Tom Brady retired on February 1, before unretiring on March 13. His father, who disputed the late-January reports that Tom Jr. would be calling it quits, believes that the media forced the hand of the GOAT.
“They were announcing his retirement before he even retired,” Tom Brady Sr. said on Greeny, via JoeBucsFan.com. “You know, the media made the news. He was not ready to make any decision and didn’t make any decision but [Adam] Schefter and [Jeff] Darlington stated it as fact. You know, he hadn’t made any decision on that.”
Still, three days after the report emerged, Tom Jr. retired.
”After [retiring,] he had time to reflect with his family, you know, [on] what gives him the greatest joy in his life, and they all agreed that this is the path forward that works best for the Brady family,” Tom Sr. said. “He is happy as can be. . . . It just took a little bit of time to sort this thing out. I mean, he’s kind of in uncharted territory. So of people might seem to think he took a misstep, hey, welcome to our world. Not very many people get to to make this decision at 44 years of age and going on 45.”
He’s right. No pro athlete has spent as many years as Brady has balancing work and family. No one has had to stave off the natural and reasonable demands of a wife and children for so long.
Although it’s highly unlikely that Brady retired because of the ESPN reporting, the report added to the existing momentum. And Brady apparently needed to retire and step back from the sport and see how it felt.
Obviously, it didn’t feel good. Tom Jr. is back. And his about-face will require the media to monitor any future retirements by Brady in order to be certain that he won’t be coming back. As with Brett Favre more than a decade ago, Brady won’t certainly be retired until a full season elapses without him playing. Even then, who knows?