NFL

Bill Belichick on Tom Brady leaving New England: “It wasn’t a question of not wanting him”

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 26: Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers following the 34-24 loss to the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on September 26, 2021 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Next Sunday night will mark the first-ever matchup between Bill Belichick and Tom Brady. The pair spent nearly two decades together as members of the New England Patriots, achieving much success in their time. With the highly anticipated game inching closer, the head coach has faced multiple questions about their recent separation. One such question included whether Belichick wanted Brady to re-sign in his 2020 free agency, to which he responded honestly.

“He looked at his options and made his decision. We weren’t as good an option as Tampa…It wasn’t a question of not wanting him, that’s for sure.”

Bill Belichick

To some, this response may seem obvious. After all, Tom Brady had already established himself as the most accomplished player in NFL history; why wouldn’t Bill Belichick want him back? There were factors involved, including rumored transactions, that suggested a different approach from where Belichick stood.

It appeared that now-former Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garropolo would succeed Brady as the new man under center. This had most to do with his excellent performance and the prospect of Brady aging into mediocrity, like other great QBs before him. Though the team would eventually trade Garropolo to San Fransisco, the situation had already strained the relationship between the legendary coach and quarterback duo. Brady’s trainer Alex Guerrero recently chimed in on the issue.

By 2020, the Patriots roster lacked the talent to continue their stretch of dominance. Brady’s intentions had supposedly then gone beyond what New England could provide in his eyes, ultimately resulting in his departure to Tampa Bay.

Previewing Sunday Night Football: Patriots vs Buccaneers

INGLEWOOD, CA - SEPTEMBER 26: Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) looks on during the NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Rams on September 26, 2021, at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This game will mark Tom Brady’s first visit to Foxboro as an opponent. He and his Buccaneers will look to bounce back from a convincing loss to the LA Rams. New England will also look to rebound from a down game this past weekend. Only three games into the new year, both teams still have ample time to establish themselves. However, all the luster behind this matchup could prove as a stepping stone for both sides.

For the Patriots, it will be a massive opportunity for their rookie quarterback, Mac Jones, to make a statement. The former 15th overall pick may have his day matching up against a struggling Buccaneers defense (#27 overall). On the other end, the defending champions in Tampa Bay will look to reassert themselves in this, their biggest game since last year’s Super Bowl.

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4 responses to “Bill Belichick on Tom Brady leaving New England: “It wasn’t a question of not wanting him””

  1. […] Belichick already spoke about Tom Brady’s departure. Now his attention has shifted toward the game ahead. This comment sheds some light on a few things, most notably, a potential advantage for New England’s defense. As coach Belichick seems fully aware of the Buccaneers’ offense, he can gameplan for it accordingly. By doing so, he may gift his team the tools to stall the opposition in their tracks and pull off an upset in the process. […]

  2. […] Belichick already spoke about Tom Brady’s departure. Now his attention has shifted toward the game ahead. This comment sheds some light on a few things, most notably, a potential advantage for New England’s defense. As coach Belichick seems fully aware of the Buccaneers’ offense, he can gameplan for it accordingly. By doing so, he may gift his team the tools to stall the opposition in their tracks and pull off an upset in the process. […]

  3. […] and his return to New England is the most viewed game so far this season and for obvious reasons. Brady spent 20 seasons in New England and was finally making his return after leaving in 2020. As a result, the game generated 26.7 million […]

  4. […] and his return to New England is the most viewed game so far this season and for obvious reasons. Brady spent 20 seasons in New England and was finally making his return after leaving in 2020. As a result, the game generated 26.7 million […]

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