Quarterback Tom Brady spoke with reporters on Tuesday for the first time since signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the six-time Super Bowl champion made it clear he has no intention of getting into a back-and-forth with the New England Patriots about who was responsible for their divorce.
In a conference call, Brady was asked a number of questions about his decision to leave the Patriots. New England owner Robert Kraft said last week that it was Brady’s choice and the Patriots would have worked something out if the 42-year-old QB wanted to stay. Brady neither confirmed nor denied that. He did, however, note that he is “not responsible” for how another person might phrase something.
Tom Brady asked about Robert Kraft saying it was Brady's decision to leave NE: "Again, I am not responsible for how other people will say certain things. Mr. Kraft has been a great influence in my life. I am so thankful for 2 decades. … I am excited for this opportunity."
— Ryan Hannable (@RyanHannable) March 24, 2020
One report claimed the Patriots were willing to offer Brady the same contract he signed with the Bucs, which would indicate Brady was intent on leaving New England from the start.
But on Tuesday, Brady claimed he did not make a final decision until the night before he announced it.
Brady on when he decided, with finality, to leave the Pats: "It was really the night that I had stopped by (Robert Kraft's house). … We spoke and we had a great conversation. I just wanted to express what he's meant to me in my life."
Said he talked to Belichick right after.
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) March 24, 2020
Brady has almost always taken the high road when discussing controversial issues throughout his career, so it’s no surprise he doesn’t want to get into a “he said, she said” with Kraft.
All indications are the split between Brady and the Patriots had been brewing for quite some time.
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Hint: For those who need a refresher, these are the seven teams Tom Brady and the Patriots played in their nine Super Bowls: St. Louis Rams (XXXVI), Carolina Panthers (XXXVIII), Los Angeles Rams (LIII), Philadelphia Eagles (XXXIX & LII), New York Giants (XLII & XLVI), Seattle Seahawks (XLIX) and Atlanta Falcons (LI).