Tom Brady’s Gauntlet vs. QB: TB12 will face Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes in the next two games

The “Godfather” movie franchise came out half a century ago. One of the famous phrases, “keep your friends close and your enemies closer,” rings true for Tom Brady today. I wonder if he marked Weeks 3 and 4 on the schedule when he retired, since he is scheduled to face rivals Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes in back-to-back games, a series of matchups anyone would salivate over. However, that may be especially true for Brady. No one can touch his GOAT status, but this might be his last chance to cement his bragging rights over his contemporaries, two quarterbacks constantly mentioned in the “best quarterback in the league” debates. “.

QB royalty

Before we get to Brady’s dominance of these rivalries, let’s revel in the fact that the three most decorated quarterbacks in today’s game are about to go toe-to-toe.

Brady, Rodgers and Mahomes are the only three active players in the league with an NFL MVP and a Super Bowl ring. No one falls over either: He has won four of the last five league MVP awards. They also own three of the four best touchdown-to-interception ratios of all time. There are plenty of superstar quarterbacks in today’s game, but this trio ranks 1-2-3 in touchdown passes since Mahomes became the Chiefs’ starter in 2018.

You may have heard that they have etched their names into the history books as well:

  • Brady is the NFL’s all-time leader in championship wins (7), Super Bowl MVP (5), games won (245), touchdown passes (626), and passing yards (84,922), among a billion others. records.

  • Rodgers may be the most efficient QB of all time, with the best touchdown-to-interception ratio in history, while ranking second in MVP (4) behind Peyton Manning.

  • Mahomes has the highest passer rating in league history and is the youngest quarterback to win Super Bowl MVP.

Bottom line. They can go on to be three of the greatest quarterbacks of all time and tango in the next two weeks. Seat belt!

Brady’s bragging rights

This sets up an almost unprecedented double QB dip. It will be the second time in NFL history that a QB with an MVP and a Super Bowl MVP will start back-to-back games against an MVP and a Super Bowl MVP QB.

And wouldn’t you know it, the other instance involved the same trio in exactly the same order, the last time they all played each other. In the 2020 postseason, Brady and the Buccaneers beat Rodgers and company in the NFC Championship Game, followed by Mahomes and the Chiefs.

You’d have to imagine that they’re both itching for a little payback against Brady. You may remember that Rodgers didn’t have the ball in his hands when it mattered most in the 2020 NFC Championship Game. The Packers opted to kick a field goal with about two minutes remaining on fourth down, down eight points, instead of putting the ball in the hands of the league’s Most Valuable Player. Green Bay never got the ball back, of course. The following week, Mahomes was seemingly running for his life on every play in the worst beating of his career. He had the worst passer rating and what at the time was the biggest loss of his career (31-9) in that Super Bowl.

The beauty of both wins for Brady: He bolstered his own trophy case while denying his two counterparts a second ring. In fact, he is now 3-0 in the playoffs against Rodgers and Mahomes. He beat Mahomes in the 2018 AFC Championship Game en route to his sixth ring. So really, every time he faced these two in the playoffs, he also lifted the Lombardi Trophy. And the kicker, in true Brady style, all three wins came as an underdog.

Brady’s overall resume against the pair makes him one of one. Between the regular season and the playoffs, 30 quarterbacks have started a game against Rodgers and Mahomes. Guess who’s the only one with a winning record against both? TB12, of course. He is 3-1 against Rodgers and 3-2 against Mahomes.

If all that wasn’t enough, Brady has as many rings in his 40s as Rodgers and Mahomes have in their careers combined (two).

Brady vs. Rodgers: Round 5

Rodgers will get the first chance at TB12 on Sunday. Perhaps the only thing he has over Brady is MVP, which also includes the last laugh. He won his fourth in 2021, outscoring Brady, 39-10.

They also have a lot of respect for each other. Rodgers was asked about the challenge Brady faces following Green Bay’s win against the Bears on Sunday, replying “Obviously Tommy is a legend.” Brady returned the respect on his podcast, Let’s go!. “They have one of the best quarterbacks of all time in Aaron leading them.”

Together, his seven MVP awards tie for the most all-time in a quarterback matchup. Each of the previous three matchups involved Peyton Manning against either Brady or Rodgers.

QB Matchups with 7 NFL MVP Awards

  • 2022: Aaron Rodgers (4) vs. Tom Brady (3)

  • 2015: Tom Brady (2) vs. Peyton Manning (5)

  • 2015: Aaron Rodgers (2) vs. Peyton Manning (5)

  • 2014: Peyton Manning (5) vs. Tom Brady (2)

Like most things, when they’ve gone toe-to-toe, Brady has the upper hand. He has better numbers in every major category. Rodgers’ only win came in his first meeting of 2014, a 26-21 Packers win at Green Bay. The stakes will be high on Sunday when both teams meet in a potential NFC Championship preview.

Brady vs. Rodgers: By the Numbers

Brady

rodgers

victories

3

1

YDS/ATT

7.4

6.9

TD-INT

8-3

7-3

passer rating

94.3

86.8

Brady vs. Mahomes: Round 6

While Brady and Rodgers will meet for the fifth time, the Brady-Mahomes rivalry will actually top that with matchup No. 6 the following week. Both players have filled the stat sheets in these games, but Brady has the all-important 3-2 lead in the win column, including a blowout victory in Super Bowl LV after most expected Brady to pass the torch to Mahomes. . Mahomes will have a chance to even the series in Week 4 in their last potential meeting.

Brady vs. Mahomes: By the numbers

Brady

Mahomes

victories

3

two

comp percentage

64.7

62.4

YDS/ATT

7.5

8.1

TD-INT

9-5

11-5

passer rating 92.2 95.6

chasing brady

When Brady finally decides to retire, Rodgers and Mahomes may still be chasing his ghost. Mahomes is clearly the biggest threat to Brady’s all-time records, but he’s not out of range either.

  • Assuming Brady continues at his career pace but also retires after this season, he would finish with 656 passing TDs and 88,981 receiving yards.

  • Including 2022, Rodgers would need to play another six seasons, until age 44, to reach those marks.

  • Mahomes would need to play another 12 seasons, to age 38, to reach those marks, which are achievable.

Sign me up for everything! The quarterback debates, the narratives, the hype, the speculative records speak and the games themselves.

It’s an offer I can’t refuse.

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