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The GOAT of GOATS
Tom Brady vs. Serena Williams
A large chunk of Twitter is furious.
In the wake of Tom Brady winning his 7th Super Bowl Ring, the consensus NFL GOAT (Greatest of All Time) has started to be called the "GOAT of GOATS." Brady's Super Bowl win this last week was with a new team and a shortened offseason due to Covid-19. This seemed to solidify to most doubters that the fabled "Patriot Way" may have been the "Tom Brady Way" all along.
Donté Stallworth got this whole thing started with this unassuming but controversial tweet:
This "GOAT of GOATS" thing has drawn the ire of different groups of fans who think the GOAT from their sport is GOAT-ier than Tom. But none have been more outspoken about this than Serena Williams fans.
And it goes on.
The general argument going around, more or less, seems to be that: Serena has more titles than Tom, and that should be that. And they're not wrong: 23 Major Championship trophies is more than 7 Super Bowl Rings.
BUT people are also saying, "Yeah, but there are four majors in a year and only one Super Bowl." And they are also right.
So, let's see who is more of a GOAT.
GOAT vs. GOAT
It's borderline impossible to do a perfect job of comparing the "greatness" of players between two different sports. I am personally not a proponent of it, but everyone seems to be doing it anyway. And they seem to be using the championship numbers to do it.
And based on championships, both athletes are clearly the best ever in their sports. But a different way to ask the question is, “Which of the two rose the furthest above the other athletes in their own sport?” And, if we're asking the question that way, the data seems to indicate that Tom Brady is very much the GOAT of GOATS in a him vs. Serena matchup (and it's not even close).
It’s just not close. Serena is clearly great and seems to be the front-runner for the GOAT in Women’s Tennis. But, if you’re judging based on having a standout number of titles, Tom is just way better.
Now, I agree that Tom Brady could not have won a Super Bowl while he was pregnant. One or two days off of his mandatory avocado toast and gallon of water per day seem to send this guy into a tailspin.
The Amazing Thing About Tom
A little context to the chart makes Tom Brady look even more annoyingly good. He obviously has had teammates who were great at doing their jobs. That's a given for any Super Bowl Team. But, in Tom's case, they were never the same players. Of the players who have won 4 or more Super Bowls:
22 of those players were all members of the 1975-1980 Steelers who won 4 Super Bowls
6 were members of Joe Montana's 1980s 49ers teams that won 4 Super Bowls
5 were miscellaneous players who won with multiple organizations at positions much less important than quarterback (4 LBs and 1 TE)
Adam Vinatieri won 3 of his 4 on Tom Brady Patriots teams
Rob Gronkowski won all 4 with Tom Brady led teams
And then there is Tom Brady, with 7 Super Bowls
The Patriots won 6 Super Bowls with Tom Brady at the helm, and there was not a single player other than Brady who was on the team for more than 3. The great 49ers and Steelers teams of the 70s and 80s had a core of players there for all 4 championships. The only Patriots player to be on the roster for at least 4 Super Bowls was "Touchdown Tommy."
Maybe Coach Belichick and the Patriots just need another year or two to draft and trade their way back on track. A few more seasons will be necessary to truly decide if the "Patriot Way" can thrive in a post-Brady era. If it does, maybe that will bring these unprecedented numbers down to size.
But for now, if it is between Tom's Super Bowl Rings and Serena's Major Championships, Tom Brady is undoubtedly the GOAT of GOATS.
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It should be noted that I don't particularly love watching Tom play, while I find Serena electric to watch. This article is nothing personal, just my two cents. For years, I argued Tom was not the NFL GOAT, but I really don't have much of an argument anymore.
Also, Serena might be GOAT-ier than Tom, just not on this metric.
Also, here is the chart for Men’s Major Tennis Championships if you were interested.
all of this data was pulled from these wikipedia pages: