When Patriots Fans Eat Their Own

by Bill Brenner on January 21, 2014

My interest in football is minimal. I love a good story of an athlete overcoming the odds and showing us that anything’s possible. In that regard, Tom Brady is a hell of a role model.

I’m not a fan of the Patriots quarterback’s wife, Gisele Bundchen. I don’t dislike her, I’m just not big on the modeling culture. But here’s something I like even less: Whenever the Patriots lose a big game, as happened Sunday, the Bundchen haters make nasty, foolish comments.

Mood music:

The haters start to joke about how she makes Brady wear ridiculous clothes and how their castles include fancy toilet bowls. They go on to complain that Brady is whipped and that, as a result, he hasn’t been able to win a Super Bowl since they got hitched.

The disdain people have for Bundchen really came out a couple years ago, minutes after the Pats lost Super Bowl XLVI to the New York Giants. On the way out of the stadium, someone heckled Bundchen, saying “Eli (Manning) owns your husband.”

She responded, within earshot of the TV mics: “My husband cannot (expletive) throw the ball and catch the ball at the same time.”

What outrages people most is that her comment essentially blamed the rest of the team for coming up short. It probably wasn’t one of her better moments. But people tend to forget that she’s a human being, prone to all the same moments of weakness as the rest of us.

The morning after that Super Bowl loss, I read a Boston Herald column by Margery Eagan on the whole affair. She wrote:

Super Bowl Sunday offered a telling glimpse into the Brady/Bundchen household. Our suspicions may be true. It was never Tom’s idea to dress like a girl in headbands with hair down his back. Or buy a $1,000 Toto toilet with water jets and blow dryers. Or ride a bike through town with Gisele’s 5-pound ratty dog in his front basket like a teeny, tiny, nasty ET.

At least Tom put his foot down when Super Gi had the Super Idea to name Super Baby Benjamin … River. “Something always flowing, immortal,” blogged Super Gi after her Super Pregnancy and Super Childbirth in the tub, where she meditated for 8 hours. And don’t forget: She wanted a law requiring all mothers to breast-feed and claimed she’d potty-trained Benjamin by six months.

I mean, beyond nauseating.

I laugh when people suggest Brady never asked for the life of a whipped husband. That’s the woman he chose to marry. In marriage husband and wife merge their lives in a blender, and the end result sometimes looks strange.

That’s beside the point, though. We all do and say things that are nauseating. I’ve read and liked Eagan’s columns for years. But she can often be nauseating, too.

When she writes a lousy column, do we blame it on her love life?

No.

Yet when Brady and company lose a game, his love life is exactly what people like to blame.

Blaming the athlete’s wife makes you a sore loser, a hater, and someone who likes to make excuses for a job not done well.

Even more, it makes you jealous and petty.

Cut the crap and be glad your team made it this far despite a season of setbacks.

Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen

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