Tom Brady’s broadcasting future presents new challenge for the ultimate champion

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Published 4:55 AM EST, Thu February 2, 2023
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Tom Brady was the ultimate winner on the field but that success does not guarantee the seven-time Super Bowl champion will make a seamless transition when he steps into the TV booth to begin his new role as a lead NFL analyst.

The 45-year-old Brady, who retired from the National Football League earlier on Wednesday after an illustrious 23-year career, agreed last May to join Fox Sports when his age-defying career as a quarterback came to an end.

Brady, whose intense preparation for games has been well-chronicled, has an unmatched knowledge of the sport. If he can translate what he sees on the field as quickly as he processed plays as a quarterback, he could prove to be one of the best analysts around.

But making the switch from the field to the TV booth is not always easy, and being relaxed, laughing at himself and not clamoring for attention could take time.

The terms of Brady's deal with Fox Sports were not disclosed, but media reports said it is worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

“It’s going to be a challenge. Tom is a pretty serious guy, at least in terms of his public persona,” Neal Pilson, the former president of CBS Sports who now runs his own sports television consulting company, told Reuters.

“He’s going to be getting a tremendous amount of money from Fox and I think he’s going to feel the pressure of entertaining people, and up to now Tom’s method of entertaining people was to play quarterback, show how good he is.”

The terms of Brady’s deal with Fox Sports were never disclosed but media reports said the former quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New England Patriots agreed to a 10-year contract worth $375 million.

Fox will be broadcasting the February 12 Super Bowl between the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs but the network did not immediately reply when asked by Reuters whether Brady would be part of the lineup.

