It's been nearly five months since Tom Brady made the decision to leave New England, and in that time, there have been a lot of theories about why Brady decided to ditch the Patriots after 20 years with the team, but there haven't been any concrete answers. Brady has been asked multiple times about why he left, but he still hasn't given a clear reason.
Although Brady hasn't been very forthcoming publicly with details surrounding his exit, he did apparently share one big reason about why he wanted out of New England during a conversation with Joe Montana at Super Bowl LIV. Both quarterbacks were in Miami for the game to help the NFL celebrate its 100th anniversary, and at some point during the week, Brady had a chat with his childhood hero.
"I spoke to Tom while we were back at the Super Bowl," Montana said this week on "The Jake Asman Show" in Houston. "I don't think he was happy with the way things were progressing there, and his ability to have input, and I think that was a big decision for him to make, to leave there."
Specifically speaking, Brady apparently wasn't happy with the fact that the Patriots would ask for his offensive input, but then totally ignore it, which led to a "beef" between the two sides.
"I think that was one of his beefs up there," Montana told USA Today Sports. "He told me that, 'They'd ask my advice, I tell them, and then they don't take it.' I think he would like a little bit of the input and I think they'll probably let him have that [in Tampa Bay], especially with the success that he's had."
Montana's story is interesting, if only because it gives us a rare look into Brady's private mindset. Remember, the conversation between the two men happened in early February, which means it came roughly six weeks before Brady ended up announcing that he wouldn't be returning to the Patriots (that announcement came on March 17). Based on his conversation with Montana, it sounds like Brady's mind was mostly made up about leaving before Super Bowl LIV even kicked off on Feb. 2.
If this is one of the reasons why Brady decided to leave, it actually makes a lot of sense and it also meshes well with a lot of other speculation out there. One report from ESPN back in March said that Brady left because he was tired of dealing with Bill Belichick after 20 years. Another report -- from NBC Sports Boston -- suggested Brady left because he didn't feel wanted and that he didn't feel like the Patriots were in it for the long haul, which is something the quarterback hinted at in an article that he wrote for the Player's Tribune. It's also believed that Brady was getting frustrated with the fact that the Patriots weren't adding any playmakers on offense even though he was giving them the financial room to make a few moves by signing below-market deals.
If Brady was dealing with all of those things, it's easy to think he might have been able to look past it if he had more control of the offense, but according to Montana, the Patriots weren't giving him that control.
In the end, Brady left because Brady wanted to leave, which is something Patriots owner Robert Kraft made clear in March.
"If he wanted to be here, we would have put a deal together," Robert Kraft told The Boston Globe in March.
And now, thanks to Joe Montana, we actually have some insight into why Brady wanted out of New England after 20 years and six Super Bowl wins.