DISCLAIMER: Before diving into this piece, as a writer, sports enthusiast, and most importantly, New Yorker, I would like to preface by saying I have never felt so overwhelmingly negative regarding someone in the sports world as I have about Tom Brady. I despise all the New England he represents and write about him in a positive light only begrudgingly. Nevertheless, I did not at any point believe he would serve his 4 game penalty. Rodger Goodell, just as so many other men in football, found out that Tom Brady is, and has always been, a perennial winner.
When discussing sports, journalists and broadcasters alike have a tendency to refer to games, teams, and players in war-like terminology. Matches become battles, players turn to warriors, and so on. Tom Brady has been called a field general and a marshal of men, amongst other, more grandiose commentary by sports pundits across networks. But when he came under attack from the great big shield, the NFL and it’s commissioner, Brady shifted his sport-warrior instinct almost instantly. Accompanied by a host of lawyers, he became embattled with words, crafting an argument to win from way behind, and vindicating himself as best he could in the process.
One does not become the face of what has become “America’s Team” without understanding how to overcome the odds, but what Brady did successfully shocked even his most ardent supporters. Facing a four game suspension and incidental defamation to his name, “The Golden Boy” took on the league that had been so good to him before. The all-enduring winner took off his jersey, strapped on a suit and thinking cap, and taught us all a lesson not just in seeking truth, but in persistence as well.
Tom Brady is not often considered an underdog, but when going against the $7.2 Billion revenue league, things did not look as they often did. Roger Goodell has been accused by many of pursuing Brady seemingly in a witch-hunt-esq manner, but still believed the commissioner was in the right. Brady, refusing to submit to the will of big brother, yet still adamantly denied that which he did not do. Broadcasters began to turn on him, and while they insisted that he just admit ignorance and take a potential lesser penalty, he and his camp remained vigilant in their quest to clear his name. Lo and behold, to the amazement of many, through a determination to himself, to the truth, to victory against all odds, Tom Brady came out with arms raised high, as he’s done so often before.
As the first game kicks off, navy blue Number Twelve will be running out onto the field to the ferocious cheers of his undaunted fans. A man with few friends to find this past summer, in refusing to take what was unjustly served, he came out even stronger and more loved by those around him. And while he can’t ever seem to beat Big Blue when it matters, when it came to his name and his legacy, Tom Brady geared up for a fight and delivered a huge KO in the court room.
By: Michael Salib
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