New England Patriots: Can Tom Brady top Peyton Manning’s 55 TD season in 2017?
The chance is there for Tom Brady of the New England Patriots to top what was probably the greatest NFL season for a Quarterback in history. Despite not winning the Super Bowl and missing out on an undefeated season, Brady amassed a season that saw him play at a level QB’s only can dream of. During the 2007 season, Brady passed for 4806 yards, 50 touchdowns and a completion percentage of 69 percent. Those are great numbers, but Brady has a chance to top those.
What was seen as untouchable was indeed touched and passed thanks to Peyton Manning in 2013 when he threw for 5477 yards, 55 touchdowns with a completion percentage 68 while with the Denver Broncos.
Brady hasn’t gotten any younger over the years but his play has stayed at an even keel. In fact, he may have improved. Now, as we enter the 2017 season, the Patriots just handed Brady a new weapon. A deal was struck with the New Orleans Saints in which Brandin Cooks will now line up across from Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski.
Yes, the same Cooks who caught 78 passes for 1173 yards and 8 touchdowns from Drew Brees.
During Brady’s magical season in 2007 he had the services of Randy Moss and Wes Welker but other than those two it was a who’s who of targets. Brady is a master at making the lowest receiver on the roster look like a Pro Bowler. However, he will not have that issue this year. This will be his best receiving core ever.
Edelman caught 98 passes for 1106 yards and 3 touchdowns in 2016. Gronk, in only 8 games due to injury managed 25 catches for 540 yards. The production didn’t end there. Chris Hogan and Martellus Bennett combined for 93 catches for 1381 yards in extended duty. Gronk will enter the season healthy and Edelman will continue to destroy the middle of the field which will allow single coverage of Cooks deep on most snaps. Cooks din not resemble Moss while with the Saints but in this Pats offense with Brady, he very well could be.
Manning caught fire with the Broncos in 2013 when he crushed Brady’s accomplishments. However, this is where Brady may have the upper-hand. With LeGarrette Blunt gone, the offense will shift to more of a passing attack. In 2016, the Pats ran the ball 482 times, with Blunt doing the grunt work with 299. Duties will fall to Dion Lewis and James White who combined for a total of 103 carries for 449 yards. If the ground game struggles, then that will give Brady all the reasons he needs to air it out.
Even at 39-years old Brady has not lost a step or any power in his arm.
What he was able to do in 2007 was eclipsed by Manning and now Brady has a chance to take back what was rightfully his in the first place–history.