Tom Brady describes eye-opening ‘welcome to the NFL’ moment

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Having been in the NFL for almost two decades, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady has seen just about everything in the game. However, even he gets caught off guard.

On the second episode of ESPN’s “Man in the Arena,” Brady cited the 2003 release of Lawyer Milloy as something that hit home. Milloy was a key member of the New England Patriots backfield for seven seasons, and was coming off a Pro Bowl season in 2002.

New England released Milloy just before the start of the 2003 season. The safety quickly found a home, signing a four-year deal with the Buffalo Bills the day after his release.

“It was the first time that I recognized that this was, you know, a really tough business,” Brady said during Episode 2 of “Man in the Arena,” as transcribed by the New York Post. “I didn’t know they brought Rodney (Harrison) in to replace Lawyer, I thought they brought Rodney in to complement Lawyer. I just was so mad that we let him go, and I just couldn’t understand why we let this guy go, who had meant so much to the team.

“That was kind of the welcome to pro football moment.”

Harrison ended up being an adequate replacement for Milloy. Coming over from the San Diego Chargers, Harrison was a key part of two Patriots Super Bowl teams. He was named to the organization’s 50th Anniversary Team, as well as the New England Patriots All-2000’s team.

If anything, Brady’s eye-opening moment was a jarring reminder of just how cutthroat the NFL can be.

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