Super Bowl LI will be a battle of two quarterbacks at the top of their game.
Matt Ryan has had an MVP-type season with the Atlanta Falcons, while even at 39, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady continues to impress, heading into his record-seventh Super Bowl.
Speaking with Sky Sports analyst Neil Reynolds at the 2017 Pro Bowl, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith praised Brady’s career, and the standard he has set for other passers.
“This Super Bowl is another layer of icing. I think his legacy is cemented either way, there’s nothing riding on this game. But to keep adding to it wouldn’t hurt,” Smith said.
“He’s what everyone is striving for, when it comes to longevity and playing consistent – he’s where everyone’s been trying to get to, he’s been doing it well for a long, long time and now he seems to be getting better.”
When Neil asked about what makes the four-time champion so good, Smith pointed to the way he conducted himself off the field, as well as his play-making ability.
“So many things. Anticipation, accuracy, winning with his brain. Obviously when it comes down to it, he’s making the plays. And doing it week in, week out, year after year
“It doesn’t just happen by accident. I know he works really hard at it, because he’s no spring chicken anymore. It’s his work ethic, his diet, all year round to give himself the best chance.”
Smith also talked about Ryan’s incredible season. After leading the Falcons to the NFC’s No 2 seed, Ryan orchestrated two post-season wins, scoring a total of 80 points against the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers.
“Matt has been red-hot all year,” Smith said. “I’ve watched a lot of tape of them, and I don’t know if he’s even had one bad game this year.
“They have been rolling offensively and, if they get hot, they’re tough to beat as well.”
To watch Neil’s interview with Alex Smith, click the video above.