Dale Arnold: Patriots told Tom Brady they can only offer 1-year deal for less than he made in 2019

WEEI
March 13, 2020 - 10:10 am
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Remember the phone conversation Tom Brady and Bill Belichick reportedly had recently that did not go well?

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On Thursday's Dale & Keefe show, Dale Arnold explained why it could be taken that way -- at least from Brady's perspective.

The Patriots and Belichick apparently made it clear to the quarterback that they can only offer him a one-year contract and it would have to be for less money than he made in 2019, which was $23 million.

“I will tell you what I was told happened. There were conflicting reports a week or so ago. Both reports said there was communication, there was a phone call between Tom Brady and the Patriots, presumably Bill Belichick," Arnold said. "And one of the reports said the call, ‘Did not go well.’ … Adam Schefter confirmed there was a phone call and said it was, ‘Business as usual.’ I am going to tell you how both are right.

“This is what I was told happened: There was a phone call between Bill Belichick and Tom Brady. There was not a negotiation. There wasn’t a, ‘We will offer you a two-year deal at X number of dollars.’ What I was told happened was the Patriots told Tom Brady that all they can do is a one-year deal at less money than he made last year because of the $13.5 million that gets tacked onto the salary cap and basically, ‘What we’re going to be able to do here Tom, is a one-year deal, but it’s not going to be for as much money as you got last year.’”

With the way Brady's contract was set up last summer, $13.5 million in dead money gets added to the Patriots' books in 2020 if he signs with any team, including the Patriots, past March 18. If he were to re-sign with New England before then it would be a $6.75 million dead cap hit in 2020 and $6.75 million in 2021.

Brady is set to hit free agency next week, and if all the Patriots can do is one year for less than $23 million, it's likely Brady will move on.

As of now, free agency is still scheduled to begin next Wednesday with the legal tampering period starting Monday.

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