TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tom Brady admits too much has happened in the four months since he announced on social media his retirement from the NFL after 22 seasons and seven Super Bowl titles.
The 44-year-old quarterback changed his mind six weeks later, saying he had “unfinished business” and would return to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Later, Brady also accepted a lucrative offer to join Fox as a football analyst after his playing career is over.
But for now, he said he’s just focused on helping the Bucs win another championship.
“It feels like a long time has passed. A lot of things happened between now and then,” Brady said Thursday, dismissing a question about why he had decided to retire in February to reverse his decision in mid-March.
“I felt like I kind of had to move beyond that point, to be honest. But I’m happy to be back with my teammates. It’s going to be a great year,” Brady added at the conclusion of the team’s mandatory three-day minicamp. “We have high expectations of what we are trying to accomplish.”
Brady also discussed his relationship with former coach Bruce Arians, who retired a little more than two weeks after the quarterback announced his return. Likewise, he addressed the future of his old partner and friend Rob Gronkowski.
Instead, he was less willing to discuss whether he had been in talks with the Miami Dolphins about joining the team as a player, co-owner or a mix of the two.
“I insist, I had many conversations with quite a few people, as has happened in the last three or four years of my career. We talked about different opportunities when I’m done playing football. I kind of made up my mind about what I wanted to do, and I’m going back to the sport,” Brady said.
“I think the most important thing for me is where I am now and what I hope to do for this team,” the quarterback added. “That has been my commitment to this team and to this organization. It’s been a lot of fun for me to come here for two years. It’s now two and a half years and this has been an incredible part of my football journey. And it’s not over.”
Brady, meanwhile, insisted he has a good relationship with Arians, denying that he played a role in the 69-year-old coach’s retirement decision.
Todd Bowles, a former New York Jets coach and Bucs defensive coordinator, has been promoted as Arians’ successor.