Tom Brady continues to prove to be an ageless wonder after guiding the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a Super Bowl title. However, Brady can’t escape questions concerning retirement as he moves even further into his 40s. With that in mind, there may be more clarity regarding his path toward finally hanging up his cleats.
Tom Brady guides the Buccaneers to the Super Bowl
For the first time in two decades, Brady donned another uniform aside from the New England Patriots.
The new experience came with a bumpy initial path as he became acclimated to his new surroundings. However, Brady found his groove in the last month of the season. He guided Tampa Bay to win its final four regular-season games, then capture three straight road playoff game victories to reach the Super Bowl.
The Buccaneers, behind Brady’s steady play and their stout defense, guided convincingly past the Kansas City Chiefs to secure the 31-9 Super Bowl 55 win. As Brady prepares for his 22nd season, there may be more clarity concerning his eventual retirement.
Tom Brady’s retirement plans may have been revealed
Brady is set to embark on his 22nd season with the sole aspiration of guiding the Buccaneers to a second straight Super Bowl title.
However, it also further raises questions concerning his eventual retirement as he continues to brush aside when he will finally step away from the game. ESPN’s Longtime NFL reporter Jeff Darlington recently gave some insight into the seven-time Super Bowl champion’s mindset by voicing he believes he will retire after the 2022 campaign.
“I remember a couple of years ago, asking him, ‘Yeah, are you going to retire this year?’ He’s like, ‘Why does everybody want me to retire so bad?’ And now he says this and we’re all like, ‘Wait a second. It’s eventually going to end?’ Yes, it’s going to end,” Darlington said via 247 Sports. “To be very clear here, though, I don’t think it ends after this year, this past season. Some people around Brady were telling me that Tom was already talking about 2022. I honestly think, if I had to guess, I say he plays this season, he plays next season and then he retires. But who knows?”
Darlington’s stance falls precisely in line with Brady’s contract situation as he’s under contract through the 2022 season after inking a one-year extension. The star quarterback has never spoken about his NFL future beyond the years he’s contractually obligated to play.
Brady voiced in years past he wants to play until age 45, which the final year of his new deal runs through that time frame. Darlington’s estimation isn’t going out on a limb by any means, but it’s more than reasonable to think the future Hall of Famer will retire after his 23rd campaign.
Tampa Bay focused on a second straight Super Bowl bid
Brady‘s long-term future aside, Tampa Bay is gearing up for another Super Bowl push.
The front office kept together a talented roster that can accomplish that lofty feat after retaining its big-name free agents. Tampa Bay managed to re-sign Chris Godwin, Leonard Fournette, Ndamukong Suh, Lavonte David, Antonio Brown, and Rob Gronkowski.
Meanwhile, Brady is progressively working his way back from serious knee surgery. He’s worked through training camp this month without using a knee brace. Coupled with that, he will have an entire training camp and preseason to build chemistry with his teammates and become more familiar with the playbook.
All that aligns the cards for the Buccaneers to make a strong push toward vying for another Super Bowl bid.
Contract figures courtesy of Spotrac.