Despite meeting with the organization at the start of the offseason to discuss a potential new contract, the Patriots legend instead announced his intentions to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who gave him a lucrative two-year, $50 million deal.
It remains unclear how many suitors Brady had in free agency, but the 43-year-old star undoubtedly kept a list of who passed on the chance to sign him.
Why do we say that? Well…
Brady appeared on an upcoming episode of LeBron James’ HBO show “The Shop: Uninterrupted” to reflect on his first-ever real experience as a free agent.
In the episode’s trailer, Brady, seemingly without hesitation, absolutely flamed an unnamed franchise for sticking with their current starting quarterback over signing him. This begs the question of which player/team the seven-time champ was referring to?
Who did ex-Patriots QB Tom Brady troll while reflecting on his free agency saga?
Brady will most certainly never reveal the identity of this player, but in terms of potential candidates, you can’t help but feel it’s Jimmy Garoppolo and the 49ers.
After all, Brady’s interest in signing with San Francisco (he grew up a 49ers fan) was well-documented, and they opted to keep Garoppolo, who ended up playing just six games last campaign due to a high ankle sprain, and the 49ers finished just 6-10.
While San Francisco’s entire roster was ravaged by injuries, it’s clear their decision to keep Garoppolo — which seemed justified after he led them to a 13-3 regular season record and ultimately the Super Bowl in 2019 — over signing Brady offended the three-time MVP.
That’s understandable given Brady’s unrivaled competitive nature. If you remember, the Patriots drafted Garoppolo in the second round back in 2014 with the intention of him succeeding the aging Brady in due time. You have to think Brady took that personally, so it’s not outlandish to speculate whether he has a private beef with his former teammate.
Now, is it possible Brady wasn’t trolling the 49ers? No doubt. Reports from last offseason listed the Raiders and Chargers as potential destinations, and Derek Carr certainly fits the bill as a QB a team would be insane to keep instead of signing Brady, but Justin Herbert?
Not even close, especially after the rookie season he put together in 2020.
It remains to be seen how long Brady talked about this for, or how much detail he went into regarding it, but Patriots fans would be wise to tune in to this episode whenever it’s released. After all, it’s very possible he reveals more hints that help connect the dots.