Details emerge on how Tom Brady ultimately signed with Tampa Bay this week

Ryan Hannable
March 22, 2020 - 10:17 am
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It dragged out a few days, but Tom Brady officially became a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by the end of last week.

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Sunday, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times gave a detailed timeline of what happened, and how Brady handled it all.

On Monday, the first day of the legal tampering period, the Buccaneers and Don Yee, Brady's agent, connected at noon and apparently money was the last thing the two sides discussed during their phone call.

It seems money was one of the last things Brady cared about.

Teams could not speak directly to players until Wednesday, and that was when Brady spoke to general manager Jason Licht, who was with the Patriots at the beginning of Brady's career, and head coach Bruce Arians. It was clear Brady did his homework, as he knew all of the Buccaneers' skill players and then he discussed how well Tampa's defense played late in the year under Todd Bowles. He also seemed to have a good idea of how Arians operates offensively.

The three spoke for 90 minutes and Brady did not ask for much. He did not ask for control of the offense, he did not ask for certain players, and he didn't even ask for No. 12. The one thing he wanted was to have the phone numbers of his new teammates.

Following that, Brady and Tampa arranged for a physical to be done in New York City and soon after Brady was officially a member of the Buccaneers.

Brady officially signed his two-year, $50 million deal with an additional $9 million in incentives Friday morning. 

After not making the postseason since 2007, having Brady in the mix gives Tampa Bay fans much-needed excitement heading into the 2020 season.

“Of all the reasons to be happy, that’s the No. 1 thing,’’ Licht said. “Just happy that during this time, what we’re all going through, there’s an escape, something for our fans to really, really be happy about.’’

Licht added: “You could say I’m probably not going to be very popular this summer in New England where I go vacationing."

Related: Robert Kraft, Patriots take out full-page ad in Tampa Bay Times for Tom Brady: 'Take care of him. You got a great one'