Tom Brady spoke to the media Friday for the first time this season, telling assembled reporters that he doesn’t want his contract situation to be a distraction and he would like to play another 10 seasons, preferably finishing his career with the Patriots.
A very business-like Brady had a lot more to say, though, specifically that how he feels personally about his contract situation — and how it plays into the current labor deal negotiations — won’t be for public consumption.
“My personal feelings are my personal feelings,” Brady explained. “I don’t want to express them with anyone except for a very few people. It doesn’t do any good. It really doesn’t. It doesn’t help this team. It doesn’t help the organization. It just really gets in the way.
“Everyone’s situation is different. I’m only commenting on my situation. Everyone’s got a different situation, a different approach, and they have to do what works for them. There’s a lot of guys who are restricted free agents based on the CBA this year. It’s just very different for different guys. I’ve got to do what’s comfortable for me. I’ve always tried to do that.”
I have to agree with Tom Curran of Comcast Sports Net that Brady’s comments, and what he didn’t say about his contract, were in stark contrast to the optimism showed by Patriots owner Bob Kraft in his comments to The New York Times. Brady had every opportunity to say everything was great. He didn’t. He didn’t on purpose.
Brady, who’s also the Patriots’ alternate player representative, has taken more opportunities to be a vocal leader, as he did when calling out teammates last season. He grew up in the game with some very strong locker-room veterans (Willie McGinest, Mike Vrabel, Tedy Bruschi among them) and didn’t hesitate to take exception to the question that expectations are down for the Patriots this season — a message to his teammates.
“I don’t give a damn, really. I don’t care what you guys think,” Brady said. “I know what we think and what we think we can accomplish. What my dad thinks, I don’t really care about. What my mom thinks, I don’t care about, because they don’t know. The only guys who can do anything about it are the guys on this practice field. It feels pretty good to me what we are doing, what I see out here. We just have to continue to put the work in.”
Brady is calculated, and I firmly believe everything he says, he says for a reason.