Has Tom Brady simply had enough of Bill Belichick?

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When Seth Wickersham of ESPN reported back in January that serious cracks had developed in the perennially successful relationship between Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Patriots coach Bill Belichick, and Patriots owner Robert Kraft, it seemed odd to think that something that had worked so well for 18 years would suddenly not be working.

But something’s missing all right, as evidenced by the fact that Brady isn’t working. With every other starting quarterback fully engaged in his team’s offseason program, Brady remains absent, possibly for a variety of reasons that include his low pay in relation to the dramatic increase in the market since he signed his most recent deal, the still-unexplained decision to bench cornerback Malcolm Butler for Super Bowl LII (possibly keeping Brady from a sixth ring despite throwing for 505 yards that day), and the reality that nearly two decades of dealing with Belichick may be much more than enough.

Despite having a reputation for being loose and funny when away from football, Belichick has always been all business when it comes to the game that he coaches. He keeps all players beyond arm’s length, because he knows that, throughout their careers, he’ll have to make detached, objective, emotionless decisions regarding whether to keep them around. For almost all of them, at some point the decision will be to move on.

From the moment Tom Brady became the starter, Brady has been dreading the moment that Belichick decides to do to Brady what Belichick did to Drew Bledsoe after Brady became an unlikely Super Bowl champion in early 2002. And Brady consistently has taken less than he could have gotten not just to ensure that more cash and cap space will be available for other players but to help ensure that Belichick will never decide in any given offseason that it makes sense to dump Brady’s contract for a younger and cheaper player.

After 18 years of it, Brady possibly has decided that he’s done tiptoeing around the guy whom Bill Parcells dubbed “Doom” because of his fatalistic demeanor.

Remember when Richard Sherman suggested that Pete Carroll’s routine had gotten stale and tired? Sherman had been dealing with Carroll, who is the anti-Doom, since 2011 — a full eleven years after Brady became introduced to Belichick and his methods. The fact that Brady possibly has decided after 18 years that he’s had enough doom and gloom is far less significant than the fact that it took him a full 18 years of coexisting with Belichick to get to this point.

Suddenly, Brady seems to be giving off the “life’s too short to waste on you” vibe toward Belichick. For now, Brady is manifesting those apparent feelings by staying away. But what happens when he shows up?

Will Brady be as deferential as he always has been? Will there be even more friction, especially if Belichick tries to needle him about not being present for OTAs?

Many think the intrigue will be over when Brady finally reports for mandatory minicamp and/or training camp. It could be that the fun will only be beginning.

76 responses to “Has Tom Brady simply had enough of Bill Belichick?

  1. This all started when the Pats let Brady push them into trading Garoppolo. If Jimmy were in the Patriots’ OTAs, Brady would have to be there. He couldn’t let his successor get all the reps, so he’d be in camp and none of this would be happening. Kraft did this to himself.

  2. Its not just Crybaby Tommy, EVERYONE has had enough of the cheating Bill Belichik.
    FYI, everyone is also pretty sick of the whining from Tommy

  3. Groan. Because the Pats reached the SB and because the sore media and the legion of haters all want “proof” the dynasty is over, they all overlook the Pats were one of the most banged up teams of 2017 even before the season started. 17 guys IR, most of them starters including Edelman, Hightower and 4 starting D-line – plus others out, plus the sudden late-preseason loss of their best defender, Ninkovich.

    On any other team 2017 would have been written off, on the Pats it came within a Hail Mary of another SB title. And but for an illegal formation being allowed on the Philly Special, it could have been a 6th ring and a 180-degree different media narrative.

  4. If there’s one thing that I’m sure of, it’s that Brady is too smart & shrewd to do anything in this matter that could possibly negatively impact his post-NFL plans for a successful career in national politics.

  5. I’m still going with Tom wants to spend a bit more time with his young family after 18 seasons of a May-Feb grind. He will play out his existing contract, retire after 2019, and have his statue erected. It’s been a pretty good run.

  6. I doubt Brady wants his legacy tainted with this kind of nonsense, expect him to be in the groove with the team ASAP if only to stop the nonsense stories.

  7. Talk about speculation. Do you have any quotes from either Brady or Belichick to support this acrimony between the two? I didn’t think so. Now, let the winning commence. Happy Memorial Day.

