Tom Brady will be a free agent in 2020 after the New England Patriots’ playoff run ends. It may be hard to picture Brady wearing anything other than a Patriots uniform, but the quarterback has been purposefully vague about where he will end up after the season.
If Brady opts to begin a new chapter, the Chargers and Colts are two teams that have been mentioned as a possible fit for the quarterback. Brady dismissed the idea that he was considering anything other than the playoffs prior to the Patriots’ Wild Card matchup with the Titans.
“I’m not much for nostalgia,” Brady noted to ESPN. “I’m just pretty focused on what I need to do. This week has felt pretty much like every other week for the last 20 years…I haven’t thought about those things. I wouldn’t be thinking about those things anyway. It’s felt like a normal week for me. I just approach practice like I always have, and try to do the best I can do. That’s what I’m going to do this weekend as well.”
The Chargers Could Pursue Brady This Offseason
Philip Rivers’ future with the Chargers is unclear, but the team could try to bring Brady back to his home state this offseason. Several NFL analysts have mentioned the Chargers as a potential destination for Brady if he decides not to re-sign with the Patriots. NBC Sports’ Peter King did not rule out the idea but sees the Chargers as more of a longshot.
The Chargers could try to talk Tom Brady, also scheduled to be free in March, into coming west. I’m skeptical of this too, but this will be the first time Brady’s ever been unsigned and ineligible to be franchised entering an offseason, and he might want to see what life is like outside Belichickland.
Could the Colts Once Again Turn to a Veteran Quarterback?
Colts GM Chris Ballard did not exactly offer a ringing endorsement of Jacoby Brissett after the regular season ended. Ballard admitted that the “jury is still out” on whether Brissett is the long-term answer for the Colts at quarterback.
“The jury is still out,” Ballard said, per Sports Illustrated. “That’s why we did the short-term deal with Jacoby. One, to give us some security that we had a player we knew we liked and could go forward with. But also, two, to give us time to figure out if he is the guy or not. Jacoby did a lot of good things. He also did some things that I think he would tell you he needs to get better at. But it’s a constant evaluation.”
Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd believes the Colts could have the right supporting cast for Brady.
“Think of what they have for Tom Brady,” Cowherd noted, per NESN.com. “When Peyton Manning was a free agent and he was old and he’d been banged up, where did he go? To a team that had weapons and an offensive line and a structure he trusted. What do the Colts have? Maybe the best young general manager in the sport, Chris Ballard. What do they also have? A really good head coach — respected, played in the league. What do they also have? A top-three offensive line…A deep threat, T.Y. Hilton…The Colts. And what do they also have? A team that would drive (Bill) Belichick nuts. Everything is lined up.”
Not only will Brady be a free agent, but the Patriots will not be able to franchise tag the quarterback based on the language in his current deal. This gives Brady ultimate control of his next destination for the first time in his NFL career.
If Brady does test the market, every quarterback-needy team is likely to have an interest in signing one of the greatest players in NFL history. Perhaps Brady will end up back with the Patriots, but everything is on the table once the Patriots’ season ends.