The question of when Tom Brady will retire has the attention of every NFL fan.
People in New England hope he’ll keep playing — and doing so at a high level — for several more years, especially now that his one-time heir apparent, Jimmy Garoppolo, is in San Francisco.
People everywhere else — tired of seeing Brady lead the Patriots to the Super Bowl — can’t wait for the day he’ll hang up his cleats.
Last season, the future Hall of Famer wasn’t able to hoist the Lombardi Trophy for a sixth time. His team was upset by the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LII amid reports of turmoil in Foxborough.
Still, the 40-year-old quarterback did become the oldest player in major sports history to win his league’s MVP award.
While Brady has insisted he wants to play into his mid-40s, he’s also indicated the decision isn’t his alone.
“You can’t make decisions necessarily just for yourself,” he said Monday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” “I think that’s one thing I’ve learned as I’ve gotten older: There are collateral effects to every decision that I make. I have a wife [Gisele Bundchen] that aspires to be a lot of things, and she travels a lot. Our kids — my oldest son lives here in New York — three kids, and you’re just always trying to juggle and you want to be there for them, and you want to be there for the hockey games and the soccer games. But you also realize the level of commitment it takes to give as much as you can to the team that needs you.”
Now Brady has added more fuel to the “end is near” fire.
In the very last scene of his six-part Facebook documentary series “Tom vs. Time,” Brady is shown sitting on his couch.
“It’s a big commitment,” he says. “I’m sitting here, laying here three days after the year getting my Achilles worked on and my thumb.
“And you go, what are we doing this for, you know? What are we doing this for? Who are we doing this for? Why are we doing this?
“You’ve got to have answers to those questions, and they have to be with a lot of conviction. When you lose your conviction, you should probably be doing something else.”
Okay so what did you all get out of the final episode of Tom vs Time. I don’t have a very good feeling about the ending. Has he lost his conviction ?
— Cheryl (@CherylDeluise) March 12, 2018
That sure sounds like the ultimate winner of “Tom vs. Time” might be Time.
Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports said the last minute of the show “punctuated two pressing realities: The last season may have been the most difficult of Brady’s career, and the next season may very well be his last.”
“The tone is a 180-degree turn from what we’ve become accustomed to from Brady,” writes Tom E. Curran of NBC Sports Boston.
Curran says the final scene “carried with it a heavy sense of foreboding. Given the editorial control Tom Brady had over the project, there’s no confusing the point. He’s just about had it.”
It should be noted that that scene was filmed days after Brady endured the devastating loss to the Eagles. He was at an emotional and physical low after a long season.
Sounds like they should have kept Garappolo!
— Sean O'Connor (@ralphie198) March 12, 2018
But the “Tom vs. Time” finale aired Monday, and Brady certainly could have ended it on a different note if his feelings had changed since Feb. 4.
His comments are no doubt alarming to Pats fans — and music to the ears of everyone else.
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