#1. Tom Brady– Nine guys have been featured, one guy remains and there wasn’t a single doubt in my mind who’d rank at the top of this list when I thought about it early in the off-season. The New England Patriots were by far the best team in the NFL last year. They win three of their first four games without the starting quarterback and that showed just how good of a head coach that Bill Belichick is. When #12 returns, they don’t miss a single beat and he showed no signs of rust or age and I know I’ve said this a lot about him, but last year may have been the best I’ve ever seen him look and I’ve watched a lot of him throughout the years. Another quarterback claims the top spot for the second straight season. It’s Tom Brady folks. He’s my top ranked player and top quarterback heading into the 2017 season and for the second time ever in the history of The Daily Blitz’s ten best players list, he’s the first player to claim the top spot on multiple occasions. He was my top rated player entering the 2011 season as well after winning the MVP in 2010 after he threw 36 touchdown passes and four interceptions. He’s shown absolutely no signs of slowing down and last year was his age 39 season. As we all know by now, he was suspended for the first four games for deflate-gate (rolls eyes). He just decided to stop fighting it and accepted the suspension. Last year was dubbed the “Tom Brady revenge tour” and he played with the biggest chip on his shoulder. In the 12 games that he played in, the Patriots won 11 of them and from a statistical standpoint, he threw 28 touchdown passes and a league low, two interceptions. Anything that was in his path last year, he carved it up and we all saw this coming. When you don’t create pressure and get to him, he has all day and then some to throw it and once he gets into a rhythm, it’s close to impossible to get him out of it. What I was extremely impressed with was how they were still able to be an effective offense even without Rob Gronkowski on the field. He had Chris Hogan playing as if he were an elite receiver and that’s what Tom does, he elevates the play of the guys around him and makes them better and that saying is still true to this day: the quarterback makes the receiver. He’s seen every coverage, he can read blitzes, he can make all the throws and he’s worked to get to this level. Now, you knew I would bring it up of course. February 5th, 2017, Super Bowl 51, Houston, Texas. It’s the third quarter and the Patriots are down by 25 points on the biggest stage. Once he had that glare on his face and that look in his eyes, I knew we were in for something. That game right there should tell you to NEVER doubt or count out Tom Brady, period. The running game was absent, so he took matters into his own hands and got the Patriots back into the game. The game ends up going into overtime, they get the ball and he leads them down the field. James White scores and he wins his fifth Super Bowl title, the most ever for a quarterback. Now, the question is should he be labeled as the greatest quarterback ever? By far. He’s been in the most Super Bowls ever for a starting quarterback (seven), he’s won five of them, the only quarterback to do so, he’s won more playoff games by himself than some organizations have as a whole and last December, he surpassed Peyton Manning for the most wins ever by a quarterback. I think what’s impressed me is the fact he’s won championships without that star receiver. He’s won big games with guys such as Troy Brown, David Givens, David Patten, Christian Fauria and that’s just to name a few. Each of those guys I listed aren’t household names, but we know who they are because of Tom Brady. When he did have that star wide receiver in Randy Moss, they made history together, but couldn’t win the big game. His resume has simply spoken for itself. 25 playoff wins, a five time Super Bowl champion, four time Super Bowl MVP, two league MVP’s and he’s winningest quarterback in NFL history with 208 wins. Canton is waiting for him. He could walk away from the game now if he wanted too, but he says he still has a lot left in him. He’s still at the top of his game and he’s entering his age 40 season.