Tom Brady now aims to play “forever”

At one point in his Hall of Fame career, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s standard response regarding the intended remaining duration of his career was 10 more years.

Several years later, he has a new goal:  Forever.

An excellent article from Greg Bishop of Sports Illustrated details Brady’s complex efforts to keep his body and brain operating at a high level and resisting, if not reversing, the aging process.  Brady, now 37, has made clear his desire to play well beyond his 40th birthday.  The “F” word (not the one he repeatedly shouts during games) has become Brady’s standard response for teammates.

The item contains plenty of interesting nuggets and anecdotes, including details of a sports hernia during the 2005 season (and never disclosed on the injury report) that cause his testicles to swell to thrice their normal size.  Bishop also includes the following tale from Brady’s time with a hard-hitting safety turned NBC analyst:  “When Rodney Harrison played with Brady, the safety showed up at 6:40 a.m. to lift weights. ‘Good afternoon,” Brady said to him. So the next day Harrison showed up at 6:30. ‘Good afternoon.’  Then 6:20. Then 6:10. Then 6. “Good afternoon” each time, until Harrison finally said, ‘Screw you, Tom.  I’m not coming in any earlier.'”

The feature that peels back the curtain on Brady’s methods could be a “screw you” to those who doubted him earlier in the season.  Surely, Brady had some specific motivation for allowing this information to be publicized in an industry that at its core is as competitive as any on the planet.  Though the easy answer could be that Brady hopes to lay the foundation for a post-football effort to become a pro football Ponce de León, there will be plenty of time as Brady gets closer to 45 or 48 or “forever” to lay the foundation for selling the secret sauce to others who hope to do the same thing.

There’s always a story behind the story.  While the story is compelling and worthy of being read in full, I’m far more intrigued by the story of how Brady came to decide to reveal so much about what he’s doing to play football for so long.

67 responses to “Tom Brady now aims to play “forever”

  1. No, he’s not the greatest of all-time, one of them…but he’s had a better coach than almost any other great QB, as well as an amazing supporting cast on the offensive line and the defenses he’s played with. They may not have been great, but they were far better than Peyton’s in Indy.

    As for this being a story, seriously? Let us know when he decides to call it quits, then it will be an actual story worth reporting.

    Every player hopes to play as long as possible…this guy is no different than them.

  2. He will go out with no more rings. Only the three his coach cheated to get. Meanwhile Russell Wilson will get more than him and he will be jealous just like he is of Peyton and Montana. The guy always complains on the sidelines when his team gets owned.

  3. No team compares to the steelers in my eyes. That being said, Brady is the best. Guy is literaly, the perfect QB. Says and does all the right things. Guy even takes pay cuts to help his team win. Would greedy rodgers or manning do that? Doubt it.

  4. “No one lives forever, no one. But with advances in modern science and my high level of income it’s not crazy to think I could live to be 245, maybe even 300.”

  5. Michigan men play until they have nothing left, right Mr. Charles Woodson? They still have it, they keep on playing.

  6. Brady looks as if he will be one of those athletes that will have his world come crashing down as he nears the end of his career. If he doesn’t go out perfectly (Bettis, Strahan, etc), he will lose his mind. Like olympians often do, his drive to win will be his undoing in life after football.

  7. Tom is the greatest QB of all time and he is still throwing accurately. He’s 37 but he looks about 27 because he is clean living and looks after himself. Provided that his protection holds up, who knows how long he can play for? 40? 43? 46? 50? Do not bet against him. If Tom really wants to string together more Super Bowl successes, then he will.
    Tom was shocked by the start of this season, when Miami and KC got lucky. But he and Bill turned it around, again.
    Brady’s superiority is in his mind. The years of sitting on the Michigan bench, getting drafted #199th and then over a year on the Patriot bench behind Drew Bledsoe produced a determination and hunger for success that cannot be matched.
    God has blessed him with exceptional gifts.

  8. Pats fan here. Do I want 5+ more years? Absolutely. Is his work ethic amazing? Definitely.

    Realistically, I think Tom probably has 2-4 more years as elite, and 4-6 more years total as good.

    My guess… 5 years.

    Even with advanced training, the body can only take so much. Tom, being the smart QB that he is, doesnt take as much punishement..still I dont think we’re going to see him past 45. I dont think we’ll see him playing at age 45 either, but I think 41, 42? Definitely.

  9. Every time I watch Cutler, Orton, Tannehill, or most any other QB I hope Brady plays forever. I’ll take him at 50 over whatever is happening in Tampa.

