Speaking from experience, Joe Namath thinks Tom Brady should stay in New England

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Joe Namath is so associated with the New York Jets that most fans under the age of 45 probably don’t know that he ended his career in 1977 with the Los Angeles Rams. Namath looks back on his forgettable final season with regret, and he urges Tom Brady not to follow in his footsteps.

Namath told ESPN that he thinks if Brady leaves the Patriots he’ll have similar regrets.

I wish I knew what I learned in making that transition before making it, meaning it turned out to be a very difficult transition,” Namath said.

Namath was the Rams’ starting quarterback for the first four games of the 1977 season, but he was benched after a four-interception game in Week Four and never played again. Namath said it would be awful to see Brady go down the same path.

“It’s almost beyond my belief that he would go to another team under any circumstances,” Namath said. “I can’t imagine that separation. Moving out of the New England area that he’s been so accustomed to, and his family, that’s a hard thing, too. I don’t think he’ll ever leave that totally behind, I really don’t. I want to see him play as long as he physically and mentally wants to, man, because we’ve all seen over the years the execution that has been superb more times than not. We don’t get to see that kind of player, that kind of character, very often. It’s very rare.”

And it’s even rarer to see a great player play his entire career with one team. Namath didn’t, but he hopes Brady will.

51 responses to “Speaking from experience, Joe Namath thinks Tom Brady should stay in New England

  1. I don’t see Brady being in the same position for success with another team.

    He’ll either have to teach the Pats offense to an entire team, which given he didn’t show much interest in helping the young receivers the Pats had last year along doesn’t seem likely, or learn a whole new system himself.

    Yeah, he can probably make an extra 5 or 10 million dollars going to another team over what the Pats will pay him, but so what? He and Giselle are worth something like 750 million at this point so the money is pretty meaningless except to massage his ego.

    Stay in New England Tom and finish your career where you should be.

  2. Brady definitely wants to play. That is clear. To me it’s also obvious that he loves the Pats and would love to keep playing for them. The problem is that Bill simply doesn’t want to have Brady anymore, Bill wanted to show that he can win a SB without Brady which would have made it look like he is the more important one of the two. In my book, the dynasty will be officially over when either Brady or Bill is gone and it looks like this is a real possibility now. Bill isn’t emotionally attached to any player – not even Brady. The lack of apprecation Bill has shown to Brady over the last few years sure made him consider all of his options.

  3. Brady may be overthinking this. I’m sure it’s very flattering to have all other clubs interested in you, but his legacy is set. He doesn’t need to do anything more. If it’s really just about playing football, he should stay and play football in NE. Kraft will pay him and play him for as long as he wants to play. Otherwise, he really does risk ending his career looking desperate to hang on to something that has clearly passed him by. Like Namath and Favre did.

  4. Johnny Unitas made the same mistake, going to San Diego at the end of his career. If you’re a living legend like Namath or Unitas (or Brady), the team will let you stay a year too long. If it gets to the point where the team just can’t let you go on any longer, it really is time to hang ‘em up, no matter how much you want to go on.

  5. Brady has already done various things that indicate he’s done with the Patriots. I think he’s also sick of Bellichick, who couldn’t bring Gronk back and badly disrespected Butler in their last SB.

  6. For Brady to stay in New England he will have to do so on a team friendly deal. Brady is coming off a mediocre year. Belichick would be doing his team a disservice if he signed Brady to a multi-year deal that would result in dead cap space in the event the team has to cut Brady after Year 1. Brady could sign a 1-year deal, but I assume he would want top 5 QB pay to do that and I don’t think the Patriots have that money considering their other needs.

  7. I agree somewhat, carloswlassiter. I think BB would have him back at a certain price but it’s not likely to be the price Brady will accept. I think it’ll boil down to whether Kraft can talk BB into giving TB 2-3 more years at a higher cost than BB wants and then, if so, whether they can still get the weapons Brady thinks he needs to be able to succeed.

