Are we beginning to take the "Golden Boy" for granted?
When you grow up in New York City and are bred as a Jets fan, you are conditioned to hate Tom Brady.
This is a given.
But as a Jets fan you have no choice but to respect and fear the dominance that Brady can exercise at any moment on any team.
Houston Texans' fans found this out the hard way on Monday when Brady and the Pats smashed the AFC juggernauts into oblivion in what was billed by ESPN as the "Game Of The Year." The Pats moved one game behind the Texans for the conference's top seed with the final score of 42-14.
After an un-Golden Boy-like performance against the Dolphins last week (a measly 12 point average in fantasy points), Brady returned to form for those who are making a playoff push in online leagues this week when he threw for four TDs to go with 296 yards and zero interceptions. At one point, he even broke out of his usual flatfooted robotic QB ways when he stepped up into the pocket, saw no one open and took off for a six yard gain that moved the chains. Brady got up and fist pumped to the New England crowd to show them just how excited he was feeling.
"I was pretty fired up at that point," Brady said after the game."(I had to show) the opposing defenses that say I can't run and won't move out of the pocket, at least there's a little bit of threat there. Not a big threat-I'm not like RG3 out there or anything."
That set up the fifth TD on the night for the offense.
With this performance against a top-five defense armed with a suffocating pass rush, Brady has definitely captured the majority of attention as far as MVP is concerned.
But why is it that just one week ago he wasn't even mentioned amongst the standout players being considered for MVP?
I have two answers for you:
Peyton Manning & Adrian Peterson.
Manning sat out all of last year after four neck surgeries while Peterson is coming off of a devastating ACL/MCL tear that sidelined the star running back for eight months. Both men have become everyone's emotional pick for MVP as they each have had strong bounce back seasons. But I would consider them stronger candidates for the "Comeback Player Of The Year" award than MVP. Manning has left no doubt that he is just as good of a field general as he was before he was injured, however, Brady has surpassed Manning in that respect. Just take a look at the speed the Pats offense operates when Brady is under center.
Jets linebacker David Harris reminded us before their October showdown that the "Oregon Ducks tempo" Pats would snap the ball before the defense had a chance to get a whiff of what Brady and his offense was up to.
"It's very difficult," Harris said. "You'll see defenses not even lined up and they're already running a play. They get a lot of extra yardage because of it. It causes guys to lose their mind. You can see it on film."
Peterson has had a fantastic year running the ball in a surprisingly more intense manner but how long can he keep the Vikings on his shoulders? The answer is not much longer. Christian Ponder isn't anything special up to this point while their second best offensive threat, Percy Harvin, seems done for the season.
Brady is currently on pace to finish with more than 4,700 yards to go with 36 touchdowns and five interceptions. These would all rank among the best of his career, but Brady himself refused to entertain hypothetical questions the media asked during the post-game press conference about who he'd vote for if he had a choice for MVP.
"I don't have a vote. I can't answer hypotheticals," Brady said. "We don't answer hypotheticals at the Patriots. Belichick would stand up here and say, 'You moron, why would you answer a hypothetical questions like that?'"
The 68,000 fans in Foxboro answered the hypothetical question on behalf of their legendary QB when they chanted "M-V-P! M-V-P! M-V-P!" after the game.
The man who commands the NFL's most dangerous offense looks well on his way to securing the third MVP award of his illustrious career and as a Jets fan I must confess even I was pulling for the Pats on Monday night.
TE Aaron Hernandez is in fact one of the starters on my fantasy team and with the help of Brady he scored 17 points to help me continue in the playoffs.
This is the only time you'll ever hear this Jets fan say thank you to the one simply known as "The Golden Boy."
True story, bro.
Zachary Hutton is the lead boxing writer and an NFL contributor for CraveOnline Sports. You can see what he's up to at his band's website myunclethewolf.com or also subscribe at Facebook.com/CraveOnlineSports.
Photo Credit: Getty