BOSTON (CBS) — Damn, Tom Brady is getting old.
The Patriots quarterback celebrates his 36th birthday on Saturday, kicking off his 37th year on the planet by doing what he loves the most: throwing footballs. While he’s still one of the best QBs in the game — if not the very best — he’s unquestionably getting a bit long in the tooth. He’s the oldest player on the roster, with new safety Adrian Wilson the only other Patriots player born in the 1970s.
However, with age comes experience, and in Brady’s case, that experience brought fame, fortune and success. And a lot of stuff.
Brady’s made a lot of money in his career, and his wife has made even more, so it becomes harder and harder each year to come up with creative ideas for birthday gifts. We managed to come up with 10 last year for the big 3-5 (and you can run through that list by clicking here in the event you missed it), so let’s give it another shot.
10. Name Tags
Wes Welker is gone. Danny Woodhead is gone. Aaron Hernandez is gone (like, way gone). Rob Gronkowski is out, recovering from surgery. Suffice it to say, Brady’s in the process of learning a lot of new names and faces out there on the practice field.
With the Danny Amendolas, Jake Ballards, Kenbrell Thompkinses, Kamar Aikens, Zach Sudfelds, Aaron Dobsons and Josh Boyces of the world out there, it’s a lot of extra work, on top of what the normal training workload entails.
You might as well try to make things easier for Tom with some big red name tags. Hello, my name is KENBRELL.
9. Hallmark Subscription
There’s no getting around it: Tom Brady is going to miss Wes Welker. Bad. Real bad.
While there’s no escaping the emotions from flowing freely (and we know he has emotions), there are ways to channel that emotion positively. And what better way to do that than with greeting cards?
Buy Tom a Hallmark subscription that allows him to pick out one “Thinking Of You” card per day, in which he can scribble a friendly note and send out to his pal Wesley out in Denver.
“Hey Wes, let’s have a catch next time you’re in town.”
“Hey best bud. Just letting you know I’m thinking about you. I made sure Lavelle Hawkins was cut from the team, because he was wearing your number.”
“My dearest Wes, do you know where Deion is? I miss that guy.”
“Wes, remember our teammate Aaron? You’ll never believe where he is right now! Text me.”
This mouse card could be his first purchase. Precious.
8. Cool Shades, Hair Dye, Tattoo Artist
Tom Brady is a model and all of that, and he manages to get plenty of magazine photo spreads and whatnot. He’s got it together … but in the words of Bill Belichick, there are always ways to get better.
And, really, no photograph better displays that fact than this one he took with Guy Fieri in May.
Remind me again — who is the model in that picture? Because it sure as heck looks like the guy on the right. You know, the guy with the blazing hot highlights and spikes, the massive mirror shades and the rockin’ tats. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.
Brady has some catching up to do if he wants to look as stylish as the mayor of Flavor Town, so help him out. His reaction to opening your gift, if you’re lucky, should be, “Holy moly Stromboli!”
7. Fordham University Clothing
If you listen to sports talk radio or you hear any of the people in New England who still stubbornly refuse to be Tom Brady fans, then you know their number one calling card over the years has been that Brady has “gone Hollywood” and that he no longer puts in the hard work in the weight room in the offseason. In the early days, they say, Brady always won the premier parking spot for being the hardest worker in the weight room, but once he got famous and married, he stopped being that guy, and the results were seen on the field. (Forget the fact that he’s gotten better just about every single year of his career. There are people who really believed this.)
Well, guess what? This year, Brady won the parking spot. Apparently, he’s not all Hollywood.
Now, being a famous quarterback, he can’t just go around wearing clothing that gives a big middle finger to those who spent the past few years criticizing him. So go the subtle route, and get him some clothing from Fordham University. Preferably, find him some shirts and hats with the school’s abbreviated initials on it.
BONUS: Touchdown For Tommy, By Matt Christopher
It’s just an awesome book. Tommy would enjoy reading it. Plain and simple. Good gift.
Tom Brady needs a set of brakes, so he can pump them the next time Funny Or Die comes to him asking to do a video.
