Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Tom Brady offers rare public praise of Bill Belichick; Patriots coach to play role in his broadcast future

Tom Brady has publicly praised Bill Belichick before, but seldom has Brady offered it himself without the prodding of questions from the media. The same can be said of Belichick, whose reluctance to praise individual players is well documented. 

Brady did go out of his way to sing Belichick’s praises this week while crediting his former coach for helping to inadvertently inspire his motivation to get into broadcasting. Brady, in case you haven’t heard, is slated to begin his broadcasting career whenever he decides to hang up his cleats for good. 

“I love football and I care a lot about football, too. I’m always going to be involved in it one way or the other,” Brady said during a roundtable interview with TNT’s Ernie Johnson that aired after “The Match” golf event. “I was thinking about the opportunity to travel around and see these guys on different Friday afternoons and watching them practice and saying, ‘Hey, here’s a couple of things that worked for me.’ 

“[Talking to] different coaches. I was around the most amazing coach, in Coach Belichick, the most amazing coaches over a period of time. I played with Hall of Famers, Randy Moss to Ty Law to Richard Seymour. I feel like I have a lot of knowledge.”

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Brady likely won’t get into the minutia of Belichick’s defensive game plans in future meetings with teams as a broadcaster. He will, however, likely share aspects of Belichick’s coaching philosophy and the overall environment he fostered that allowed the Patriots to win six Super Bowls during Brady’s time in Foxborough. While it isn’t for everyone, Belichick’s coaching style helped bring out the best in Brady, the most accomplished player in league history who is still going strong at age 44. 

Not every union is built to last forever, and despite their success together, Brady and Belichick parted ways in 2020 after 20 seasons together. It’s been documented that the split was mutual. Belichick wanted to start over with a young quarterback; Brady was looking for a fresh experience that would allow him to be more of the leader he aspires to be at this point in his life and career. 

While there may have been hard feelings at first, it’s clear both parties have moved on while appreciating what the other has done for their career. Along with Brady’s recent comments on TNT, Belichick called Brady “the best player in NFL history” following Brady’s brief retirement earlier this offseason. Given Brady’s peerless achievements and longevity, it’s hard for to find anyone who would argue with Belichick, who has his own argument as the greatest coach in league annals. 

Along with sharing Belichick’s wisdom, Brady is also looking forward to giving back to a sport that has given him wealth, fame, and enough accolades to rival any trophy case. 

“How do you give back to a sport that’s given so much to me?” Brady said. “I think that I have a lot of education around it, and I’m excited, when that time comes, to fully focus on that and give back to the game in a way that so many people have supported me and taught me things. I think part of the enjoyment and the entertainment of it will be giving back to [the next generation of players] and seeing these guys maximize their opportunity as well.” 

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