The relationship has been strong for 20 years, and if they really are no closer to a contract then they were two months ago, then Patriot fans have every reason to be concerned that perhaps Brady will be moving on this year.
When Adam Schefter speaks I normally listen, because I don't trust any NFL reporter more than I trust Adam schefter. I'm not sure there's any reporter more tied to trusted NFL sources than Schefter But, even he admits that he has been not given any indication by any of his sources about what Tom Brady is going to do on March 18. That doesn't mean that Schefter doesn't have an opinion on the situation, and while making an appearance on Mad dog Sports radio he had the following to say about Brady:
"Let me say this to you, I think that whether or not (Brady and Bill Belichick) spoke, (Tuesday) or last week, and what the tone was, frankly, I don't need to hear any of that to deduce that it is now March 5. Free agency starts in less than two weeks," Schefter said, as transcribed by NESN's Ricky Doyle. "Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are no closer to a contract agreement today than they were at any point during the season or any time recently. So if the greatest quarterback and arguably the greatest player in NFL history is not any closer to a contract agreement with the team he's played for for 20 years, I think we can all sense what way this is tracking. Which doesn't mean they can't figure it out at the last moment and somehow find a solution to bring him back to Foxboro and find a way to make it work. But again, I just compare and contrast what is going on with Tom Brady and what as opposed to what's gone on with, say, Drew Brees, who comes out and says, 'I am either retiring or playing for the Saints.' Have we heard that? We have not heard that with Tom Brady. Right? At what point is it going to register with people who believe he's going back there that there's a real chance he's not going back there. What more do we need to see - other than him actually agreeing to a deal with another team, which certainly seems like it's on track to happen now."
Schefter has a point, you would think that at this point in free agency if anybody was going to be able to solve a contract issue it would be Brady and the Patriots. The relationship has been strong for 20 years, and if they really are no closer to a contract then they were two months ago, then Patriot fans have every reason to be concerned that perhaps Brady will be moving on this year.
The only thing that gives me hope is that there's been heavy rumours that the Patriots have been waiting to see what happens with the collective bargaining agreement, because it's going to change the salary cap quite significantly. If the players do vote to approve the proposed CBA. The top brass of the NFLPA feel confident that the players will overwhelmingly approve the owners proposal, but there are a lot of teams who are waiting to see what happens with the cap before they start making any significant moves.
But, just because the Patriots salary cap increases, that doesn't mean that everybody elses doesn't. That could leave a team like the Raiders who have apparently backed off a little bit on how aggressively they're going to pursue Brady to have a change of heart and start getting more aggressive again because of the added cap that they have.
Next Monday every team will have the opportunity to negotiate with Tom Brady. Will Bill Belichick use his last week of exclusive negotiation rights to get a deal done with the soon-to-be 43 year old quarterback, or is Pat's Nation preparing itself for a new era in New England? Only time will tell.