Is Tom Brady the best player in the NFL? QB's peers clearly think so originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
Stop us if you've heard this before: Tom Brady is No. 1.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback earned yet another accolade Sunday when he was announced as the No. 1 player in the NFL's "Top 100 Players of 2022" rankings. It's Brady's fourth time earning the top spot on the list, which is voted on annually by NFL players.
That the 45-year-old Brady is No. 1 on this list more than ten years after his first top appearance in 2011 is remarkable. The seven-time Super Bowl champion is coming off one of the best seasons of his career, in which he led the league in completions (485), passing yards (5,316) and passing touchdowns (43) in Year 22.
Brady unseated last year's No. 1 player, Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald, and finished ahead of 2021 NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers, who came in at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. While you could debate whether Brady is actually the best player in the NFL, his No. 1 ranking confirms that players view him as the unquestioned GOAT.
"I gotta go with Tom Brady, man. He 80 years old, throwing for 5,000 yards, man," Denver Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy joked in the NFL's video unveiling Brady as No. 1.
Others, such as Washington Commanders quarterback Taylor Heinicke, remain in awe of Brady's work ethic. Heinicke shared a great story of the time he joined the New England Patriots' practice squad in 2017 and was intent on being the first player at the practice facility on his first day -- only to find Brady watching film at 5:15 in the morning.
— NFL Films (@NFLFilms) August 29, 2022
It's hard to imagine Brady replicating his 2021 stats at age 45, especially with Rob Gronkowski no longer on the Bucs' roster. Then again, it's foolish to count out the GOAT at this point.