Tom Brady tells M&C he isn't thinking about retirement and hasn't experienced arm pain since working with Alex Guerrero

Alex Reimer
January 28, 2019 - 9:19 am

Tom Brady is adamant he won’t retire after Super Bowl LIII, despite some recent speculation to the contrary. The Patriots’ quarterback insists his body has never felt better as he gears up to play in his ninth Super Bowl to cap off his 19th season.

In his weekly interview Monday with “Mut & Callahan,” Brady expanded on why he says he isn’t thinking about retirement. Earlier this season, Brady told his buddy Jim Gray he intends to play until he’s 45, and reiterated his desire to keep going in a new Q&A with ESPN’s Jeff Darlington. 

“I set a goal that I want to play until my mid-40s and I have long-term goals, short-term goals, but you’ve got to treat your body right,” Brady said. “You’ve got one body. If you decide to bury it and drive it into the ground, that’s what’s going to happen. I committed a long time ago –– it’s everything Alex (Guerrero) and I talk about. Just treating your body the right way, getting the right foods to eat, drinking the right things. He and I make sure we’re staying up on all of our treatments, the right amount of strength. In the end, it comes down to some discipline. You’ve got to have discipline in order to do it. That’s something I’ve learned over the years. A lot of people come to you and say, ‘What can I do? What’s the one thing?’ I’ll say, ‘It’s not one thing. It’s everything. It’s all of these choices.’ In your job, it’s the same thing. If you’re good at your job, it requires daily acts. It’s doing a lot of the right things over and over and over again, and becoming more efficient –– whether it’s a relationship, your work career, your body. It’s the same thing. You’ve got to do the right things more often than not. That’s the approach I’ve taken and it’s worked really well for me.”

In the TB12 Manual, Brady talks about his journey with his guru and business partner Alex Guerrero. Brady says he used to experience chronic shoulder and arm pain, which prompted him to start working with Guerrero, per the advice of former teammate Willie McGinest. Since then, Brady says he’s been pain-free, even though he’s nearly two decades older than most of his football-playing peers.

“I was in a lot of pain when I was a younger player,” Brady explained. “When I was 25, I worried, ‘How can I play football when I’m hurt all of the time? Every day I wakeup, I’m sore.’ I was doing what I had learned in college and what I saw a lot of guys do when they were young. I was just copying them, because that’s what you do. Then I learned from Willie (McGinest), after my arm was hurt so bad I couldn’t throw in training camp. He said, ‘Dude, you’ve got to do something different. You’ve got to come work with Alex.’ I did, and I haven’t had arm pain since. That arm pain, the same way I treated my arm, is the same way I’ve treated my knee, ankles, hips, shoulders. All of these things that you see all of these athletes having problems with. I’m fortunate to be 41 and still feel like I can go out there and perform at a championship level. And again, it takes effort. I certainly put effort into it. It certainly requires the discipline to do it. But for me, it’s not that hard, because I love to do it. I really like the way I feel. When you feel great, I don’t know why you would ever go back to wanting to feel badly. That doesn’t make sense to me.”

Brady did reportedly suffer an MCL injury this season, but that appears to be behind him. Still, ex-teammate Rodney Harrison advised Brady over the weekend to retire, saying he hopes his friend moves on to enjoy the rest of his life while his body is still intact. 

While Brady appreciates the sentiment, it doesn’t seem like he’s going to take Harrison up on his advice.

“I didn’t talk to Rodney about that. I don’t think anyone wants to see anyone get hurt,” Brady said. “But you could be 24 and get hurt, you could be 26 and get hurt. It’s a contact sport. Anything can happen. But again, you just do your best to prepare your body for the types of hits you’re going to take. Again, it’s a yearlong process. I never really get out of shape, I stay in good shape. I love playing football and I love the competition and love competing at the highest level. I don’t know what’s more fun for me than running out against Kansas City in the biggest game of our season in front of 70,000 people and coming away with the win. That was one of the great joys of my life. And I think you can never go back as an athlete. It’s not like I’m going to retire for a year and then come back when I’m 43. I’m just going to keep playing. When I feel like I don’t want to make the commitment, or feel like I’ve had enough, then I’ve had enough. But in my view, this year, next year, the year after that, I want to keep playing, because I really love it, and I’m having a lot of fun.”

As we all know, Father Time comes for everyone. But at 41 years old, Brady still thinks he has several years left, and at this point, it’s hard to doubt him.