After weeks of retirement, Brady is back

by Gary Shelton on March 14, 2022

in general

Brady got tired of sitting on the porch./TIM WIRT

Monday, 4 a.m.

Evidently, there are only so many hours a man can spend whittling.

There are only so many Early Bird specials that a guy can digest. Only so many sessions he can spend sitting around the fireplace and talking about the old days. Only so many afternoons you can spend at the fishing hole.

Yeah, retirement sure was tough on Tom Brady.

All six weeks of it.

And if you haven't heard, he's baaa-aaack.

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Brady breathed life into the Tampa Bay Bucs Sunday -- again. He stopped all the silly guessing game. He re-embraced Tampa Bay, despite those lingering rumors about San Francisco. He saved the franchise three or so No. 1 draft picks they might have traded for Deshaun Watson, who will have to get his massages elsewhere. He suggested that, no matter what you've heard, that he and Bruce Arians were not at the breaking point. He made Jason Licht's job easier as far as bringing back free agents (such as Ryan Jensen, who re-signed Sunday).

All of that happened when Brady un-retired on Sunday, ending one of the most vexing six week stretches in memory.

Blaine Gabbert was going to be the quarterback. Brady had soured on Arians. Kyle Trask was going to be the quarterback. Brady wanted to play for the 49ers. Brady has slammed the door. Brady was coming back. Brady wanted to spend time with his family. Jameis Winston was going to be the quarterback. And so on.

For six weeks, during which the Bucs didn't practice, didn't play and didn't do much except talk about Brady, things were kind of dark around here. There was a lot of speculation about who the next quarterback might be -- and agreement that whoever it was, he wouldn't be as good as Brady.

Granted, we might be right back here in a year. But the NFL is a year-to-year sport. It was becoming more and more evident that the Bucs weren't going to go far in the playoffs this year without trading away a hunk of its future. Yes, there are still holes on the roster, but don't you like the Bucs' chances better with Brady than without him?

Will we ever know how much teeth there were to this rumor or that one? Probably not. There has rarely been an athlete who generates as much speculation as Brady.

The good news is, for a while longer, it will be generated from Tampa Bay.

Still, we are all the Brady Bunch.

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