‘It makes me cringe:’ Tom Brady no fan of being called the greatest ever

Julian Edelman and Tom Brady celebrated with Mickey Mouse in the Super Bowl victory parade at  Disney World Monday.
Julian Edelman and Tom Brady celebrated with Mickey Mouse in the Super Bowl victory parade at Disney World Monday.Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel via AP

Order “Never Gets Old,” the Globe’s commemorative book about the Patriots

It’s been said that the key to beating Tom Brady is to disrupt the Patriots quarterback in the pocket.

Perhaps if opposing teams really want to make him uncomfortable, they should just start paying him compliments between plays.

In an interview with Michael Strahan on “Good Morning America,” Brady reacted to being called the greatest of all time.

“I don’t even like that,” he said. “It makes me cringe.

“I wish you would say: ‘You’re trash. You’re too old. You’re too slow. You can’t get it done no more,’ and I’ll say, ‘Thank you very much. I’ll prove you wrong.’ ”


Brady reflected on winning a sixth Super Bowl.

“I don’t know what to think, other than I’m just blessed,” he said.

“I know that I’ll be giving back for the rest of my life. I know how hard it is to play in the NFL, and I have so much respect for the players.

“The way the Rams played last night, they played so good on defense. I’m so proud of our guys for fighting, and just glad to come away with a Super Bowl win.”

Tom Brady and Julian Edelman embraced after the Super Bowl.
Tom Brady and Julian Edelman embraced after the Super Bowl.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

The interview took place while Brady and Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman celebrated at Walt Disney World. Brady talked about his relationship with Edelman.

“We grew up in the same area,” he said. “We grew up 5 miles apart. Naturally, a quarterback/receiver relationship is so important. I’ve had that with all the receivers I’ve played with.

“We’ve been together for so long. So I’ve shared a lot of life moments with him, not just on the football field, but off. He’s obviously one of my best friends.”

Strahan asked Brady how he stays grounded with all of the success he’s had.


“I was a late bloomer,” he said. “I struggled in college. I struggled at the early part of my career. Like, I was never the first guy chosen.

“So that part is in me. It’s deep. It’s there, and it’s not going anywhere.”

After the win Sunday night, Brady brought his daughter Vivian up to the podium to accept the Lombardi Trophy. He talked about being able to share the experience with his family.

Tom Brady with his daughter Vivian after the Super Bowl.
Tom Brady with his daughter Vivian after the Super Bowl.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

“To be an older player, you know, I love bringing my kids to training camp,” he said. “I love bringing them in the locker room after the game, carrying my pads in.

“Football success is one thing, you know? Being a good dad, being a good husband, being a good friend, that’s really important to me, too. Relationships. I’m someone that cares about people.”

Before the game, Brady’s wife, Gisele Bundchen, posted a photo on Instagram with the caption, “I got your back!”

Brady talked about their relationship.

“She’s my rock,” he said. “I married someone that I know is my life partner. She’s just one of the most caring, nurturing people in the world.

“The way she takes care of our family when I’m working, sacrificing a lot of her dreams. I can only tell her I love her so much.

“She’s got my back. I have no doubt about that. And she knows I have hers.”

It’s already next year

The Patriots signed 11 free agents to futures contracts, eight of whom — quarterback Danny Etling, offensive linemen Cole Croston and Dan Skipper, defensive linemen Trent Harris and Frank Herron, defensive back A.J. Howard, linebacker Calvin Munson, and wideout Damoun Patterson — finished the season on the practice squad.


The team also signed three other players:

■  Offensive lineman Jake Eldrenkamp, who spent most of the season on the Cleveland practice squad;

■  Offensive lineman Ryker Mathews, who played the last two seasons in the Canadian Football League;

■  Defensive lineman David Parry, who played all 16 games with Indianapolis at nose tackle in 2015 and 2016, but spent just three games with Minnesota this season.

Futures signees will not be added to the active roster until March 13, which is considered by the NFL the first day of the 2019 league year.

Follow Andrew Mahoney on Twitter @GlobeMahoney.