Tom Brady has not only beaten Father Time, but it's a blowout. The seven-time Super Bowl champion has surpassed what were the perceived limits of how long a person can play quarterback in the NFL and done so by maintaining his legendary level of play. Just last season, he was able to win his latest Super Bowl title (first with the Buccaneers) while throwing for more than 4,600 yards and 40 touchdowns at age 43. Prior to Brady, that was simply unheard of.
Given his unprecedented success, it naturally gets the mind wondering just how far Brady could push things. He's long noted that his 45-year-old season will be a major mile-marker to check back in on where he's feeling and could very well be when he elects to hang up his helmet. But the Buccaneers -- as you would expect following their first taste of a Super Bowl run with the quarterback last year -- are open to him extending that window far beyond that.
"I told him, if he wants to play until he's 50, and he feels like he can still play, he can play until he's 50," Buccaneers GM Jason Licht told the "Rich Eisen Show" back in May when speaking of Brady.
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While the Tampa Bay brass certainly would like to see Brady play for the organization for as long as possible, Brady doesn't know if playing until the big 5-0 is in the cards.
"Fifty? That's a long time. Even for me, that's a long time," Brady told USA TODAY Sports. "I've always said 45 was the age that I wanted to reach and that was my goal. This year I'll be 44, so next year I'll be 45. I got a two-year contract.
"I'm going to be able to obviously play this year and God forbid anything happens but play next year and then see what happens after that. If I still want to keep playing, I might be able to do that. And if that's enough, then that would be enough."
Brady, who turns 44 prior to the start of the 2021 season, signed an extension that links him to the Buccaneers through the 2022 season. At the end of that campaign, Brady will have played through age 45, so it could be the clean break where he hits his playing goal right on the nose.
"I'll just have to evaluate all that when it comes," Brady said. "It's a physical sport; anything could happen. So I'm going to go out there this year and give everything I've got like I've done every other year, and then take it from there."
While the jury is still out as to how much longer we'll see Brady on an NFL field, he will be suiting up for the Buccaneers in 2021 and looking to become the first team since his 2003-04 New England Patriots to repeat as Super Bowl champions.