Tampa Bay Buccaneers players believe Tom Brady could retire from NFL

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers players feel Tom Brady is done with the franchise as he prepares to enter free agency for the second time in his illustrious NFL career. Brady is reportedly weighing up his options as he could either return to the iconic franchise, join a new team or retire from the NFL entirely. 

On Monday night, Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers were comprehensively defeated 31-14 by the Dallas Cowboys to end the iconic quarterback’s 23rd NFL season. Brady doffed his cap to the fans and kissed his parents before disappearing down the Raymond James Stadium tunnel, suggesting his time in Florida is over.

After one of the toughest seasons of his storied career, Brady will not rush into making any decisions over his future. He famously retired last offseason only to reverse his decision 40 days later, and the 45-year-old will surely not make the same mistake again.

However, several of his Buccaneers teammates believe he is set to leave the franchise after three years, three trips to the postseason and a Super Bowl LV triumph. According to NFL insider Ian Rapoport, Brady’s former teammates believe the quarterback is done with the franchise, with one saying: “I’d be surprised if he’s back.”

Another reportedly commented: “He sounded like a person saying goodbye for good.”

After the Cowboys crushed the Buccaneers, there was a palpable sense of finality in Brady’s post-match press conference but this could be due to the imminent end of his three-year stay in Tampa as his contract is set to expire this offseason. Brady noted his love for the organisation and how grateful he was the respect he received throughout his tenure in Florida, adding: “I just want to say thank you guys for everything this year.”

Speculation has been rife regarding what Brady could do in 2023, with retirement mooted along with finding a new team. The 45-year-old has been linked with a sensational return to the New England Patriots, the franchise where he won six Super Bowls, as well as move to the Las Vegas Raiders. 

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The Tennessee Titans and San Francisco 49ers could also be in the mix for Brady’s signature this offseason. Brady is a boyhood fan of the 49ers as he hails from the Bay Area, but they could opt to continue rolling with seventh-round rookie quarterback Brock Purdy.

Earlier this week, the Buccaneers fired offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich following the disappointing season in which the Tampa Bay offence stagnated. Brady’s overall frustration with the unit and its struggles were clear, although the Bucs also had a woeful offensive line in a season to forget.

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