Tom Brady Leaving Patriots Compared to Kobe Bryant’s Near-Departure

LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 28: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers attempts to block the shot of Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center on December 28, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers won 104-87. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Tom Brady made history this week when he left the New England Patriots and signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

“Man that shocked me,” NFL Network’s Nate Burleson told me on the Scoop B Radio Podcast.

“It totally did. I did not think that Tom Brady would end up leaving the Patriots. I just thought that his legacy being so strong in Boston, the system that he was playing in, the coaches that he was playing with – you know Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels… it would be a cold day in H-E-double hockey sticks before Tom Brady left to play somewhere else.” Burleson said.

“And maybe I’m just scorned about [Michael] Jordan playing with the Wizards because if you’re a legend playing 15, 16, 17 years somewhere, just retire that jersey. Because even if you have bad years, the team that has cheered for you so long, they’re gonna give you that respect. They’re not going to ‘Old Yeller’ you. They’re not going to take the dog out back; they’re going to allow you bow out gracefully.”

Magnitude of Tom Brady’s Patriots Departure

Burleson proceeded to talk about what it’s like to see a star of Brady’s magnitude change teams after such an incredible run with one franchise.

“When you’re an OG and you change jerseys, and that expectation is so high… man, those Buccaneers fans – if Tom starts throwing picks, or things aren’t going well, man they’re going to be vicious. So I hope that he finds success. Because if he does, I think it’s the boldest free-agent move in sports history.” Burleson continued.

“At this age, him going out there – and if he takes them to the playoffs, let alone win a Super Bowl?…I’ll tell you what man. That would be the ultimate pat on the back because people have always said that he was the greatest quarterback of all time, but people always question whether another quarterback could have played in that system [in New England]. He’s the greatest system player of all time along with being the GOAT.”

A 14-time NFL Pro Bowler, Brady won six Super Bowl rings with the Patriots.

Rodgers vs. Brady Round 3

GettyTom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots talks with Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers after the Patriots defeated the Packers 31-17 at Gillette Stadium on November 4, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts.

Seeing Brady leave after only playing with one NFL team could be confusing to some.

Michael Jordan spent much of his time with the Chicago Bulls and later joined the Washington Wizards.

Keeping it football: Joe Montana left the San Francisco 49ers and later joined the Kansas City Chiefs?

Then there’s Brett Favre leaving the Green Bay Packers and joining the New York Jets and the Minnesota Vikings.

Brady’s Departure Would Have Been Like Kobe Bryant Leaving Lakers?

Where does Brady leaving the Pats and joining the Bucs likely compare to?

That’s a tough question,” Nate Burleson told Scoop B Radio.

“I would say Favre going to the Jets because you didn’t necessarily think that the Jets were contenders. And then when Favre showed up – okay, now we’re for real. I would also throw in Peyton Manning to the Broncos. The only difference is, there was a succession plan that the Colts had in Andrew Luck and the Broncos had a tremendous defense which is why he ended up winning the Super Bowl the year after he got there and that was at the very end of his career. So I would say it’s more Favre to the Jets, but you know this a story that we’ve seen time and time again,” said Burleson.

“It just doesn’t happen when you’re the greatest player of all time; like it would’ve been like Kobe Bryant (R.I.P to the legend) leaving the Lakers. And remember there were rumors like, Kobe Bryant – he’s unhappy, he wants more talent around him, he’s explored options of playing elsewhere…and I honestly believed that Kobe actually thought about it. And if he would’ve gone somewhere else – you know, let’s say Kobe Bryant went to somewhere like … I don’t know man – the Clippers [in 2004] at that time you know what I’m saying? But I would say somebody even worse though…because the Clippers have always had talent.”

READ NEXT: Magic Johnson Details Truth Behind Michael Jordan’s Infamous Shrug