Tom Brady has set out to prove Father Time wrong once again. The veteran quarterback will be turning 45 years old just before the season starts. Anything can happen between now and then, but he is currently going to be without a longtime teammate, TE Rob Gronkowski. While this could hurt his output, Brady has shown us that he isn’t ready to hang up the cleats and to still have faith in his ability.
Other than Gronk retiring, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ offense will look largely the same. Mike Evans and Chris Godwin will be the primary receivers and the Bucs added Russell Gage and Julio Jones in the passing game. Ronald Jones left the team in free agency, but Leonard Fournette returned and should see a lot of playing time. It will likely be a team effort to replace Gronk’s production, but Cameron Brate and rookie Cade Otton should get the first shot.
2021 season statistics & fantasy finish
Passing: Brady completed 485 of his 719 passes for a 67.5% completion percentage. He threw for a league-leading 5,316 yards with 43 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
Rushing: Brady is certainly not known for his mobility. He ran the ball 28 times for 81 yards and two touchdowns last season.
Fantasy: He finished with 374.74 fantasy points, ranking third among quarterbacks. Brady’s 22 fantasy points per game were also the third among quarterbacks.
Buccaneers offseason moves
Tampa Bay didn’t do a lot this offseason outside of the surprise signing of Jones. Guard Ali Marpet retired, and they signed C Ryan Jensen, G Aaron Stinnie, CB Carlton Davis and WRs Russell Gage and Breshad Perriman. They also brought in DB Logan Ryan and OL Fred Johnson.
The biggest news of the offseason was the retirement and then ensuing un-retirement of Brady. Head coach Bruce Arians stepped down and Todd Bowles is the new head coach heading into the season.
2022 best-case scenario
We are very familiar with the best-case scenario for Brady. We won the Super Bowl with the Bucs only two years ago and he can certainly do it again. When it comes to fantasy, Brady’s best-case scenario is capped by the lack of rushing upside. He could finish as the overall QB1, but to do that he would need to greatly lead the league in passing yards and touchdowns. Guys like Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson all have elevated fantasy value because of what they can do on the ground.
2022 worst-case scenario
The worst-case scenario for Brady is that he should have stayed retired and it becomes obvious. Whether that is from inaccuracy in his passing or regression in touchdown production, the end of Brady’s career is near. If he lets it show, you know it is going to mess with him on a weekly basis and he could finish outside the top-10 quarterbacks. Luckily, a lot has to go wrong for that to happen, so it isn’t very likely.
Barring an injury, the old-timer should continue to impress. Brady has consistently shown that nobody knows him better than himself, so if he felt like he had enough left in the tank to play competitively, then we have to assume he does. With weapons around him like Evans, Jones, Godwin and Fournette, Brady should be in for another great fantasy football year.