Despite missing 11 days of practice earlier this month, Tom Brady will start in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' final preseason game of the summer against the Indianapolis Colts. Head coach Todd Bowles told reporters that all healthy players will see action Saturday, which includes Brady.
This is significant because Brady didn't play in the Buccaneers' first preseason game against the Miami Dolphins and completely missed the match against the Tennessee Titans while away from the team. When he returned to practice this past Saturday, Bowles said he wasn't sure if Brady would see the field against the Colts. But with only a few weeks until the season starts perhaps Bowles wanted to see at least one drive of live game action with Brady under center.
The mystery around Brady's absence has taken on a life of its own this offseason despite the Buccaneers' attempts to downplay it. A wild social media rumor speculated that Brady left to appear on the show "The Masked Singer," but Bowles said Brady's departure was a pre-planned event to deal with “personal things" which ended up reportedly being just a trip to the Bahamas with his family.
Buccaneers' tight end Cameron Brate called the whole situation "definitely weird" but added that Brady not practicing was a "good opportunity for other guys to step up and fill that void.
Now that Brady's back (again), the Buccaneers can focus on football.