Tom Brady is cognizant of what Week 4 of the NFL season brings.
Though the Buccaneers quarterback has made it clear he’ll be playing as long as he’s of championship caliber, he also recognizes that if he stays with Tampa Bay, he probably won’t make it back to Gillette Stadium after the Oct. 3 matchup against the Patriots.
Realistically, it might mean playing in New England for “the last time probably in my career.”
In an interview Tuesday with Jim Gray for a special SiriusXM Town Hall event that debuts Wednesday at 6 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports, Brady discussed the homecoming of sorts.
“There’s a lot to happen between now and then, and obviously I know the challenge of beating a great team like that, a great organization, great players, so many friends that are still on the team that still are my brothers,” Brady said of the Patriots, as transcribed by The Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian. “Unfortunately, we’re going to be on different sides of the stadium this time around.
“I’ve got a lot of familiarity playing in the stadium. You know, we’ve got to first get to training camp and see where we’re going to be and then get through the first three weeks of the year, but I’m sure it’ll be a great opportunity for me to go back to a place I know as well as anyone. It’ll be a great day for football.”
Brady didn’t specifically say he has the same feeling of anticipation that he did when playing the New York Giants as a member of the Patriots, given the revenge he likely wanted to impose after those early Super Bowl losses.
But he did compare the matchup to it, kind of.
“I’m not naive to the fact there’s some marquee games you always look at over the course of the season, a matchup of places guys have been versus where they’re at now,” Brady said. “You know, brothers playing one another, or former Super Bowl teams going — when we played the Giants in the regular season, it always felt like it was a little more when I was with the Patriots. So, naturally, there’s just more buildup, but at the end of the day, it’s going to be a game where we’re going to prepare like we’ve been preparing.”
Brady only had good things to say about the Patriots in the interview. The same can’t be said for whatever team passed on him in free agency last year, though.