Tom Brady was set to go from calling signals to calling games. Now there's some question if he's going to do the latter — if not necessarily from the man himself.
Fox agreed to make Brady among the highest-paid analysts in TV history with a $375 million contract. The New York Post's Andrew Marchand reports Brady might be leaning toward passing on the opportunity, with sources telling Marchand that the future Hall of Famer might not be ready for all the travel.
"It was at 51 percent that he's going to do it to 49 percent, with the reasoning it's so much money he'll try it for a year," Marchand said. "However, I've talked to a couple people recently close to Brady and I kind of feel like I'm going more 49 percent chance he does it, 51 percent chance he doesn't."
CLIP: Brady Meter to call Fox games moves to 49-51— Andrew Marchand (@AndrewMarchand) May 3, 2023
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MORE: Tom Brady Fox contract, explained
Marchand explained Brady would likely be "all-in" if he opts to do it, which would mean he would not be arriving at the site of the games on the day of, but rather would be there a few days early to begin prep work, calling it a "four-day event."
"He shares his kids with Gisele [Bundchen], I think that's very important to him, and he can make money elsewhere," Marchand said. "49/51, Brady not doing it at the moment, fluctuating."
Brady, for his part, seemed to refute the report, leaving a comment on an Instagram post of the report by Sports Illustrated simply saying, "FakeNews," according to Awful Announcing.
The skepticism certainly seems warranted at this point. Front Office Sports reported Fox wanted to use Brady in its coverage of Super Bowl 57, with one source sounding confident Brady would be used in some capacity.
“If he’s not playing in the game, I would expect Brady to be part of Fox’s Super Bowl coverage,” said a source. “Definitely. I would be very surprised if he isn’t.”
It didn't happen. Brady was not part of Fox's coverage of the Super Bowl, and later told FS1's Colin Cowherd he expects his time with the network to begin with the 2024 NFL season, giving him an entire season between the end of his playing career — presumably — and the start of his broadcasting career.
Marchand certainly is far from the only one who believes Brady might never put on the headset. Back in November, Joe Buck told the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast he thinks "there's a chance" Brady leaves his massive Fox contract on the table and never calls a game.
"I know there are people at Fox who would say there's a chance that he doesn't call a game there," Buck said.
Brady has certainly made more than his share of money in his life. Spotrac lists him as having made nearly $333 million just from his NFL contracts, which is to say nothing of all his endorsements, investments and other potential opportunities for financial growth. Leaving $375 million on the table seems like a lot, but Brady would still probably be fairly comfortable without the big Fox deal.