Oprah can get anybody to open up. Even, Tom Brady.
The media mogul sat down with the New England Patriots quarterback for an episode of “SuperSoul Sunday” yesterday. During the interview, Oprah and Brady discussed a wide-range of topics.
But it was the topic of retirement that seems to have everyone’s attention.
Brady, who’s been vocal about playing well into his 40s, hinted that maybe he wouldn’t play as long as he led on to in the past.
When asked by Oprah if he’s “thought about what happens after football”, Brady seemed calm and comfortable when he replied, “I think about it more now than I used to. I think I’m seeing there’s definitely an end coming, sooner rather than later.”
When asked if the end was at near the age of 43 or 45, Brady replies, “As long as I’m still loving it. As long as I’m loving the training and preparation, and willing to make the commitment. But it’s also, I think what I’ve alluded to a lot in the docuseries was there’s other things happening in my life, too. I do have kids that I love, and I don’t want to be a dad that’s not there driving my kids to their games.”
It’s been a rough few years for the quarterback, so it should come as no surprise that he might be thinking of moving on. He’s been in the headlines for things that he’d rather not. Everything from Deflategate to his offseason training regime and diet. With his place already cemented in the Hall of Fame, Brady really has nothing else to prove and could walk away from the game under his own terms, at the peak of his ability and in great health.
Brady, who’s 41 and has expressed that he’d like to play until he’s 45, appears to be thinking more now about family and life after football now than he has in the past.
Despite the self-reflection, Brady isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. He still has one record within reach.
Brady looks to become just the fourth quarterback in the history of the NFL to start at least 10 games after the age of 41. He’s played at least 12 games or more since the 2009 season, with him missing four games in 2016 due to the Deflategate scandal. The only other quarterbacks to do this are Brett Favre, Vinny Testaverde and Warren Moon, who’s accomplished the feat twice. However, none of the three made the playoffs during those seasons.
Coming off a season where Patriots made yet another appearance in the Super Bowl before falling to the Philadelphia Eagles, Brady should be able to join that list if he stays healthy. Last year, Brady finished with a 102.8 QBR, 32 touchdowns and 4,577 yards while completing nearly 67 percent of his passes.
Hardly the signs of somebody slowing down.