Tom Brady and Simeon Poisson: An Unlikely Duo


  • Lillian J. Cullen Middlebury College
  • Valentina H. Hogenhuis Middlebury College
  • Emily S. Garcia Middlebury College
  • Paul Martin Sommers Middlebury College



Tom Brady, Poisson probability distribution


Seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady announced his retirement from the National Football League (NFL) on February 1, 2022.  Forty days later, he changed his mind about retiring.

         Tom Brady’s records through twenty-two NFL seasons are numerous and well known to fans of professional football.  During his first twenty seasons with the New England Patriots and, more recently, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the number of Tom Brady touchdown passes per game has something in common with a nineteenth century French mathematician, engineer, and physicist, Siméon Denis Poisson (1781 – 1840).

         In this paper, the authors hypothesize that the number of Tom Brady touchdown passes per regular season game (all games, wins or losses) and the corresponding number per playoff game (all games, wins or losses) have followed a Poisson probability distribution.  The close correspondence of these statistics to a Poisson distribution is stunning and astonishing, two words that have also been used to describe the 44-year-old quarterback during his playing career.



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Author Biography

Paul Martin Sommers, Middlebury College

Professor of Economics

References or Bibliography

Listed at the end of the article



How to Cite

Cullen, L. J., Hogenhuis, V. H., Garcia, E. S., & Sommers, P. M. (2023). Tom Brady and Simeon Poisson: An Unlikely Duo. Journal of Student Research, 11(4).



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