Tom Brady’s Bizarre Defense of Alex Guerrero

Brady responds, stands by his guru, and says not-so-nice things about Coca-Cola.

tom brady

Photo via AP

Three days after Boston magazine published an investigation into Tom Brady’s business partner, best friend, and fitness guru Alex Guerrero, Brady was grilled about the story’s revelations on WEEI’s Dennis and Callahan program. In a sprawling and at times bizarre interview, Brady dodged questions about what he knew of Guerrero’s past and when he knew it—but repeatedly defended both Guerrero and his methods.

Among the highlights:

  • Brady admitted he’d used NeuroSafe, a product that claimed to prevent concussions, claims that the Federal Trade Commission found had no scientific basis and about which the agency expressed “serious concerns.”
  • Brady also claimed that TB12—the sports therapy business venture he runs with in partnership with Guerrero, headquartered at Patriot Place—has had “incredible success” in treating “lots of people” with concussions.
  • Challenged about how he could support Guerrero when the trainer had been accused of “quackery,” Brady attempted to turn the tables by describing several tenets of Western medicine and nutrition that he finds strange. “When you say, ‘This sounds like quackery,’ there’s a lot of things I see on a daily basis in Western medicine that I think, ‘Wow, why would they ever do that?’ I think there’s a lot of things that are the norm of very systematic that really don’t work.”

As Boston reported last week, the FTC sued Guerrero for a late-night infomercial in which he suggested that his supplement, Supreme Greens, could cure cancer. Guerrero later agreed to a settlement with the FTC that imposed permanent restrictions on him from making outrageous medical claims. But years later, the agency found that he was marketing a product called NeuroSafe, which he and Brady claimed could safeguard athletes from concussions and other head injuries, and help them recover faster from such injuries. In 2012, the FTC investigated but declined to bring action against Guerrero for NeuroSafe, but only after Guerrero stopped selling the product and agreed to offer refunds to anyone who’d purchased it.

On Monday, WEEI’s Kirk Minihane pressed Brady on whether he was aware that—as Boston first reported—Guerrero claimed, in an informercial for Supreme Greens, to have conducted a study in which only eight of 200 terminally ill patients died while under his care. (Guerrero later admitted that no clinical study actually existed.)

“We’ve talked about several things as it relates to that, and he dealt with that,” Brady said. “I mean, that’s part of his life and that’s something that happened 13 years ago… Nutritional supplements and FTC regulation, and all those types of things, there are a lot of gray areas.”

(To be clear: there were no gray areas noted in Guerrero’s case, according to the FTC’s settlement. Guerrero’s lifetime decree demanded that he never again refer to himself as a doctor or a doctor of oriental medicine, and that he cease making outrageous claims about any supplement or product.)

Later in the interview Brady added, “I think there’s things [Guerrero] wished he would have done differently. I think that’s part of growing up and understanding that there’s certain things that happen in your life that you do and you wish you didn’t do certain things.”

According to Brady, Guerrero distributed NeuroSafe and “really liked what it was about. And he said, ‘Look, you’re gonna get hit in the head, and if you do get hit in the head, at least you want to try to do something proactively to try to prevent things that may or may not happen to your brain.”

As Boston reported Friday, in the FTC’s letter to Guerrero in 2012, the agency said it had investigated NeuroSafe and found no scientific basis for “extraordinary” claims that the drink would have any impact on preventing concussions or recovering from traumatic head injury.

Regardless, Brady stuck by Guerrero throughout Monday’s interview. He preached the need for people to eat better and attacked American’s dietary habits:

“You’ll probably go out and drink Coca-Cola and think, ‘€˜Oh yeah, that’s no problem.’ Why? Because they pay lots of money for advertisements to think that you should drink Coca-Cola for a living? No, I totally disagree with that. And when people do that, I think that’s quackery. And the fact that they can sell that to kids? I mean, that’s poison for kids. But they keep doing it.”

He then went on to criticize Frosted Flakes.

“We believe that Frosted Flakes is a food,” he said.

When the hosts circled back to Gurrero’s claims surrounding cancer, Brady continued to defend Guerrero and said he has “never been wrong” in the time they’ve worked together. As proof, Brady pointed to his outstanding career. “I have tremendous belief with Alex and what he’s accomplished with me.”

  • BigHog

    Brady is the man

  • Doug1001

    Where was the “bizarre” part here? Nice headline.

  • p_radicator

    I randomly caught the interview. Kirk Minihan (sp?) – the 3rd host – who seems to be an intentional pain-in-the-ass was the one grilling him. I think Brady was caught a bit off guard as the line of questioning went from – “How did you adjust to the Cowboys pass rush?” to “Did you know you business partner is a fraud?”. All in all Brady’s defense was ok, but he definitely meandered a bit – I just don’t think he was expecting the questions. I’m sure it will come up again next week.

    • LT Wong

      Minehane had an obvious bias with the notion that diet can impact health or recovery. I would suggest that Minehane look at the research the Army did with high doses of Omega-3 in the treatment of Traumatic Brain Injury, or the THOR 3 program that carefully controlled diets as a means to improve recovery from war wounds. RAND actually studied the THOR 3 program and found it worthwhile enough to suggest improved funding and more research.

  • LT Wong

    The real issue here is how did our dietary guidelines get skewed by special interests. i.e. we now know that there is little correlation between heart disease and animal fats, that a low salt diet for a healthy person does not make sense, that cholesterol is not as problematic in our diets as we once believed, vegetable oils can actually be harmful in large quantities, and that the carb heavy food pyramid is actually bad for us. How did we get there? I begins with Crisco funding research by Dr. Keys who looked to validate his thesis that animal fats is the cause of heart disease. Proctor & Gamble helped to launch the American Heart Association, where Dr. Keys took a prominent role. Over the next half century our diet has been dictated by quackery made credible by bad research. P.S. This is not tin foil hat stuff, this is well documented in the media, WSJ, PBS, etc.

    As for Brady, it is obvious that he is loyal to his friends and that he credits Guerrero for his physical and emotional health. I don’t think Brady’s response is bizarre at all, rather, it is expected and understandable.

  • Bob Dob

    Brady’s answers sound stylistically similar to Gisele’s advice about birthing and parenting. He never used to sound like Gisele. Coupled with the leaky mouth he displayed in calling out John Harbaugh, which was the spark that lit the whole chain of events leading to Deflate-gate, safe to say that NeuroSafe is complete and total baloney.