Tom Brady could return to NFL to play at Miami, report says
In a sports saga of seemingly endless twists and turns, the NFL rumor mill is churning amid speculation that legendary quarterback Tom Brady, 45, might return to the gridiron once more, despite announcing his retirement on two separate occasions and insisting that his latest departure was permanent, as the Daily Mail reports.
Specifically, former league quarterback Scott Zolak, himself a radio broadcaster for the New England Patriots, has gone on record saying he is unconvinced by Brady's insistence that he has no interest in another comeback and is giving credence to growing scuttlebutt about the athlete's future plans.
Combine yields rumors
As the New York Post reported on Monday, NFL Network anchor Rich Eisen set tongues wagging when he recounted rumors he claims were circulating at the recent league Scouting Combine, with a particularly juicy one centering around Brady.
“This one just blew my mind: Tom Brady might not be done after all,” Eisen teased.
The anchor continued, “A couple of people were just like, 'Hang on, just you wait.' And I was like, 'He's Instagramming out pictures of his cat,'” referencing recent photos of Brady's newly-adopted feline friends.
“But it doesn't look like he's getting big and fat, does it?” Eisen observed. “Let it play out. Let's see who wants what.”
Going into slightly more detail about what might materialize with regard to Brady, Eisen said, “The one place that folks are saying to keep an eye out for is Miami.”
“Even if the Dolphins, somehow or some way get a doctor's report or piece of information from a medical evaluation of Tua [Tagovailoa] that he may not be ready to to go, and suddenly there's Tom Brady sitting in Florida, where his family is located and where he can easily locate himself,” Eisen noted.
The commentator concluded cryptically, “Keep an eye out on that. I was told by a couple birdies at the Combine.”
Zolak, for his part, appears to concur, saying on NBC Sports Boston that the Miami option is indeed a real thing and adding, “I think that's in play. I do. I think the possibility of him coming out of retirement is definitely 100 percent in play,” as the Mail noted.
Cowherd chimes in
Amid all of the aforementioned chatter about Brady's possible return to football, FS1 host Colin Cowherd could not resist getting into the fray, weighing in on Eisen's takeaway from the Combine, as the New York Post noted separately.
Referencing the staggering $375 million, 10-year deal Brady signed with Fox Sports to work as a play-by-play commentator following his retirement, Cowherd said, “Somebody I trust outside of this building told me a couple of weeks ago, 'I don't think Tom Brady's gonna be a broadcaster any time soon. I think he wants to play.'”
Suggesting that the 49ers franchise might be among those interested in securing the quarterback's services, Cowherd added, “Brady can still sling it. He's not as good as he was, but remember, the San Francisco offense is built. Are you smart? Can you deliver the ball accurately? Can we pay you a good salary but not break the bank if we want to keep these weapons?”
Adding to the ambiguity, Cowherd recalled a chat he had with Brady on his program last month, noting that the quarterback had difficulty giving a straight answer when asked whether this time, his retirement would stick. “People that day told me, 'I loved the Brady interview, but he kind of gave you a fuzzy answer on the retiring thing.' I went back and watched it and thought, 'Yeah, it was kind of fuzzy.'”
Brady says no...so far
For his part, Brady seems to be brushing off the rumors swirling around him at present, recently suggesting that he was too busy with the demands of domestic life and pet ownership to consider a return to the game.
“Anyone who thinks I have time to come back to the NFL has never adopted a 2-month-old kitten for their daughter,” Brady joked, according to the Mail.
Indeed, since the end of the last football season and since his divorce from supermodel Gisele Bundchen was finalized in October 2022, Brady has been seen spending much of his time in the company of his three children, two of whom he shares with his ex-wife.
Despite Brady's declaration in an emotional February video that this time, his retirement really was “for good,” football fans will be forgiven for taking his words with a big grain of salt, given that his prior attempt to exit the game lasted all of 40 days. Whether there is any truth to the latest industry buzz about the seven-time Super Bowl winner, however, only time will tell.