PHOTO: Getty Images
Tom Brady has been the target of scrutiny for not finding Nick Foles to congratulate him on the field after Super Bowl 52. Some used the incident to call the quarterback’s sportsmanship into question.
A separate occurrence, captured later in the U.S. Bank Stadium tunnel, tells a very different story. Jim Wyatt of TitansOnline captured this encounter between Brady and Eagles rookie defensive end Derek Barnett after the game:
Just witnessed this encounter in walkway after #SuperBowl: @Patriots QB Tom Brady congratulating former @Vol_Football and @baeagles star @dbarnett25, who had a big day for @Eagles. #Eagles pic.twitter.com/BbXyt6gdsj— Jim Wyatt (@jwyattsports) February 5, 2018
Wyatt said that the two men talked for a few minutes. They then shook hands and shared a hug before departing. Wyatt spoke to Barnett after the scene.
“It’s crazy,” Barnett said. “I told him how I looked up to him when I was younger. I told him to be able to compete against him, it was an honor.”
“And he was super cool. He told me we had a hell of a season, and we deserved it. And he told me to keep working hard. He’s a great player and a great competitor. I feel like I was lucky to be able to go against one of the greatest football players to ever play the game.”
It was Barnett who recovered Brady’s fumble on the strip sack from Brandon Graham.