Tom Brady probably makes a list of football players’ faces on looks alone — let’s admit that — but obviously even as he pushes in the direction of 40 the play earns him a spot as well. No other quarterback of this generation can lay claim to five AFC titles and three Super Bowl wins, and with his defense’s uneven performances in recent years, as Brady goes so do the New England Patriots.
I know everyone and their grandparents is building their own Mt. Rushmore-type quartet for every franchise in sports this offseason, but I’m going to a pull twist on it I haven’t seen yet: only accomplishments over the past couple years will apply, in the effort create the most relevant set of four mountain-side faces as possible. So I’m crafting the Patriots’ Mt. Rushmore to beat all Patriots Mt. Rushmores: Whose face makes it in stone?
Tom Brady: The super model-kissing face of the franchise.
Rob Gronkowski: The adult film-star associating face of the franchise has drawn the ire of many a trolling columnist, but it’s hard to exclude a tight end that — if he can finally stay healthy — has all the skills to amass the greatest career by a tight end in league history.
Devin McCourty: While this defense has been extremely inconsistent in recent years, McCourty represents the type of versatile piece in the secondary that pins it together.
Bill Belichick: It’s hard to imagine that Belichick has struggled to reclaim dominance for this defense in a long while, but all the young talent at his disposal could very well click in 2013.