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Burke: A fond farewell to Tom Brady

By Adam Burke  ( 

February 1, 2022 10:22 AM

The GOAT officially announced his retirement on Tuesday morning. Tom Brady certainly earned the right to go out on his own terms and that seems to be precisely what he has done. He picked up a seventh ring and nearly had an epic comeback for the ages with a new team, almost just to prove that he could.

Brady’s accolades and achievements are well-documented, but let’s talk about his accomplishments from a betting standpoint. Bettors strive for 54 or 55 percent in this business because that’s good enough to overcome the standard -110 vig. Do something like that and you’ll show a profit. Do something like that with a very large bankroll and you can actually make a living on it.

Well, Mr. Brady was at 59.2 percent (209-144-10) in the regular season and playoffs combined. Every Twitter account across the industry is citing a different record, which may simply be a testament to his longevity with 22 years in the league, but they’re all around the same cover rate. What his teams did was unprecedented and unparalleled from a betting standpoint, especially when you consider that the sportsbooks were well aware of Brady’s (and the Patriots’) ATS dominance, shaded lines and he still covered in those games.

There were times (regrettably) that I bet against Brady because of those inflated prices and because of the absurdity of being that much of a cover machine. There were also times I went ahead and said “eff it” and bet on him anyway. Bill Belichick (and later Bruce Arians) obviously had a hand in this, too, and Brady almost always had quality defenses in his corner with the Patriots.

Still, I’m not sure we’ll ever see anything like this again and certainly not over this long of a period of time. A lot of people like to talk about unbreakable records in sports. Given the longevity, I’d say Brady’s 59.2 percent ATS rate over more than 360 games just might be one of those.

What a player. What a career. What a stud for bettors. If only we’d all just blindly bet the Patriots every game.

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