It’s the age old question, who is responsible for the Patriots dynasty: Bill Belichick or Tom Brady? Since Brady departed from Boston, Belichick has shown Brady wasn’t the reason for the Patriots dynasty. It was actually Belichick’s beautiful football mind.
In the COVID-ridden 2020 season, the deck was stacked against Belichick and the Pats all year. They had 8 players sit out due to covid-19, 3 of which were major contributors. The Patriots lost their starting quarterback without any successor, because Brady ran his replacement out of town. Belichick’s new starting quarterback was coming off a serious foot injury and also got sick with Covid during the season. Julian Edleman, the Patriots’ top receiver, has been out since week 8 and despite all this, Belichick still has his team at a respectful 6-6 in the hunt for a playoff spot.
In TOMpa Bay, Brady has been in the best situation in football and only produced a 7-5 record. Brady really doesn’t have any excuses, either. Only one player for the Bucs, offensive lineman Brad Seaton, who has never started a game for Tampa, sat out the 2020 season due to COVID concerns, and Brady has the best weapons in all of football. The system quarterback has Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, Ronald Jones, Leonard Fournette, Rob Gronkowski and Cameron Brate, but this Brady led offense only ranks 15th in the league. While last year, with a blind Jameis Winston, who had fewer weapons than Brady, the Bucs secured the 3rd best offense.
Back to 2020, and Belichick has a fraction of the offensive firepower the Bucs have. Despite the lack of weapons at Belichick’s disposal, the Pats still have 19th best offense in the NFL. If Brady is the best quarterback of all time, don’t you think he should be dominating with the players he has around him? Put any average quarterback on the Bucs and they would produce more than what Brady has done.
Let’s not forget Brady, once again, has a strong defense making things easier for him. Against Tampa’s 7th ranked defense, Patrick Mahomes threw for 465 yards and 3 touchdowns. With that stat line, you would think the Chiefs put up a 50 burger, but they only scored 27, and Tom Brady, with the best weapons he’s ever played with, couldn’t beat them. The Chiefs on average score 30.8 points per game, so the defense did what they had to do to win. Tom Brady, on the other hand, did not. It was a winnable game especially for a team fighting for a playoff spot.
In New England, Belichick, after losing 2 key defensive players in Dont’a Hightower and Patrick Chung, has the 12th best defense in the league. Again showing he can do more with less, something Tom Brady has yet to do.
My last argument is that Belichick has a tendency to make bad quarterbacks look great. The man legit won 10 games with Matt Cassel who, in my opinion, is ass. Cassel only has 36 career wins while starting in 81 games. Without the 2008 season in New England, Cassel would have a career record of 26-40. He’s not a very good quarterback, and yet Belichick made him look great. Cassel eventually robbed Kansas City of $63 million.
Cassel isn’t the only average to below average quarterback Belichick has gotten paid because of their play with New England. Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett both signed lucrative deals since leaving the Patriots. Garoppolo, who has only played in one full season due to injury, is average at best. Yet, he signed a 5 year $137 million deal. He is extremely overpaid because Belichick made him look like he was the next big star.
Then we get to Brissett, who turned 2 starts into a 2 year $30 million contract. Brissett is a backup QB and nothing more. So, for Belichick to make him look as good as he did, shows just how great the Patriots coach is.
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The season is still not over and Brady could totally change the narrative. Brady would need to get in the playoffs and make it to at least the conference finals in order for this season to be successful. But if Belichick gets this Pats team into the playoffs, that should also be viewed as a successful season, considering the circumstances they found themselves in.
Brady is clearly not the same QB he was in New England and never should have left, since it probably will hurt his legacy. The debate should be over. It was all Belichick’s system and it had nothing to do with Brady. The Pats could have had the same dynasty with any average quarterback. Tom Brady isn’t special.