Tom Brady sent social media ablaze on Tuesday after he clapped back at Tony Dungy when the former Colts head coach named him as the sixth-toughest quarterback he's ever gone up against. Brady responded to the video where Dungy was ranking the likes of Aaron Rodgers, John Elway, and Steve Young as more difficult matchups by simply posting a picture of Indy's 2014 AFC finalist banner.
For those who may be unaware, Brady's Patriots defeated the Colts that season in a 45-7 blowout en-route to a Super Bowl title. That banner essentially celebrates a second-place finish in the conference, which instantly was the butt of a number of jokes across the NFL once it was unveiled. That said, Brady may have forgotten that Dungy was not Indy's head coach back then as it was actually Chuck Pagano on the receiving end of he and the Patriots' wrath that day. Nevertheless, it's still a strong burn.
"I was just having fun," Brady told reporters of the social media exchange with Dungy on Wednesday. "I was only referring to him as the Indy head coach, not as the Bucs head coach. So it was nothing personal. Coach Dungy knows I love him. I was just giving him a little grief. He gave me a little grief, I gave him a little grief. It was all in good fun."
As he noted, Brady does have to toe a line as he goes at Dungy. Sure, the Patriots-Colts rivalry was at a fever-pitch when these two were on opposing sidelines, but now Brady is sporting Bucs colors, which Dungy did from 1996-2001. Going at one of your own isn't exactly kosher in NFL circles, which is why Brady likely threw in the caveat that he was specifically ribbing the Colts version of the Pro Football Hall of Famer.
While Dungy did give the nod to other quarterbacks as being a more difficult player to scheme against, it was largely because Brady wasn't a mobile figure in the pocket, which was one less thing to worry about.
"Who gave me real problems? John Elway," Dungy said. "You could do everything right, have the perfect defense, and going to move around, make something happen and kill you. He killed me enough to say he was difficult. Steve Young was the same way. Those mobile quarterbacks, that's who I put ahead of Tom. Aaron Rodgers, John Elway, Steve Young, guys who could move. Not to say Tom wasn't great, but that extra dimension meant something to me so that's why I would only put him at six."
Over the course of his career, Brady has played well against the Colts, owning a 15-4 record which includes a 4-1 mark in the postseason. Against Colts squads led by Dungy, Brady went 7-4 with a 2-1 playoff record included.