Tom Brady Signs as Fox Sports Analyst, NFL Retirement Tour Now Underway
The seven-time Super Bowl winner will be joining Fox as a lead NFL analyst immediately after his playing career is over
In early March, while he was retired but before he was unretired, Tom Brady spoke with former pro golfer Fred Couples on his Sirius XM radio show about what he thought his post-football life would be.
“I wish I had a clear vision of what the future holds, but I think for me, there’s a lot of great things and a lot of great opportunities that I know I said right after football season I was looking forward to spending time with my family. And I’ve done that the last five weeks. And I know there’ll be a lot more of that, too,” Brady said.
About a week later, after spending a sixth week with his family (notice he was keeping track), Brady announced he was coming back to the NFL for a third season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and 23rd in pro football.
Today, courtesy of a surprise announcement from Fox Sports, we know that the 44-year-old’s career in pro football will continue after he is done playing, as the seven-time Super Bowl winner will join Fox as the network’s lead NFL analyst immediately after he is done playing.
“Over the course of this long-term agreement, Tom will not only call our biggest NFL games with Kevin Burkhardt, but will also serve as an ambassador for us, particularly with respect to client and promotional initiatives,” Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch said in a statement. “We are delighted that Tom has committed to joining the Fox team and wish him all the best during this upcoming season.” In an earnings call with investors, Murdoch added “it is entirely up to him when he chooses to retire and move into what will be an exciting television career, that is up to him to make that choice when he sees fit,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.
In a brief statement of his own, Brady said he was “excited” to join Fox, but had “a lot of unfinished business on the field” with the Bucs.
Both sides can say whatever they want, but now that Brady has made his post-retirement plans official there will be daily speculation about how long it will take the three-time NFL MVP to complete that unfinished business. Brady, who is only banking $15 million in salary this season from Tampa per Spotrac, will likely be getting a raise once his career at Fox officially starts as there is no way he is taking less than the $17.5 million Tony Romo is getting to call NFL games for CBS. (ProFootballTalk speculates that $30 or even $40 million could be on the table.)
In addition to killing off Brady’s assertion that he didn’t want to deal with a farewell tour because it would be too distracting, today’s announcement also puts the notion that the star quarterback is making decisions based on spending time with his family to bed once and for all. As the lead analyst for Fox, Brady will be spending his future Thanksgivings and Christmases in the broadcast booth calling NFL games, not at home watching them.
Finally, the Brady retirement tour is officially underway. Where and when it ends — maybe Miami? — is another matter.
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