Rickie Fowler has plenty of close friends on the PGA Tour who already have achieved what he still is hoping to – no, expects to – ultimately accomplish.
That is, of course, shedding the backhanded complimentary tag of being "the best player to never win a major" that he has assumed since Sergio Garcia prevailed at The Masters in 2017.
But why limit your questions or only pick the brains of his golfing contemporaries for pointers, when Fowler apparently also has occasional access to one of the winningest athletes of this or any generation?
Fowler and Phil Mickelson slipped away from the crowds and the questions at Shinnecock on Tuesday afternoon and played a friendly round at Friar's Head Golf Club in nearby Riverhead with a certain five-time Super Bowl champion quarterback.
"I tell you what," Fowler exclaimed on Wednesday, one day before the start of the U.S. Open, "Tom Brady can really putt. So if I can take that into this week, I think that's one thing I'd take off of him that'll help me."
Talk about a guy who knows a thing or two about winning major titles, as well as handling losing them. (See also: Giants, Giants again and Eagles. Sorry, Tom).
OK, back to Tuesdays with Tommy...
"The last couple of days have been nice to get away from how busy the U.S. Open is," Fowler said. "Obviously practice rounds can take some time. And I think a big part of being ready for the week is being rested mentally and physically, as well. Being able to go out and play and get away from the hectic scene of the U.S. Open I think can be very beneficial. ... It was just a fun day with the guys, hanging. And my fiancee Allison was walking around, hanging out. So we all had a good time."
Indeed, Fowler, 29, got engaged last week on Long Island to his longtime girlfriend, former college pole vaulter and current fitness model Allison Stokke.
"Nothing against the area. It wasn't necessarily – there was nothing planned out," Fowler said. "I just really didn't want to carry the ring around any longer."
Speaking of rings, the same questions Fowler hears regularly hounded Mickelson when he went more than 13 years into his career without copping a major title until finally breaking through for the first of five such victories in his career at the 2004 Masters.
The same happened in the ensuing years to the likes of Justin Rose and Dustin Johnson and Henrik Stenson and, finally, to Sergio, until they all achieved their watershed career moments.
"I've been very close. I feel like there's a few you could look at and say, if it wasn't for that one guy, we would have won. There was a couple of majors where there was a runaway or someone just happened to play just that little bit better," Fowler said. "We all know I'm good enough to win. I know I'm good enough to win. Being prepared and making it happen that specific week, there's been a few guys that have been very good at that – Jack (Nicklaus), Tiger (Woods).
"But Phil didn't get his first for a while, so there's still hope. I'm not too worried about it."
Fowler's late weekend surge left him just short at Augusta earlier this year, losing the Green Jacket by one stroke to Patrick Reed. He now has placed in the top-5 in each of the four major tournaments twice apiece, also featuring a runner-up showing behind Martin Kaymer in this event at Pinehurst in 2014.
"I'd be very surprised if Rickie didn't have multiple majors by the end of his career," says Rory McIlroy, who has posted victories at the U.S. Open (2011), the PGA Championship (2012, 2014) and the British Open (2014). "He's a great player. Again, he's played great in majors. Like he could have won a couple in '14, and I was the one that got the better of him.
"But he's put himself in positions. He made a great run at Augusta earlier this year. Again, it's just there's so much more to winning a golf tournament than just playing well. Your timing has to be right. You have to get momentum at the right time, a lucky break here and there. The more times Rickie puts himself in a position, the better his chances are of winning one.
"But I think everyone in this room would be really surprised if he wasn't to go on and win at least more than one major in his career, and I think his game is highly regarded by all his peers. He's a wonderful player, a lot of imagination, has all the shots, which is something you need around here."
To Fowler, it's certainly appreciated to have the support of both those who've come before you and your contemporaries, always ready to offer to lend an ear or some sage advice.
"Yeah, definitely, from Jack to Tiger to Phil to Freddy (Couples) ... to some of my peers – Rory, Jordan (Speith), Justin (Thomas)," Fowler said. "Sometimes I give Justin a hard time. It came a little quicker for him. I've had to wait a bit.
"We'll get it done, and once we get our first, it's definitely not going to be the last."
With Tom Brady on his side now, too, Fowler can lean on both his compatriots on tour as well as his Patriots off of it.