Tom Brady’s suprising departure from the Patriots after 20 stellar seasons has led to much finger-pointing as fans and the media try to figure out exactly why the team and its legendary quarterback couldn’t come to an agreement that would have kept in him New England.
Brady, who was reportedly “embarrassed” by the fact that he was making a lower average salary than 13 other NFL quarterbacks including Jared Goff, Carson Wentz, Matt Ryan, Kirk Cousins, Jacoby Brissett, Jimmy Garoppolo, David Carr, and Alex Smith, will now be receiving a $25 million per year salary from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Another one of the reasons being put forth for why Brady ended up leaving New England is being laid at the feet at Patiots head coach Bill Belichick.
According to Seth Wickersham of ESPN.com…
Brady made it clear that he was playing football until his mid-40s. He preferred to sign a deal to ensure that he retired a Patriot, but if the team refused, he was fine moving on. He wanted clarity. He met with Belichick, and the meeting ended with a “blowup,” a source said. He met with Kraft. He got mixed signals. Team president Jonathan Kraft told NFL Network in January 2018 that Brady had “earned the right” to decide when he wanted to stop playing for the team. On the other hand, that right never came in the form of a contract extension, at least not one Brady felt would last the rest of his career.
Wickersham also cites the 2018 Ian O’Connor book Belichick in which is was stated that Brady wanted a “divorce” from The Hoodie, and the 2018 book Big Game by Mark Leibovich which claimed Brady was tired of Belichick’s “culture.”
Add to that a report that a recent phone conversation between Belichick and Brady did not go well, and that New England reportedly offered Brady less money than he made in 2019 and would only commit to a one-year contract, and the writing was on the wall.
Brady’s time in New England was over.