Regardless of where you stand on the Rams vs. Saints debacle, the dominance of Tom Brady can’t be ignored. Brady has five Super Bowl victories, has been to eight, and has four Super Bowl MVP awards. He continues to solidify his legacy and add to the legend that is Tom Brady. Even when he was counted out this entire year, both regular and post season, he continues to shine and defy the odds. When told that he doesn’t have enough in the tank, doesn’t have the weapons, or any other reason, he just laughs and leads the Patriots to the Super Bowl. The question must be asked after a while, should Brady retire? Regardless of Super Bowl 53, I say Brady shouldn’t even consider walking away.
Look at the division Brady plays in. Brady plays the Jets, Bills, and Dolphins all twice a year. Do any of those teams jump out at you as immediate Super Bowl contenders? The Dolphins have suffered with being average for so long and seem to always finish .500. The Jets and Bills are both rebuilding with their new franchise quarterbacks, but I don’t think either will make that big of a jump next season. Brady plays in a division where he is practically guaranteed 4-6 free wins a year. With the weak teams around him, Brady has more time to rest, heal, and a greater chance at a first round bye; thus, he is saved even more play time and the risk of injury.
Speaking of injury, Brady has remained relatively healthy throughout his career. The NFL is also evolving to protect quarterbacks to a point where it’s almost detrimental. When Brady was barely touched against the Chiefs, he was granted a roughing the passer call. The NFL is changing to make things easier on him. Why walk away when the league is making things easier for you? He doesn’t seem to be slowing down, and the league is making it easier for him to thrive. Also, the Patriots surround him with the best possible tools he could ever need: running backs and a terrific coach.
The Patriots got a steal in Sony Michel. Michel is a dynamic runner who rushed for 931 yards and 6 touchdowns in his first season. Rex Burkhead is also a great compliment to the Patriots offense and has 3 touchdowns this post season. Brady can also throw to running back James White who had 15 targets against the Chargers. Brady has multiple running backs who can shine and thrive and take pressure off him. Bill Belichick may be the best coach in history and continues to make things easier with his play calling and strategy. He has so many assets around him to succeed. The main reason Brady may want to stay has nothing to do with stats: it has everything to do with fun.
Every kid who grows up playing sports does so for one reason: it’s fun. Brady enjoys himself on the field and gets paid doing what he loves. He has defied the odds of where he was drafted and has forced his way in the greatest ever argument and I believe has run away with it. He smiles and jokes around with teammates and is enjoying every second of every game. He has worked so hard his entire life and has earned the right to play until he wishes to ride off into the sunset. As an athlete, I never wanted to stop playing and I imagine it’s the same for him. He loves the sport too much to simply give it up.
Brady has multiple tools around him, like a great coaching staff, and talented athletes on his team. He plays in a weak division and the game is becoming easier for him. The idea shouldn’t even cross Brady’s mind. He’s having fun, enjoying life, and getting paid to do what he loves. He will continue to play until he gets bored, or possibly runs out of fingers for rings.