    To do that, they’d have to let some of the good defenders sign elsewhere and find both a real TE and another wideout (Sanu should be an ok #3/4 when he’s not hurt).

  8. Love the Pats and want Tom to stay, but I would rather see him leave than have to play with an offensive roster like he had last year. The reality is Bill can’t draft on Offense, and hasn’t drafted an offensive player of note since Gronk. Michel was a waste of a 1st round pick, and possibly N. Harry too. Unfair to fully judge Harry since he was injured, but it is clear he is not a #1 receiver. The next 3 to 4 RBacks and WR’s drafted after Harry and Michel are vastly better than both. I mean Bill started the year with Gordon and a D2 school Defensive Back (Gunner O) as wideouts. The fact that Gunner took a single snap on offensive is pathetic, and his punt returns consisted of 90% fair catches. The last 2 years of offensive roster building have been embarrassing as a Pats fan.

    Go Pats!

  9. I think the Chargers would be interesting. They’ve had a lot of talent for yrs, but lack that certain something that maybe Brady could give them. Rather he stayed for a couple more yrs, but that would be worth watching if it happens.

  10. If he goes to another team, he may not be as overly protected as much as he has been in the past. I doubt he wants to be treated like other QB’s are.

  11. Favre and Montana both went to conference championships after they left their teams. Van Brocklin won a championship after leaving the Rams. Unitas was traded so that wasn’t his fault. Namath’s career ended badly but he needed the money so he kept playing. Brady should leave. The Pats aren’t doing enough to get Brady back to the SB so I think he’s okay to move on.

  12. Ego can be damaging. It’s just a matter of Brady is willing to be reasonable, not skip OTAs again, and be committed to the players on the team.

    If it needs to be a 2 year deal. since he probably won’t want just 1 year at 10-12 million.

    He’s going to have to check the ego at the door and accmomodate the team. If Kraft wants to give him a % of ownership as a wink/wink type thing, fine.

    Of course, this all comes down to how BB feels about Stidham and Brady’s recent attitude problems working with new and young WRs. He’s the only QB in the league to skip OTAs AND have an attitude problem with new or young WRs. BB cannot be happy with it. It has to be pretty draining trying to manage an ego like that. Namath certainly had one and it ruined him, really. His knees were an issue, but he was never really the same after the SB 3 win over the Colts. His TD/INT ratio is horrible, for example.

  13. nflfan12blog – a couple of quick points.
    First, I know you’re just talking about skill position players–the Pats have drafted incredibly on the OL for a while. How many teams wish they could have gotten Cannon, Thuney, Andrews, and Mason when they did.

    The other thing is that it’s so hard to determine what’s the player and what’s the situation. To be sure, Brady is not super patient working with rookies. Teams that aren’t winning divisions can allow the growing pains that Tom and JM won’t usually tolerate. And this year, they certainly got unlucky with injuries and some of the gambles. That said, no way I’m defending the Michel pick and I can’t believe they didn’t try to get a TE for this past year (though I hate the Hollister belly-aching, the dude couldn’t block a CB and that does not go over in NE).

  14. With respect to Namath, Brady is a world better than Broadway Joe was at this late stage.
    Brady will leave, get paid what he’s worth, and will THRIVE wherever he chooses to go.
    Period..

  15. In a perfect world, Brady would finish in NE. But Belichick is the HC there, and it has become crystal clear that he wants to move on from Brady. The tension last year was almost unbearable, and you could see it weighing down the whole team – esp Brady – once the team hit that mid-late season rough patch.

    They say the waiting is the hardest part – that’s especially true with mortality. Brady knows Bill is watching for even the tiniest signs of decline…if you’ve ever read about how BB evaluates players, you know how ruthlessly analytical he can be. When he was coach in Cleveland, it became clear in 1992 that BB thought Kosar’s days were numbered…after a year of escalating tensions BB cut Kosar loose, one of the most heartbreaking moments in Browns history (and that’s saying something!)

