Just hours away from opening day of NFL free agency on March 18, Tom Brady’s destination is still largely an unknown – but the picture is coming into focus. Both the Tennessee Titans and Denver Broncos have been ruled out of contention for the New England Patriots‘ 42-year-old quarterback in the past two days, while a handful of teams remain in the mix.
According to multiple reports from around the league, including NFL Network reporter Michael Giardi, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have established themselves as a legitimate suitor for Brady’s services.
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According to Brady’s social media accounts on early Tuesday morning, he will continue his football journey elsewhere this season, and possibly beyond.
With the Patriots firmly out the running to re-sign the six-time Super Bowl champion, who will now hit the open market for the first time in his 20-year career, the Buccaneers and Los Angeles Chargers have a legitimate shot to land the superstar. Both franchises have reportedly made offers in excess of $30 million annually, per NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport.
Bucs Looking at Free Agent QB Options Behind “Door No. 2”
With the future of impending free agent QB Jameis Winston uncertain to continue in Tampa Bay, the team is reportedly exploring its options at the quarterback position, including an unprecedented free agent class highlighted by veterans such as Brady, Philip Rivers and Teddy Bridgewater.
In February, Buccaneers Head Coach Bruce Arians brought up this exact point in an interview with NFL Network.
“That’s the thing, you’ve never seen a quarterback market with like Tom Brady and Drew Brees and Philip Rivers and all these guys that are potentially going to be out there,” Arians told NFL Network, per Yahoo Sports. “You don’t know what trades might happen. You don’t know who is behind door No. 2 yet, then you can make a decision.”
Echoing the comments of his head coach, Bucs General Manager Jason Licht confirmed that the team is doing its due diligence before committing to a longer-term decision.
“We’re not saying we don’t want Jameis,” said Licht. “We just want to see what’s behind door number two. We just want to gather all of our information.”
Whether Tampa Bay’s bid ultimately falls on deaf ears in the Brady camp, the organization has already made a few key moves to bolster their defense, including franchise tagging the NFL’s sack leader, OLB Shaq Barrett, and preparing to re-sign DE/OLB Jason Pierre-Paul.
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