Make no mistake, his Funny Or Die debut last year was nothing short of outstanding, and frankly, he deserved some Oscar consideration for his backhand slap of his own cardboard cutout and delivery of the line, “I am the guy in the standee!” That was hilarious. But his 2013 follow-up just couldn’t live up to that high standard, and the result was an underwhelming sequel, much like we expect from Sharknado 2 or what we got from Speed 2, Caddyshack 2, Slap Shot 2, Dumb And Dumberer, and so on. The last thing we need is a trilogy, which is where the brakes come in handy.
5. A Cameo In ‘Dumb And Dumber To’
This gift can pretty much only be given by the Farrelly brothers, but it would be a good one.
The real sequel to Dumb And Dumber will begin production soon. You’ll remember in the original back in 1994 that Cam Neely, then the king of Boston sports, made an unforgettable cameo as Seabass. Neely will reportedly reprise his role in the sequel, but the Farrellys also ought to invite the current king of Boston sports to star this time around.
I mean, he already has the tuxedo for it and everything!
4. Michigan/UConn Tickets
Show Tom you care by getting him something he really wants: tickets to see his alma mater play in New England.
It’s not every day that Michigan rolls through the area, yet Big Blue will be traveling to Rentschler Field in Hartford on Sept. 21 to destroy the UConn Huskies. It might inspire Tom to have a career performance the following day against Tampa Bay … just make sure he doesn’t wander around the streets of East Hartford after the game. We don’t need Tom to go missing.
3. Audio Recorder (To Use When Asked About Tebow)
Tim Tebow is on the Patriots – had you heard??? – and that means a lot of extra attention and many extra questions for a team that already receives plenty. Despite the fact that the answer is almost always the same, the questions keep coming. In the case of Tebow, they’ll likely go like this:
“Tom, what can you say about Tim Tebow’s work ethic?”
“Tom, have you been impressed by Tim out on the practice field?”
“Tom, what are some of the things Tebow has done that have caught your eye?”
Tom’s response is probably going to be the same thing over and over again – “Tim’s a hard worker. He’s working hard out there. He works hard.” – so help Tom save some breath by buying him an audio recorder. Every time he gets asked about Tebow, he can just hold up the recorder, press play, kick back and relax and take a sip of a nice cold beverage. This might be the gift that makes him most thankful.
2. A Wet Blanket. A Big One.
Last year, the Houston Texans came to town sporting their snazzy new varsity letterman jackets. They were, indisputably, beautiful jackets, but they were also a horrible idea. The Patriots embarrassed the Texans, who entered the night with an 11-1 record, in a 42-14 blowout that wasn’t even as close as that final score would indicate. Houston lost two of its next three games before making a postseason trip to Foxboro that ended in a 41-28 Patriots victory. The Patriots probably would have won – and won big – regardless of whether or not the Texans wore their varsity duds, but the hokey little team-building experience might have inspired the Patriots to lay it on a little bit extra in both meetings.
Well, the Texans haven’t learned their lesson, apparently, as they scheduled the Patriots’ visit in Week 13 to be their “Homecoming” game. What that means outside of high school isn’t entirely clear, but Brady will be out to ruin the party for all 71,000 or so fans looking to party at the Patriots’ expense. A giant wet blanket will help accomplish that goal.
1. A Saddle
Let’s face it: Tom Brady has mastered everything he could possibly master in his profession. He’s set records, won a bunch of games, won championships and established himself as one of the best ever. Frankly, it’s time for a new challenge.
Enter the world of horse racing.
We already know Tom is an avid fan of the ponies, as he’s been showing up in some flashy clothing to the Kentucky Derby the past few years. This year, he even celebrated with the owners of Orb, the winning horse, and he even reportedly won a fat chunk of change for his bet on the horse.
But if you know Brady, you know he’s a hands-on type of guy. He’s not one to watch from the sidelines. He’s got to get in there.
So get him a saddle so he can hit the ground running on his second career as soon as he retires from football. While it may be true that Brady is more than a foot taller and 100 pounds heavier than the average jockey, you just can’t ever count Brady out of anything. If he gets picked 199th overall in the annual jockey draft, it’ll be the chip on his shoulder that he needs to become the best jockey in history.