Patriots

Patriots

Maybe it’s revisionist history, but former Patriot Willie McGinest said he had an inkling about Tom Brady, all the way back to Brady’s rookie year in 2000.

“He didn’t talk a lot but he had a chip on his shoulder, “ said McGinest, who was at the Pats joint practice with the Jaguars as an employee of NFL Network .”He felt like he was overlooked in college, which he was. He outperformed the guy {Drew Henson} who played a little more than him so when Tommy got his opportunity on this level, he wasn’t going to look back.”

17 years later, Brady is still carrying that chip. It’s something he - and the organization - refuse to grow complacent. McGinest saw that up close as a player under Bill Belichick and with Brady for six seasons, and still sees that same edge during the 2nd week in August here in 2017.

“Starting off as an underdog, you always keep that in the back of your mind,” he said, “and I think this franchise and this organization has been so good over the last decade plus because no matter how much success we’ve had - or they are still having - you find ways to motivate and turn yourself into the underdogs. I think that’s hard to instill with so much success but they’ve been about to do that here and it’s special.”

We’ve heard Brady talk numerous times of the last couple years about his desire to play well into his 40’s. We’ve discussed and debated it on television and the radio and in print and on blogs. McGinest smiles at the notion.

 

“I see a lot of motivation now because people keep throwing that number around {40} and all the players i’ve talked to, or people who really understand the game of football, we don’t really measure the games by numbers,” he said. “It’s more about production, what you’re doing on the field. It’s easy to talk about his age, but if you look at a player who’s involved, who keeps getting better, who’s setting records in the Super Bowl, the biggest game of his life, and people are comparing him to nobody now because he’s accomplished so much.”

“At the age of 40, he was still 1-2 for the MVP award, which he probably should have got. He was voted by players in our top 100 - voted by the players, not us - they voted Tom the number one player in the league. How could you be talking about age, or when he’s going to retire, or when he’s going to be done or any of that stuff? i just think you look at the production, look at what he’s doing on the field. I’m not sitting here saying he’s gonna play another 10 years but I don’t think we should start talking about retirement any time soon.”

We will continue to do, but it’s more than likely an exercise in futility.