  8. All of Belichick’s head coach success has come with Brady as QB. His record was 43-57 when Brady took over for an 0-2 Pats team in 2001.

    The one year Brady got hurt for the whole year the Pats missed the playoffs. They did go 11-5, but that’s coming off a 16-0 season.

    Belichick is just an ordinary coach who got lucky when they landed the best QB in history in the 6th round of the draft.

  9. As a Patriots fan there are plenty of us who are sick and tired of Belichick’s routine. Benching Malcolm cost us the Super Bowl. The Josh McDaniels era should start now.

  10. further evidence that brady should’ve (not “of” clowns) been the one to be traded, krafts loyalty to brady is going to cost him big time- i am a pats fan since the early 70’s suffered a ton for decades, so i am neither a hater nor an apologist, perhaps just someone who reads the writing on the wall without the bias? either way kraft screwed the pooch by insisting brady not be traded, his time had come with a successor in place, c’est la vie, we all must live with our decisions

  11. I can’t believe Brady hasn’t showed up. But needless to say the Patriots will still work it out and more than likely still kick everybody’s backside and at least make it to the championship game.

  12. Brady knows the end is near and that he has all the leverage for a new deal. Rogers and Ryan will make $30 million and Garoppolo is gone. I’m not a Brady fan but he out maneuvered Belichick when he ran Garoppolo out of town..

  13. One of the three is done after this year, and Kraft isn’t going anywhere. I think McDaniel’s was promised the job to blow off Colts.

  14. Always excuses when the Patriots lose. Philadelphia lost more key starters than any Super Bowl team in years including their starting QB.

    ——————-

    streetyson says:
    May 28, 2018 at 9:03 am
    Groan. Because the Pats reached the SB and because the sore media and the legion of haters all want “proof” the dynasty is over, they all overlook the Pats were one of the most banged up teams of 2017 even before the season started. 17 guys IR, most of them starters including Edelman, Hightower and 4 starting D-line – plus others out, plus the sudden late-preseason loss of their best defender, Ninkovich.

    On any other team 2017 would have been written off, on the Pats it came within a Hail Mary of another SB title. And but for an illegal formation being allowed on the Philly Special, it could have been a 6th ring and a 180-degree different media narrative.

  15. McDaniels was promised the head coaching job once Belicheck retires (Rooney Rule Violation that they refuse to admit). The incentive for Belicheck in this scenario is an agreement to retain his two sons on McDaniels coaching staff when that time comes.

    P.S. Brady has become insufferable, and it’s getting to be just plain weird that he travels everywhere with his health guru dude. If Brady wrote a friggin book on the subject, why does he need the guy physically there with him?

  16. I don’t get it… nothing has changed in weeks. Kraft and the Patriots know Brady is staying away for OTAs. Why a new theory? He’s just not coming to OTAs and it was decided a long time ago.

  17. redclaw1314 says:
    May 28, 2018 at 8:37 am
    Pats traded the wrong quarterback

    ———–

    No they didn’t. Alienate Brady and trade him away now and you become the Colts long term. it’s not worth it. Losing a shot a Jimmy maybe being great hurts, but you keep the greatest player of all time and build a legacy that goes on for many decades.

  18. Matthew Lembke says:
    May 28, 2018 at 9:43 am
    Brady knows the end is near and that he has all the leverage for a new deal. Rogers and Ryan will make $30 million and Garoppolo is gone. I’m not a Brady fan but he out maneuvered Belichick when he ran Garoppolo out of town..

    —————

    He had nothing to do with Garoppolo leaving except for continuing to play well. That was it.

  19. mikefromtexas says:
    May 28, 2018 at 8:47 am
    This all started when the Pats let Brady push them into trading Garoppolo. If Jimmy were in the Patriots’ OTAs, Brady would have to be there. He couldn’t let his successor get all the reps, so he’d be in camp and none of this would be happening. Kraft did this to himself.

    —————

    He still wouldn’t have to be there for OTAs and he still would have been starting if Jimmy was willing to stay and sit on the bench for less money. 0 percent chance Jimmy was starting until Brady actually starts to play badly.

  20. wte1 says:
    May 28, 2018 at 9:36 am
    As a Patriots fan there are plenty of us who are sick and tired of Belichick’s routine. Benching Malcolm cost us the Super Bowl. The Josh McDaniels era should start now.

