Tom Brady has played 17 NFL seasons. He’s appeared in 237 regular-season games — more than all but five quarterbacks in league history — plus another 34 in the playoffs. He’s been around for a long, long time.
And he’s not planning on hanging up his cleats anytime soon.
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft relayed Monday that Brady recently told him he would “be willing to play six, seven more years.” (For those who are unaware, Brady will turn 40 in August and is the oldest non-kicker in the NFL.)
“I think Tommy’s sustained excellence is just unbelievable,” Kraft told reporters at the NFL Annual Meeting. “It’s a lifestyle. He’s in training now. It’s not like he stopped. He works out. I remember after our first Super Bowl, going down in the training room at the old Foxboro Stadium three days after we won, and he’s in there with the music blaring, working out. He’s really dedicated.
“The thing that’s amazing about him is to this day, he hasn’t changed as a human being in terms of how he relates to people but also how he works out. And the only thing that’s probably changed is how he eats — his diet. I’m not sure avocado ice cream is right for me, but if I could look like him and perform half as well, I guess I’d do it.”
Brady, who is coming off one of the best seasons of his career, conveyed a similar message last month, telling The MMQB’s Peter King he hopes to play until his mid-40s. The Patriots quarterback certainly has shown no signs of slowing down, either, finishing second in NFL MVP voting this season as he led New England to its fifth Super Bowl title since 2002.
As Kraft alluded to, Brady has remained remarkably healthy throughout his career. He hasn’t missed a game because of injury since tearing his ACL in 2008.
Kraft also hopes Patriots coach Bill Belichick, who at 64 is the second-oldest head coach in the NFL, sticks around a good while longer.
“I hopes he coaches until his 80s,” Kraft told reporters. “I see Warren Buffett and Rupert Murdoch, they’re in their mid-80s and they’re performing at a pretty high level. So we’ve got to keep Bill healthy.”
Thumbnail photo via Kevin Jairaj/USA TODAY Sports Images