Tom Brady was noncommittal Sunday night when asked if he would return for the 2022 NFL season. Following the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ divisional playoff loss against the Los Angeles Rams, the idea that the quarterback might finally retire is at least on the table.

“Truthfully guys, I’m thinking about this game,” Brady told reporters when asked about retirement moments after the 30-27 defeat. “I’m not thinking about anything past five minutes from now.”

Brady, who has one year left on his contract with the Bucs, will consider retiring and ending his illustrious NFL career, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. That doesn’t mean Brady won’t come back for a 23rd season, but it appears to be more of a possibility than ever before.

“I haven’t put a lot of thought into it,” Brady emphasized in his post-game press conference. “So you know, we will just take it day by day and kind of see where we are at.”

 

 

Brady appeared to have pulled off another unlikely comeback Sunday, erasing a 27-3 deficit to tie it late before the Rams booted a walk-off field goal. Brady completed 30 of 54 passes for 329 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He was sacked three times, lost a fumble and received the first unsportsmanlike conduct penalty of his career for arguing a non-call.

Brady has not yet told Tampa Bay that he will be back next season, Rapoport reports. Brady is expected to take some time and consider moving away from football and focus on other ventures outside of the NFL.

On-field performance is not an issue for Brady. The 44-year-old will likely be the runner-up for the NFL MVP award. Brady led all quarterbacks with 485 completions, 5,316 passing yards and 43 touchdowns. Brady’s completion rate of 67.5% was his best in 14 years.

Brady can still compete for a championship with the Buccaneers, who are one year removed from winning the Super Bowl. Tampa Bay tied the Green Bay Packers for the NFL’s best record in the regular season. 

There isn’t much more for Brady left to accomplish in the NFL. He’s widely regarded as the greatest quarterback of all time. Brady’s seven Super Bowl titles and five Super Bowl MVP awards are records that could stand for many, many years to come.

Bucs head coach Bruce Arians doesn’t expect Brady to retire. There’s been speculation that the quarterback might try to play until he’s 50 years old. Given Brady’s competitiveness and continued greatness, it’s easy to see him competing for championships for several more seasons.

Tom Brady was non-committal about his future after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' playoff exit on Sunday Tom Brady was non-committal about his future after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' playoff exit on Sunday Photo: GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA via AFP / Mike Ehrmann