t give up any points due to lesser than average QBs at the helm.
    Brady also benefited from a dumbed down version of the offense when he took over. He was asked to do a lot less than Drew. And before you call this Brady hate, this came straight from the mouths of NE coaches.
    While I do not like the Patriots, I love the way they approach the game. Too many teams go for the home run on every play, but NE’s goal is to get 10 yards in 4 downs and then another 10 yards until you reach the endzone.
    That’s also the reason I think Brady is not in the same class as Manning, Rodgers and Marino when it comes to QB play. He can’t make the same throws and he was pretty much a game manager in his first 6 NFL seasons. It was appropriate to say that back then, but now your called a Brady hater, if you do. And let’s not act like we haven’t seen QB after QB have success in the NE system.
    The Brady run NE offense has been one of the best in NFL history, but that does not make him the best QB ever, in my opinion. Brady benefited greatly from superb coaching and team philosophy, very fortunate occourences and favorable situations that quite frankly no other team gets on a consistent basis.
    I look at the Brady NE combo much like Emmitt Smith with the Cowboys. Most regard Barry Sanders as a better RB than Emmitt. While that may but true, I would take Emmitt with the Cowboy system, but without the system, I would probably choose Barry as the better runner. Much like Rodgers is a better QB than Brady, I would still take Brady over Rodgers, if his NE system came along with him. 10 yards is all you need…
    __________________________________________________________________________________

    This is the best comment on here. Also, not only did Brady get a watered-down playbook, the Pats also had a better team than they did in 2000, along with an easier schedule. Also, his passer ratings during the first three SB years weren’t much better than Kurt Warner’s worst year as a Giant, and he never had a 100 rating or better until he hooked up with Moss.

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