One of the common stories concerning Tom Brady is that the New England Patriots were able to get this future Super Bowl MVP in the sixth round of the NFL Draft taking him with the 199th pick. While it is obvious now that the pick was a steal… what other team wouldn’t love to have Tom Brady, but passed on him, you have to also remember that it wasn’t exactly a quarterback-rich draft that year.
Only one quarterback was drafted in the first round: Chad Pennington, by the New York Jets with the 18th overall pick.
This is a far cry from the year Dan Marino was taken as the fifth quarterback in the first round, or even when Peyton Manning and (sigh) Ryan Leaf were drafted back-to-back with the first and second overall picks in the draft.
How many quarterbacks were selected ahead of Tom Brady?
Chad Pennington – 1st Round – 18th Pick – New York Jets
Giovanni Carmazzi – 3rd Round – 65th Pick – San Francisco 49ers
Chris Redman – 3rd Round – 75th Pick – Baltimore Ravens
Tee Martin – 5th Round – 163rd Pick – Pittsburgh Steelers
Marc Bulger – 6th Round – 168th Pick – New Orleans Saints
Spergon Wynn – 6th Round – 183rd Pick – Cleveland Browns
Not taking anything away from the Patriots, but as you can see from that class of quarterbacks there weren’t many gems there… only Pennington and Bulger went on to accomplish anything. Plus when you factor that the Patriots also passed on Tom Brady for the first five rounds you can see that they too didn’t entirely see the potential that he had… there is a lot of luck in drafting good players.
Players the Patriots took in the 2000 Draft before they took Tom Brady:
2nd Round – Adrian Klemm – Tackle – University of Hawaii
3rd Round – J.R. Redmond – Running Back – Arizona State University
4th Round – Greg Robinson-Randall – Tackle – Michigan State
5th Round – Dave Stachelski – Tight End – Boise State
5th Round – Jeff Marriott – Defensive Tackle – University of Missouri
6th Round – Antwan Harris – Defensive Back – University of Virginia
To a certain degree, the Patriots themselves must have thought that each of these players had more talent or would help their team more than Tom Brady would. To say that the Patriots got a steal when they drafted Tom Brady in the sixth round is an understatement and cannot be argued… to say they were smarter than anyone else by getting him there… that isn’t entirely the truth.