While he no longer plays his football in New England, it’s still tough to separate Tom Brady from the Patriots’ all-business attitude. In Tampa Bay, though, the quarterback has been able to loosen up a bit. If you need an example, just take a single look at his social media accounts.
On Wednesday, May 12, the NFL released the 2021 schedule and confirmed that the Buccaneers will begin their title defense by hosting the Dallas Cowboys. Even though that game is months away, Brady couldn’t resist taking a lighthearted shot at America’s Team.
Tom Brady will meet the Dallas Cowboys in Week 1 of the 2021 NFL season
Try as the NFL might, the schedule reveal isn’t exactly must-see TV; fans already know who their favorite team will play, so it’s just a matter of learning when each game will take place. Wednesday night, however, did confirm some set pieces in the 2021 calendar.
In recent years, the defending Super Bowl champion gets the honor of kicking off the new campaign with a Thursday night home game. 2021 won’t be any different as Tom Brady and his Buccaneers host the Dallas Cowboys.
Beyond the pageantry of the occasion — Tampa could have a full house of fans by then, providing the perfect opportunity to honor their championship — the game could go either way. On paper, the Cowboys have plenty of talent. They’ve struggled to put it all together, though, and haven’t made a deep playoff run in quite a while.
TB12, however, is already doing his part to spice up the occasion.
Tom Brady threw some shade at the Cowboys’ status as America’s Team
During the course of the average NFL game, there’s plenty of trash talk thrown around between the lines. Brady, it seems, wanted to get a head start on his verbal warfare.
In an Instagram story, TB12 shared an NFL graphic announcing that the Buccaneers would open their season against the Cowboys. He added the text, “9/9 can’t come soon enough. Excited to open against ‘America’s Team.'” He also added a gif of the now-iconic Wandavision wink.
For those who aren’t up on their internet trends, Kathryn Hahn’s wink has become a popular way to take the classic idea of a wink and a nudge to the next level. “Enter The Agatha Wink: a new, satisfying pictorial shorthand for, ‘We all know what I’m telling you (and/or ourselves) is straight-up bullshi*t,’ Andrew Paul explained for AV Club.
By adding that gif and some air quotes, Brady seemed to join the chorus of fans around the country who say that winning two championships in the 1970s and three in the 1990s doesn’t give a franchise the right to claim they’re America’s Team.
TB12 has been having some fun on social media since leaving New England
In the big picture, Brady’s little jab at the Cowboys won’t mean much; we’ll probably hear a bit about it around Week 1, then it can fade into the ether. That Instagram story, however, does seem to be part of a trend. In Tampa Bay, TB12 has been having a bit more fun on social media.
As mentioned above, Bill Belichick and his Patriots have a reputation as an all-business organization. Brady, whether fairly or not, got lumped into that image. He was the quarterback who showed up, did his job, and followed a strict diet to ensure he was always in peak physical shape.
While the diet is still going strong in Tampa, TB12 does seem to have let his hair down a bit. After having a bit to drink at the Buccaneers’ boat parade, he poked fun at himself and his love of avocado ice cream. He shared a tweet of a (fake) Bruce Arians tattoo, traded barbs with Patrick Mahomes, and sent the internet into a frenzy by adding ‘laser eyes’ to his profile picture.
Whether that quarterback is having more fun because he’s away from Belichick or simply feels more comfortable in his own skin at age 43, he’s clearly enjoying himself in Florida. For NFL fans, that can only be a positive; football, after all, is supposed to be entertaining.