Tom Brady is unquestionably the GOAT of the NFL. No player rivals Brady in his accomplishments, and it’s almost at the point where teams can’t either.
However, across all team sports, is Brady still no.1? With 7 Super Bowl rings Brady would not only extend his record for most Super Bowl wins by a player, but he’d also have more Super Bowl wins than than any other team in NFL history.
That’s right. Any team. Does that mean that Brady would be the ultimate team player across sports? Stephen A. Smith certainly thinks so.
If Tom Brady pulls this off, I don’t how you can argue he’s not the best team sports champion in modern history.
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) February 5, 2021
Tom Brady vs. Michael Jordan
Perhaps the biggest competition to Brady’s claim as the ultimate team athlete (at least in American sports) is Michael Jordan. Jordan’s considered to be the greatest NBA player, the first to ever hold the exclusive GOAT title.
Jordan famously went 6-0 in the NBA Finals, and he smashed several NBA records along the way. His statue outside the United Center in Chicago is still one of the most memorable sport symbols anywhere.
However, Jordan never got to 10 championships. Moreover, if Brady does win this, Jordan would have one less trophy than Brady. Do those things put Brady above Jordan? Well, the easy answer would be to say yes, but this is an extremely difficult question.
For one, you’re comparing two athletes in two very different sports. Additionally, the two players played in different eras.
However, the consensus appears to be that winning a title in the NFL is much harder than winning one in the NBA. For one, a single player can’t carry his team like he could in the NBA since an NFL team fields 11 players on both offense and defense versus just five in the NBA.
Additionally, the NFL has never seen a three-peat while the NBA has had multiple. Retaining a dominant NFL roster over multiple years is much harder because of the number of different players that a team must keep. Moreover, there’s also a thought process that NBA titles are easier to win for the favorites but much harder for the underdogs due to the fact that each playoff series is a best of seven.
Thus, upsets are much less likely and therefore, winning as a lower seed in the NFL is significantly easier. So, in conclusion, it goes both ways. There’s no definitive answer, but in the eyes of everyone seven is greater than six. And at the end of the day, that may be the deciding factor.
What About Other Sports?
Of course, if we look at the sporting world as a whole, there may be more debates. In football/soccer, you have Lionel Messi and Christiano Ronaldo who have multiple La Liga titles with their respective clubs.
Messi has won four Champion’s League Trophies, 10 La Liga titles, six Spanish Cups, eight Spanish Super Cups, and three UEFA Super Cups.
Meanwhile, Ronaldo has won five Champion’s Leagues, three English Championships, two Spanish cups, two Italian cups, and three UEFA super cups.
The distinction there is much harder to draw. How do you compare a Super Bowl win to a Champion’s League trophy? You simply can’t. And, maybe that’s a sign that this whole GOAT argument is futile. Maybe, we should stop comparing and simply admire the greatness of these incredible athletes who give us a show night in and night out.