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Buccaneers’ Tom Brady gets candid on HBO’s ‘The Shop’

Talking free-agency, game preparation, and mental challenges facing young athletes

Los Angeles Rams v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

When Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady speaks, people listen. Doesn’t really matter the venue either.

Whether it’s an Instagram post, a tweet, an interview, or an appearance on HBO’s ‘The Shop’, people don’t hesitate to consume any morsel of knowledge they gain gather from the legends of their fields.

So when Brady sat down on HBO’s uncensored and unfiltered ‘The Shop’, everyone paused to pay attention.

And it was worth it. We knew before Brady was going to comment about a team that passed on him during the free-agent process. While Brady didn’t out the team or quarterback he was referring to, he did say,

“Looking back, I’m thinking ‘There’s no f—-ing way I would’ve gone to that team. They said they didn’t want me! I know what that means! I know what that feels like! And I’m going to f—- you up because of that.”

Speculation about which team he is referring to in this comment has run rampant, and I’ve ventured the guess he was talking about the Los Angeles Rams and then quarterback, Jared Goff.

Of course, since then, that team has traded Goff to the Detroit Lions in exchange for quarterback Matthew Stafford. But if the franchise decided not to pursue Brady in favor of giving Goff one more year to prove he could be the franchise leader, this reaction could certainly be one Brady would have.

NFL: NOV 08 Saints at Buccaneers Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

My Locked On Bucs co-host James Yarcho speculated the comment to be about the San Francisco 49ers and Jimmy Garoppolo or even the Tennessee Titans and Ryan Tannehill.

We’ll likely find out sometime after Brady is retired who he is really talking about, but for now, all we can do is speculate.

Of course, there have been reports about how close the New Orleans Saints were to securing Brady’s services and ushering Drew Brees into early retirement. However, after Brees came back, the quarterback’s path to Tampa was clear and the path to history had begun.

If the Saints decided to pursue Brees’ return instead of moving on to Brady, signing with the Bucs would certainly open the door to ‘(messing) them up’ as he put it.

And mess up New Orleans’ dreams of sending Brees stage left with a Super Bowl win, as Brady and the Buccaneers unceremoniously ended their season, in their home stadium. Leaving Cam Jordan to hang two regular-season wins on his mantle like a sad participation trophy.

Brady also spoke about challenges in winning championships - which may surprise some to hear him call it difficult - and his approach when it comes to talking about opposing teams and their players.

He also touched on mental health, and specifically the recent commentary surrounding tennis star Naomi Osaka and her refusal to speak to media. In a statement, Osaka said earlier this year,

“I’ve often felt that people have no regard for athletes mental health and this rings very true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one.” Osaka continued in her statement, saying, “Me not doing press is nothing personal to the tournament and a couple journalists have interviewed me since I was young so I have a friendly relationship with most of them. However, if the organizations think that they can just keep saying, “do press or you’re gonna be fined”, and continue to ignore the mental health of athletes that are the centerpiece of their cooperation then I just gotta laugh.”

Speaking about Osaka’s stand and the surrounding conversation, Brady said,

“Now as someone that’s twice her age, you have compassion and empathy for that. You hope that she can deal with that because you wouldn’t want that to take away from her true joy of playing tennis.”

Much more was said by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ quarterback so if you haven’t caught the full episode, I recommend you do. There are some good clips and quotes on Twitter though, as well, collected by Dov Kleiman.