During his career with the New England Patriots, Tom Brady and Super Bowls became synonymous. He holds almost every conceivable quarterback record in NFL history. After emerging victorious from his first Super Bowl appearance with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, we look back at Brady’s love affair with the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
How many Super Bowls has Tom Brady won?
Following his victory on Sunday, Tom Brady already has seven Super Bowls to his name. Not only is his seven Super Bowls a record in itself, but Brady also holds the record for Super Bowl appearances. Sunday’s Super Bowl 55 was Brady’s 10th attempt at winning the Lombardi Trophy.
To put into context the staggering size of that achievement, the closest player to that record has just six appearances. Two men share that honor. One of them is Brady’s former New England Patriots teammate Stephen Gostkowski. The only other quarterback who comes anywhere close to Brady’s record is John Elway, who has half the number of appearances.
When he took his first snap on Sunday, Tom Brady joined an exclusive club of NFL quarterbacks. Only Peyton Manning, Craig Morton, and Kurt Warner are the other names to start Super Bowls for multiple teams. Prior to Brady’s victory in Super Bowl 55, Manning was the only quarterback to lift the Lombardi Trophy for two different teams.
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Tom Brady’s Super Bowl appearances
Super Bowl XXXVI – New England Patriots 20, St. Louis Rams 17
The first of Tom Brady’s six Super Bowls came in an upset win over the St. Louis Rams. Although the Rams’ offense was dubbed “The Greatest Show on Turf,” they were stymied by the New England Patriots’ defense.
Despite Brady throwing for just 145 yards and a touchdown, Brady earned the first of his Super Bowl MVP awards after leading the Patriots down the field late in the fourth quarter. Adam Vinatieri would kick the winning field goal for the Patriots — and Brady’s — first-ever Super Bowl win.
Super Bowl XXXVIII – New England Patriots 32, Carolina Panthers 29
Two years after their first of six Super Bowls, Brady and the Patriots faced the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII. In what would be considered one of the greatest Super Bowls of all-time, Vinatieri would again be the Patriots’ hero. With four seconds left on the clock, Vinatieri kicked the game-winning field goal to give the Patriots a 32-29 win.
In contrast to the first of his Super Bowls, Brady threw for 354 yards and three touchdowns. His performance earned him the second of his Super Bowl MVP awards.
Super Bowl XXXIX – New England Patriots 24, Philadelphia Eagles 21
Tom Brady and the New England Patriots secured back-to-back Super Bowls for the first time since the Denver Broncos in the 1997-1998 and 1998-1999 seasons. Only six teams had achieved the honor before the Patriots. The Pittsburgh Steelers are still the only team in NFL history to win consecutive titles more than once.
After a tightly fought game, Brady and the Patriots pulled away in the fourth quarter. Although the Philadelphia Eagles would get back to within three points near the end of the fourth quarter, they couldn’t capitalize on having the game’s last possession. Brady threw for 236 yards and two touchdowns. After snagging a Super Bowl record 11 catches for 133 receiving yards, wide receiver Deion Branch was awarded the Super Bowl MVP Award.
Despite all their success, the third of Tom Brady’s Super Bowls would be the last for some time.
The start of a long wait to taste success again
Super Bowl XLII – New York Giants 17, New England Patriots 14
The 2007 New England Patriots bulldozed through the NFL on their way to a fourth Super Bowl appearance of Tom Brady’s career. The Patriots set offensive records aplenty as they went undefeated through the regular season. With Brady and Randy Moss, they were virtually unstoppable. That was, however, until they met the New York Giants.
Having already beaten the Giants earlier in the year, the Patriots were an overwhelming favorite. Despite the 2007 New England team’s offensive nature, the Super Bowl emerged as a tight, defense-dominated affair. Although the Patriots had led early in the second quarter, the lead flip-flopped in the fourth quarter.
During their final drive of the game, the now-famous “Helmet Catch” by David Tyree kept the Giants alive. Two minutes later and Plaxico Burress snagged the winning touchdown pass. The undefeated season vanished at the final hurdle.
