Tom Brady brought one of his all-time favorite Patriots targets to Tampa Bay, but he tried to bring two.

Brady convinced Rob Gronkowski to come out of his short-lived NFL retirement and join him on the Buccaneers, who landed the legendary quarterback after his iconic 20-year run in New England. And if the seven-time Super Bowl champion had his way, Julian Edelman would’ve made the trek to Tampa with his longtime teammates, too.

“He (Brady) would joke around about leaving with me for like four years. So this time, I was like, ‘Boy crying wolf,'” Edelman said on “The Rush with Maxx Crosby” podcast, as transcribed by Sports Illustrated. “He left. He hit me up when he left, and he goes, ‘Hey baby, you want me to get you down here?’ I said, ‘Nah, I’m good, bro. I’m a one-team man.'”

Brady and Edelman, of course, had far different experiences in their first season apart. The Super Bowl LIII MVP only played six games in the Patriots’ 2020 campaign before sustaining a knee injury that prompted him to retire the following spring. Brady, meanwhile, led the Bucs to a Super Bowl LV victory over Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.

Story continues below advertisement

Now both retired, Brady and Edelman are teammates again as FOX analysts. The 2024 NFL season will mark the all-time great signal-caller’s first campaign as the network’s lead color commentator.

Featured image via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images