Brady compares football season to ‘going away on deployment in the military’

“I almost look at like a football season like you’re going away on deployment in the military, and it’s like, ‘Man, here I go again,'” said Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady during the most recent episode of the “Let’s Go! with Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald and Jim Gray” podcast.

During an interview with NBA star Kevin Durant, Brady and Gray discussed work-life balance and the draw their sports have on their own psyche. 

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“And then it gets, starting to get tricky, though, as I get older age because I’m starting to experience more as a man outside of me being an athlete. So it’s like, where’s the balance? Durant asked, adding he will always be “hungry” for the competition, but alsoshould I still be this like every day, just immersed in what I’m doing?”

Brady responded, saying he feels similar push-and-pull between home life and the football field.

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“That’s a good point. And you know, and you feel, certainly me being 45 now, it’s like, do I just think the same way? Do I still I almost look at, like, a football season, like you’re going to on deployment? In the military?” Brady wondered. 

Durant agreed as Brady continued. 

PITTSBURGH, PA – OCTOBER 16: Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) looks on to the field as he enters from the tunnel before the game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Pittsburgh Steelers at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA on Octo

“And it’s like, man, ‘here I go again,’” Brady said. “…the reality is, is you can really only be authentic to yourself, right? Whatever you may say. ‘Oh, man, I want to, you know, make sure I spend a little more time doing this, you know, during the season.’ The reality is, is when it comes down to it, your competitiveness takes over. And as much as you want to have this playful balance… you’re going to end up doing exactly what you’ve always done, which is why you are who you are. You’re going to go, ‘How do I get it done?’ You know? ‘What do I need to get it done?’”

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The toll an exceptionally long, Hall-of-Fame-worthy football career has on a person could not be argued. Brady played an astounding 19 seasons with the New England Patriots before coming to Tampa Bay for the 2020 season. 

Brady has seven Super Bowl Championship rings and been named Super Bowl MVP five times. He has the highest NFL winning percentage among quarterbacks, combining regular and postseason games. 

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However, Sarah Sicard of the “Military Times” points out, Brady is currently being compensated $30 million a year for his service to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

But Sicard writes, “The average enlisted service member, meanwhile, rarely sees above six figures.”

And Brady can hang up his jersey whenever he’s ready. He did for a moment in early 2022 but un-retired a short time later.

Tom Brady with Best Buddies program

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Brady’s military deployment metaphor, and Durant’s apparent agreement to the analogy, consisted of about 2-minutes of the 40-minute podcast. 

His point appeared to be that a job which requires extreme physical and mental commitment is difficult to compartmentalize, when it comes to work-life balance. 

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