Did Brady give Belichick a shout-out with this postgame quote?

/ by Darren Hartwell
Presented By Nissan

Whatever terms Tom Brady and Bill Belichick ended on in New England, one thing is clear: The quarterback learned a lot from the head coach.

Brady appeared to provide one example after his Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the New York Giants on Monday night to snap a two-game losing streak. During a postgame interview with ESPN's Lisa Salters, referenced a line that "an old coach of (his)" used to say.

"Every year has its different challenges. You've seen this year a lot of crazy things happen with games," Brady told Salters when asked about the Bucs' recent struggles. "An old coach of mine used to say, 'It's not who you play, it's how you play when you play them.'"

There's no public record of Belichick saying this exact quote, so we can't confirm the Patriots head coach is the "old coach" in question. But this sure sounds like something Belichick would say behind closed doors to make sure his players don't overlook any opponent. (Brady's wry smile also seemed to suggest he was quoting his former boss.)

Watch: Edelman does spot-on reenactment of Brady-Gronk sideline chat

It's a wise saying, too: The New Orleans Saints (5-5) and Washington Football Team (4-6) are both average teams at best but took down Brady's Bucs in back-to-back weeks by capitalizing on some uncharacteristic poor play by Tampa Bay.

Brady is one of the NFL's best at avoiding repeat mistakes, though, and helped the Bucs get back on track Monday night with 307 passing yards and two touchdowns.


The 44-year-old quarterback is thriving in Tampa Bay with the help of a strong supporting cast he didn't have during his final years with the Patriots. But Brady didn't get to where he is today without learning from one of the NFL's greatest football minds.

"I had Coach Belichick there to teach me," Brady said in a recent trailer for ESPN+'s "Man in the Arena" documentary about his career. "Every Tuesday we would meet and go through the entire defensive starting lineup and their strengths and weaknesses: what we could attack, what he was watching and how I could see the things that he saw so I could gain confidence and anticipate."