There was nothing particularly spectacular about Tom Brady when he entered the NFL Draft in 2000.
The 193cm quarterback was picked up by the New England Patriots as the 199th pick in round six, and didn’t exactly blow scouts away at the 2000 Combine.
Watch Super Bowl LV: Chiefs v Buccaneers LIVE with ESPN on Kayo. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial & start streaming instantly >
Brady completed the 40-yard dash in a leisurely 5.28 seconds, and pictures of the youngster’s rig at the time have circulated on social media over the years.
The shirtless NFL hopeful stares awkwardly at the camera with arms at his side and an unremarkable torso on display.
By no means was the 23-year-old out of shape, but his physique was incomparable to that of the seven-time Super Bowl champion today.
The photo has taken on a life of its own on social media within the NFL community — Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammate Ryan Jensen even arrived at Raymond James Stadium for Monday’s Super Bowl with the infamous image plastered on his shirt.
Brady has completely changed his body shape over the past 20 years through an intense workout regime and extreme diet.
“Tom’s sustained success over the past 20-plus years is a testament to his incredible drive and his meticulous approach to everything he does,” John Burns, chief executive of Brady’s TB12 health and wellness organisation, explained.
“It’s that mindset that allows him to keep going.”
It’s been said that trainer Alex Guerrero knows Tom Brady’s body better than his wife, Gisele Bündchen.
As the quarterback has aged, he works out less with weights, which could leave him prone to muscle tears. Now it’s all about planks, lunges and squats, followed by more pliability exercises, such as doing crunches with a vibrating roller beneath his back.
While there’s no denying that Brady’s spartan diet has played a major part in prolonging his playing career, some of his former New England Patriots teammates thought it obsessive and unappetising — or as one put it, “that birdseed s**t”.
Caffeine is off the table. So is white flour, white sugar, dairy products and anything with gluten. He steers clear of veggies — tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, mushrooms — that could cause inflammation.
“The regimen I follow is a mix of Eastern and Western philosophies,” Brady wrote in his 2017 book. “Some of these principles have been around for thousands of years. My nutritional regimen may seem restrictive to some people, but to me it feels unnatural to eat any other way.
“Many people have conditioned their bodies to a nutritional regiment made up of lots of white or pale-looking foods – french fries, potato chips, white bread, chicken nuggets – that don’t exist in nature.”
Everything has to be organic. Each day Brady tries to drink “a couple of hundred ounces” of water, usually enhanced with electrolytes.
READ MORE: Mind-boggling worth of superstar pair
“If I’m craving bacon, I have a piece,” Brady told Men’s Health last year.
“What’s changed as I’ve gotten older is now if I want pizza, I want the best pizza,” Brady added. “I don’t eat a slice that tastes like shit and then wonder, ‘Why am I eating s**t pizza?’”
After defeating the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV on Monday AEDT, Brady has now won more Super Bowls than every single NFL team and has more titles than NBA legend Michael Jordan.