Tom Brady received some kind words from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell during the lead-up to Super Bowl LV.
During his annual Super Bowl week news conference, Goodell was asked about Brady’s remarkable career and whether he regrets the four-game suspension he handed down to the former New England Patriots quarterback in wake of Deflategate.
He responded to the first prompt, ignoring the second.
“Tom Brady has shown that he is probably the greatest player to ever play this game,” Goodell said. “His leadership, his ability to rise to the big occasions — and make everybody rise around him — that’s what’s absolutely incredible to me. Everyone just plays better when they’re with him. He’s an exceptional talent.
“And more importantly, he’s one of the great guys. I’ve known him for probably 15 years. And he’s an extraordinary guy. He’s real, and he cares about this game, deeply. He cares about the people involved in the game. And so, for me, I wish him well. I think he’s going to continue to be a great performer. I’m glad to hear he’s going to play a few more years.”
At 43, Brady will become the oldest player ever to appear in a Super Bowl when he takes the field Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium. It will be the 10th Super Bowl appearance for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signal-caller, who won six championships during his two decades in New England.
Brady said earlier this week he would “definitely consider” playing past age 45 — his long-stated career target. Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians said Thursday he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Brady, who’s signed through next season, eventually signs a second contract with Tampa Bay.