    As far back as 2014 BB was preparing to move on from TB, drafting JG and setting 2017 (when JG’s option would need to be picked-up) as the end date to make the move. But Kraft stepped in and BB reluctantly (some say spitefully) traded his QB of the future. The “end date” was pushed back to 2019.

    Even if Kraft pulls rank and offers Brady another year, will Brady want to go through another season like 2019, with the Sword of Damocles hanging over his head?

    Yes starting with a new team will have its challenges, but surely Brady believes he’s still got it – and he may even think he’ll play better without the specter of Mr Sunshine (BB) plotting his demise behind the scenes.

    My hunch is that Brady has already made up his mind: he is leaving NE. But he doesn’t want to make it seem like he is the one doing the leaving…

  16. dougiex says:
    January 23, 2020 at 10:53 am
    Favre and Montana both went to conference championships after they left their teams. Van Brocklin won a championship after leaving the Rams. Unitas was traded so that wasn’t his fault. Namath’s career ended badly but he needed the money so he kept playing. Brady should leave. The Pats aren’t doing enough to get Brady back to the SB so I think he’s okay to move on.
    ______________________________________________________________

    that and namath really wasnt that good. check his stats. only 2 seasons where he threw more tds than picks, and always hovered at 50% completion rate.

  17. All-American Voltron says:
    January 23, 2020 at 10:08 am
    Well if he’s going to re-sign with the Patriots, then he’s going to have stay in Julian Edelman’s guest house, because TB already packed up his stuff and hit the road…
    ———————————————————————————
    IDK, pretty sure Tom and the Mrs. can swing a one year lease.

  18. “that and namath really wasnt that good. check his stats. only 2 seasons where he threw more tds than picks, and always hovered at 50% completion rate.”

    50% completion rate is terrible these days, but back then was not that bad. In that era defensive players could more or less decapitate receivers and QBs for that matter. You practically had to full on assault a receiver for any kind of pass interference call. The passing game was a lot tougher then.

  19. I agree with posters who’ve cited some some other late career QB’s finding success with new teams. Norm van Brocklin, Montana, Warren Moon, Steve DeBerg, YA Tittle, Earl Morrall, Cunningham, Favre (he had 2 good seasons in Minnesota, the first of which was arguably as good as any he had in GB), PManning, Flutie, Vinny (Jets), Sonny Jurgenson, Kurt Warner, Carson Palmer.

    Admittedly, most of these guys were younger than Brady when they switched teams…but in the old NFL QB’s aged much faster. Prior to Goodell’s reign as commish, age 30 was what age 40 is now.

    It’s not the age, it’s the mileage.

  20. Namath makes a good point. If Brady leaves the Pats he needs to go to team that has a good OL (rumors are that he’s going to the Fins! Good grief NO! Their OL is terrible…even if Thuney joins him! Even with Flores there!)

    But if BB wants him to go I can see that too. I wonder…does BB think the Pats shoulda kept Garappolo? I mean, he’s only taking the Niners to the Super Bowl…

  21. I’m sure one more year isn’t an issue as Stidham could probably use another year of grooming. Even 2 years is conceivable. So it wouldn’t surprise me to see a 1 or 2yr deal in NE (2 or 3yrs on paper), and I’d be shocked to see Brady leave to start as QB elsewhere at this point.

  22. As a Pats Fan I don’t expect him to leave. The Pats certainly can’t replace him with anybody better and He certainly won’t end up on a team with a better shot of winning. They’ll get it worked out but the Pats success next year will be predicated on whether or not they can fix this offensive line, Not Brady returning. If Dave Andrews makes it back at center that’s a good start.

  23. Brady’s best chance is with the Pats of course, it’s his team and they are ready to be contenders after doing some WR/TE reloading, and maybe fix up the O-line a bit.

    Otherwise I’m pretty sure Brady wants to return to NE, but it’s up to BB at this point. They could have offered him the contract whenever, but they haven’t which is why he’s still a free agent and said he will look around.

