“You are such a sociopath”
For a brief period of his life, Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury called Tom Brady his colleague.
While he didn’t last long as a quarterback for the New England Patriots, he got to know his counterpart on a more personal level during a trip to the Bahamas. In an unforeseen moment, Kingsbury got a firsthand glimpse of Brady’s unwavering commitment to his craft. Although the event took place almost two decades ago, it doesn’t look like the aging quarterback’s attitude has changed at all.
And that’s exactly why the Tampa Bay Buccaneers should be seen as a major threat to win back-to-back Super Bowl titles.
Kliff Kingsbury started his NFL career as a teammate with Tom Brady
Prior to embarking on a coaching career, Kingsbury played on the field as a record quarterback at Texas Tech. After racking up big numbers in the Red Raiders offense, he had the chance to prove himself professionally.
The Patriots selected Kingsbury in the sixth round (201st overall) in the 2003 NFL Draft. It came three years after Bill Belichick drafted another quarterback in the sixth round. Back then, however, Brady wasn’t seen the same way he is now. So even though New England seemed to have hit big on the former Michigan caller, it made sense to invest another pick on the position.
Unfortunately for Kingsbury, his tenure with the team ended fairly quickly. He didn’t play a single snap as a rookie due to an arm injury. Meanwhile, Brady led the Patriots to their second Super Bowl title in three seasons. Seven months later, just before the start of the 2004 season, New England released Kingsbury.
In 2008, the journeyman quarterback officially transitioned from the field to the sideline. Ironically, Brady tore his ACL in Week 1 of the 2008 season, which was the first major injury of his career. Clearly, however, this setback didn’t stop him from achieving incredible success. And if anyone understands what it’s like to see Brady overcome an unfavorable situation, it’s Kingsbury.
Kingsbury learned everything he needed to know about TB12 in the Bahamas
During an appearance on The Ringer’s Flight trainer podcast, Kingsbury told a story about a trip to the Bahamas that included the greatest quarterback of all time. They both attended a wedding held at a place Kingsbury describes as “Adult Candyland” called Baker’s Bay.
The 41-year-old said everyone in his party, including Brady, spent the night “getting hammered”. Kingsbury woke up early the next day because he was having trouble sleeping. What happened next only confirms the many stories that have been told about Brady’s manic dedication in training.
âI get in a little golf cart, and I roll, and I get up, and I see on these polo fields a guy with another guy, and he looks like he’s doing resistance band drops,â he said. Kingsbury said.
By 7:30 a.m. Brady already had sweat (and maybe some of the booze from the night before) dripping from his pores.
âHe’s got this assistant holding his resistance bands, and he just crushes those drops, kills him and does this workout,â Kingsbury said. “I’m like, listen, you’re such a sociopath.”
Of course, this level of dedication has led Brady to lift the Lombardi Trophy seven times during his NFL career.
“His desire to be the best of all time is on another level,” Kingsbury said. âThe world hasn’t seen much like this. A guy who dedicated every waking moment, diet, sleep, work ethic, to being the best ever.
Can the Cardinals take a step forward as Brady tries to win back-to-back titles with the Buccaneers?
Brady begins his season at 44 with a chance to win back-to-back Super Bowl titles for the second time in his career. Kingsbury, who turns 42 six days after Brady’s birthday, is just trying to qualify for the playoffs for the first time as an NFL head coach.
While the Buccaneers have a balanced roster of established stars and young talent, the Cardinals look like a franchise trying to turn back time to 2015. They’ve spent a lot of money on free agency to bring in JJ Watt. and AJ Green. Both players have legitimate cases of someday entering the Professional Football Hall of Fame, but Watt and Green don’t seem to have much in the tank. Given their respective injury histories, it seems risky to bet on their keeping them healthy all season.
If Arizona has any chance of qualifying for the playoffs, Kingsbury must find a way to unleash Kyler Murray’s full potential. Selected No. 1 overall in 2019, the double-threat quarterback must become a more consistent passer and continue to master the nuances of the game at the NFL level. If Kingsbury can’t make Murray a star, he may not be head coach of the Cardinals any longer.
Meanwhile, Bruce Arians doesn’t have to worry about job security. Because as long as Brady wants to call Tampa home, the Buccaneers will continue to compete for Super Bowl titles.
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