Some time ago, I heard from Kevin Braig, Quant Coach, that he was planning to review Tom Brady vs. the NFL: The Case for Football’s Greatest Quarterback for Cold, Hard Football Facts. I was thrilled. And I was scared to death.
I’m not typically one to sweat a review. Not that I don’t like good ones. Not that the bad ones don’t bother me. It’s just that you can’t do anything about them. If you’re wise (or if you’re able to pretend your wise), you just sit back and take them as they come.
This one was different. Because, well, first of all, there are a lot of football media outlets I admire and respect. But CHFF (along with Football Outsiders) sits at the top of the list. This is media for people who think a lot about football by people who think a lot about football. It’s an outlet that has earned my respect and that keeps earning it just about every day.
I want everyone who reads TBvNFL to enjoy the book. I hope everyone who reads it will be able to see that I worked hard to earn both the time and money they put into it, and will come away feeling like the experience was worth the price of admission. But when it comes to the people who run and contribute to sites like CHFF, I want to believe that I’ve earned their respect just as they’ve earned mine.
I’ve also come to think highly of Kevin. He’s a guy with a clear perspective on the game and a deep understanding of it, whose work has influenced the way I think about football. I wanted him to like the book.
I neither expect nor need everyone to agree with my conclusions in this book. There are plenty who won’t. That’s fine. My take has always been that if someone were to read this book and say, “I don’t agree with you on Brady, but I think you made a good argument and I enjoyed the read,” then I’ve succeeded. So I’ve been on pins and needles, just hoping Kevin would write something like that. (And dreading, of course, that he would tell his readers, “Don’t waste your time.” That’s where the scared to death part comes in. Not because he’d have been telling people not to read my book, but because it would have meant he thought my argument was poorly made, which is to say that I’d wasted my time and his.)
I pretty much got my wish this morning.
Here are some of my favorite quotes from the review.
“In his book, Glennon runs a solid, statistically supported, fact-based campaign for Brady.”
“Still, while one might argue all the achievements and all the statistics and the context in which they came to pass, it is indisputable that Brady achieved his back-to-back Super Bowl titles in the most technologically sophisticated era in NFL history.”
But pulling quotes out of context doesn’t really do justice to what is a very thoughtful examination of my book and it’s premise. You really need to see the complete piece for yourself. So do that. Go read Kevin’s review. (I think I’ll go and read it again myself now.)