Brady or Belichick?

May 22, 2024

It is a question for the ages – and a long-running debate, which we hope to settle once and for all.

Who on the New England Patriots was most responsible for the team’s historic number of Super Bowl wins and appearances, 6 and 11, respectively? Was it the most successful Head Coach of the 21st Century and future Hall of Famer aka the Hoodie (or Darth Hoodie), aka the Grumpy Lobster Boat Captain, Bill Belichick, as @ JasonGay from the Wall Street Journal memorably dubbed him for his surly, sneering, misanthropic disposition at press conferences. Or was it Tom Brady aka TB12 aka the Ageless Wonder who seemingly defied Father Time as a quadragenarian quarterback?

Until 2019, public opinion held that Belichick was the Steve Jobs of Head Coaches – maybe Steve Jobs didn’t invent the iPhone, but he certainly put all the pieces together and made it happen just as Belichick deserved most, if not all the credit, for the NE Patriots’ historic, dynastic run, as its chief draconian architect and the best investment that the football franchise ever made.

However, after 2020 when Tom Brady left the NE Patriots for the greener pastures of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and won his 7th Super Bowl ring without Belichick the pendulum swung in favor of the ever clutch QB as being the true Michael Jordan/MVP/GOAT of the NFL – especially now that an evidently past-his-prime, and out-of-his-depth Belichick has been fired after a disastrous 2023 season, which saw the Pats rank last in their division with a 4-13 record, their worst finish since 1992.

As wide receiver, Danny Amendola, says in perhaps the best soundbite of the new Patriots documentary on Apple, “We worked for Bill, but we played for Tom.”

So, to revisit the question, who deserved the lion’s share of the credit for the NE Patriots’ titanic success, Brady, or Belichick? And, BTW, titanic is the right word here since the dynasty eventually sank under the weight of its own success and hubris.

For what it’s worth – and not that anyone asked us exactly – but our answer to the question is that neither Belichick nor Brady are responsible. Or rather both are. Belichick and Brady were a perfect match, an inseparably dynamic duo who dissected opponents with molecular, Machiavellian precision and brought out the absolute best (or absolute worst depending on your perspective about #Deflategate and #Spygate) in each other for over 20 years.

The same is true of the trispecific small molecule, 1-bromoacetyl-3, 3-dinitroazetidine (RRx-001) (generic name nibrozetone), which combines three groups, a dinitroazetidine ring, a non-cleavable amide linker, and an alpha- (⍺-) bromoacetyl functionality to make one cohesive and functional whole, as shown below.

The dinitroazetidine group fragments under conditions of low oxygen to release the free radical, nitric oxide.

The α-bromoacetyl group binds to specific thiolate groups i.e. negatively charged sulfurs like the NLRP3 inflammasome.

Just as Bill Belichick ran the defense and Brady the offense, so the dinitroazetidine group mediates the cytotoxic and vasodilatory activity of RRx-001 (nibrozetone) and the α-bromoacetyl group is responsible for its defensive, protective, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Not to be overlooked is the enormous contribution of silver-tongued team owner, Robert Kraft, shown below, who by hook or by crook – or let’s not sugarcoat it, by checkbook – managed to hold the team together until he couldn’t anymore, just as the amide linker in RRx-001 (nibrozetone) keeps it intact.

For more information on the rise and fall of the most successful NFL franchise in history, watch the excellent and compelling behind-the-scenes docuseries, “The Dynasty: New England Patriots” on Apple TV+.

For more information on RRx-001 go to PubMed, the EpicentRx LinkedIn homepage, @EpicentRx, and these hopefully always edifying and entertaining blog posts.