The stories of the past and alternative scenarios in the NFL are often interesting, although we will never know what would have happened if they had really happened.
Such is the case for the first time the story is told of how Sean Payton failed to convince the New York Giants to select then-little-known University of Michigan quarterback Tom Brady in the 2000 Draft.
Payton was in his first year as the Giants ‘ offensive coordinator and his agent was Brady’s agent at the time, Don Yee , who asked him for a personal favor.
Sean Payton said, as an assistant for the Giants, he tried (and failed) to convince the team to draft a relatively low-profile quarterback from Michigan: Tom Brady https://t.co/3NJrRPFxNp
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) April 14, 2022
Sean Payton’s personal favor
“Okay, so I’m in New York and my agent is Don Yee, and Don also represents Tom Brady ,” Payton told Yahoo! Sports . “Don would call me periodically with a client who had just signed and say, ‘Hey, will you call Tom Brady ? He’s in Michigan and I have him, and I only help him with things that would be important to him at the combine.’
“I remember it was a half-hour phone call about what’s important. Making a good impression, being prepared to answer some football questions. Interviews were much more informal at the time,” Payton recalled.
After that Payton tried to advocate for Brady in the Draft , however, he was not paid much attention in the Giants office who were happy with the work of Kerry Collins , who was the leader of the team and who led the Giants to Super Bowl XXXV in the 2000-01 season.
Tom Brady didn’t impress scouts
“We were looking at Brady and everyone saw Tom run the 40 yards at the combine. They all saw what you know, a guy who isn’t fully developed and who was a starter for a year. You can tell he needs to go to the gym weights, but [Michigan head coach] Lloyd Carr said this, and I’ll never forget it: ‘He’s the toughest player I’ve ever coached.
The Giants did not draft Brady , who was drafted by the New England Patriots , although the Giants were the only team to defeat the now – legendary TB12 in two Super Bowls .