  10. Brady could play another 4 or 5 years. Do I think he should? No, because I don’t see him maintaining his current level of play, which has already regressed from his prime (by the way this is OK to admit fellow Patriots fans he is after all 37), and I wouldn’t want to see Brady playing as a shell of his former self.

    Either way his time in New England is up sooner than later. I think he plays one more year in New England and Bill will be done with him. Brady will either retire or he will move on to a new team.

  11. Both Brady and Manning will be able to play into their 40s because the rules are incredibly quarterback friendly in a way that they never have been before. Moreso than any other position in in any sport. you look at a quarterback wrong and it’s a 15 yard penalty. that, combined with the advances in medical technology and techniques, and you can throw out your thinking of what an “old quarterback” is in 2014.

    I live in Boston. the cold makes you tougher. #bostonstrong

  12. Brady’s “secret sauce” is his protection. He’s the best protected quarterback since Montana. No protection, no Golden Boy. Period.

  13. After much head scratching, I got an idea. This might sound strange, but I think the story behind the story is that this is the beginning of a grand strategy to head off repeated questioning about how long he’ll keep going. Or perhaps he’s had an epiphany that’s led him to disregard whether or not he sucks in deciding whether to give it more years. We may never know.

  14. vancouversportsbro says:
    Dec 11, 2014 9:46 PM
    He will go out with no more rings. Only the three his coach cheated to get. Meanwhile Russell Wilson will get more than him and he will be jealous just like he is of Peyton and Montana. The guy always complains on the sidelines when his team gets owned.
    —————————————————–

    LOL some things you can always count on

  15. Brady may have just jinxed it. When you make statements like that there may be a career ending injury just around the bend.

  16. I love when people talk shot and don’t know what they are talking about. Peyton has taken a pay cut and got cut by Indy 1-2 years after. The colts wanted to make him highest paid ever and he said he didn’t want to make any more than brady.

  17. And…can tell no one went and read the article.
    It’s fascinating. Brady is basically becoming Bruce Lee but as a QB. Paying attention to everything. Everything. The alkaline or Acid in his food, reps in every single action he does. Diet changes by season. Changes in exercises and ‘tradtional’ football stuff that they figured out was actually causing more harm than good. He even simulates out the season through the SB. Loose 1st game of playoffs, simulate 3 more games? Crazy stuff. Who the hell does that?
    Bruce Lee does. Larry Bird does. Ali does.
    It’s rare. That singular drive to the ultimate level is a once a generation thing.
    This has nothing to do about Brady being the best, but about how he has become consumed 365 24/7 of being a Quarterback. A singular drive to play football before everything else. This is the drive we all wish we had, or could tap into.
    Dude even does exercises for his brain, in case of concussion.

  18. Typical haters rearing their heads for the latest Patriots/Brady article. At least man-up and give the guy his props, because a large majority of you know that if he somehow landed on your team.. you’d likely crack open a celebratory beer, or six.

  19. The Patriots selection of Garopolo was probably to Brady what getting drafted in the 6th round was. That is pure motivation to him. The best way to keep Brady happy is to keep Revis and Browner around for a while.

  20. Even if you hate the Pats and Tom Brady, you have to give the guy his due. No matter who he has at WR or RB, he makes them better and wins.
    He’s an all-time great QB. It’s pointless to say if he’s the greatest or not, but he’s certainly the best during his time in the NFL — Peyton Manning included.
    I am a Packer fan and think Aaron Rodgers is the best QB in the NFL at this time. But I respect the heck out of Brady and think his critics all have one thing in common. They wish their favorite team had him for all these years.

  21. Tom Brady will play until he is 50+, just has to learn how to kick field goals like George Blanda did for the Raiders.

  22. Bernard Hopkins will be 50 in January. He has only lost one fight since 2008 (when he was 43).

    I am pretty sure Brady can play another 5 years at a high level.

    Amy talk of Kraft or Belicheck wanting him gone is just stupid. Brady made them both who they are Today.

    He can stay as long as he wants.

    I will accept 5 years of 0-16 with Brady at the helm out of respect of what he has done for us fans over the last 14 years.

  23. I know Patriots and football fans will find this article a testament to Brady but to me it is just depressing. I like Brady and it sounds like he Is setting himself up for major heartache. He is so obsessed with football he won’t be able to function when it is over. Not to mention that he’ll probably be divorced by that time since he is hardly ever with his wife or kids. If he doesn’t start to see the bigger picture and look to retire by 40 he will end up depressed and alone. Think I’m crazy? The guy missed a beach vacation with his wife and both of his kids’ birthdays for that Chargers game that no one will remember 5 years from now.

