After the San Francisco 49ers’ Super Bowl loss in 2019, the organization held internal discussions about the possibility of acquiring then-New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in free agency. And according to recent reports, that interest was entirely mutual.
In the new book, “It’s Better To Be Feared” (highlighting the Patriots dynasty from 2001-19), ESPN senior writer Seth Wickersham reported that Brady called his former teammate/current Niners wide receivers coach Wes Welker prior to the 2020 season to say he’d be willing to finish his career in San Francisco if the team was interested.
Brady reportedly wrote down a list of around 20 things he wanted from a potential partnership and a reasonable two-year, $50 million contract demand.
Brady, who grew up in San Mateo as a 49ers fan, reportedly told Welker that if the team wanted to sign him, there’d be “no free-agency tour, no bidding war, full stop; he would end his career where his love of football began, in scarlet and gold, allowing his parents to drive to [his] games for the first time since the 1990s.”
After looking over Brady’s demands and examining his film from the 2019 season, Kyle Shanahan and the San Francisco coaching staff reportedly decided that the gap between the all-time great QB and their current signal-caller, Jimmy Garoppolo, wasn’t great enough to make the deal worth it.
At the time, Garoppolo, 15 years younger than Brady, was coming off a Super Bowl appearance with three years remaining on the big-time contract he signed in 2017. Brady on the other hand was coming off one of the lesser productive seasons of his career in 2019.
In hindsight, the Niners are likely kicking themselves for this decision.
In his first season with the Buccaneers, Brady brought the franchise a Super Bowl title. Now looking to continue that success, it seems the superstar QB is content with finishing his illustrious NFL career in Tampa Bay.
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