Thursday was not Tom Brady’s finest hour. Not only did the three-time MVP cost his team by losing track of what down it was during the final moments of a one-point defeat, but Brady also flunked in the sportsmanship department, blowing off his Chicago counterpart Nick Foles in the post-game handshake line. Brady is now 0-for-2 in his career against Foles (their previous encounter came in Super Bowl LII) and has yet to shake his kryptonite’s hand.
Brady, who has gotten quite ornery in his old age, was in no mood Thursday night, ripping into his offensive linemen with one of his patented sideline tantrums (his tirade came after Tampa Bay committed five penalties on a single drive). Frustrated by the loss and the role his late-game gaffe played in it, Touchdown Tom made a beeline for the Bucs’ locker room, leaving Foles hanging at midfield.
Even the greats—actually, especially the greats—can lose their composure in the heat of the moment. Recently, LeBron James left the court early during the Lakers’ loss to Miami in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, assuring he wouldn’t cross paths with Jimmy Butler or any of his Heat teammates. Years earlier, Cam Newton, still processing his team’s loss to Denver in Super Bowl 50, spurned the media in similar fashion. And if you dig even deeper into the archives, Isiah Thomas’ snub of Michael Jordan in the 1991 Eastern Conference Finals likely prevented him from playing on the iconic “Dream Team” in Barcelona the following year.
Brady had reason to be upset. The shorthanded Buccaneers (playing without Chris Godwin and Leonard Fournette, among others) had countless chances to put the Bears away but couldn’t finish the deed. But as a role model and veteran leader, would it have killed the 43-year-old Brady—a certain Hall of Famer who has earned every accolade an NFL quarterback could possibly accomplish over the course of his career—to acknowledge Foles with a two-second fist bump? Or was rushing to the locker room to pout some more really that important?
Come on, Tom. It’s Week 5. I don’t know if the TB12 diet permits the occasional chill pill, but it should.