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Brady recalls emotions when Patriots drafted Jimmy G

/ by Jake Levin
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Jimmy Garoppolo wasn't the first quarterback the New England Patriots drafted even with Tom Brady on the roster, nor would he be the last.

But the selection of Jimmy G was unlike the others.

Drafted in the second round, 62nd overall in 2014, Garoppolo came aboard at a time when the Patriots were coming off of their ninth straight season without a title and Brady, about to turn 37, was coming off of one of the worst seasons of his career. New England had drafted a pair of quarterbacks in the third round through the years (Kevin O'Connell in 2008 and Ryan Mallett in 2011), but never earlier than that.

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Between those facts and Bill Belichick's comments after drafting Jimmy G -- "we all know Tom's age and contract situation" -- it would be fair to wonder just what was going through Brady's head in the summer of 2014.

In the latest episode of Brady's Man in the Arena docuseries, he provides some clarity as to what he was thinking when the former Eastern Illinois signal caller arrived in Foxboro.

"I just thought like every other time, 'Embrace him, he’s your teammate,'" Brady said, making note that Garoppolo was indeed drafted higher than any Patriots quarterback to that point of the 21st century.

Brady continued on about Belichick's comments, however, which seemed to light an even greater fire than the presence of Garoppolo himself.

"Coach Belichick referenced my age to me, he referenced it in the media," Brady said. "In my mind, I was thinking, 'What are you talking about?' And I think he was referencing that not many quarterbacks have played and been successful late in their career. That’s just a fact. For me, I was like, 'I don't care about any of those things.'"

 

Brady's relationship with Garoppolo remains somewhat of a mystery, but Brady has gone on to appear in five more Super Bowls -- including Super Bowl XLIX, as covered in the latest Man in the Arena episode -- and break just about every career passing record there is since Garoppolo's name was called at the 2014 NFL Draft. Draw your own conclusions as to Jimmy G's impact.

Perhaps in one of the next two episodes of Man in the Arena we'll get more answers on the Brady-Garoppolo dynamic. In 2016, when the Patriots won Super Bowl LI, Garoppolo started the first two games of the season in place of Brady, who was serving a four-game suspension for his role in the DeflateGate scandal; in 2017, when the Patriots lost Super Bowl LII, Garoppolo was traded midway through the season to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for a second-round draft pick.