In March, New England Patriots fans were still very much in love with Tom Brady – and for good reason. After all, many assumed he would resign with the Pats and come back for another AFC East title and deep postseason run.
But then he signed with Tampa Bay, and some Patriots fans soured.
Of course, when you play 20 years for the same franchise and same head coach, you might not need OTAs to prepare for a season. When you change teams, however, extra work could be necessary.
“I didn’t care,” Murray said. “I actually kind of thought it was funny because I’m more Tom over team and have been that way over the last like five years. I think he’s been the more important piece. That’s no real knock on [Bill] Belichick. I understand how much he means and how important he is and he’s the greatest coach ever, but I just didn’t really like how he handled this whole situation.”
Some fans and analysts wonder if Belichick took Brady for granted during his final seasons in New England.
“I felt like [Belichick] wanted to move on after he drafted [Jimmy] Garoppolo, so I can understand why Brady got a little diva-ish and Dan Marino-ish at the end here,” Murray said. “I still think he has something left in the tank, and they kind of did him dirty and pushed him out, especially after he won that MVP the year that they lost to the Eagles in the Super Bowl. That incentive-laden contract they put in front of him, I thought, was just straight up insulting, so I can understand why he was pissed.”
Which is why Murray was happy to see Brady practicing months before the 2020 season.
“After last season, the way it played out, that’s what I wanted: a reinvigorated Tom, a reinvigorated Bill and let’s see how it plays out without each other,” Murray said. “But boy, people saw that and [whined], ‘Oh now he’s going to try. Now he cares. You did us dirty.’ It’s one of the great and terrible things about Boston and New England as a whole. It’s so provincial. It’s part of our charm, but it’s also maybe our biggest flaw. ‘Oh, you left us and now you did us dirty. You forgot where you came from.’ Oh just get over it, you stupid babies, and wish him the best. The guy’s given us the greatest run in 20 years. He’s everything that any of us could have ever wished for or we could have rooted for as sports fans around here. Root for him, you babies.”