Tom Brady Doesn't Like Being Called the GOAT: 'It Makes Me Cringe'

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistFebruary 5, 2019

New England Patriots' Tom Brady holds his daughter, Vivian, after the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019, in Atlanta. The Patriots won 13-3. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

Tom Brady appeared on Good Morning America at Walt Disney World and told Michael Strahan that he doesn't like it when people refer to him as the greatest of all time.

"I don't even like it," he said. "It makes me cringe."

Good Morning America @GMA

"It makes me cringe!" The @Patriots' Tom Brady tells @michaelstrahan he still doesn't like it when people refer to him as the "G.O.A.T." https://t.co/x4xMHH0TFx https://t.co/fi05gT2iYz

Brady added that he doesn't take compliments as well as he deals with criticism. 

"I wish you would say, 'You're trash, you're too old, you're too slow, you can't get it done no more,'" he noted. "And I would say, 'Thank you very much, I'm going to go prove you wrong.'"

"The personal criticism, I mean I think I'll walk off the practice field and be like, 'That was the worst day, you know, like get your mind right,'" he continued. "Sports have always brought that out in me."

Brady also maintained during the interview that his goal is to play until he's 45, laughing when Strahan suggested he should play until he was 50 and saying that would be too long. 

The 41-year-old Brady has shown few signs of slowing down. While 2018 wasn't his best season from a statistical standard (4,355 passing yards, 29 touchdowns, 11 interceptions) and the Los Angeles Rams largely frustrated him in the Super Bowl (262 passing yards, no touchdowns, one interception), he always seemed to make the big play when the Patriots needed one. 

And while he might not like be referred to the GOAT, there's little argument against him holding that distinction at this point. His six titles in nine Super Bowl appearances, 14 Pro Bowl selections and three MVP awards make him the clear front-runner in the GOAT conversation, at least among NFL players.

Other athletes like Michael Jordan, Michael Phelps, Serena Williams, Usain Bolt, Wayne Gretzky and Lionel Messi can make strong claims in the overall GOAT discussion. But in the NFL, the debate is over. Brady is the GOAT, and by the time he's done playing, he may have even more accolades to add to that resume.