    ———–
    BB also made the calls to win two of the last 4 Super Bowls. Got to give him credit for those. We can’t be such spoiled fans that we don’t appreciate how historically great the Patriots have been and run BB out of town for 1 error.

  21. lgw91s says:
    May 28, 2018 at 9:13 am
    I’m still going with Tom wants to spend a bit more time with his young family after 18 seasons of a May-Feb grind. He will play out his existing contract, retire after 2019, and have his statue erected. It’s been a pretty good run.

    ———

    Exactly right.

  22. Lifetime Ban For Kneelers says:
    May 28, 2018 at 8:57 am
    Its not just Crybaby Tommy, EVERYONE has had enough of the cheating Bill Belichik.
    FYI, everyone is also pretty sick of the whining from Tommy

    ————

    If by everyone you mean all the fans of the other AFC teams that want a chance to win, then yes. That’s true.

  23. tb12greatest says:
    May 28, 2018 at 8:44 am
    In other news the Patriots 5X super bowl champs. I am sure Brady is real upset about that.

    ————-

    You forgot he’s currently in Monaco enjoying yacht life at the invitation of Prince Albert and throwing football with Bella Hadid. He’s also really upset about that.

  24. Happy Memorial Day to you too Florio! As everyone knows, I’m the furthest thing from a Patriots apologist but it’s obvious you suckered me into whatever will transpire from this moving forward because I’m here. Anyway, perhaps this is true. Brady will play. There may be a locker room meltdown and the Bills may steal the AFC East. We’ll see.

  25. Pats fans should be more worried about what the team will look like post BB and Brady when Kraft goes back to having control. Over the years he’s delegated a lot to Bill but in the opportunities Kraft has had to make decisions he’s blown it.

  26. fritz96 says:
    May 28, 2018 at 9:50 am
    Always excuses when the Patriots lose. Philadelphia lost more key starters than any Super Bowl team in years including their starting QB.

    —————————-

    Nonsense. Wentz wouldn’t have played any better than Foles did that night. On the other hand NE lost their best WR in Edelman and best defensive player in Hightower. Both were absolutely instrumental (i.e., important – look it up Eagles fans) in their past super bowl wins. Plus Mr. I’ll take a Knee Jenkins knocked out our 2nd best WR.

  27. Call me crazy, but I’ve never seen a personal warmth there between those two. After the year he missed with a knee injury though when Cassell got paid, we did see a lot of this same passive aggressiveness with people saying Brady was upset that people were doubting he could come back and working on his own in California that off-season. So I wouldn’t read too much into any of this. Kraft is going to have to make his contract right though for the last coupel of his years since he has basically told Belichick that Brady is hands off.

  28. Have you ever heard the expression “correlation does not imply causation”? Just because things happen at the same time/place, that doesn’t mean one causes the other.

    Because Brady isn’t at OTAs, and Belichick hasn’t explained why he didn’t play Malcolm Butler in the Super Bowl and Brady is paid much less than other elite QBs, that doesn’t prove that Brady has had it with Belichick. Those are just items in a universe of facts, not a chain of evidence. I don’t know why you’re so wedded to this narrative, unless it’s just your inner Steeler fan at work.

    As long as we’re spitballing but pretending we’re reporting, I have one for you. Brady and Belichick agreed that Brady should skip OTAs so he can make paid appearances like the one he just did in Monaco, which ensures that his low Patriots salary is a non-issue and BB has plenty of money to spend on other players, which then means that Brady has the best personnel around him for another run for the Lombardi. Let’s see what other money-making things Brady does between now and mandatory training, and I’ll add those to my narrative

  29. And but for an illegal formation being allowed on the Philly Special, it could have been a 6th ring and a 180-degree different media narrative.

    This coming from a fan of a franchise with two massive cheating scandals attributed to them in the past decade, both of which caused them fines and loss of draft picks. Before you start complaining because the refs missed a call, maybe you should just be thankful that your five superbowls haven’t been stripped from the record books yet. Who knows what new “gate” will come up in the next year! I’m sure there will be much, much more cheating and lying coming out of foxborough sooner or later.

  30. u4iadman says:
    May 28, 2018 at 10:23 am
    Oh those cheating pats. No hof coach, just a cheater.

