FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Tom Brady is making one thing clear as he prepares for his 19th NFL season: He doesn’t plan to stop playing football anytime soon.
In the epilogue of his seven-part Facebook Watch documentary series “Tom Vs. Time” released on Wednesday, the 41-year-old Patriots quarterback reiterated his desire to play at least five more years.
“I’d love to play 41, 42, 43, 44, 45,” Brady said. “It’ll be a challenge for me. I don’t think it’s going to be easy. It’s going to be hard to do. I think it’s going to be very hard to do. But I think I can do it. And once you stop, you’re done. And I think I’m not ready to say that I’m done, because I don’t feel like I am. I still feel like there’s things to accomplish. … It was really hard to get to this point. Why not finish it off?”
New England opens its 2018 season Sunday against Houston.
Despite winning five Super Bowls and becoming the oldest player ever to win MVP honors last season at age 40, Brady said he thinks there’s another level he can reach.
“I think the last eight years of my career have been better than my first 10, so I should just prolong it, and that’s what I’m trying to do,” he said.
Since its debut in January, “Tom Vs. Time” has provided viewers a glimpse into several behind-the-scenes moments with Brady on the field since he turned 40, as well as rare looks at his private life off the field.
This final episode also explored what Brady said is a new approach to certain aspects of NFL life, which includes ignoring the opinions people have of him.
At one point he seemed to address the criticism he’s received in recent seasons about his relationship with his personal health coach and business partner Alex Guerrero. During training camp, Brady called it “ridiculous” to suggest the suspension of Patriots receiver Julian Edelman is tied to his work with Guerrero. Those same questions about Guerrero prompted Brady to abruptly end his first media availability of camp.
“(The media wants) to talk about a lot of drama,” Brady said during the epilogue. “I’m sure a lot of teams have things like that. But ours is just to the tenth degree. I’m learning to do deal with it better.”
Brady also hinted at the rumored discord between him and coach Bill Belichick, which both have previously downplayed.
“I think anytime you’re together with people for a long period of time, relationships ebb and flow,” Brady said. “I think people are just looking for something to write and talk about. I just don’t give a (expletive) anymore that much about anything. … Nothing’s that big a deal to me anymore. Or maybe I’m just caring more about things that really matter — like my family, like people’s health, like life and death.
“But to worry about a lot of (expletive) of what people may say or think or feel — I really don’t care anymore.”