As we wait for former NFL quarterback Tom Brady to kick-start his TV career, Bob Costas anticipates watching it begin sooner than expected.
Brady announced his retirement from the NFL for a second time Wednesday morning, claiming this time it’s ‘for good,’ which means he’s officially available to begin his second career as a broadcaster with Fox, a deal slated to pay him $375 million over the next 10 years. To discuss Brady’s decision to retire from the NFL after 23 seasons and his pending partnership with Fox, Costas joined CNN’s Laura Coates Wednesday night.
With Brady slated to be a Fox employee and Fox owning the broadcast rights to Super Bowl LVII this season, rumors about his potential involvement at the game have swirled for months. Earlier this week, however, Fox shared their Super Bowl LVII coverage plans and Brady wasn’t listed in the outline.
Bob Costas expects Tom Brady to join Fox at the Super Bowl pic.twitter.com/JzphJBsYhe
— Brandon Contes (@BrandonContes) February 2, 2023
“In the immediate future, Fox has the Super Bowl this year,” Costas noted. “So I would expect that he would be part of their coverage. Not in the game itself, but there’s a six-hour pregame, and then a halftime, and then a postgame, and they’d be very foolish not to want Tom Brady to be front and center as part of that.”
When Fox announced their Super Bowl LVII coverage outline, Brady had not publicly announced his retirement. Although it is fair to assume that Fox may have been made aware of Brady’s pending retirement prior to the quarterback posting a farewell video on Twitter.
The timing of Brady’s retirement, occurring 11 days before Fox broadcasts the Super Bowl, is interesting and hints at the possibility that he wants to be in Arizona to help cover the event. If Brady was going to retire and skip out on being part of the Fox broadcast, why wouldn’t he just retire after the Super Bowl? And now that Brady retired before the Super Bowl, can Fox really afford to let him evade the event when they’re paying him $375 million to be an analyst and an ambassador for the company? As Costas noted, they’d look foolish to do so.
Brady’s decision to retire before the Super Bowl also puts added pressure on the current Fox broadcast booth. Greg Olsen has kept the seat warm for Brady as the lead analyst for Fox and will call the Super Bowl alongside Kevin Burkhardt. Throughout the season, Burkhardt and Olsen grew used to answering questions about Brady’s looming presence. Previously, they were able to lean into the unknown based on Brady still being an active player, but his untimely retirement will only bring about more questions. So again, if Brady wasn’t going to join Fox in Arizona, why not wait until after the Super Bowl to retire?