Super Bowl LI left no doubt, Tom Brady is the greatest quarterback in NFL history.
As if his four previous titles weren't already enough, Brady got an unprecedented fifth ring Sunday, leading the Patriots to the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, erasing a 25-point deficit before beating the Falcons 34-28 in overtime.
Brady willed New England back into the game, setting Super Bowl records with 42 completions and 466 passing yards while leading four consecutive scoring drives (and a pair of two-point conversions) after falling behind 28-3.
He completed passes on the first five plays of OT, marching New England 75-yards in eight plays capped by James White's Super Bowl record third touchdown of the game to seal it.
It was the kind of stuff legends are made of, except Brady became a legend long ago.
Remember, he was just a sixth round draft pick out of Michigan when he was inserted into the Pats' lineup during the 2001 season after an injury to starter Drew Bledsoe. Brady improbably led New England to an upset of the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI and never relinquished the job.
Two more titles came in 2003 and 2004 and, after being denied twice by the Giants, Brady finally won his fourth ring by beating the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX at age 37.
That win tied him with Hall of Famers Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana for the most Super Bowl wins by a quarterback, and Sunday's win sets him apart. Brady now has five rings and four Super Bowl MVP's to go along with two regular season MVP awards. It is a resume that can't be matched by any other player, let alone quarterback.
Most impressively, is the way he's done it. Both Bradshaw and Montana won their championships during a shorter window of time with Steelers and 49ers teams respectively that kept their nuclues largely intact. But Brady is the only player that remains from the Patriots' first Super Bowl run 16 years ago.
He has done it on teams that were run first and teams that were pass first. He's done it in four-receiver sets and with double-tight end formations, making stars of receivers like David Givens, David Patten and Danny Amendola in the process.
Even at age 39, he shows no signs of stopping. Brady and the Pats have won eight straight and 14 of the last 16 AFC East titles, and have reached the Super Bowl two of the last three years. He says he'd like to play into his mid-40's. Who's to say he can't the way he's playing?
Put simply, Brady is the G.O.A.T.
We shouldn't have needed it, but Sunday's performance erased all doubt.