The final episode of “Tom vs. Time” ended ominously, with Tom Brady’s wife, Gisele Bundchen, describing how the last two seasons haven’t been as enjoyable for the New England Patriots quarterback.
Filmmaker Gotham Chopra, who teamed up with Brady to craft the six-part documentary web series, was asked about Bundchen’s comments and the QB’s future in New England during an appearance on “The MMQB Podcast with Peter King.” His answer was revealing.
Brady, who will turn 41 in August, has said on several occasions over that past year that he intends to play until his mid-40s. But after spending months embedded with the superstar signal-caller, Chopra said he’d be surprised if Brady sticks around that long.
Here’s Chopra’s full response to King, emphasis ours:
“I spent a lot of a time with Tom, obviously, but we were very particular and careful, frankly, about the Patriot Way. I’m a Patriots fan. I’ve been a fan for a long time and an admirer of the organization (and) the coach. And part of that is not getting in the way, not being a distraction — not being a distraction for Tom. Certainly not filming in and around the stadium. So my exposure was all to Tom in his car, in his house, with his family and that sort of stuff. And yeah, I think the last two seasons — and that is kind of what Gisele says in that last interview — have been very challenging for him, both because of stuff off the field, going back to the suspension, his mom getting unwell, etc.
“But also, look, it’s an 18-year marriage (to the Patriots organization). And it’s been an incredibly successful run, but there’s a lot of intensity and a lot of pressure and a lot of big personalities. And Tom is one of them. I think that hasn’t been easy. I did find it was interesting at the end of the season, it all kind of faded away, because when you get to the postseason, no matter what has been going on, everybody gets on the same page and focuses.
“And again, they had another incredible run. And that’s what (Brady) says at the end: this is a very different offseason for him. And I think that’s not necessarily (because of) what happened during the season, it’s the fact that he’s got three growing kids, a wife that’s like, ‘Hey, you know, I’ve been kind of putting stuff on hold for a while, and I want to go out and do my thing now, too.’
“So Tom’s juggling a lot of things, and I think that’s basically what he says at the end: I’ve got to recalibrate, and I’ve got to find that conviction again. I think he will, but I think this idea that he’s going to play for four or five more seasons — I mean, this is just me, the guy that’s been around him for a while now — I’d have a hard time envisioning that, to be candid. But we’ll see. I do think that these next few weeks and months are a really critical time for him.“
If this series finale taught us anything, it’s that Brady might be closer to the end than he’s letting on.