Stop Comparing Tom Brady To This Athlete

Athlete

Stop Comparing Tom Brady To This AthleteSports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com

The debate began shortly after he won Super Bowl title number seven. It’s a new spin on an old take that is now asking if Tom Brady is the greatest athlete in pro sports history. While it’s almost refreshing to have a new conversation about how good Tom Brady is, this conversation started on the wrong foot with comparisons to athletes that are just not fair for the quarterback or others. For starters, comparing Tom Brady and Serena Williams is wrong, because it’s a stupid way to judge the career achievements of both athletes. 

In my mind there are two kinds of athletes, team athletes and individual athletes. Tom Brady plays a team game, just as basketball legend Michael Jordan and hockey great Wayne Gretzky. Serena Williams plays tennis, an individual sport, which allows her to pick and choose which events she enters while being able to skip those she may not believe she will perform well in.

Williams, like golfer Tiger Woods, not only dominated their sports, but raised the bar by increasing sponsorship income, and controlled their sport in way few ever have. Unlike tennis and golf, some individual athletes only have one chance every four years to make their mark, such as Michael Phelps, whose domination in swimming events has made him the most decorated Olympian in history.

The one thing that is clear is that all these athletes are historically outstanding; but it would be unreasonable to compare some of them to others because of the sports they play.

Think about it: Is it truly fair to compare Tom Brady to Serena Williams? Brady has a team to manage and a team to defeat with games over five months to win one championship. While Williams needs to only play a half dozen opponents in order to win majors over a two-week period.

So, who had the better career, the athlete who reached ten Super Bowls and won seven over a 21-year span, or the athlete who had four chances a year to win majors and racked up three times as many titles? My point is that team sports are played in a different manner than individual sports, thus making it impossible to compare athletes from each against one another.

Michael Jordan dominated basketball just as Wayne Gretzky dominated hockey. However, Tom Brady hasn’t been a dominant regular season quarterback except in the one stat that matters most, wins. That is what has helped propel him to becoming the most accomplished pro athlete in sports history. Yet, to say that he is in the same sentence as Woods, Williams, or anyone one else in terms of physical gifts would be an insult to those and many other athletes. 

Remember, while winning is how we judge success, athletic ability is judged on a personal level. Sure being able to play in the NFL is a wonder at age 43, but Brady is part of team that was good all season long, making it easier to help Tampa Bay win. Does that make him a great athlete, no, just a successful one and one that players like Patrick Mahomes will strive to one day be compared to after their careers are over.  But that doesn’t mean their physical gifts are less than Tom Brady, so the debate truly boils down to what you value more, physical gifts or trophies, because so often those with one don’t have the other. 

 


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Stop Comparing Tom Brady To This Athlete | TooAthletic.com

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