Lately, there has been speculation and uncertainty in the New England Patriots organization about the future of Tom Brady‘s NFL career.
On Monday, Don Yee, Brady’s agent, more than likely squashed any doubt, telling ESPN’s Adam Schefter that he expects the 40-year-old quarterback, who will be 41 in August, to suit up and play for the Patriots in 2018. This comes after ESPN reported last week that Brady had not committed to playing in 2018 yet, but many people expected him back regardless.
“Tom’s intentions have not changed,” Yee said. “He’s consistently said he’ll play beyond this contract and into his mid-40s, or until he feels he isn’t playing at a championship level. I understand the constant speculation, but this is one point he’s been firm about.”
2018 will mark Brady’s 18th season in the NFL, all of which have came as a member of the Patriots. He is coming off a 2017 season where he was named the NFL’s MVP for the third time, and the Patriots traded away young quarterbacks in Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett in what was perhaps a vote of confidence by Patriots head coach/general manager Bill Belichick regarding Brady’s longevity.
Belichick knows just like the average fan knows that a succession plan is needed behind Brady. With the NFL Draft coming up this week, the team has been reportedly interested in Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, and with New England behind armed with two first-round picks thanks to the Brandin Cooks trade with the Los Angeles Rams, many believe the Patriots will be able to move their way up to draft Jackson if they so wish to do so.
As Yee mentioned, Brady’s goal remains to also play beyond 2018, and it’s been heavily noted the type of training Brady does to keep himself playing at an elite level at an age that most NFL players won’t ever see during their time in the league. Brady is currently signed through 2019 and will make $14 million in 2018 and 2019 before he is scheduled to become a free agent. Of course, if Brady still wants to play and the Patriots still want him, Brady will never hit the open market.
Brady threw for 4,577 yards and 32 touchdowns in all 16 regular season games last season. He also completed a 66.3% completion rate, and a quarterback rating of 102.8. He and New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees will enter the 2018 season 52 touchdown passes away from becoming the NFL’s all-time passing touchdowns leader. Peyton Manning is the current leader with 539.