Tedy Bruschi’s Determination, Instincts Made Him a Patriots Great, But Not Greatest Patriot

Tedy Bruschi's Determination, Instincts Made Him a Patriots Great, But Not Greatest Patriot Former Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi didn’t really get the same level of national recognition as other players at his position, such as Baltimore's Ray Lewis or Chicago's Brian Urlacher.

And that’s fine, because that is part of what made Bruschi such a great Patriot. Bruschi, who will be honored by the Patriots at halftime of Monday night's game against the Jets, blended in with the New England defense as a whole, playing that team style that helped those Super Bowl squads to mesh together as one of the best units in the league on an annual basis.

Still, Bruschi was the heart and soul of that Patriots defense — and maybe the entire team — and his effectiveness captured the spirit of the whole organization. Bruschi was an overachiever, a collegiate defensive end who was drafted in the third round and had to make his hay on special teams before earning his shot as a starter on defense.

And seemingly every time the Patriots needed to make a play, Bruschi was there to make it. He had the unteachable instincts that made him a coach's delight, and his wizardry on the field sparked a run in which the Patriots won three Super Bowls in four years.

Bruschi has already gone down as one of the best players in franchise history, along with quarterback Tom Brady, guard John Hannah, wide receiver/kicker Gino Cappelletti, kicker Adam Vinatieri, linebacker Andre Tippett, wide receiver Troy Brown and a number of others.

However, as much as Bruschi has done for the organization, it's the current quarterback who owns the distinction as the best Patriot of all-time. Brady emerged as a Super Bowl winner from the get-go and has gone down as one of the greatest players in football history, and his book is still being written.

Where does Tedy Bruschi rank among the Patriot greats? Leave your thoughts below.

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