Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, who have combined for eight regular season MVP awards and two Super Bowl rings (and counting), were arguably the two greatest quarterbacks of their era.
You might think the on-the-field rivalry between the two NFL legends extended to off the field as well.
But that’s not the case.
In an Instagram post Wednesday, Brady revealed that the two quarterbacks have always been friends.
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“Spoiler alert… we were friends this whole time,” Brady wrote. “Always great to see you Peyton!”
The post has drawn numerous comments from other celebrities.
But it was comedian Kevin Hart who posted what many others were also likely thinking.
“Well this changes everything,” Hart wrote.
Bitter rivals being friendly outside of the game is certainly nothing new.
NBA greats Larry Bird and Magic Johnson were friends, as were golf legends Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus.
The “rivalry” between the two quarterbacks was often played up by the media when Brady and Manning faced off.
But there was one legitimate situation where Brady took a jab at Manning in what he thought was a private email that later became public.
In the midst of the Deflategate controversy, some of Brady’s emails were submitted in the NFL Players Association’s suit against his four-game suspension.
In November 2014, Brady wrote to a childhood friend, per Boston.com: “Thanks popa. I’ve got another 7 or 8 years. [Manning] has 2. That’s the final chapter. Game on.”
It turned out that Manning had just one more year after that one, while Brady will soon be five years into his planned seven or eight seasons.
In another email, Patriots blogger Jay Flannelly said, “Manning needs things to be perfect to succeed, weather, his system, etc.”
Brady didn’t outright agree with Flannelly, but he also didn’t disagree either.
He provided just a typical Patriots response of, “We are some hard working grinders beav. That’s what our team is all about. Our best is still ahead of us.”
That may have been written in 2014, but it could still be applicable today.
Even though Brady showed some decline last season, it would be absolutely no surprise if he came out and won his seventh championship next season.
That would surpass the number of titles won by NBA legend Michael Jordan, who Brady has admitted to always being in awe of.
When it comes to Brady, nothing should really surprise us anymore.
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