Two Januarys ago, Tom Brady advised John Harbaugh to “study the rule book” after the New England Patriots utilized unorthodox formations to knock Harbaugh’s Baltimore Ravens out of the playoffs.
A little over 12 months later, Brady and Harbaugh shared a plane ride that evidently had a profound impact on the Ravens coach.
During a conference call Thursday with New England reporters, Harbaugh shared a story of how the Patriots quarterback doled out life lessons to Harbaugh’s teenage daughter, Alison, during a flight home from Michigan’s “Signing of the Stars” event.
“We had a lot of fun,” Harbaugh said. “I don’t know if he’s talked about that at all, but we ended up sharing a plane ride along with my daughter and a couple of his people, friends of his. We just had a chance to just talk for a couple hours, and really more than anything, Alison got a chance to listen to Tom Brady talk about competing and what it takes to be great at what you do.
“And one of the funny things about it was, he was so nice to her. So he gets off and they go, and we get back on the plane and we’re talking, and she says something like, ‘Boy, Tom really is a nice guy.’ And I look at her and go, ‘Tom?’ I’m thinking ‘Mr. Brady’ would have been more appropriate. And she said, ‘He said to call me Tom.’ I got a kick out of that. It was good. (I have) a lot of respect for him and a lot of respect for what he’s accomplished.”
Clearly. Harbaugh, whose Ravens will visit Gillette Stadium this week on “Monday Night Football,” went on to call Brady the best quarterback of his era.
“He’s very tough to compete against,” Harbaugh said. “The best quarterback that’s played, certainly in this era, without question in my mind. That’s how I would rank him. And it’s just another tough challenge to have to play against him.”
Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images
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