Excerpts from Tom Brady’s interview about Clyde Christensen
Tampa Bay quarterback Tom Brady spoke with The Times’ Sam Farmer about Buccaneers quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen, a longtime NFL offensive guru.
Brady: When I think of Clyde, a big smile comes to my face because he’s a great coach, obviously, he connects with people. But he’s just one of the finest, kindest people I’ve ever met in my life. It’s an amazing balance between a coach who pushes you and is competitive, but also at the end of the day an incredible husband, father, friend. He’s just everything. So when he speaks, everything is so genuine. He cares so deeply about everybody. He’s an amazing man, that’s really what it comes down to.
Farmer: What was it like leaving Lambeau [after defeating the Packers in the NFC championship] last Sunday?
Clyde Christensen won a Super Bowl ring as a coach for Peyton Manning’s Indianapolis Colts and is looking for another one with Manning’s former rival, Tom Brady.
Brady: We sit next to each other on the bus every road game. He and I get a chance to talk about everything that happened in the game. Kind of our little therapy session, win or lose. He’s got great perspective. Obviously, you kind of know about how he grew up, which is an incredible story in and of itself. But he’s got so much humility, and he’s so grateful, and he’s got incredible perspective. When I’m sitting there listening, I’m very much — the story isn’t about me — but for him to say, “How lucky am I,” I feel the same way. How lucky am I. We shared that moment together, just being so grateful for getting a great career accomplishment when it’s all said and done — the memories are important, but the relationships and the memories matter most at the end of the day.
For someone who has been a staunch competitor, and on the other side of — he might call where I was a certain place, not very flattering, and I might call the place where he was at not very nice, nothing very flattering. The fact that we’re now in the same place, trying to achieve something similar is pretty amazing. It’s pretty cool.
Farmer: He says he jokes with you about finally making the Super Bowl the honest way.
Brady: He’s so cruel. But believe me I get him right back. There’s not a dig that he gets in that I don’t have a retort. So believe me. We have a great back and forth. It’s very fun. It’s very enjoyable.
Here are some of the favorite NFL memories of longtime offensive guru Clyde Christensen, currently quarterbacks coach in Tampa Bay, and his players.
Farmer: Can he really throw still?
Brady: Definitely. He likes us being competitive at practice. He wants to get us amped up and ready to go. He works really hard at getting us prepared. All the players appreciate that. And yeah, he can throw the ball. I’ve seen some of his clips from college. He was a lot thinner then. All the QBs are trying to help him out. We’re like, “Clyde, you’ve got to cut down on the processed foods. We’ve got to get those out of your diet.” He’s like, “Oh, yeah, I’ll start tomorrow, I’ll start tomorrow. Next year.” We’re going to work on him. I’ve got to get him to eat a little bit healthier. But he’s such a super guy.
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