FOXBORO, Mass. — New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will turn 40 years old Thursday in what has become somewhat of a regional holiday.
Since it’s a milestone birthday, especially for an NFL quarterback, expect to hear even more about Brady’s birthday this year. Brady’s teammates annually comment on how amazing it is that the five-time Super Bowl champion still is playing at such a high level at nearly twice their age, and the media often wonders how much longer Brady can do it.
We’re getting started a little early this year.
“Wow. I mean I’m only 23 so let’s put it like that,” wide receiver Brandin Cooks said Tuesday. “This guy is still playing this game so hats off to him. That’s amazing. That’s a special milestone to hit, and I’m happy for him.”
Cooks has enjoyed his time so far with Brady this offseason, and it shows on the field when they hook up for long completions.
“To play with a guy like that is special,” Cooks said. “The way that he pays attention to the game, he makes you up your level a little more. So when you have that from a teammate you can’t ask for anything more.”
Cooks wouldn’t specify what he’s getting Brady for his birthday, but a few deep touchdown receptions during the season surely would suffice.
“I mean, it wouldn’t be a gift if I said it,” Cooks said. “What if he watches this, right? So I can’t say anything about that.”
Cooks is used to playing with elder statesmen at quarterback. Drew Brees, Cooks’ quarterback for three seasons with the New Orleans Saints, isn’t far behind Brady in age and will be 39 years old in January. Cooks has been hesitant to compare the two players since arriving via trade from the Saints.
“They’re both professionals,” Cooks said. “They’re both great quarterbacks. They have their similarities, but hey, at the end of the day, I’m here now and I’m focused on this, not necessarily what I had before. Just here, focused on the moment right now and forgetting about what happened in the past and forgetting about what’s going to happen in the future. …
“I would just say I’m blessed. I’m blessed. There’s nothing else more to say.”
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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