    But realistically his best chance with 1-2 years left, he has to stay with the Pats and finish off his career here, Brady shouldn’t wear any other uniform IMO. You can talk about Montana, Favre, etc. finishing off but Brady to the Pats is different than those guys, Pats winning history is all Brady.

  24. There sure are a lot of people willing to tell Brady what he should do. How about we let Tom make the decision he wants to, especially since what he does is no one else’s business.

  25. There is really no excuse for Brady not to have made the SB considering he had historic defense and special teams supporting him. Can anyone argue Jimmy G had a better supporting cast than Brady save for Kittle? This year’s team makes the SB with Jimmy G at QB. Brady’s done.

  26. Bellichick disrespected Brady. Kind of implied he’s just another player. Brady has been taking pay cuts for 15 years and this is the thanks he gets.

  27. I expect him to leave and sure hope he does, for his own sake. He has no one to throw to. Their offense is beyond pathetic. It’s embarrassing and it’s not his fault. Guys just aren’t open, can’t run routes, don’t know where to go.

    A soon to be 34 year old Edelman and that’s it? Yes, that’s pretty much it.

    And new vets are 50/50 as to whether they can even learn the offense.

    What about Tampa Bay?

  28. ——-
    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:

    January 23, 2020 at 12:08 pm

    There is really no excuse for Brady not to have made the SB considering he had historic defense and special teams supporting him. Can anyone argue Jimmy G had a better supporting cast than Brady save for Kittle? This year’s team makes the SB with Jimmy G at QB. Brady’s done.
    —-
    Is this real? Brady had no line, rookie WRs who can’t run routes or don’t know where to go, a 38 year old TE and some injured TE guys who can’t block. A porous OL. His center and LT gone all or most of the year. A street FA startng LT for a while. Brady had one viable receiver and that was Edelman.

    Those “weapons”?

  29. deborahlagarde says:
    January 23, 2020 at 11:39 am

    I wonder…does BB think the Pats shoulda kept Garappolo? I mean, he’s only taking the Niners to the Super Bowl…
    ————-
    Brady went to three consecutive Super Bowls since Garappolo’s last start with New England. If Brady was traded for Garappolo in 2017, it would have been coming of a Super Bowl MVP and being replaced by a QB who had only had 3 NFL starts, one where he went out injured. Obviously Garappolo is a very good QB, but BB did get some good value out of Brady after that trade.

  30. If brady doesnt want an asterisk by his name as goat he needs to win a sb without bellichick. Otherwise, a couple years removed from retirement, he will be remembered as a system qb. Take away the rings (and playoff chances) bellichick gave him, the two last second sb wins vinateri got him, and the incredible sb james white won him his stats are painfully average.

  31. Namath and Brady couldnt be much more different, neither in talent level or body nutrition and conditioning.

  32. deborahlagarde says:
    January 23, 2020 at 11:39 am

    I wonder…does BB think the Pats shoulda kept Garappolo? I mean, he’s only taking the Niners to the Super Bowl…

    I doubt it. Since Jimmy G. left in Oct 2017, the Pats have been to two super bowls, winning one of them. Who’s to say the Pats would even make it to those super bowls if Jimmy G. was the quarterback. Also, Garappolo didn’t want to sign a long term contract with the Pats knowing Brady was still going to be playing. He sat on the bench for 3 years and was ready to play. Bill wasn’t going to trade Brady in 2017 as he was still playing at too high a level.

  33. Here’s the thing – if Brady signs before his contract expires on March 18, the $13.5M dead cap hit is spread out over two years. If he signs with AFTER his contract expires or if he doesn’t sign at ALL with NE – the Pats will have a $13.5M dead cap hit. So any QB they sign to replace Brady – just tack that $13.5M cap hit to that QB’s cap. So financially it really behooves the Pats to sign Brady before his contract expires.

