Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is embarking on the final four regular-season games of the 20th season of his New England career. He hasn’t — and he won’t — comment for now whether he wants to return for a 21st season.
Brady’s father, Tom Brady Sr., has chimed in, placing the decision on the shoulders not of his son but of his son’s coach, Bill Belichick.
“You know, I don’t know,” Brady Sr. told Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald as to whether Tom Jr. will be back in 2020. “It’s hard for me to envision him playing somewhere else. He wants to play. But ultimately, it’s Bill’s decision. Nobody really knows. Bill doesn’t tip his hand. There’s just been insinuations here and there. This is really kind of between those two. They got to decide what they want.”
So what if Belichick decides to move on?
“If Bill says he doesn’t want Tommy, and Tommy wants to play, well, Joe Montana went to Kansas City,” Brady Sr. said. “”Just because Bill decides he wants to move on, that won’t dictate Tommy’s future. I’m sure there are a few other teams in the league that would want him.”
There surely would be. There currently aren’t enough good quarterbacks to go around, and Brady carries with him important business factors: The ability to sell tickets and to move merchandise. After all these years, his jersey continues to be among the best selling of all player jerseys.
Brady Sr. made it clear that he’s speculating, but as speculation goes the father of Tom Brady is probably in a better position to do it than most.
“I just know Tommy loves playing football,” Brady Sr. said. “He loves everything about it. He loves his teammates. I don’t think anyone knows right now what’s going to go on. Bill may know. Bill doesn’t make a decision he hasn’t thought long and hard about. We’ll see what he wants to do at the end of the year.”
Indeed we will. And it could result in Tom Brady following the likes of Unitas, Favre, Montana, Favre, and Peyton as a franchise quarterback who finishes his career with a franchise other than the one with which he’s most identified.