Hannable: Ending of Tom vs. Time feels like Tom Brady is closer to end of career than we think

Ryan Hannable
March 12, 2018 - 1:36 pm

Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports

The final episode of Tom vs. Time was released Monday afternoon and capped what was a tremendous production by Tom Brady and director Gotham Chopra.

It was truly fascinating to get a peek behind the curtain of the greatest quarterback to ever play the game and see what goes into him performing the way he does, as well a look inside his personal life. Within that it gave some clues as to how he feels about certain things and also some insight into what was going on inside the walls of Gillette Stadium this past season.

In episode five it showed his personal training guru Alex Guerrero giving him treatment in a Gillette Stadium suite before a December game because Guerrero had his office in the stadium taken away. Then, in the closing minutes of the final episode both Brady and his wife Gisele Bundchen had some interesting words as it relates to the past few years, and also the future for the 40-year-old quarterback.

“These last two years have been very challenging for him in so many ways, and he tells me, ‘I love it so much and I just want to go to work and feel appreciated and have fun,’” Bundchen said.

These words give truth to what has been rumored for the last few months -- there’s been some tension at One Patriot Place and Brady is right in the middle of it.

Two things come to mind. 

One, the Guerrero situation and how much of an issue it has caused, with Bill Belichick going as far as banning him from the sidelines during games and taking his office away at the stadium. And two, the ESPN story where Seth Wickersham hinted Brady no longer is OK with Belichick being so hard on him.

“Belichick's negativity and cynicism have gotten old, Brady has told other Patriots players and staff,” Wickersham wrote. “He feels he has accomplished enough that he shouldn't have to endure so much grief.”

While it’s no guarantee these two things are part of what Gisele was referring to, it’s hard not to connect the dots. 

Brady also closed the docu-series by speaking about why he continues to play the game at age 40 and when he will know it’s time to call it quits.

“I’m sitting here three days after the year getting my Achilles worked on and my thumb and you go, ‘What are we doing this for? What are we doing this for? Who are we doing this for? Why are we doing this?’ You have to have answers for those questions and they have to be with a lot of conviction,” he said. “When you lose your conviction you probably should be doing something else."

It’s important to note Brady played a major part in this production. He’s the one controlling the message. If he didn’t want Gisele’s comments to be included, he in all likelihood would have them removed. He also chose to end with those last few sentences -- the last thing the viewer leaves with.

When you lose your conviction you probably should be doing something else.

With Gisele admitting the past few years have been frustrating and hinting he isn’t having as much fun as he used to, it’s worth wondering how much conviction Brady has left? 

Having accomplished so much in his career and unquestionably being the best quarterback of all-time, what else does Brady have to prove? Maybe playing at an elite level over the age of 40 and giving more credence to the TB12 Method, but really, is going to work not happy worth it? Especially with his kids growing older at home and missing their dad?

It sure felt like an ominous ending. 

No, it doesn’t appear Brady will be retiring before the start of next season, but the narrative that he’s going to play until his mid-40s may not be as strong as some thought it was say a few months ago.

One last deep playoff run capped off with a sixth Super Bowl title may cause that conviction to keep playing go away.

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