The Surprising Thing Tom Brady Did Before His First Super Bowl

Tom Brady is not only one of the biggest stars of the NFL, but one of the most celebrated athletes of his time. Now in his 22nd season, Brady has been playing professional football longer than some of his fellow players have even been alive. However, the famed quarterback told USA Today in June that he plans to throw in the towel fairly soon. "I've always said 45 was the age that I wanted to reach and that was my goal. This year I'll be 44," he said, "so next year I'll be 45. I got a two-year contract." 

Not only does he have seven Super Bowl wins to his name, but Brady also turned down a bigger salary while he was with the New England Patriots, just because he wanted to build a better team. Brady also could have been a multi-sport athlete, giving his fans and critics more of a reason to either love him or loathe him.

While there's no doubt that Brady is someone who always comes prepared, there was one surprising thing he did before he won his first Super Bowl championship that may seem out of character.

Tom Brady snoozed just so he wouldn't lose

Believe it or not, Tom Brady fell asleep before his first Super Bowl, and only woke up a few minutes before the game was about to begin. This happened back in 2002, when the New England Patriots were up against the St. Louis Rams. Brady admitted that he got a little shut-eye in an NFL Films documentary (via Business Insider). The quarterback figured that because the Super Bowl pregame lasted longer than a typical one, he could relax a little before the game. However, he ended up falling asleep altogether. "I wasn't intending to sleep," Brady recalled, "but I think I dozed off for 20 or 30 minutes." 

Although he woke up just 12 minutes before game time, the Patriots ended up winning the game with a score of 20-17 over the Rams, per the Los Angeles Times. For Brady, that little snooze might have proven to be beneficial at the end. "I just felt good about where I was at," he said in the doc. "It wasn't like I was so relaxed, I didn't realize the importance of the game. I just felt like I was very prepared."

But for anyone who has been following Brady's career over the years, they probably already know just how important sleep is for the football legend in the making.

Tom Brady loves to get his sleep

There is one bedtime rule that Tom Brady always follows, and that's going to bed on time — and at the same time — every night. In an interview with ABC News back in 2016, he said that his sleep schedule is just as important to him as his practice schedule. That's why he goes to bed every night promptly at 8:30 p.m. "I don't go to bed at 1 a.m. and wake up at 5 a.m. and say, 'Let's see if I can get this done today,'" he said, emphasizing his need to be well-rested. He also acknowledged that his dedication to his profession keeps him from indulging in some of life's finer things. "Because my career is so important, I think I make a lot of, I wouldn't call them sacrifices, but just concessions for my job," he said. "I love what I do and I want to do it for a long time."

If sleep is truly part of Brady's winning formula, then we wouldn't be surprised if he took a quick nap before every game.