New direction? Tom Brady is set to play for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after announcing his departure from the New England Patriots, according to multiple reports.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted on Tuesday, March 17, that Tampa Bay “is the expected landing spot for Tom Brady barring anything unforeseen.” He noted that “there’s no signing date or announcement officially set up” just yet, but the 42-year-old six-time Super Bowl champion “is expected to be a Buccaneer.”
Meanwhile, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport wrote that Brady “has an agreement in principle to join” the Florida team. “It is believed to be roughly $30M per year,” he added.
Earlier on Tuesday, Brady announced his departure from the Patriots after a 20-season run. “I wanted to say thank you to all of the incredible fans and Patriots supporters,” he wrote via Instagram and Twitter. “MA has been my home for twenty years. It has truly been the happiest two decades I could have envisioned in my life and I have nothing but love and gratitude for my time in New England. The support has been overwhelming — I wish every player could experience it.”
The quarterback continued, “My children were born and raised here and you always embraced this California kid as your own. I love your commitment and loyalty to your teams and winning for our city means more than you will ever know. I can’t thank you enough for the support of our team. The packed training camps and sold out stadiums and mostly the victory parades. I have been so blessed to share them with you all.”
Though Brady noted that he’s unsure what his “football future holds,” he said that “it is time for me to open a new stage for my life and career.” He also thanked Pats Nation for “a lifetime full of fun memories.”
Brady’s wife, Gisele Bündchen, reacted to her longtime love’s news with a comment on his Instagram post. “So much gratitude for all the wonderful experiences and friendships we had in beautiful New England this past few years,” the model, 39, wrote on Tuesday.
Brady began his NFL journey in 2000 when he drafted to play for the Patriots. During his career with the Massachusetts team, the athlete played in nine Super Bowls and won six of them. He also earned four Super Bowl MVP awards.
Weeks before Brady’s exit news, longtime Patriots fan Ben Affleck revealed that he and BFF Matt Damon were worried about their pal’s future with the team. “Me and Matt texted him, ‘What’s the deal? You going or you staying? And this is what we got back: an emoji,” the Way Back actor, 47, told ESPN’s Get Up on February 18, while doing his impression of the shrug emoji.
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“I hope he stays. I think he’s fabulous. By the same token, he’s given up a lot of money to play for that franchise over the years that he well deserves,” Affleck explained. “The New England Patriots didn’t sacrifice any money winning all those Super Bowls, selling all those tickets, selling all that merchandise. I pray and hope that he stays. It would break my heart if he left.”
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