Watch: 46-Year-Old Tom Brady Gives 40-Yard Dash Another Try, Attempting to Overcome Infamous Combine Performance

Watch: 46-Year-Old Tom Brady Gives 40-Yard Dash Another Try, Attempting to Overcome Infamous Combine Performance

If any NFL team is looking to make good on one of the biggest draft mistakes in history and sign a future hall-of-famer who runs a faster 40-yard dash now than he did during the NFL Combine, now’s your chance.

The one caveat: He’s 46 years old and retired. But, hey, stuff like this has never stopped Tom Brady.

In a viral video that proved the former New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl-winning quarterback still retains his competitive fire, Brady ran two dashes that were quicker than his infamous 5.28-second time at the 2000 NFL Combine.

Remember, Brady remains one of the biggest all-time draft whiffs in NFL history at quarterback. In 2000, he was the seventh quarterback picked overall in the sixth round by the Patriots, who were — at the time, anyway — merely looking for a backup for Drew Bledsoe.

Part of it was his performance at the combine, which tests players athletic ability, football knowledge and mental acumen. This, according to Sports Illustrated, included the infamous 5.28 40, a 24.5″ vertical leap (that’s also bad) and a legendarily bad shirtless photo of his physique that gives those of us with dad bods a bit of consolation when we look in the mirror each morning:

Some of the highlights (not the right word, really) of his 2000 performance at the combine, from the NFL — which apparently holds some kind of grudge against the GOAT by putting this up on their official YouTube account:

Only one QB was selected in the first round that year: Chad Pennington, of Marshall, by the New York Jets. Pennington, a Rhodes Scholar known for his testy relationship with New York media, would go on to have a solid if hardly legendary career with the Jets and the Miami Dolphins, pockmarked by injuries and persistent concerns about his lack of arm strength compared to other elite NFL quarterback talent.

After that came a parade of people whose names are mostly punctuated by the words: “Wait, who?” Giovanni Carmazzi, 65th pick, San Francisco 49ers; Chris Redman, 75th pick, Baltimore Ravens; Tee Martin, 163rd pick, Pittsburgh Steelers; Marc Bulger, 168th pick, New Orleans Saints; Spergon Wynn, 183rd pick, Cleveland Browns. And then, with the 199th pick, Tom Brady, New England Patriots.

Only one of the other players picked before Brady became a regular starter, and then not even with the team he was picked by: Marc Bulger, who started for the St. Louis Rams for a spell. And this, mind you, was in a draft so thin that a kicker got drafted in the first round. (Sebastian Janikowski, the 17th pick by the Oakland Raiders.)

While Brady has seven Super Bowl wins in 10 appearances, his mobility has never been his strong point. However, his ability to get into better shape than he was in college and stay in that shape has been — which is why, at age 46, he set out to prove that he could beat that pesky 40-yard-dash time that, from all appearances, haunts him slightly less than that near-perfect season that was tossed away in 2007 with the Super Bowl loss to the New York Giants.

Thus, on Wednesday, he dropped a hint on social media that he was going to go for redemption:

On Thursday, the full video was released — albeit with a bit of promotion for NOBULL, the footwear company Brady endorses.

On his way to the workout, one of Brady’s associates teased him from the back seat of his car: “Clocks were different back then, right? Like, things were just a little slow? Was it a daylight savings thing?”

“This is not the true measure of a man,” a jocular Brady insisted, but noting that, “I need to do this.”

“My only prediction is a 100 percent chance of excuses,” the associate teased.

“I’ll give you 100 percent chance of effort,” Brady shot back.

Another associate — entrepreneur Mike Repole — asked him to “sign a medical waiver that we are not responsible for this” before the run.

“You haven’t been an athlete in over a year,” he said.

The results? On the first run, 5.18 seconds. On the second, 5.12.

The NFL did him a solid (maybe to make up for not memory-holing that combine footage) and posted a comparison of the combine Brady run and the 46-year-old Brady run:

So, let’s start speculating about Tom Brady coming back again, right?

Well, not quite. Brady may be the Dick Clark of the NFL, but he knew when to say when — which was after a distraction-filled 2022 season. Furthermore, it’s not as if his mobility was ever his asset — it cost him the perfect season when the Giants defense was able to rattle the precision passer by flushing him out of the pocket — nor are any of his records likely to be surpassed anytime soon.

The most important one, Super Bowls won by a single quarterback, only has one potential challenger: Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, who’s won three. (Two others have won four, but I don’t think that either Joe Montana or Terry Bradshaw is attempting a comeback anytime soon.)

Mahomes, it’s worth pointing out, had a 4.80 40-yard-dash time at the combine and a 30″ vertical jump — but that also comes with the downside that the Chiefs have used the Texas Tech product as a mobile quarterback, something that adds to injuries and generally shortens careers.

Brady, meanwhile, managed to play 23 seasons. Part of that was, paradoxically, that he was so slow; he was a pocket passer and neither the Patriots nor the Buccaneers tried to pretend otherwise. They simply tried to protect him. But it worked out well enough for him — 40-yard-dash time be darned.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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