Why 2022 will be Tom Brady’s final season | You Pod to Win the Game

Yahoo Sports’ Senior NFL Writer Charles Robinson and Yahoo Sports’ Columnist Dan Wetzel discuss why each of them believes this will be The GOAT’s swan song, and they each have different reasons. Is it the enormous broadcasting contract he received from FOX? Is it pressure from his family? Or could it be that his body is finally starting to break down? Hear the full conversation on the You Pod to Win the Game podcast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen.

Video Transcript

DAN WETZEL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the question is, who is the starting quarterback, Charles?

CHARLES ROBINSON: Tom Brady is an underrated part of Seth Wickersham's book, "It's Better to Be Feared," that maybe people didn't talk about as much, is the unhappiness of Gisele. And when I say that, I mean, you can see-- when-- if you really read through the entire thing, you can get a sense that she really has had a very difficult time with Tom taking his football career this deep.

And I would imagine that his unretirement, even though I think the whole thing with Miami was happening, and it was all kind of fake anyway, it was all sort of baked-- baked into the decision. It wasn't real retirement and whatnot. I just can't imagine. I really-- it's crazy to say this, but I really, truly believe after reading that book, that if he goes beyond this season, like he's jeopardizing potentially his marriage.

It sounds nuts. It sounds nuts to say that. I'm just saying, if you-- really, you got to read the book. Like she clearly struggled with him continuing to push this, and how football is this dominating thing in his entire life. And it talks so much about Brady's fear of not knowing what his life is going to look like once football ends. And like the mental impact that could have on him.

And it's-- like people might say it's inappropriate to say that, or whatever. But I'm just telling you, reading the book, and seeing some of the comments she's made publicly, I think this has got to be it for him. I think for his family, when he talks about that, and not knowing whether or not he's going to have the desire beyond the season, I think those factors, they combine to bring Tom Brady to a place where 2022 is his final season. So go see him.

DAN WETZEL: This has got to be it. I don't think it's because he's listening to his family, because if he's listening to his family, he would be retired five years ago. He also has a 10 year, $375 million job with Fox waiting for him the day he stops playing. Which could be at any point.

You don't know about injuries. Obviously, you don't know if you're going to make the playoffs. He could be commenting in the NFC Championship game, right? Or whatever Fox is-- Fox is broadcasting that, right? So yeah, I mean, this is clearly the last run. This is-- every indication is this is the last run. It looked like last year it was the last run, but he kind of held out, and then, eh, maybe not. This is it.

So, as for the-- we just hope the happy couple can persevere and move on. I think it'll be fine. $375 million contracts tend to help.

CHARLES ROBINSON: Yeah, definitely. I don't think there's any doubt that at least having that secured in place--

DAN WETZEL: That's just one job he'll have. I mean--

CHARLES ROBINSON: That-- by the way, I also think that kind of puts into context how much he needs to be a part of football. That he's already locked in basically a lifetime job if he wants it.

Being in the orbit of football, even when he leaves it. Like he's never going to be someone who can just walk and walk. Like he has to be, I think in some sense, kind of like Peyton Manning. Peyton Manning can do a million different things, but he can't leave football alone and completely separate himself for it. For the rest of his life, he needs to be connected to it. And I think Tom Brady is the same exact way.

DAN WETZEL: Tom needed to make sure he was connected. There was no need to do that--

CHARLES ROBINSON: Yeah, that's what I'm saying.

DAN WETZEL: Peyton-- Peyton took like a year off. He took like a whole year, didn't he? Didn't do anything.

CHARLES ROBINSON: But-- but he was-- even that year off, like he was going to camps in the summer--

DAN WETZEL: Yes, but he wasn't-- he didn't like, this is what I'm going-- it was like, was he going to be a front office guy, is he going to be a part owner, or is he going to do this. You knew he was going to do something. But he didn't jump at the media, like, Tom's already locked in. He's like, I already decided what I'm doing next. That to me was the moment the transition is clear.

He did fear, what do I do on day one of vac-- he basically took this quote unquote retirement this year and realized he hated it.

CHARLES ROBINSON: Yeah.

DAN WETZEL: There's a genuine fear of what do I do. And so he spent a lot of time building up to it. People say like, he's never says anything in the media, but he spent the last X number of years trying to build that up. He did a reality show. He does the golf events, where he shows his personality. He's done way more commercials lately. He's done a lot of different things to kind of set that up. So he's planned it out.

This is it. One year, can Tampa-- can Tampa make one final Brady run? Probably not. But, we'll see.