National Football League
An extension for Tom Brady with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers makes perfect sense
National Football League

An extension for Tom Brady with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers makes perfect sense

Published Feb. 24, 2021 5:07 p.m. ET

The defending Super Bowl champions might be on the verge of keeping their superstar quarterback in Tampa Bay for years to come.

When asked about an extension for Tom BradyTampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht addressed the situation on "The Dan Patrick Show":

"It's a possibility. He certainly didn't look like he slowed down any this year. So that's a possibility. And we'll have to see how that goes."

When pressed on how far discussions have progressed ⁠— if they've even officially begun ⁠— Licht took a coy approach.


He did, however, say that the stars are aligning quite nicely.  

"I talk to Tom often. Probably keep that under wraps right now. It appears that he really had a good time this year, winning the Super Bowl, and likes our organization, likes our coaches, likes our head coach and ownership. And we certainly love him. So usually, when you have those things going for each other, it's a match made in heaven, so we'd like to keep this going."

Brady has one year left on the two-year, $50 million deal he signed with the Buccaneers in March 2020.

The union between Brady and the Bucs proved to be ideal for both parties, as Brady won his first title without Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots and led the Bucs to their second Super Bowl championship.

After this year's win, the five-time Super Bowl MVP left no room for interpretation about his plans to fulfill his two-year deal and return to defend his title in 2021.

Beyond that, Brady's future is undecided. 

From a purely financial standpoint, an extension would make sense, per NFL Network's Ian Rapaport. 

If the Buccaneers are able to lessen some of Brady's impact on the salary cap for 2021, it would allow them to potentially re-sign or franchise tag other key players from the Super Bowl run.

Among the most notable free agents are outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett, inside linebacker Lavonte David and wide receiver Chris Godwin.

On Wednesday's "First Things First," Nick Wright and Brandon Marshall discussed which players the Buccaneers should prioritize heading into the season. Said Wright:

"My top two are ... Shaq Barrett, who's going to be expensive ... and Lavonte David. Those are my top two guys. The guy I'm most easily letting leave is Chris Godwin because I think he's going to be very expensive ... I don't need Godwin back, I don't have to have [Leonard] Fournette back. I definitely need Barrett and David back."

Freeing up space on the payroll could go a long way in keeping Tampa Bay's top-ranked rushing defense intact. 

Additionally, Wright thinks an extension would send a positive signal to the 43-year-old Brady, particularly given the way his departure from New England played out.

"I think the news here is the difference in the way Jason Licht is discussing Tom Brady's future and the way Tom Brady's previous GM would discuss his future. ... When Bill Belichick didn't want to entrust Brady for age 43, you now have the Bucs saying, 'We want to entrust you past age 45.'"

It seems that keeping Brady in Tampa beyond the upcoming season is a no-brainer, and perhaps it's just a matter of time before an extension comes to fruition.

And if any player has shown that time isn't an obstacle, it's Tom Brady.


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