Did the LA Rams just give Tom Brady reasons to retire?

Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

The LA Rams have faced the Tom Brady-led Tampa Bay Buccaneers three times in the past two seasons. And the LA Rams defeated quarterback Tom Brady, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, all three times. Sometimes one team’s dominance over another team is tough to explain. In those cases, the better team on paper does not always win.

But in the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs, when the Rams defeated the Buccaneers by a score of 27-24, the better team clearly won. The Rams were in command with a huge lead before turnovers allowed the Bucs to sneak back into it.  With the win, the Rams ended Tom Brady’s dominance of the NFL after moving to and playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

That cessation of dominance creates a fork in the road for Brady now. Should he come back, risk tarnishing his going-out-nearly-atop-his-game, for a chance to retake another Super Bowl victory? Or should he step away now, while he will still be thought of as a QB who can win a Super Bowl?

Retire on a high note

I know what my decision would be. And based on the views of NFL Analysts, it seems as though Brady is leaning that way too.

So what do some others think? The tone of the many analysts is that Brady retires after the 2021 NFL Season. Just watch the Peter King/Mike Florio video below, they would be very surprised if Brady steps away now:


Rams will be on his radar through 2022

While Brady committed to playing through 2022, everything has changed now. Brady’s legacy was ascending all the way through the 2021 NFL Season. But when he faces the LA Rams, now in three straight contests, has been stopped dead in his tracks.

After the 2020 NFL Season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers worked very hard to bring everyone back. But even having done so, the Bucs lost twice this year to the Rams. And the same LA Rams will be on the schedule in 2022. And if the Buccaneers are in the playoffs next year, they will have a good chance to face the Rams again.

We witnessed what happened in a game after Brady publicly admitted that he gets away with tantrums.  But after calling out the NFL officials for giving him preferential treatment, they were not as willing to do so. Without that NFL officiating coddling Brady, protecting Brady, will the game really be as fun to play if the referees suddenly abandon the guy?

Perhaps the key to all of this is formerly retired tight end Rob Gronkowski, who came out of retirement to reunite with his quarterback and play these past two seasons. Per ESPN staff writer Jenna Lane, Gronkowski would retire once more if he was forced to decide right now. I believe that decision, due to his closeness with Brady, indicates which way his quarterback is leaning right now.

If he retires now, the entire NFL will wonder if Tom Brady had one more Super Bowl win in him. If he comes back in 2022 and doesn’t deliver? The entire NFL may realize that he doesn’t.

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