The brilliant coach on the sideline and his cerebral leader on the field - winners of three Super Bowls together - are still a notch above their NFL championship game opponent. That's why come Sunday the New England Patriots will beat the New York Giants, a title to be earned with brains as much as brawn.
And as a result of the discipline and preparation that Belichick has stressed in his 12 years as coach of this team.
"Nobody works harder than he does," Brady said. "I don't think there's ever been a time that I've shown up at the stadium and he's not there. He sees everything. He evaluates everything. He watches every bit of film that he can get.
"Over the course of the season, our teams have always seemed to improve."
"It starts with his heart. The way he reads defenses, the way he directs and takes protections," guard Logan Mankins said. "I think everyone gets enamored with the talent side sometimes, but Tom might not be one of the fastest guys, but he's definitely one of the smartest guys and he has a strong arm.
"He can make all the throws. He reads defenses so fast. It makes him a special player."
But the Patriots have a veteran group of offensive linemen who can quickly figure out who to block. Brady was sacked an average of only twice a game in the regular season. In two playoff games, he's been sacked once. Even guard Brian Waters, in his first season with New England after 11 in Kansas City, has blended in well.
"I think he does a good job of studying the opponent that he lines up against," New York defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said. "He has a plan in his head about how he's going to block the opponent and he sticks to his plan."
They led the AFC with 32.1 points per game and are averaging 34 in the playoffs. That offense, which has run half its plays this postseason without huddling, keeps defenses from getting a breather and having the right players on the field for a particular situation.
The All-Pro tight end is making daily progress and Brady almost certainly will have his most important receiver back, even if he's not at full strength.
Brady definitely will have NFL receptions leader Wes Welker and the other dangerous tight end, versatile Aaron Hernandez, who lines up all over the place - as a split or slot receiver, a running back and in the traditional tight end's spot close to the linemen. He's sure to keep the Giants defense guessing.
"I don't really think we focus on rankings or any of that," Patriots safeties coach Matt Patricia said. "All we are worried about is going out and trying to do the best that we can."
Turnovers are one of the most important factors in the outcome of a game and the Patriots led the AFC with a plus-17 differential, compared to plus-7 for the Giants. Running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis has handled the ball 577 times in his four NFL seasons, all with New England, and never has fumbled.
"Unfortunately, we know what it's like to not come out on top," tackle Matt Light said. "You want to make sure you don't put yourself in that position."
They won't, not with Belichick and Brady leading the way.