“Tom [Brady], come on now. Fess up. It was a fumble,” Woodson said Sunday on NFL Network’s NFL GameDay Morning. “It’s still a fumble.”
Woodson laid the vicious hit on Tom Brady in that 2002 playoff game that knocked the ball loose and forced what was initially thought to be a game-winning fumble for the Raiders. Officials reviewed and ultimately overturned the call, though, allowing Brady to drive down the field for the win and helping the Patriots start their dynasty.
That moment alone turned the tides for the Patriots as an organization and Brady as a player. It set New England up to win three Super Bowls in four seasons and handed Brady his first shining moment in what has turned into a sterling career.
Woodson sees the tuck rule call as the moment that sparked Brady’s rise to superstardom, and he’s even taking credit for the quarterback’s overwhelming success, both on and off the field.
“Let’s just get this out of the way,” Woodson said. “If [the officials] make the correct call — which they did at first, then they overturned it — this -game playoff streak that Tom Brady has? It never happened. Tom Brady owes me his house. I’m the reason why he’s married to who he’s married to. I’m a reason for a lot of that. Everything. Because they overturned that call.”
While claiming responsibility for Brady’s marriage to supermodel Gisele Bundchen or even saying the quarterback owes him his house is a bit over the top, Brady at least owes Woodson a thank you card for jumpstarting his ascension into the limelight.