Super Bowl XLVI – New York Giants 21, New England Patriots 17
The New York Giants would get the better of Brady and the Patriots again four years later. The Giants had already beaten New England during the regular season.
It was a disastrous start to the game for Brady. An intentional-grounding-induced safety gave the Giants an early lead. Eli Manning would add a touchdown to give the Giants a 9-0 lead. Two Brady touchdown passes would give the Patriots an eight-point lead.
However, the Giants reduced the lead to two points with a couple of field goals. An Ahmad Bradshaw touchdown run in the closing seconds put the dagger in the hearts of Patriots fans.
Ten years later, a return to victory
Super Bowl XLIX – New England Patriots 28, Seattle Seahawks 24
When Tom Brady and the Patriots won the third of their Super Bowls, they couldn’t have imagined that it would take ten years to win another — or maybe, they could. The structure of the NFL is meant to ensure that dynasties like the Patriots are nearly impossible.
Super Bowl XLIX saw one of the most dramatic ends to a Super Bowl of all-time. When Malcolm Butler intercepted Russell Wilson in the dying seconds, he secured Brady a fourth Super Bowl.
After throwing for 328 yards and four touchdowns — plus two interceptions — Brady was honored with the third of his Super Bowl MVPs. Despite the interceptions, Brady’s two fourth-quarter touchdowns to Danny Amendola and Julian Edelman had proved enough to guide the Patriots to victory.
Super Bowl LI – New England Patriots 34, Atlanta Falcons 28
After missing Super Bowl L, Patriots fans were treated to another heart-attack-inducing performance as Tom Brady secured the fifth of his Super Bowls. Trailing 28-3 to the Atlanta Falcons midway through the third quarter, most New England fans had left the stadium when Brady found James White for a five-yard touchdown to make the score 28-9.
What followed was perhaps the most improbable comeback in the history of sports. Brady’s two-point conversion to Danny Amendola following a James White touchdown took the game to overtime. With momentum — and more importantly, the ball — on their side, White found the end zone to give the Patriots their fifth Super Bowl. In a record-setting game, Tom Brady became the first quarterback in NFL history to win five Super Bowls.
Super Bowl LII – Philadelphia Eagles 41, New England Patriots 33
In a repeat of Super Bowl XXXIX, Tom Brady and the Patriots met the Philadelphia Eagles looking to win back-to-back Super Bowls for a second time. However, it wasn’t meant to be in a thrilling contest in Minnesota. At different points in the game, the Patriots trailed by 10 and 12 points. The infamous “Philly Special” touchdown ensured that the Eagles held a halftime lead.
Following touchdown passes to Chris Hogan and Rob Gronkowski, Brady put the Patriots in position for another comeback win. The drama wasn’t over yet, however. A Zach Ertz touchdown allowed the Eagles to retake the lead before Brandon Graham stripped the ball from Brady as the Patriots drove down the field in the fourth quarter. Although Brady would get the ball back one last time, there was no repeat of the comeback against Atlanta.
Super Bowl LIII – New England Patriots 13, Los Angeles Rams 3
Providing almost perfect symmetry to his New England career, the last of Tom Brady’s Super Bowls with the Patriots came in a rematch of his first. In stark contrast to the previous two, Super Bowl LIII was a mostly defensive affair. There were just six points scored in the first three quarters. Sony Michel’s rushing touchdown was the only touchdown in the lowest-scoring Super Bowl of all-time.
In his final Super Bowl appearance for the Patriots, Brady threw for just 262 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.
Nevertheless, Brady and the Patriots secured their sixth Super Bowl together.
A similar result, but with a different uniform
Super Bowl LV – Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31, Kansas City Chiefs 9
Super Bowl 55 brought something that Brady is not really used to, a comfortable Super Bowl victory. The Buccaneers jumped out to a first-half lead that they would never surrender. Brady was efficient, completing 72.4 percent of his passes for 201 yards. However, a lot of credit belongs to his defense, who kept Mahomes and the explosive Chiefs’ offense to just nine points.
With Brady now having added a seventh Super Bowl victory, will he chase an eighth next season, or could retirement be on the cards?
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