NO NAME SALOON, FOXBORO, MASS.- At his press conference this week, Tom Brady lamented the fact that Matt Ryan of the Atlanta Falcons has a "sweet" nickname, and Tom felt somewhat left out of the affectionate handle game.
Matt Ryan, formerly of Boston College, is known to one and all as "Mattie Ice," in reference to the ice water in his veins. He will stand up in frightful situations and make that key pass.
You may ask, "Hunh?" Ryan has won only one playoff game in his career, while Tom Brady has won innumerable playoff games and even a few Super Bowls. There is no ice water in Tom's artery apparently.
What do the cognoscenti call Tom? He is known by many as TB12. It sounds like a strain of tuberculosis that has no known cure. It's not exactly a game winner.
Indeed, Tom kindly accepted the nickname when reporters pointed it out. No one apparently referred to Tom by his more accurate sobriquet: "Tom Terrific."
That reference to an old cartoon hero may be too archaic for 21st century centurions.
So, Tom is left without a short love term. It would put him at a disadvantage in the NBA where nicknames will soon adorn the jerseys of players.
Tom may want to hold a contest to find something appropriate like "Gronk" or "Jack the Ripper Hernandez."
The idea that great heroes have great nicknames goes back to Babe Ruth. Even his name was a nick. The Sultan of Swat, the Bambino, Babe, was George Herman Ruth, not exactly a name to inspire. It could only be worse if his name was Thomas Edward Patrick Brady. If you don't have a good nickname, you stack up on middle names.
It could only be worse if Tom Terrific were known locally as "Loser." We dread to think a few more games without receivers might baptize him with a moniker he will hate.