Why Tom Brady Is the Most Overrated Quarterback in NFL History

Zayne Grantham@ZPGSportsContributor IIINovember 7, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 6:   Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots reacts after a missed opportunity against the New York Giants in the fourth quarter on November 6, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Giants won 24-20. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Tom Brady has been dubbed the greatest quarterback ever by many people. Most believe that he is at least in the top five in NFL history. Brady has played in four Super Bowls and won three of them. He has six Pro Bowl appearances and was voted the NFL MVP twice. Tom Brady holds numerous Patriot team records, as well as NFL records. Brady is also the most overrated quarterback to play the game.

Tom Brady is simply a system quarterback. He does the things that Bill Belichick needs him to do to be successful in the Patriots offense. That is how Belichick built his team. Any decent quarterback can step into the Patriots' system and succeed. Ask Matt Cassel.

In 2008, Brady was injured and Cassel, a quarterback who had not completed a pass since high school, stepped in to take over. Cassel led the Patriots to an 11-5 record and was a top-10 quarterback in 2008. He threw for just under 3,700 yards and 21 touchdowns and also ran for 270 yards and two touchdowns.

Cassel finished in the top-10 in passing touchdowns, completion percentage and passer rating. Since joining the Chiefs in 2009, Cassel has yet to match the overall production he showed in New England.

One of the most debated topics in recent memory is about Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. Everyone wants to know which quarterback is better. The 2011 season answers this question without a doubt. When the Patriots have not had Brady, their record is 11-5. However, the Colts are 0-9 without Manning. It is obvious that Manning is more important to his team.

In the past, Manning has carried the Colts on his back. I am sure that Manning could do the same for many different teams in the NFL. If Manning went to the Seahawks, Dolphins, Redskins or any other team with a bad quarterback situation, he could carry them too. Manning instantly makes a team much better. Brady just doesn't seem to have that trait.

INDIANAPOLIS - NOVEMBER 15:  Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts greets Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots after the game at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 15, 2009 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  The Colts won the game 35-34. (Photo
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Brady could not be put on any team and lead them to success. Brady is the definition of a system quarterback. 

Brady did win three Super Bowls, but the last one was in 2004, seven years ago. Since the Patriots' last Super Bowl victory, Brady is 5-5 in the playoffs. The Patriots have won a lot of regular season games, but they have also been horrible in the playoffs, especially recently. Brady's last playoff win was in 2007.

So, why are the Patriots, and Brady, so "good" in the regular season? They play in the AFC East, which, until recently, was one of the weakest divisions in football. 

Since 2004, the Dolphins have two winning seasons and have been easy games for the Patriots. The Bills have been similar, with only one winning season in the same time period. The Jets have been the only competition for the Patriots in the AFC East, but the Patriots have still won seven division titles since 2000.

This year is the first season in a long time that there is good competition in the AFC East and the Patriots are obviously struggling, with Brady leading the way.

Brady has already thrown 10 interceptions this year and looks confused in pressure situations. The five teams the Patriots have beaten this year have a combined record of 18-22, and their three losses come to teams with a combined record of 17-8. The Patriots have played four teams with winning records and have lost three of those games.

It is simple. Brady is struggling because the Patriots are struggling. When the Patriots succeed, Brady succeeds. This is because Brady is a system quarterback.

Did anyone notice how great the Patriots' back-up quarterbacks were in the preseason? It may have been against second- and third-team defenses, but the Patriots' system made Ryan Mallett look like a Pro Bowler.

I am sure that Mallet or Brian Hoyer could come in and do just as well as Brady is this year.

Brady is in the top three for most statistical categories, but he just cannot seem to win the big games, or at least hasn't since earlier in his career. 

Manning has done more with less in Indianapolis for years. If he is healthy and playing for the Patriots right now, then they are probably a 7-1 or 8-0 team. That is what a guy like Manning does for your team. 

Brady, on the other hand, can only be as good as the people around him. He cannot make every player better than they are like Manning can. That is what makes Brady overrated. He gets too much credit for the Patriots' success.

This year, Brady has led the Patriots to a 5-3 record, but they seem to be falling apart after a 5-1 start. They have lost two straight games to teams that bullied the Patriots around. It'd be interesting to see what Brady could do in Miami, Seattle or Washington. Probably just as well as the current starters. 


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