Tom Brady is now elaborating on his decision to end his retirement in March after a whole 40 days.
During a Q&A with Ernie Johnson on Wednesday night as part of “The Match” golf event, the 44-year-old quarterback said he “felt some pressure” to return with free agency looming, despite announcing in February his decision to step away and focus on responsibilities outside of football.
“At this stage, it’s like 55% yes and 45% no. It’s not 100-0. That’s just the reality. It’s not that I’m not 100% committed, it’s just as soon as I make the commitment to do it, it’s like, ‘Ugh. All right, here we go,’” Brady said, according to ESPN.
“It’s like running a marathon. You can’t decide two weeks before the marathon, ‘Hey, I’m going to start running.’ We got right to free agency and I felt some pressure to do it and talked to the team and organization, and it all worked out.”
Brady is now back with the Buccaneers for his third season, and 23rd overall. Once the decision was made, Brady notified teammates to give them a heads up, including wide receiver Chris Godwin, who inked a three-year, $60 million deal to remain in Tampa Bay.
“At the end of the day, I just love the competition on the field. And last year was a very bitter ending to a season and we’ve got to make a lot of corrections to try to improve and put ourselves in a better position to succeed moving forward,” Brady told ESPN in April.
Though Brady will now have the opportunity to make a run for his eighth Super Bowl title, the quarterback added Wednesday that he was “partly” ready to call it a career after the Buccaneers’ Divisional Round ouster to the now-Super Bowl champion Rams.
“I think when you’re their [Mahomes’ and Allen’s] age, if you were to ask me, ‘Are you going to play football next year?’ I would say there’s a 100% chance I’m playing. And I think as I’ve gotten older, that’s changed because I have other responsibilities,” Brady said of the AFC powerhouses, both of whom are 26.
“So the responsibilities are many people taking care of me and things that I have off the field that are really important to me like my family, my kids; my wife’s done an amazing job of that. That’s a big commitment from her, so it’s harder when you get older. I don’t even think they know what’s coming. Aaron [Rodgers] knows these things because your life gets bigger as we all do, our life gets more full — there’s more responsibilities.”
Brady shares son Benjamin, 12, and daughter Vivian, 9, with wife Gisele Bündchen, whom he has been married to since 2009. He also has a 14-year-old son Jack with his ex, actress Bridget Moynahan.
When the quarterback did decide to return to the NFL earlier this year, both Moynahan, 51, and Bündchen, 41, celebrated the move, the latter of which quipped, “Here we go again!”