Bill Belichick and Tom Brady sit on the precipice of becoming arguably the greatest coach-quarterback combination in NFL history.
The Patriots will be 4-1 in Super Bowls during the Belichick-Brady era with a win over the Giants on Sunday, which would tie Brady with Joe Montana (4-0) and Terry Bradshaw (4-0) for most wins among quarterbacks, and would leave his coach at the top of the list with Chuck Noll (4-0).
But the Patriots’ current run of success was a thing of the future when the team finished 5-11 in Belichick’s first season in 2000, the same year the team drafted Brady in the sixth round. So it’s when he’s asked about how their relationship has grown during the 12 seasons together since then that Brady’s admiration for his coach becomes a bit more transparent.
“Quite a bit,” Brady told NFL Network when asked if their relationship has grown. “He coaches us hard. He coaches me hard. He’s relentless on (things like), ‘Brady can’t complete a hitch. Wide open, and you throw it in the dirt?’ Part of me, you want to stand up and strangle him, saying ‘Don’t you know?’
“But he wants us to be at our best every single day.”
Brady’s summation of Belichick’s coaching style is as simple as it is accurate. Belichick, who might have what some would describe as a maniacal attention to detail, leaves no stone unturned in getting the best out of his players and putting them in a position to succeed.
In return, the ensuing culture fostered by Belichick’s drive — dubbed, simply, “The Patriot Way” — has earned the lifelong respect of players like Brady.
Catch the full interview with Brady and NFL Network analyst Willie McGinest on “NFL GameDay Morning” on Sunday (9 a.m. ET).