HOUSTON—This is, more than anything, the Tom Brady Super Bowl. Yes, Brady has been a big part of the production every time, but not like this. After that 2012 loss to the Giants he was chased down by his wife Gisele, who was yelling to him and gently weaving through an ant-like column of reporters so she could hug her husband and whisper consolations, surrounded by clicking cameras. It was an incredible scene. But that wasn’t all Brady’s game, and neither was the last one. It was Seattle’s loss as much as New England’s win, and everyone knew that.

This time, though, there is nobody within screaming distance of Brady. Atlanta is a good team that plays exciting football. There are lots of New England Patriots who could make the difference Sunday. Bill Belichick still sounds like the hum of an old hotel air conditioner in the next room, but he is a famous man.

But the only truly A-plus celebrity in this Super Bowl is Tom Brady. At the first non-clown-based media sessions of the week, Atlanta attracted perhaps half of the attendees of New England, and when the Patriots came out for their session, Brady was swarmed. It wasn’t a scrum; it was a hive, and it dwarfed everything else. It’s the Super Bowl, but Atlanta won’t move the needle unless they do it Sunday.

As for the Patriots, the team is a celebrity, but most of the players aren’t. Rob Gronkowski isn’t playing. Belichick is an eternal presence, more than anything else. No, in the biggest sports event of the year, Tom Brady is the show.

“My opinion — I mean, does it really matter — I think he’s the greatest quarterback ever,” said Patriots safety Duron Harmon.

“(He) has been just above and beyond anything you would expect,” said Patriots defensive lineman Chris Long, who is new to New England this season. “What a team player he is. What a good locker room guy he is. He pays attention to everybody. He’s a great teammate.”

“He’s able to put it all together better than any player that I’ve ever coached,” hummed Belichick. “Putting (everything) together at once in just a couple of seconds of time, he has to process it once he gets the calls and gets to the line Kaçak İddaa of scrimmage. I think his preparation allows him to in part do that. He has the football instincts as well. He’s a great role model for all of us. Any player and any coach. All of us.”

Yes, this is Brady’s Super Bowl. It’s his Super Bowl after the National Football League and commissioner Roger Goodell railroaded him into that four-game suspension this season. It’s his Super Bowl because it was reported Tuesday that Brady’s mother has been battling an unspecified but worrisome illness for 18 months, and this will be the first game she will attend this season, and that is one reason he didn’t fight Deflategate all the way to the Supreme Court. It’s his Super Bowl because he’s been to seven of these things now, and won four, and he is 39, and no quarterback has won five. He might be found wanting on his friendship with the President, but the rest you can’t take away.

“I mean, the losses in this game are tough, and you’re going to live with those losses the rest of your life,” said Brady on Tuesday. “Games that you lose, there’s regrets about every play in that game. When you win, you don’t think about any of those things, you have no regrets.”

“I don’t (think) about a personal legacy. I mean, those words would never even come out of my mouth unless I just repeated them. Those things have never been important to me. I never thought I’d be at this point in my life. I never thought I’d play professional football.”

Brady went through his other thoughts, because people care about his thoughts. He sounded very much like someone who will continue to push his own theories on health and longevity, like never eating strawberries, pyjamas that reflect his body heat back at him, maybe the concussion-salve juice that his personal body man, Alex Guerrero, used to hawk. He talked about how he doesn’t think he’s a system quarterback. And he talked about his parents.

“With things that your family goes through in the course of your life, it’s been a challenging year for my family,” Brady said. “Just for some personal reasons. It’s nice to have everyone here watching this weekend. It’s my mom and dad. And just . . . they’ve been so supportive my entire life. It’s nice to be here to show them, you know? To try to make them proud.”

He has become the kind of outsized icon that looms above everything else, and people will remember this as Tom Brady’s Super Bowl, win or lose. Atlanta cornerback Jalen Collins was asked if winning a Super Bowl would mean more because of the opponent, and he said of Brady, “Not to take anything away from him, but he has to line up against us, and we’re not going to give him anything easy. I mean, yeah, that would be wonderful to beat the New England Patriots in a Super Bowl, because of the Super Bowl resume that they have.”

Every one could be Brady’s last one, and until proven otherwise, this one is his.

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