We all age, some do so more graciously than others, of course. But after side-by-side photo comparisons of Tom Brady and NFL Hall of Fame quarterback George Blanda went viral, some people are asking if the G-O-A-T got some H-E-L-P from plastic surgeons.
The debate started during Saturday’s NFC Wildcard game between the Washington Football Team and the Tampa Bay. Brady threw a touchdown to Antonio Brown making him the oldest quarterback in NFL history to throw one in a playoff game. Brady, 43, was 51 days older than Raiders legend Blanda when he threw his final postseason score.
SportsCenter posted a graphic showing the two legends side-by-side along with their stats. And fans noticed something. Tom Brady looks great for his age. In fact, maybe he looks too good.
That’s when people started to speculate if Brady has had some work done.
Tom Brady, George Blanda Come From Different Eras
It’s fun to guess if Brady has had surgery and maybe it’s even possible, but it’s really not fair to compare the two men’s looks. For one, George Blanda played during the hard-nosed era where player safety ranked lower with fans than concession stand costs. Also, Blanda came from a time when athletes didn’t care about their health. Blanda said he played better when he was smoking two packs of cigarettes a day.
In fact, once, a reporter wrote that Blanda, who played until he was 48, had a secret health regime. He actually got upset that people would assume he was taking special care of his body.
“My special diet consists of the same things I’ve been eating ever since I grew up: steak and potatoes and green vegetables. I smoke and I drink,” he wrote for Sports Illustrated. “The worst five years of my 21 as a pro were the five when I didn’t smoke at all. Now I’ve gone back to cigarettes, a pack or two a day, although I don’t inhale them. As for alcohol, I enjoy bourbon — it’s part of my University of Kentucky background — but I don’t guzzle it down like water. I sip it, and I limit myself to two or three drinks. You may see old George Blanda acting stupid, but you won’t see him acting drunk!”
Contrast that with Tom Brady, who has always been on the cutting edge — no pun intended — of health and wellness. Brady famously works out year-round and takes immaculate care of his body. He doesn’t drink or smoke, and he’s married to a supermodel which requires him to attend black-tie parties and Met Galas in the offseason. He has a stylist, nutritionist, personal trainer, and a chef. Whether he has a secret surgeon on standby likely doesn’t matter. Brady will still probably look better than Blanda at 43 when he’s 70.