As the National Football League enters the second round of the playoffs, a lot of the focus this week has been on an individual that isn’t even playing this weekend.
Minutes after the New England Patriots were unceremoniously bounced from the post-season by Tennessee, Brady told reporters during his post-game news conference that he was ‘unlikely’ to retire.
In a lengthy thank you message to Pats fans on Instagram on Wednesday, Brady made no mention of retirement and instead says that he has “more to prove.”
The 42-year-old QB has spent all 20 seasons of his illustrious NFL career with the Patriots and is expected to become a free agent for the first time in his career this off-season.
It is important to note that Drew Brees, Eli Manning, Philip Rivers and a bunch of other starting quarterbacks are also scheduled et to hit the open market this year.
Where will Brady end up playing in 2020?
New England Patriots: Even though Pats head coach Bill Belichick has made no mention of bringing Brady back, we shouldn’t close the door on this scenario until Brady moves on. Owner Robert Kraft loves Brady (and why wouldn’t he?) but the QB has said that he won’t take a hometown discount to stick around.
Still, New England remains the favourite.
Los Angeles Chargers: The Chargers are moving into a new stadium in 2020, a facility they will share with the L.A. Rams, and odds are they will be doing so without QB Philip Rivers. Brady is from California (San Mateo) and going back home may be appealing to him. He would also have offensive weapons like receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams to throw the ball to.
Indianapolis Colts: Once upon a time the Colts, led by Peyton Manning, and Brady’s Patriots were the two biggest foes in the AFC so to envision the latter in an Indianapolis uniform would be downright weird.
Still, the Colts have a great offensive line: the talented T.Y. Hilton at receiver and Marlon Mack at tailback. Indy also plays in the AFC South, where 10 wins almost guarantee a division title.
Las Vegas Raiders: The Silver and Black may be an outlier in the Brady sweepstakes considering current starting QB Derek Carr is under contract until 2022. But if the Raiders want to make a massive splash in their inaugural season in Sin City, what better way to do it by bringing in Brady?
Brady could conceivably go to a number of other teams who are in need of a starting quarterback but the likelihood of that happening is remote.
If the Brady era in New England is indeed over, it’s certainly been one epic ride.