Tom Brady may have won five Super Bowls as a star quarterback. But the New England Patriots hero recently proved that when it comes to his family, his defensive skills are just as strong. Here’s how the NFL icon dealt with the radio host who insulted his five-year-old daughter.
Born in San Mateo, California, in 1977, Brady began his football career playing for the University of Michigan. In 2000 he was selected by the New England Patriots in what is widely regarded as the NFL draft’s biggest ever steal. Brady went on to dominate the sport for the next two decades.
Indeed, Brady has guided the Patriots to no less than eight Super Bowls, an NFL record. He’s won five of them, too – a feat which only defensive end Charles Haley has also achieved – as well as four Super Bowl MVP awards. And his record-breaking certainly doesn’t end there.
Brady has also achieved 13 Pro Bowl selections, guided his team to 15 division titles and picked up three league MVP accolades. On the all-time lists, he places fourth in passing yards and third in touchdown passes. Meanwhile, when it comes to playoff games, he’s appeared in and won more than any other quarterback in NFL history.
But Brady’s glittering career hasn’t been entirely without controversy. The quarterback famously received a four-game suspension for his alleged role in the football-tampering scandal known as Deflategate. Yet by the end of the same 2016 season, he’d dramatically turned things around. Brady not only helped the Patriots win Super Bowl LI, but he also picked up the MVP, too.
Away from football, Brady has also attracted attention for his political beliefs. The quarterback has been on friendly terms with Donald Trump since the turn of the century and reportedly phoned him up on the eve of the 2016 presidential election to offer his support. However, despite speculation, Brady has claimed he has little interest in running for office himself.
Meanwhile, Brady’s eventful personal life has also seen him grace the front pages. In 2004 he began a two-year relationship with actress Bridget Moynahan which ended at the same time she became pregnant. John Edward Thomas Moynahan was born in Santa Monica, CA, in August 2007.
Shortly after splitting with Moynahan, Brady started seeing supermodel Gisele Bündchen following a blind date set up by a mutual friend. The pair wed at an intimate Santa Monica ceremony in February 2009 and welcomed their first child, Benjamin Rein, later that year. In 2012 the couple added to their family unit with the birth of daughter Vivian Lake.
And it was while defending the latter that Brady found himself at the center of another major tabloid story in 2018. Just days before he competed in Super Bowl LII the quarterback was making his regular weekly appearance on sports radio station WEEI. But on this occasion, Brady was in no mood to talk football.
For just four days earlier WEEI host Alex Reimer had described Brady’s daughter Vivian as an “annoying little pissant.” Reimer used the term while discussing a scene from Brady’s Facebook documentary series, Tom vs. Time. The station later removed the audio from its site, but by then the damage had already been done.
And during his regular Monday slot on the Kirk & Callahan Show, Brady made his feelings on Reimer’s outburst very clear. “I’ve tried to come on this show for many years and showed you guys a lot of respect. It’s very disappointing when you hear [Reimer’s comments], certainly. My daughter, or any child, certainly don’t deserve that.”
Brady then added, “I’ll obviously evaluate whether I want to come on this show again, so I really don’t have much to say this morning. So, maybe I’ll speak with you guys some other time.” Although host Kirk Minihane offered an apology to Brady, the NFL star then hung up.
That same day, Brady’s brother-in-law Kevin Youkilis took to Twitter to offer his support. “As a proud family man, it is taking everything in me to not take the low road today,” Red Sox infielder Youkilis wrote. “We will continually take the high road while others feel it necessary to take a swipe at our family. #Karma #Family”
Brady’s Patriots teammate Devin McCourty also had plenty to say on the matter, telling The Guardian, “I thought that was very disappointing to see anyone say anything negative toward his daughter, or anything about your family. Really poor taste. But I think as always Tom handled it in the right way with something like that.”
However, not everybody took Brady’s side. Shock jock Howard Stern told Sirius XM radio, “I’ve got to stick up for radio guys, because number one, you’re on the air and it’s not like there’s a script. Tom Brady should know better. If you’re going to put your young child on a TV show, on the internet, you’re putting her out there for comment.”
WEEI had previously apologized for Reimer’s remarks. “We are disappointed and embarrassed by Alex Reimer’s on-air comments made last Thursday evening,” an official statement read. “His remarks were utterly indefensible, and mean-spirited commentary directed in any way at children is wholly inappropriate.”
They also placed Reimer on indefinite suspension, a development which left the radio host distraught, according to Minahan. However, despite being at the receiving end of Reimer’s hurtful jibe, Brady insisted that he didn’t want the host to lose his job. “I would hate for that to happen,” he told NFL.com.
In the same interview, Brady explained why he’d hung up on the Kirk & Callahan Show. “I just know everybody is real protective of their kids,” he said. “I never stayed away from criticism, I understand that criticism is part of sports. But I certainly don’t think that my children or anybody else’s children deserve to be in that. And that’s what I said.”
However, the star also revealed that he’s not looking to bear a grudge against Reimer. “Look, I think we all go through our life and sometimes we say things we shouldn’t say or make mistakes, and that happens,” he said. “I can express it and you move on.”
In any event, the drama surrounding Reimer’s remarks didn’t appear to distract Brady from his day job. Indeed, the star almost broke a postseason passing yards record during Super Bowl LII against the Philadelphia Eagles. Despite his best efforts, though, Brady couldn’t prevent the Patriots from losing the game 41-33.