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With just over two minutes left in regulation, Colorado quarterback Shedeur Sanders needed to take his team 98 yards. So he drew inspiration from one of the best to ever do it: Tom Brady.
“All I was thinking was Brady mode. Simple. Brady mode. You left too much time out there,” Sanders told ESPN after the game.
Whatever his motivation, it worked.
Sanders led a seven-play drive that ended in a 45-yard TD pass to Jimmy Horn Jr. with 36 seconds left. Then, he hit Michael Harrison for the 2-point conversion to tie the game.
“Well, we do it in practice all the time, so it’s not really a surprise to us,” Sanders said. “We like these high-pressure moments.”
And the pressure only mounted from there as Colorado battled Colorado State into double overtime. Sanders and the Buffaloes ultimately took the win, 43-35.
And maybe Tom Brady is partially to thank.
“We talk after every game,” Sanders said of TB12. “I’m sure he’s going to text me in a second. But that’s all I was thinking is Brady mode. If he can do it, I can do it. We’re just alike.”
Sanders has a long way to go before he’s just like the seven-time Super Bowl champ. But he’s certainly been impressive so far. The 21 year old finished Saturday’s rivalry game with 348 yards, four TDs and one interception for the Buffaloes.
And Brady took notice, giving the quarterback a two-emoji shoutout on X.
Shedeur Sanders Has Close Relationship With Tom Brady
The GOAT clearly sees something in Shedeur Sanders.
In October 2022, while playing quarterback for Jackson State, Sanders signed an NIL deal with Brady Brand apparel. It was the first time Brady had signed an individual athlete to an endorsement deal.
“Shedeur Sanders is the perfect ambassador for Brady,” Brady said in a release at the time. “He embodies everything we look for in a Brady athlete and his character and values align perfectly with our brand. Not only is he an exceptional football player and quarterback but he is one of the most influential players of his generation.”
The two reportedly have maintained a close relationship ever since.
After Colorado opened the 2023 season with a massive upset over TCU, Brady sent Sanders a simple but powerful text message: “Don’t be satisfied.”
“It was cool hearing from him, knowing he’s still watching and stuff like that,” Sanders said.
He said Brady has served as his mentor ever since getting a one-on-one workout with the future Hall of Famer in 2020.
“Just working with him, it really helped me just understand don’t focus on the good things,” Sanders told reporters after the Week 1 win. “Focus on the bad things. Focus on the things that we wasn’t able to do at a high level.”
After Saturday’s dramatic double-OT win, the hype surrounding Sanders and the Colorado Buffaloes is at an all-time high. Sanders will undoubtedly need to continue channeling “Brady Mode” if the team is to extend its winning streak entering Pac-12 play.
And he’ll have his next chance on Saturday as the Buffs head to Eugene to take on No. 13 Oregon.