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The voice on the other end of the telephone was Tom Brady's, the words he was speaking unforgettable. This is what he said to his good friend and former University of Michigan teammate Aaron Shea: Don't forget about me.
It was 2000, and Brady was hanging on as the fourth quarterback for the New England Patriots. Shea, a fourth-round draft pick of the Cleveland Browns that year, seemed more secure.
Brady and Shea had been tight at Michigan, living in the same apartment building, but now they were embarking on their professional careers in different cities. And although Brady has seemingly always exuded confidence, maybe there was just a sliver of internal doubt as to where things were headed.
So that's what he said to Shea. Don't forget about me.
They can laugh at the memory now.
Brady's championship emergence from sixth-round draft choice -- the 199th overall selection and seventh quarterback off the board -- is an unforgettable story, one of the best in the history of the game. It will be revisited Tuesday in a documentary called "The Brady 6" to be aired on ESPN (8 p.m. ET).