Brady walks off the field after a playoff loss to the Dallas Cowboys in an NFC Wild Card game in January 2023. The Cowboys won 31-14.
From left, " 80 for Brady " director Kyle Marvin and cast members Rita Moreno, Brady, Sally Field, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda pose together at the Los Angeles premiere of the film in January 2023. The movie, which is based on a true story, follows a group of octogenarians who are hardcore Brady fans and travel to Super Bowl LI. "This could be Tom's last one; he's almost 40," Tomlin's character says in the trailer. "That's like 80 in people years."
Tom Brady holds the Vince Lombardi Trophy after leading the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a Super Bowl win in February 2021.
Brady played college football at the University of Michigan. He started for the Wolverines in his junior and senior seasons, going 20-5.
Brady grew up in San Mateo, California, and played football, basketball and baseball before joining Michigan.
Despite his successful career at Michigan, Brady was not projected to be a star in the NFL. He was the 199th player taken in the NFL Draft. Many quarterbacks were taken before him.
Brady started his career backing up Drew Bledsoe. But when Bledsoe was hurt in September 2001, Brady got his chance to shine. He took over as starter and led the Patriots all the way to the Super Bowl.
Brady loses the ball after being hit by Oakland's Charles Woodson during an NFL playoff game in January 2002. The Patriots got the ball back and went on to win the game, but the controversial play was heavily debated in the offseason. The "tuck rule" was eventually repealed in 2013.
The 2001 season culminated in a Super Bowl victory for Brady and the Patriots in February 2002. They upset the heavily favored St. Louis Rams 20-17. Brady was named Super Bowl MVP, and he became the youngest quarterback to win a Super Bowl. He was 24.
Brady and the Patriots were back in the Super Bowl in 2004, winning another title over the Carolina Panthers. They repeated the next season with a Super Bowl win over Philadelphia.
Brady and Patriots coach Bill Belichick celebrate after a playoff win in January 2007. The two were together for Brady's entire Patriots career.
Brady throws a pass during a game in Cincinnati in October 2007.
Brady is surrounded by the media in 2007. The Patriots went undefeated in the regular season but lost to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl.
New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck strips the ball from Brady during the Super Bowl in February 2008.
Brady leaves the field in 2012 after another Super Bowl loss to the Giants.
Brady kisses his mother, Galynn, after the Patriots defeated Seattle for their fourth Super Bowl title in February 2015.
An opposing fan taunts Brady as he takes the field in August 2015. Brady was eventually suspended four games over the "Deflategate" controversy, which involved allegations that the Patriots purposely deflated balls to gain an advantage on offense in an AFC Championship game.
Brady runs onto the field before a game in September 2015.
Brady drops back to pass during a game against Dallas in October 2015.
Brady arrives at a federal court to appeal his suspension for "Deflategate."
Brady is tackled by Denver's Aqib Talib in the AFC Championship game in January 2016.
Brady raises the Vince Lombardi Trophy after leading the Patriots to their fifth Super Bowl victory in 2017. The Patriots were trailing 28-3 before pulling off the biggest Super Bowl comeback ever and winning in overtime.
Teammate Rob Gronkowski playfully steals Brady's jersey before a Boston Red Sox baseball game in April 2017. Brady had just had his Super Bowl jersey returned by authorities after it had been stolen from the locker room.
Brady and his wife, model Gisele Bundchen, attend the Met Gala in New York in 2018. The couple married in 2009.
Brady celebrates after an overtime win in January 2019 that put that Patriots in the Super Bowl.
Brady celebrates with his daughter, Vivian, and his wife, Gisele, after winning his sixth Super Bowl in 2019. In October 2022, Brady and Bundchen announced that they had divorced after 13 years of marriage.
Brady's last game with the Patriots was a playoff loss to Tennessee in January 2020.
Pro golfer Phil Mickelson reads a putt for Brady as they team up for a made-for-TV charity match in May 2020. Mickelson and Brady lost a close match to Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning.
Brady throws a pass during a game against Carolina in September 2020. Brady finished the regular season with 40 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions as the Buccaneers went 11-5.
New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees congratulates Brady after the Buccaneers defeated Brees' Saints in an NFL playoff game in January 2021. It was the first playoff game in NFL history to feature two starting quarterbacks in their 40s. Both players occupy the top two spots for many of the league's quarterback records.
Brady celebrates with his teammates in January 2021 after Tampa Bay defeated Green Bay to win the NFC and clinch a spot in the Super Bowl.
Brady celebrates at the end of the Buccaneers' win over Kansas City in Super Bowl LV. He was named the game's Most Valuable Player.
Brady throws the Vince Lombardi Trophy to teammates as they celebrate their title during a boat parade in Tampa, Florida, in February 2021.
President Joe Biden laughs at a joke made by Brady, who was visiting the White House along with his Tampa Bay teammates in July 2021. One of Brady's jokes was about those who continue to deny that Biden won the 2020 election. "Not a lot of people think that we could have won (the Super Bowl). In fact, I think about 40% of people still don't think we won. You understand that, Mr. President?" Brady said to laughter. Biden responded, "I understand that."
Brady runs off the field after the Buccaneers defeated his former team, the New England Patriots, in October 2021. It was Brady's first game back in New England since he left the franchise in 2020.
Brady throws a pass during a playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams in January 2022. The Rams eliminated the Buccaneers 30-27.
Brady celebrates after scoring a rushing touchdown against Carolina in January 2023. The Buccaneers clinched a postseason berth — and their second straight NFC South title — with a 30-24 win.
In pictures: NFL legend Tom Brady
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Pilson suggests it would be better for Brady if his analyst debut did not come at the Super Bowl as that would expose him right away during the most-watched NFL game of the year.

There have been no shortage of players who went on to become football analysts after their NFL careers, including Hall of Fame members Terry Bradshaw, Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Shannon Sharpe.

Rob Ninkovich, who won two Super Bowl titles with Brady in New England and now works as an NFL analyst for ESPN, told Reuters a job talking football on television can help ease some of the hardest parts of retirement.

“Michael Jordan could go play a pickup game of three-on-three somewhere and still, you know, still shoot a basket and get his feel of playing basketball,” said Ninkovich. “Football players, unfortunately, you hang it up and you’ll never ever put on a helmet, shoulder pads.

“It’s trying to fill that void with other activities, maybe a business or, you know, entrepreneurship or even television, still talking about football and being involved in football – but you’re not taking the beating.”

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