  34. zonedout100 says:
    January 23, 2020 at 12:44 pm
    Here’s the thing – if Brady signs before his contract expires on March 18, the $13.5M dead cap hit is spread out over two years. If he signs with AFTER his contract expires or if he doesn’t sign at ALL with NE – the Pats will have a $13.5M dead cap hit. So any QB they sign to replace Brady – just tack that $13.5M cap hit to that QB’s cap. So financially it really behooves the Pats to sign Brady before his contract expires.

    1 0 Rate This
    ———————

    Correct. They have just under 2 months to see if Brady will avoid skipping OTaS again, doesn’t have an ego that has gone completely overboard, and if BB wants to keep him for another 2 years with a QB who has shown signs of fading the last 2 years.

    It all comes down to Brady’s willingness to understand his age, the numbers, etc, and if BB thinks Stidham is ready or not.

    If Brady wants to play for 10-12 mil this year or next, understanding that cap hit is still dangling, great. Done deal, most likely.

    I am just not sure where BB is on Brady. Him taking off his headset before halftime vs Miami with 3 timeouts and plenty of time even for a FG, tells me a lot.That was AFTER Brady checked out and threw the awful pick 6, too. The attitude with the no contract until he’s 45, skipping OTAs’s, copping the attitude after BB was forced to release AB, was all a very bad look for Tom. Very bad.

    I also have no idea why you’d still want Brady and McDaniels working together for this long a period of time, where McDaniels refuses to scold Brady when Brady sucks. They just sit there and act like they’re always great and everyone else isn’t worthy. It’s really annoying to see during a game. McDaniels’s lack of understandting what a 2 RB set would do for Brady and that offense is also infuriating. He’s not as great as people think.

  35. uliehashtagbest says:
    January 23, 2020 at 12:23 pm
    If brady doesnt want an asterisk by his name as goat he needs to win a sb without bellichick. Otherwise, a couple years removed from retirement, he will be remembered as a system qb. Take away the rings (and playoff chances) bellichick gave him, the two last second sb wins vinateri got him, and the incredible sb james white won him his stats are painfully average.

    1 3 Rate This

    ——————–

    I am as hard on holding Brady accountable as any Pats fan you’ll see but even I know how stupid that statement is.

    Your jealousy is delicious.

  36. Besides Kraft having a very good relationship with Brady…… Think of all the money Brady has brought into the organization. His jersey was still seliing at #1 till recently. TB12. Tom just being Tom brought crowds in. Kraft being a business man is looking at this too. Dont you think if Tom went to another team he would automatically increase it’s income? Though BB is a great coach and basically runs the organization. He does work for Kraft. Sometimes I think Bill just doesnt like Tom. I’d be pissy too if my boss treated me like Bill treats Tom.

  37. The experience of Namath and Montana should keep Brady in NE. Although Brady is still better than they were!

  38. Namath shouldn’t be in the HOF.
    His stats are laughable.

    Brady should not be elected to the HOF anytime in the future.
    Dude probably cheats when playing Monopoly with his kids.

  39. Namath sucked at that stage in his career, Brady can still play, which is amazing, and I hate the guy.

    I see potential for Brady to go to the LA Chargers if Rivers isn’t invited back. The Chargers are a tenant in that stadium and are going to have trouble putting asses in the seats. Brady would be a huge draw and he’s a California kid. Giselle would be right at home in Southern Cali too.

    With respect to “I want to kiss you” Joe Namath, the time is different as are the circumstances. Yes, Brady SHOULD stay with the Patriots, but perhaps the feeling isn’t mutual.

  40. I think he will stay with the Pats. IF the money is good, he feels like playing, and they get him at least one receiver more that knows the offense, like Danny Amendola or Chris Hogan. Sanu will develop and so will Harry and Myers, but not having a guy other than a clearly injured Edelman killed the offense. If that doesn’t get fixed I think he will not play. I don’t see anyone else picking him up given the other issues with learning the offense etc.

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