Tom Brady is reportedly expected to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
ESPN reported the Buccaneers were expected to sign the six-time Super Bowl champion quarterback “barring any unforeseen circumstances” on the same day Brady announced he was leaving the New England Patriots, ending one of the most successful chapters in the history of American sports.
The network characterized the signing as a done deal despite there being no signing date or official announcement scheduled.
Brady will be 43 when the next NFL season begins. He also brings with him six Super Bowl titles, four Super Bowl MVP trophies and three regular-season MVP awards. Simply put, he’s the most successful quarterback in pro football history.
“I don’t know what my football future holds, but it is time for me to open a new stage for my life and my career,” he wrote earlier Tuesday. “Although my football journey will take place elsewhere, I appreciate everything that we have achieved and am grateful for our incredible TEAM experiences.”
Tampa Bay made a pitch to Brady on Monday.
Earlier Tuesday, Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd and Dale Arnold of WEEI in Boston reported Tampa Bay is indeed the destination for the free agent quarterback.
“I have somebody telling me this morning – this is very interesting – this is not a football source. It’s an icon source. It is somebody in Tom’s stratosphere that knows Tom, that is a famous person. And he says Tampa,” Cowherd said on his radio show Tuesday. “That’s what he’s telling me. I am contacting teams. That is what I’m hearing. I’m hearing Tampa Bay.”
Arnold added on Twitter: “From my source: the @Buccaneers will announce their deal with @TomBrady tomorrow. The deal is done.”
The Los Angeles Chargers were considered to be the other team in the running for Brady, who ranks second all-time in passing yards (74,571) and touchdowns (541) behind Drew Brees.
With Brady in the mix for the Buccaneers, former No 1 pick Jameis Winston is free to move on the open market.
Among the teams expected to add a veteran quarterback are the Cincinnati Bengals, Jacksonville Jaguars, Chicago Bears and Chargers.
Tampa Bay’s home ground, Raymond James Stadium, is scheduled to host Super Bowl LV on 7 February 2021.