New England Patriots: 6 Reasons Tom Brady Could Surpass Brees' 2011 Record
Drew Brees broke the record for passing yards in a single season in 2011, but Tom Brady could surpass that record in 2012. Despite throwing for more than 5,200 yards in 2011, Brady still has room to improve.
Brady, who loves the game and is constantly driven to be the best, has better weapons around him and will have a chance to set a new record in 2012.
Here are six reasons why Brady will surpass Brees’ 2011 record.
Despite Being Humble, Brady Wants to Be the Best
Tom Brady has been driven since the day the New England Patriots drafted him with the 199th pick in 2000.
He was the seventh quarterback selected that year, and besides Chris Redman, who is a backup for the Atlanta Falcons, Brady is the only starter left from that draft.
Brady has used this as motivation since he entered the league, and though he has won three Super Bowls and two MVP awards, he is still driven at 34 years old.
Brady used that motivation to break Peyton Manning’s single-season touchdown record and will be just as motivated to break Drew Brees’ single-season passing yards record.
Brandon Lloyd Will Make Brady Better
Brady threw for more 5,200 yards last year even though he had one of the worst receiving corps of his career.
Brandon Lloyd will be his savior in 2012.
The Patriots signed Lloyd to be the outside-the-numbers receiver the offense lacked in 2011. While he may not be the true stretch-the-field receiver that Randy Moss was, Lloyd is the missing piece for the Patriots offense.
Other than Wes Welker, Brady’s second option was the injury-riddled Deion Branch. Even though he was a great receiver earlier in his career, he was a shell of himself in 2011. And after Welker and Branch, the receiving corps consisted of unproven young receivers and the disaster that was Chad Ochocinco.
Things will be different in 2012.
Josh McDaniels Is a Better Coordinator Than Bill O’Brien
The last time Josh McDaniels and Tom Brady worked together, Brady threw 50 touchdowns and broke Peyton Manning’s single-season record.
This year I expect Brady to break another record as McDaniels will utilize the tight ends, Welker, Lloyd and the versatile running backs to make things even easier for Brady.
Bill O’Brien may have shown what Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez can do, but McDaniels will turn them loose in 2012. McDaniels thinks outside the box and will exploit their talents to make Brady even better.
Lloyd will also benefit from reuniting with McDaniels, who was his head coach in 2010 when he played for the Denver Broncos. That season McDaniels utilized Lloyd perfectly and he had 77 catches for 1,448 yards.
Chad Ochocinco Will Be Better in 2012
Despite having a terrible season in 2011, Chad Ochocinco never complained and did what he was asked.
With a full offseason to digest the playbook and a full training camp to connect with Tom Brady, expect Ochocinco to bounce back in 2012. Combine the extra time with the return of Josh McDaniels, and I expect Ochocinco to nearly double his production.
The resurgence of Ochocinco will give Brady a second outside-the-numbers receiver to go to, along with Brandon Lloyd.
The Patriots' 2012 Running Back Corps Is More Explosive
BenJarvus Green-Ellis was a good running back for the Patriots, but in his last two years in New England he only caught a combined 21 passes.
Now that he is gone the Patriots will use younger, more explosive running backs.
Stevan Ridley showed he has big-play ability running the ball and can catch the ball out of the backfield, too.
However, the reason why Brady will have more success in 2012 is because of Shane Vereen.
In his three-year career at the University of California, Vereen showcased his catching ability out of the backfield. He caught 74 pass for 674 yards, but more importantly he showed he was elusive enough to make big plays out of simple checkdown passes.
Combine Vereen, Ridley, newcomer Joseph Addai and the shifty Danny Woodhead, and Brady has the most versatile backfield he has ever had.
Brady Is Driven After Last Year’s Super Bowl Loss
I mentioned that Brady used being a sixth-round pick as motivation, but more importantly, in 2012 he will use the Super Bowl loss to the New York Giants as motivation.
Brady wants to be considered the best, but in order to do so he needs that elusive fourth Super Bowl title. Even though the Patriots seemed to improve their defense through the draft and free agency, Brady knows that this team needs to score points in order to win.
Brady will use the Super Bowl loss like he used the Spygate criticism as motivation and will dominate the NFL in 2012.
The last time Brady and the Patriots were this motivated he threw for 50 touchdowns and broke Peyton Manning’s single-season record. This year he will break Brees’ record.