The COVID-19 pandemic radically altered the 2020 NFL season. It also hit close to home for Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady.
During an appearance Monday on ESPN’s “Greeny” radio show, Brady’s father, Tom Brady Sr., revealed he and his wife, Galynn, both contracted the coronavirus last September.
Brady Sr.’s illness left him hospitalized for three weeks, he told host Mike Greenberg.
“When the season started this year, I was in the hospital with COVID for almost three weeks, and my wife was sick with COVID at the same time,” Brady Sr. said. “We didn’t even see the first two (Buccaneers) games of the year. It was the first two games I’ve ever missed in (Brady’s) career, because I was sick as a dog and my wife was sick as a dog.”
During Brady’s father’s hospitalization, the QB’s sister, a nurse, cared for their mother at home. Galynn Brady is a breast cancer survivor, having battled the disease during the New England Patriots’ run to Super Bowl LI in 2016.
Brady Sr. said their bouts with COVID-19 gave the family a serious scare.
“We were sick,” he told Greenberg. “When the season started — we’ve never missed a game, at Michigan or New England or wherever — and for the first two games, when I was in the hospital, I didn’t even care if they were playing, much less missing the game. It was a matter of life and death, just like anybody who goes into the hospital. It’s serious stuff. Tommy fought through it, and now it’s in the rear-view mirror.
“We’re healthy, we’re happy and everything is good. … We’re just representative of 25 million Americans that have had this (virus) so far. It’s nothing to shake a stick at. … We’re fine, it’s just one of those experiences that for us, for our family, starting out the season, football was the least important thing in the world.”
After leading the Bucs to a 31-26 win over the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship, Brady will play in his 10th Super Bowl next Sunday, facing off against Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV.
Brady Sr. said he hopes his family will be able to attend the game, which will be played at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium.
“It’s just really fun,” he told Greenberg. “After you win a couple Super Bowls, you’re so fortunate. And then you get here, and getting to the 10th Super Bowl in 19 years of playing is incomprehensible, actually. It’s beyond anything we could ever imagine.”