The Pittsburgh Steelers are out of Latrobe and back at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, also referred to as the South Side Facility. We are already into the regular season, where everything is magnified and, you know, actually counts. The team is working through the highs and lows and dramas that go through a typical Steelers season.
How are the rookies performing? What about the players that the team signed in free agency? Who is missing time with injuries, and when are they going to be back? What are the coaches saying about what they are going to do this season that might be different from how it was a year ago?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Would you root for the New England Patriots to win the Super Bowl if it meant Tom Brady would retire?
It’s becoming increasingly difficult for the doubters and haters to deny that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is the greatest football player of all time. What cannot be disputed is that he is the most accomplished, and he is only continuing to add to his prestige.
Having already surpassed 200 wins, 500 touchdowns, and 70,000 yards, Brady also just won his ninth AFC Championship game, which is more championship game victories than any team in the NFL. If he wins the Super Bowl in two weeks, he on his own will tie the Pittsburgh Steelers as an organization for the most Super Bowl victories, and will also break a tie with Charles Haley for the most Super Bowls won by any player.
In other words, there’s absolutely nothing else to prove. And there is speculation that Brady could potentially be interested in riding out into the sunset on the top of the mountain. The vast majority will agree beyond dispute that he will retire as the greatest football player of all time. Hell, he might get his own wing in Canton.
Steelers fans, however, are understandably protective of their unique place in NFL history as the winningest franchise of the modern era and the only team to own six Lombardi trophies, and they don’t like company. I myself am guilty: I rooted for the Baltimore Ravens in 2012 in order to prevent the San Francisco 49ers from claiming a sixth title.
So which would you prefer: a few more seasons of Tom Brady competing on the field against the Steelers, making it more difficult for them to win the Super Bowl, or watching him win one more game, tying Pittsburgh’s record for Super Bowl victories, and hanging up his cleats? Let’s say Rob Gronkowski goes with him too, since there has already been speculation about that for over a year.