Tom Brady’s decision to retire (for good this time) brings an end to one of the greatest NFL careers in history, and perhaps one of the finest in professional sports ever. Rarely does an athlete dominate a sport for so long while winning so many championships. Some of his records may not be broken for several decades. Some may never be broken.
However, a few young quarterbacks have a chance to surpass Brady on several fronts. Let’s take a look at this idea and what it would mean.
Brady has hundreds of league records due to his excellent skill, incredible teammates, and sheer longevity. Here are five of the most prominent current NFL quarterbacks who may surpass him before they also retire.
Tom Brady says he is retiring "for good" from football, ending a storied 23-year NFL career during which the star quarterback won seven Super Bowls and set numerous records. pic.twitter.com/cJMiiX32ra
— Tipico Sportsbook (@tipico) February 1, 2023
To be frank, no current quarterback is breaking or even tying Brady’s Super Bowl-winning record. However, Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts appear to have the best prospects right now, and not only because of their Super Bowl LVII faceoff. Both lead superb teams that show no signs of a major setback in the short term. But there is no promise of one of them winning 8 or more titles.
So, could any current quarterback surpass Brady’s regular-season win total? Well, Mahomes has a half-decent shot. Through five full seasons, he is presently at 64-16 (80% victory rate). If he plays 14 more full seasons at the same win rate, he will have collected another 190 victories, bringing his total to 254. Much depends on whether Mahomes continues to play into his late 30s or early 40s. Of course, the Kansas City Chiefs’ continued domination in the AFC West is crucial.
We’d take 50-1 odds on Mahomes achieving it because, with his surrounding offensive and defensive corps, Kansas City is on track to win 12 games or more in each of the next three years, giving him 100 wins by the time he’s 30.
Teams averaged 212.2 passing yards per game in Brady’s first full season (2002). Whereas, Teams averaged 231.3 passing yards ten years later. It peaked at 240.2 a few years ago before dropping in the previous two seasons.
However, the top passing teams continue to sling it. Mahomes topped all quarterbacks with 5,250 passing yards, bringing his career total to 24,241, or nearly 4,800 per season. Brady only surpassed 3,800 yards once in his first six seasons because the game was played differently back then. Furthermore, his Patriots functioned differently than Mahomes’ Chiefs do now.
To put a cherry on it, Brady has averaged 266 passing yards a game. Mahomes has a 303 average. At this pace, the latter may be on Brady’s doorway by the time he reaches the age of 38.
Tom Brady’s career in perspective: if Patrick Mahomes doesn’t get injured, avoids roster reconstructions, and puts up the exact same numbers that he’s currently averaging…
Mahomes wouldn’t eclipse Tom Brady’s passing records until 2036 at 41 years old. pic.twitter.com/Ai9OeAfQof
— Jordan Moore (@iJordanMoore) February 1, 2023
Then there’s Joe Burrow, who’s averaging 280 passing yards per game and has a core team of elite (and young) receivers who might help push him to 300-yard-per-game endeavors in the coming years. Meanwhile, Justin Herbert is averaging 288 yards per game and shows no signs of slowing.
Burrow expressed his admiration for Brady as he stated, “I think he epitomizes toughness at the quarterback position. And he’s a great leader. I mean, he’s the greatest of all time for a reason: he’s the full package.”
Furthermore, we can’t exclude Trevor Lawrence. Although the stats aren’t there yet, Lawrence’s ceiling matches that of any other quarterback in the game today. It all comes down to the Jacksonville Jaguars’ future growth and if Lawrence continues to throw 600+ (or 650+?) times each year.
Brady has defeated 32 teams. Mahomes has already defeated 30 teams, excepte his own and the Minnesota Vikings. A league expansion to 34, 36, or more teams might put Mahomes on a road to defeating more than 32 teams. Several current quarterbacks could easily defeat 33+ teams if the NFL expands. Even some of the older players who are still around might make a run if the timing is right.
Mahomes also admits that it will be difficult for him to compete with Brady, who has played in 10 Super Bowls and won seven of them. Mahomes, however, wants to pursue that impossible ambition. In an interview he said, “He(Brady) has a little bit of that Jordan in him. That will to win and that will to be the best. I think that’s what makes Tom so great. Even though he might not have the best arm or the best mobility, he’s still really good at both of those things.”
Many other records might be challenged in the 2030s or 2040s, depending on how long the current generation of youthful and eager quarterbacks can hang in a league that simultaneously elevates and churns through talent.
But as of yet, there is no better player than Patrick Mahomes who has the best prospect to surpass all the records set by the GOAT Brady in his wonderful NFL career. Who is your best bet on that? Take a wild guess and let us know in the comment.