An essential piece of the dynasty the New England Patriots have built appears to be moving on. Tom Brady posted to social media on Tuesday that he plans on exploring his options as an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his 20-year career. He has played for the Patriots since they selected him with a sixth-round pick in the 2000 NFL Draft. Now opposing teams are looking acquire Brady and upgrade their quarterback rooms. We break down where the six-time Super Bowl champ is most likely to land in 2020 here:
The Chargers appear to be the frontrunners to land Brady right now. They reportedly offered Brady a contract valued at about $30 million annually, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. But Los Angeles has other things to offer him as well. The Chargers’ offense is significantly more talented than the group Brady captained in New England last year. They have a dynamic go-to receiver in Keenan Allen, and up-and-coming second option out wide in Mike WIlliams, a young tight end in Hunter Henry, and a versatile back in Austin Ekeler that nearly notched over 1,000 rushing yards and passing yards last season. Brady likely only has a season or two left, so returning to his home state of California with a hefty contract isn’t a bad deal.
Tampa Bay is said to have made an offer comparable to the one made by Los Angeles. The NFC South isn’t as challenging, and the Bucs finished 7-9 in a season where Jameis Winston threw 30 interceptions. Wide receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin had huge years last season, but Tampa Bay’s options at tight end and running back are downgrades from what the Chargers can offer. On the other hand, Bruce Arians is said to be a quarterback’s coach. The opportunity to work with him could be enough to persuade Brady to join.
The Raiders have long been rumored to be interested in Brady, but they have already agreed to bring Marcus Mariota aboard to pair with Derek Carr in the quarterback room. It seems unlikely that Las Vegas would bring aboard two signal callers who could unseat Carr, and there have been no reports of an offer being made. The Raiders are less talented offensively than the aforementioned teams, and that’s not what Brady wants to deal with.
The Dolphins have said they are in a rebuilding process, which we’ve seen with their regular trading of players for picks. However, there have been some rumors they might push for Brady at some point. However, given their dearth of talent, it’s hard to see Brady going there outside of a pure money grab.
Jacoby Brissett was serviceable filling in as a starter following Andrew Luck’s unexpected retirement last year, but the Colts want to step it up. They’ve been linked to multiple veteran quarterbacks since the end of the 2019 season, but are reportedly nearing a deal with Philip Rivers, according to ESPN’s Ed Werder.