  24. Brady has had inconsistent games, stretches, seasons, SBs. He is human and still one of the best. You only lose a % or 2 of muscle mass each year. With protection, a greater QB will have to rise up to replace him. Garroppolo is promising. Has everything to do with Patriot greatness: coach, drafting, salaries. Flaws? Sure.BTW all teams were doing what the Pars did and many teams continued. Post-cheat, they went 18-0, were in 3 SBs, and have the best regular season record in the NFL, causing 30 teams , maybe only not the Giants, wishing to do what the Pats have done. A top 5 QB is rare, only 5 teams have them, the discussion doesn’t start until he stops being one. And Giselle will be hot forever.

  25. 1. Montana
    2. Brady
    3. Unitis
    4. Elway
    5. Manning

    If Brady gets another one than he jumps to 1. If Manning gets another he jumps to 3.

    Cry about it.

  26. He’ll play into his early 40s easily, but at that point, his body will start giving out, just like it did with Favre.

    Give the guy credit. Brady has been playing at an elite level since 2003 – that’s 11 of the last 12 seasons (save the one his missed due to injury). He’s earned the right to play until he can’t keep up that level of performance.

  27. As a Dolphin fan I cant wait for him to retire. Hands down one of the best QB’s of all-time. I even say hes one of the best players ever to play this game at any position. I have nothing but respect for Mr. Brady.

  28. Hard to doubt this guy…Still has the fire and knows how to lead. If there is one knock on him its his mobility…but that’s it. Theres one qb playing today that might be better but if they played against each other in Foxboro I’d take Tom to win.

  29. I’m really looking forward to the day when he does retire, so that maybe then, you and the rest of the NFL can climb down off of Tom Brady’s knob.

    Hell, what am I talking about – look how long you guys sucked up to Favre after he left.

  30. @Carlos

    I don’t get your point by talking about one aspect of a QBs game?

    Looking at the way Kapernick scrambles vs. Brady’s scrambling how can you call hime the GOAT? See how silly that sounds?

    GOAT means “all time.”. Is Rodgers better than Brady right now, I’d say yes. I think Rodgers is the best in the game RIGHT NOW. Just not of ALL TIME.

    Maybe rodgers will retire GOAT, who knows, he’ll have a shot at his current rate

  31. My little boy is 3 and has a rocket arm. He already sent Kraft a letter telling him he won’t report if the pats draft him.

  32. Think I’m crazy? The guy missed a beach vacation with his wife and both of his kids’ birthdays for that Chargers game that no one will remember 5 years from now.
    ———————————————-
    And every working slob in America misses something with their family because of work at one point or another.
    Football is his job. He has decided to do his job better than everyone else. Respect.

  33. 1. anyone think Brady is just sick and tired of people asking him how long he will play? Forever sounds like a great FU answer.

    2. Like the old Daniel Tosh skit, you are going to pay me how much to play? Yeah I will do that for as long as I can. Then you will pay me how much to hold a clipboard? Yeah, sign me up for that as well.

    ————————————————————————-

    No, he’s not the greatest of all-time, one of them…but he’s had a better coach than almost any other great QB, as well as an amazing supporting cast on the offensive line and the defenses he’s played with. They may not have been great, but they were far better than Peyton’s in Indy.

    ——————————————————————-

    Peyton had better WRs, receiving TE, and RBs in Indy and Denver compared to Brady’s career.

    O-line was a wash as both had some good and some bad players along the line. Pats line looks good on stats because of Brady’s quick release and pocket presence (like Miami back with Marino).

    Defense has Brady with an edge but in the last five years Peyton’s D has closed that gap comparing the D both QBs had.

  34. Emily Dickinson wrote that “Forever is composed of nows”.

    Brady’s concept of ‘forever’ is probably as different from mine as is his bank account and his marriage history. His ‘forever’ will be as long as he decides it will be, but only as long as he continues to put more Ws than Ls on the Patriots balance sheet.

    At some point the definition of ‘forever’ will be taken out of Brady’s hands. Meanwhile, whether he’s the greatest, or the second greatest, or in the top ten or whatever, let’s just enjoy watching one of the best to ever play the position. I’m not particularly a Brady fan, but it’s always easy to pick out a thoroughbred and he is definitely in that category, as far as quarterbacks go.

  35. Only if his wife says to play ,and as long as they are winning he will say that but once that cheating team starts losing he will be crying as always ,Brady U R a spoiled little cowardly Lion u chump

  36. “Only if his wife says to play ,and as long as they are winning he will say that but once that cheating team starts losing he will be crying as always ,Brady U R a spoiled little cowardly Lion u chump”

    Wow. This is one pathetic jealous rant.

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