Putting Tom Brady on the bench in the 4th quarter could not save The New England Patriots from a humiliating 41-14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
However, some are wondering aloud if keeping Brady there could help the team avoid future disasters.
For now Patriots coach Bill Belichick is firmly in Brady's corner.
He scoffed rather sarcastically at the suggestion that Tom's job security could be threatened.
The reaction may have gone viral, but it's important to remember that Belichick is hardly a stranger to replacing star quarterbacks.
Bledsoe was the face of the Pats at a time when hardly anyone knew or cared about Brady. And yet he slid seamlessly into the role of starting quarterback when called upon.
Years later and now some are arguing it's Tom Brady that needs to be let go. The difference is that unlike Drew Bledsoe, one wouldn't exactly consider Brady cut down in his prime.
Rodney Harrison won two Super Bowls with Tom Brady. He says the QB looks "scared to death." http://t.co/fpSJ9kmgPg pic.twitter.com/EhD56Iz8QwSuch a response begs the question of just how reasonable it is to place a mediocre start to the NFL season squarely on the shoulders of one man.
— NFLonCBS (@NFLonCBS) October 1, 2014
As Belichick himself said, "We all have to do a better job."
Asking whether or not the Pats should sit Tom Brady is like asking whether or not the tip of the iceberg sank the Titanic.
Even as some suggest New England fans prepare themselves for a Post-Brady era, the reality is that replacing a single player has never been the entire solution to a football team's problems.
Bill Belichick's mistakes as GM are costing the Patriots Tom Brady's final years. http://t.co/Q8IINwmSg3 pic.twitter.com/eC4IadRGYxThe New England Patriots will be in need of a natural leader to step in when Brady does go. The position is irrelevant; the man must be capable of pushing his team to raise their game to impossible levels. Even if they are average players, it should never show.
— ESPN Insider (@ESPNInsider) September 30, 2014
Once average abilities are revealed among previously feared teams, the facade of invincibility soon fades. This is what we're witnessing with the Patriots.
Brady may be the de facto leader at present, but he is not the sort of quarterback that can carry a mediocre team.
This isn't to say that Tom Brady isn't still the "golden boy" in the eyes of his coach, team, and fans. It's also likely he really was benched in an effort to rest him and give everyone a chance to play.
A 2-2 start to the season isn't ideal, but all that can really be done by Brady and the Patriots is to accept the humiliating outcome actually happened and then move on.
Tom Brady ranked 29th in passer rating: #BradyBigDeal or #BradyNoBigDeal? pic.twitter.com/ZMCj3pRSVJIn order for the Patriots to improve their fortunes, it's been suggested that they improve the overall quality of their team.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) September 30, 2014
That may very well begin with sitting Tom Brady and even replacing him in the near future.
It certainly won't be the end of the matter; not if what we're seeing is a popular franchise headed into decline.
Image Credit: Keith Allison