Tom Brady will be back to defend his Super Bowl title.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback confirmed his plans to play again in 2021 following Sunday's win over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV. He will be 44 years old.
"Oh yeah, we're coming back," he told Jim Nantz in a postgame interview. "You already know that."Brady earned Super Bowl MVP honors for the fifth time in his career after throwing for three touchdowns in his team's 31-9 win over the Chiefs.
As ESPN's Jenna Laine noted, he entered rare company on Sunday, surpassing his idol Michael Jordan by earning his seventh championship ring. As she pointed out, there are few figures across the history of sports who have won as many times as Brady, though he still has one more win to go to surpass former coach Bill Belichick, who also won twice as an assistant coach with the New York Giants.While there had been some speculation about whether Brady might hang up his cleats if he led the Buccaneers to a title this season, the future Hall of Famer has long been open about his desire to continue playing into his mid 40s. As CBS Sports reported, Brady has said that he would like to play until he's 45, which would come after the final year of his two-year contract with the Buccaneers is over.
Brady also said he could continue playing beyond that point if he's still able to keep up with the game as he had in the last year. Speaking to the media in the week leading up to the contest, he shared that, as long as he could stay committed to the sport and keep up with the physical demands, he would keep on playing.
"Yea definitely," he said earlier in the week. "It's a physical sport and the perspective you have on that is -- you never know. You never know when that moment is, just because it's a contact sport and there's a lot of training that goes into it. And again, it has to be 100 percent commitment from myself to keep doing it."
Another familiar face could be back with him. As Pro Football Talk reported, tight end Rob Gronkowski said after the game that he plans to return as well, though he will be entering free agency. One of Brady's favorite targets with the New England Patriots, Gronkowski came out of retirement to play with the signal-caller this season, and caught two touchdowns in the victory over the Chiefs.