Tom Brady reveals he almost came out of retirement in May

He just can't help himself, can he?
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There might not ever be a quarterback like Tom Brady ever again in our lifetime. He's unquesitonably the greatest and most accomplished player in NFL history and as each new year passes the stories of his career get concretely concreted into legacy.

Everything about his story feels like it was written for a movie, from his unassuming rise to fame to his ascension to the greatest player to have ever played the game. Every chapter has its own unqiue twist, right up to his arrival in Tampa Bay to help win a Super Bowl in his first season away from New England.

There's also the way his career ended -- twice.

Brady retired after the 2021 season, only to return a month later for one more rodeo. As it turns out, he probably should have rode off into the sunset after Super Bowl 55 in what would have been the best ending imaginable to his historic career. Instead he tried chasing the high one too many times.

Ever since unretiring, Brady has been milking his whole unretirement narrative for over a year. There were rumblings back in February that he was going to come back and it was something that fans and media members watched carefully until we seemingly reached a point of no return.

As it turns out, there might have been something to the rumors of Brady making one final return to the NFL.

Tom Brady suggests he almost unretired, again, back in May

In his year-end message to the world, Brady casually revealed that he almost came out of retirement -- again -- back in May but was talked out of it by is family and friends.

The question is where would he have gone to play?

Rumors were swirling about Brady potentially joining the Raiders, but those ended up concluding with him buying partial ownership of the team. It was a hilarious bookend to where his rise to greatness began with the Tuck Rule game back in 2002, but it had little to do with him coming back to play for another season.

The most logical place he could have played was in San Francisco, a team tailor made for a Super Bowl run in the same exact way the Bucs were back in 2020. Dropping Brady into Kyle Shanahan's system for one final ride while potentially bringing a Super Bowl back home to his childhood team is the sort of storybook ending that's almost too on the nose.

Brady's comments about vowing to never play for the Niners after they passed on him in the 2000 NFL Draft seem to suggest his ego might have been bigger than his desire for that storybook ending.

A return to Tampa Bay made sense but seemed extremely unlikely from the outset. Brady retiring in February saddled the team with $35 million in dead cap space and they were handcuffed from making any meaningful moves. Things ended up working out alright, though, as Baker Mayfield has proven to be less of a Stedad Quaterback and more the Quarterback Dad Who Stepped Up in reviving his career with Tampa Bay.

Could Brady have returned to New England for one final season? Was there potential fire to the smoke about joining the Detroit Lions?

It's perhaps most likely that Brady is just stirring the pot, dropping in a joke that is meant to be nothing more than that.

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