FOXBOROUGH – In case it was not evident by the fact that this week's installment of this countdown was guaranteed to be a New England Patriot and the fact that Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski have already been in the top ten, then I write to you now to say that Tom Brady is the best Boston athlete of the decade. Is anyone surprised?

It has to be Brady. And besides the fact that he has accumulated unprecedented statistics and recognition in the past decade, he is also still playing! He just played last night and recorded two rushing touchdowns in a 35-14 win over the New York Giants. The 42-year-old quarterback may still be years from retirement.

He is also, of course, the greatest quarterback of all-time and the greatest football player of all-time, but that's beside the point. Let's focus on what Brady achieved from 2010 to 2019.

He was arguably better in this decade than he was in the decade before. He has thrown for 41,079 yards (and led the league in this category in 2011) and 302 touchdowns and counting. He continues to climb the ranks of essentially every record and milestone that can be set by a quarterback. Just last night, he passed Peyton Manning to become second on the all-time passing yardage list.

On top of that, Brady has played in every post-season of the decade and is bound for another one this season. In these playoff matchups, Brady has thrown for 7,071 yards and 45 touchdowns. But aside from the statistical achievements, Brady is also a bona fide winner and this decade has more than proved that. In the decade, his regular season record is 119-31 and the Patriots are currently 6-0. His playoff record is 16-6 with three Super Bowl titles along the way.

Brady won Super Bowl MVP honors twice, in 2014 and 2016, and regular season MVP honors twice, in 2010 and 2017, as he just kept getting better with age. He's been named to the Pro Bowl every season of the past decade and he received All-Pro honors three times.

Quarterbacks have come and gone. Rivalries have ignited and flamed out. But there's one constant in football, in Boston, and in life. And that constant is Tom Brady. In all honesty, he will probably be number one on the countdown of the best Boston athletes of the 2020s, too. He just never gets old. We love you, Tom.

Now that the countdown is over, here is the full list of the top ten Boston athletes of the decade:

  1. Tom Brady
  2. Rob Gronkowski
  3. Mookie Betts
  4. David Ortiz
  5. Isaiah Thomas
  6. Patrice Bergeron
  7. Chris Sale
  8. Julian Edelman
  9. Zdeno Chara
  10. Paul Pierce

If you have any disagreements, I would definitely be curious to hear them!

Image via Wikimedia Commons / Jeffrey Beall