    Hahaha—the simple fact that you have to mumble this to yourself every day to make you feel ok just proves that the exact opposite is true. It will end eventually, just not yet. Greatest coaching mind of your lifetime. Hope you enjoy his HOF speech too. You can keep mumbling even then—we don’t mind.

  31. The Patriots are likely aware that Brady wants to remain fully energized.That s what is happening. Plain and simple/Give the old bones a vacation.

  32. Belichick and Brady conspired to deflate their way to winning ten-year’s worth of turnover battles; such is the foundation of the Patriot “dynasty.”

    Now, the co-Conspirators are turning on each other.

    Kraft and Brady forced Belichick to detonate his Garoppolo transition plan, and Belichick’s childish act of “revenge” was to throw the Super Bowl by benching Butler-

  33. What narrative did Wickersham push that was correct? Brady even said BB was the type of coach he needs. It’s amazing how childish the media has gotten all because he hates you. NE went to the Superbowl two years in a row and the media treats them better than Cleveland. What a shame.

  34. It’s the 11th annual “the Patriots dynasty is over” season. That’s right up there with the number of “farewell” tours Ozzy Osbourne has had.

  35. Foles was great but they would have had a different playbook with Wentz who was also more mobile. Of course no team matches the 2014 Seahawks for SB injuries. Chancellor had a torn MCL, Thomas a separated shoulder, Sherman had 1 good arm, and Lane and Avril were out for the 4th quarter. Weak coverage and no pass rush. Not even close to being the same team that destroyed the Broncos.

    —————————-
    tb12greatest says:
    Nonsense. Wentz wouldn’t have played any better than Foles did that night. On the other hand NE lost their best WR in Edelman and best defensive player in Hightower. Both were absolutely instrumental (i.e., important – look it up Eagles fans) in their past super bowl wins. Plus Mr. I’ll take a Knee Jenkins knocked out our 2nd best WR.

  36. smartcollegefootball says:
    May 28, 2018 at 11:08 am
    Belichick and Brady conspired to deflate their way to winning ten-year’s worth of turnover battles; such is the foundation of the Patriot “dynasty.”
    Now, the co-Conspirators are turning on each other.
    Kraft and Brady forced Belichick to detonate his Garoppolo transition plan, and Belichick’s childish act of “revenge” was to throw the Super Bowl by benching Butler-

    ————–

    Put that one in the tin foil hat category with the Stanley Kubrick moon landing theory.

  37. mightyminer says:
    May 28, 2018 at 11:12 am
    maybe Tom just wants to have fun

    ————-

    Maybe Tom is focusing on family like he said he would.

  38. Or the simple explanation.
    Gisele – “time to retire, spend time with the family”
    Tom – “I don’t want to retire, but I can compromise, I’ll spend more time with family during the summer”

    But hey, whatever makes headlines, right guys?

  39. Pete Carroll had to blow up his team because of a coaching “mistake” in the SB – it caused a cancer in his team – BB has done the same thing and you’re seeing a similar situation develop.

  40. wib22 says:
    May 28, 2018 at 11:11 am
    They cheat, and it’s rigged. Good riddance!
    ===================================
    If it is rigged, why would they have to cheat?

  41. If Tom Brady has had enough of Belichick, he could have retired. No one is making him play football.

  42. If i we’re a boston fan, the question i would want the answer to would be, how stupid could an organization be, with all the success they have had, trade JG for a freaking 2nd round pick ? i mean think of it ? coulda been another farve/rodgers situation. it boggles the mind.

  43. It just gives my heart a chuckle to see all these bitter & jealous fans on here, spouting their frustration & jealousy, TRYING to make THEMSELVES feel better about their pathetic franchises in hopes of TRYING to make we Patriot fans feel worse about the TEAM we love…..
    I know this Donkey fan that got more enjoyment seeing the Patriots lose a game than he did watching his team win a game….. I got a feeling there are A LOT of depressed fans out there like him….. that too makes my heart chuckle a bit too!!!

  44. It was Belichick who turned an out of shape Brian Griese’s backup and a 199th draft pick into a SB winning QB. Brady would be wise to deflate his ego just a bit.

