Where will Tom Brady play in 2020? John Elway weighs in
While coaches, scouts and personnel executives study young NFL hopefuls, there’s an undeniable buzz surrounding a legend of the game, an active player twice the age of many of those prospects.
Where will Tom Brady wind up?
At 42, the New England Patriots star is due to become a free agent next month and could finish his career with the Chargers, Las Vegas Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins or with some other quarterback-needy franchise. Alternatively, he might just re-sign with the Patriots, a franchise he has defined for two decades.
John Elway, president of football operations and general manager of the Denver Broncos, said he would prefer Brady remain in New England. Elway played his entire hall-of-fame career with the Broncos.
“When you think of Tom, Tom’s always going to be a New England Patriot,” Elway said Tuesday. “He’s at that time in his life he still wants to play. It’ll be interesting from him to kind of explore and see what’s out there. I’m sure that’s exciting to him to kind of look around and see what’s available. I’m just glad that he’s thinking about playing again. He’s great for the game and he’s been great for this league.
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Elway said Brady’s biggest challenge with a new team would be leaving an offensive system that’s so familiar to him.
“He’s been with the same guys in the same system from a long, long time,” Elway said. “To change that, to change where he’s practiced, the head coach, the coaches, all those types of things I think having gotten used to where he’s been for so long, I think just the change might be exciting for him, but I think it’s going to be a lot of work.”
Asked if he would be interested in talking to Brady if he hits the open market, Elway said: “We’d always talk to him, but I think that we’re happy with what we have with [second-year quarterback Drew Lock].”
Tampa Bay coach Bruce Arians acknowledged the Buccaneers would be interested in both Brady and Philip Rivers, who parted ways with the Chargers earlier this month, if they’re available.
Others were not so willing to entertain fantasy-football scenarios involving Brady. After all, he’s still under contract with the Patriots, meaning there are tampering rules that govern how much other teams can say.
“I don’t want to speculate,” said Dolphins coach Brian Flores, who had a variety of roles with the Patriots from 2004-18. “That’s what it is right now. A lot of speculation, a lot of smokescreens. I’m worried about our team. That’s where my focus is, where my mind is at all times. How do I help our team get better? How do I help our players, our coaches do better? And I think the combine’s part of that.”
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