Bill Belichick is the most successful coach in NFL history. Rival fans despise him but his knowledge of the sport must be respected. He also had an interesting take on the best quarterback he coached against. However, Rodgers didn’t even enter the conversation. Instead, he opted for Peyton Manning. Admittedly, the Patriots don’t play the Packers very often. But it was still interesting to see Belichick’s perspective.
Belichick admired Manning’s ability to call his plays. “He basically called every play by adjusting and/or changing the play once he saw what the defense was doing,” he told the Boston Globe. He excelled at using the cadence and recognizing blitzes, and more than anyone single offensive player, he forced us to change and adapt defensive game plans.” The coach loved the challenge of trying to outclass Manning.
Super Bowls aren’t always a fair reflection of an individual player’s ability. Dan Marino never won a ring because Miami never had a strong defense. But he is unanimously one of the greatest signal-callers ever. Brady’s unique record with seven rings as well as success with two franchises is unique. However, their Pro Bowl selection rate is an interesting comparison (via Sportskeeda).
Brady has 14 Pro Bowl appearances compared to Rodgers’ nine. Yes, Brady has played for longer than Rodgers, but he lost an entire season to injury. He also missed the first four games of the 2016 season after the DeflateGate scandal. But he still made the Pro Bowl and won the MVP award. Arguably, when a superstar plays alongside weaker teammates it’s easier to stand out. But it’s impossible to outclass Brady.
We’ve spoken about Brady’s move to Tampa. But this came with a unique challenge. He was accustomed to Bill Belichick’s style of play for 20 years. Suddenly, he had to learn Bruce Arians’ playbook. Make no mistake, this was a massive challenge for an older quarterback. Nobody knows if Rodgers would prosper in such a situation. Maybe he’d blossom but Brady proved his ability.
It helped that the Buccaneers brought in Rob Gronkowski. However, it’s still a testament to Brady’s dedication that he continued to flourish (via Bleacher Report). Many younger quarterbacks struggle with new systems but it didn’t stop Brady. He continued to outclass and out-perform his opponents. Rodgers will probably leave Green Bay in 2022. Then, he’ll have to prove that he can do the same.
At 44, Tom Brady led the NFL in passing yards in 2021. This was outrageous because of his age and the competition across the league. He continued to outclass rivals like Rodgers, Josh Allen, and Patrick Mahomes. It was staggering because he was so consistent. Furthermore, he was breaking records in every game he played. The Bucs faced the Buffalo Bills in December 2021 (via Bleacher Report).
This game saw a couple of special moments. Brady broke the record for the most touchdown passes ever. But he also shattered Drew Brees’ record for the most completed passes in history. Brady required 18 passes to break Brees’ landmark before this game. He duly went on a roll and hit his 7143 completion in the second quarter. Rodgers has a long way to go before he comes close to this number.
Tom Brady turned 44 years old in 2021. That number is staggering because of his brilliance on the field. His numbers continued to improve despite his age. Most athletes decline physically in their late thirties. But Brady is an outlier. He’s played better than he when he was in his twenties. Insanely, many regarded him as the top active quarterback in the league in December of that year.
He was the oldest starting quarterback to win a Super Bowl in history in 2020. This came during Rodgers’ third MVP season. The Green Bay star was also a veteran at 38. But Brady’s consistency so late into his forties was ludicrous. It helps that he was never the fastest player or had the strongest arm. He played consistently to his strengths and did the little things right (via Slate.com).
Rodgers was an uncontroversial figure for the majority of his career, then everything changed overnight. He suddenly demanded to leave Green Bay because he wanted to return to California. Furthermore, there was a vaccine controversy that tarnished him in the eyes of neutrals (via Medium.com). Brady successfully left the Patriots without burning bridges. His relationship with Bill Belichick was icy but publicly respectful.
New England fans felt devastated but there was no sense of betrayal. No doubt he’ll retire in the future as a Patriots star. The difference between Rodgers and Brady in this scenario is staggering. Rodgers didn’t consider his legacy when he pushed for the trade. Brady actually won more fan respect after his move because he was away from the hated Patriots. It’s another area where he continues to outclass Rodgers.
In 2021, Tampa defeated the Buffalo Bills as they continued their Super Bowl defense. After the game, Brady received a lot of praise because he broke some incredible records. Firstly, he broke the all-time completions record. Then, he achieved his 700th career touchdown pass. This was a remarkable personal accolade because it was the first time in NFL history (via Sportskeeda).
It helps that Brady had great receivers but it still shows remarkable consistency. Furthermore, it required incredible longevity. Meanwhile, Rodgers had 484 in a shorter period. There is the possibility that he will break 700 touchdown passes one day. However, Brady is the one who set the record first. He continues to pave the way and outclass all of the competition.
Some analysts think it’s unfair to compare Brady’s Super Bowl record to Rodgers. The latter only has one ring after beating the Steelers in 2010. However, Mike McCarthy arguably wasted some of the best years of Rodgers’ career. They failed to build on their success. Meanwhile, Bill Belichick built a ruthless winning machine. Brady won six of his eight Super Bowl appearances with the team.
He then claimed a seventh ring with the Buccaneers. This was an incredible achievement because it meant he had more rings than any franchise. The Patriots and the Steelers have six each to their name. This also meant that Brady broke his own record. He’ll always outclass Rodgers in this category. Charles Hayley is the individual with the second-most rings with five. He starred for the Niners and Cowboys throughout the 1990s (via AS Sports).