  45. patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    May 28, 2018 at 3:22 pm
    It was Belichick who turned an out of shape Brian Griese’s backup and a 199th draft pick into a SB winning QB. Brady would be wise to deflate his ego just a bit

    ——-

    ….then Belichick threw for 70,000 yards and 500 tds and won multiple MVP awards over 18 years — oh, wait — that was Brady who actually did that?

  46. Any truth to the rumor that the name of the team will become TOM BRADY and the new england patriots?

  47. ikeclanton says:
    May 28, 2018 at 4:20 pm
    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    May 28, 2018 at 3:22 pm
    It was Belichick who turned an out of shape Brian Griese’s backup and a 199th draft pick into a SB winning QB. Brady would be wise to deflate his ego just a bit

    ——-

    ….then Belichick threw for 70,000 yards and 500 tds and won multiple MVP awards over 18 years — oh, wait — that was Brady who actually did that?

    ————

    He did that within Belichick’s system.

  48. “The end is near”.
    I just cut and pasted the above quote once again from the previous year, and I’ve done is either 9 or 10 years in a row now. LOL.

  49. All haters join in with me now.
    “The end is near.”
    Come on, you can do better than that.
    What? You say this is boring because we do it EVERY year?
    I don’t care.
    Once more. This time with feeling.
    “The end is near.”

    Hahahaha. I know, I know. It DOES sound stupid, doesn’t it?

  50. patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    May 28, 2018 at 7:39 pm

    He did that within Belichick’s system.

    _________________________________________

    And Belichick’s “system” produces one playoff berth in 7 seasons without Brady.

  51. TB12 has adequate reason to be angry with how the SB went down. He is hyper-competitive, holds himself to a high standard, and doesn’t like losing. BB brushed the SB aside in borderline disrespectful manner.

    All that said, TB12 using his program to get himself ready for 2018 season. Probably has little to do with BB. It has everything to do with being ready to go for 19 games.

  52. “He did that within Belichick’s system”

    Belichick didn’t have a system in 2001. He has had the luxury of having one QB for 18 years around which to build a system.

  53. Belichick coached in Cleveland and one season in NE without Brady And never won anything. His coaching in SB deliberately hurt team. That’s why Brady is taking his time, period.

  54. patsfan4lifesbchamps says:

    May 28, 2018 at 3:22 pm

    It was Belichick who turned an out of shape Brian Griese’s backup and a 199th draft pick into a SB winning QB. Brady would be wise to deflate his ego just a bit.

    ==================================

    Belichick did such a good job, he only went 18-19 when Brady didn’t start with 33 of those 37 games started by Pro Bowl QBs. Yet it was the magic “system” of the Pats, right? And yet you contradict yourself on these threads by saying they should have kept Jimmy G. Why, if Belichick is so great at reclamation projects with QBs, would he keep Jimmy G who became the highest paid QB in the NFL? It makes no sense for BB to sink that much cap space into a position he could fill on the cheap. Pick a side. Is it the Pats magic system or not?

  55. realfootballfan says:

    May 28, 2018 at 10:42 am

    Call me crazy, but I’ve never seen a personal warmth there between those two. After the year he missed with a knee injury though when Cassell got paid, we did see a lot of this same passive aggressiveness with people saying Brady was upset that people were doubting he could come back and working on his own in California that off-season. So I wouldn’t read too much into any of this. Kraft is going to have to make his contract right though for the last coupel of his years since he has basically told Belichick that Brady is hands off.

    ===============================

    Same thing too happened with Gronk when he had surgery on his forearm in 2013. The Pats and Gronk differed on the course of treatment and Gronk then had a bad infection which required more surgeries and missed more of the off season training than anticipated. It was a pretty big story that year and internally there likely was friction, but obviously both sides figured it out.

  56. Brady needs to cut soy from his diet.
    The Patriots traded away a great young QB to make you happy and feel “appreciated.”

    I would say “shut up and play” but that is conditional on this report being true (and there is 50/50 anything you read being true).

  57. “Belichick coached in Cleveland and one season in NE without Brady And never won anything. His coaching in SB deliberately hurt team. That’s why Brady is taking his time, period.”
    ___________________
    He went to more playoff games those two seasons then Cleveland did in all the years since Belichick left. Browns fans need to shhhhhhhhh

  58. IF the Patriot’s defense showed up for the Super Bowl, or just for a few key plays, would any of this negative talk exist?

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