With his sustained superstar play, it is easy to forget that Tom Brady is well past the age where most players have already called it quits. He’s been winning Super Bowls and playing as one of the greatest quarterbacks for almost 20 years, but could that soon be coming to an end? Recently, Brady made headlines when he took to Instagram and said, “Treat my first like my last, and my last like my first.”
According to Tom Brady, the hoopla surrounding the post was much ado about nothing. The words were taken from a Jay-Z song that he likes, and serve as a mantra for him to treat every new year with the same passion he had coming into the league. “That’s a Jay-Z song,” he later said according to The Boston Globe, “I just like the lyric. It’s a general appreciation for every year you’ve got to come out and you’ve got to earn it.”
One sign that Brady may be slowing it down is his decision not to participate in the voluntary workouts. For the last two seasons, Brady hasn’t been there, and for someone who is as hard-working as he is, this may come as a surprise.
However, according to Brady, this is nothing more than being there for his family during the offseason and affording his wife, Gisele Bundchen, the time to do traveling and obligations that she may not be able to do when he is in the grind of the season.
Tom Brady’s life off the field
Tom Brady’s offseason started with the shaving of his playoff beard, led to some skiing, and even led him to social media, where he announced his retirement on April 1. Those who looked at the calendar immediately caught on to the joke, but it shows that Brady is aware that there is a fascination with how long he plans to play in the NFL.
From trips to Disneyland, to celebrating his parents’ anniversary, much of what Brady does in his spare time reminds us that he isn’t all football, all the time. However, while he has publicly said how important his family is to him, it doesn’t mean that football is being ignored.
In April, Tom Brady showed that he was practicing for the upcoming season, posting a video of him training with teammate and reigning Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman. Later on, the pair was seen working with the Patriots’ newest rookie, N’Keal Harry, who will be a vital part of the team’s offense with Rob Gronkowski heading into retirement.
More recently, Brady was seen putting in work with embattled wide receiver Josh Gordon, who the team plans on reinstating as soon as the league office gives him the go-ahead. Just because Brady isn’t at the voluntary practices, it doesn’t mean that he isn’t working just as hard as he would be working if he were living in the team’s facilities.
How much longer?
Tom Brady made headlines when he ran a faster 40-yard dash than he did when he was entering the league nearly 20 years ago. It’s feats like this that make people think that he can play forever. However, there will come a day when Brady has to step away. Whether time finally catches up with him and he has to step away, or he simply steps away without any regression, no athlete can play forever.
However, this doesn’t mean that Brady will be stepping away any time soon. Before last season, he said that he plans on playing several more years. He even recently signed an extension with the Pats to back up that claim. Clearly, time will tell whether that ends up being the situation, but until Brady shows signs of regression, we cannot help but assume that it will be the case.