But Bucs head coach Bruce Arians apparently spoke to a very different Brady last week.
Joining "The Rich Eisen Show" later Tuesday, Arians said he knew Brady would leave the New England Patriots to join his club the moment he got off the phone with the 42-year-old quarterback last week.
"When I hung up the phone that night, I talked to (general manager) Jason (Licht) and said, 'I think he's coming,' " Arians said.
That phone call happened last Wednesday night, hours after Brady hit unrestricted free agency but before the QB had made any formal decision. So, what made Arians so confident?
According to the head coach, Brady was brimming with excitement.
"His enthusiasm," Arians said. "He was trying to sell me as much as I was trying to sell him. His excitement level was off the charts. I couldn't wait to go to practice."
Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer and others also have reported that the Brady-Arians phone call sealed the deal, but it's notable Brady was so gung-ho on Tampa Bay, especially considering he reportedly didn't have many other suitors at that point.
Aside from the Bucs' elite offensive weapons, it appears Brady also was enticed by the "challenge" of winning outside New England -- and the freedom to pursue success in his own way.
Arians told Eisen he'll allow Brady to continue working with personal trainer Alex Guerrero and do whatever he needs to do to perform at a high level.
"One thing I believe in is each guy has something different," Arians said. " ... Just, whatever it takes for you to get ready to play on Sunday, I'm all for."
That was probably refreshing for Brady to hear after his reported clashes with Patriots head coach Bill Belichick over his work with Guerrero.
So, while some believe the six-time Super Bowl champion shouldn't have left New England, it sounds like he'll get exactly what he was looking for in Tampa Bay.
How a phone call convinced Bruce Arians that Bucs would land Tom Brady originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston