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#pounditWednesday, September 28, 2022

Tom Brady reveals how close he came to staying retired

Tom Brady puts up his hand

Aug 28, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) jogs off the field after a game against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Tom Brady’s decision to end his brief retirement may have seemed inevitable to some. Ask the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback, however, and it was nearly a coin flip decision.

Brady revealed during a TV roundtable for “The Match” that his decision to return was essentially 55-45, though he became fully committed once he did decide to return to the NFL.

“You know at this stage, it’s like 55 percent yes and 45 percent no,” Brady said, via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. “That’s just the reality. It’s not that I’m not 100 percent committed, it’s just as soon as I make the commitment to do it, it’s like ‘Ugh. All right, here we go.’ It’s like running a marathon. You can’t decide two weeks before the marathon, ‘Hey, I’m going to start running.’ We got right to free agency and I felt some pressure to do it and talked to the team and organization and it all worked out.”

Brady knew that free agency was essentially a do-or-die moment for his comeback considerations. If he did not return then, a number of veterans were going to leave the Buccaneers. Brady halted that exodus with his return and kept the core of the team together, even though there was evidently some reluctance on his part.

Of course, we still don’t know Brady’s side of a reported plan he had that had fallen through by that point. Maybe that was his real hope, and something he was much more enthusiastic about.

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