FOXBORO, Mass. — Tom Brady revealed Wednesday he's had four surgeries in the last eight years, including a major left knee reconstruction, so he candidly admitted something that few in his position rarely open up about.
It is about the money.
"I hate when athletes say it's not about the money," Brady said. "It's our job. You love playing the game, and that’s why you do it. We're fortunate to get paid for something that we love. If we weren’t getting paid, we'd probably all have to find something else to do, but there's no better job in the world that I would rather have than to do what I'm doing. I think that’s why I want to do it for a long time.
"Everything else, for me in my life, really pales in comparison to how much I enjoy this," he went on to say. "In that sense, it's about winning games. That’s what we're here for. We're expected to go out and win games. I think that’s the real motivation for all of us. That’s definitely No. 1 on all of our lists."
Brady, who is in the final season of a six-year deal, said he's undergone surgery on his shoulder, knee and groin but did not specify the fourth procedure. Reports indicate Brady and the Patriots are very close to reaching an extension, which could be in place prior to Sunday's season opener against the Bengals.
Brady wouldn’t specifically discuss anything about the contract extension that may or may not be pending, indicating that he no longer assumes anything in life. It sounds like the 2008 knee injury has impacted the way he goes about his business.
"You count your blessings when you come off the field," Brady said. "I think you have a new appreciation when you do come off the field, win or lose. You're trying to win every time out, obviously. But I think you also pinch yourself every time you walk off the field healthy and say, 'Man, at least I get a chance to go out next week and play also.'"
Brady said he "didn’t know" if he would have a deal in place before his current contract runs out after this season. Yet, judging from his comments, it sounded like he'd prefer to have something in place sooner than later.
"I’m blessed to play here, and I love playing here," Brady said. "I think we’re all fortunate to play for a team that’s committed to winning. If that’s the goal for all of us, if you want to win, you really appreciate where you’re at."