The further we get from Tom Brady’s second retirement announcement, the closer we get to seeing if he’ll see his Fox deal through.
Week 1 of the NFL season kicks off Thursday night, and it will do so without Brady on a roster for the first time since 1999. Brady agreed to a 10-year deal with Fox to be their lead NFL game analyst, but in his first year of retirement, the 46-year-old decided to take the season off.
There has been a lot of skepticism surrounding whether Brady will ever join Fox in a full-time broadcasting role. Pushing his Fox debut off until 2024 didn’t do much to quiet the skepticism, but on the season premiere of his Let’s Go podcast for SiriusXM, Brady reiterated that Fox remains in his plans.
“I was very blessed to play for as long as I did, and I loved it,” Brady said. “Now I get to see other guys do it, and I also get to see football from a different perspective. I’ll be on Fox next year, so I have a chance to really sit back and watch and learn a different career.”
Although it wasn’t in the NFL booth, Brady did appear on Big Noon Kickoff for Fox last weekend to hype his alma mater, the Michigan Wolverines. Fox may have appreciated the pre-recorded cameo from Brady, but it’s certainly not why they recruited him. The $375 million reasons why Fox added Brady to their network will have to wait another year to be seen.
“I’ll need a lot of help from a lot of different people,” Brady said of becoming a broadcaster. “I’ll be able to really watch this year from kind of a different eye. I used to watch from the lens of a quarterback, now I see it more from, maybe broadcasting, but also as a fan, and also still as a quarterback.”
Brady seeking “a lot of help from a lot of different people” is part of why he decided to delay his debut in the booth until 2024, an announcement he made on Colin Cowherd’s Fox Sports Radio show earlier this year.
A lot of different people were also surprised when Brady signed with Fox, believing the seven-time Super Bowl champion’s celebrity was too big for a broadcast booth. But Brady added to his list of surprising retirement decisions this week by partnering with Delta Airlines. Not as a brand ambassador, but as a long-term “strategic advisor.” Maybe Brady talking football on Fox doesn’t seem so strange after all.