By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Tom Brady released a brief, five-minute epilogue to the “Tom vs. Time” docuseries on Wednesday, and Patriots fans are going to like it. A lot.
Brady used the video series to double down on his decision to spend time away from the Patriots during voluntary workouts and practices in the spring and summer, saying he owed it to his children to dedicate time to them.
“I mean when I look at probably the last six months, it’s been the first time where I’ve taken a little break I think from what I’ve done and what’s been cyclical and monotonous. But I just think I needed something different this year. My family needed something different. I’ve gotta be able to spend enough time with them, because I want to, because you’ve gotta see ‘em grow, you’ve gotta see ‘em develop, you’ve gotta be there for ‘em,” Brady explained. “I think in general, kids want to know that you care about them. And they need your time and energy. And if they’re not going to get it from – whatever, August through January – then they’ve gotta get it from February through July, or else I’m not doing my job as a parent.”
Despite all of the criticism that his absence might have inspired, Brady confidently stood by his decision.
“I think being able to be available to them in ways that I never have been is something that I’m never going to regret,” he said.
Brady also discussed how he deals with all of the nonstop chatter and speculation about the drama that plays out inside the walls of Foxboro Stadium. Though he didn’t mention Bill Belichick by name, it wasn’t difficult to discern what Brady was talking about.
“I think any time you’re together with people for a long period of time, relationships ebb and flow. And I think people are just looking for something to write and talk about,” Brady said. “They want to talk about drama, and I’m sure a lot of teams have things like that. But ours is just to the 10th degree.”
The 41-year-old Brady said his approach to such media speculation is to just separate himself from it.
“You learn to deal with it better. I just don’t give a f— that much anymore about anything,” Brady said. “I think a lot of keeping things in perspective. Nothing’s that big a deal to me anymore. And maybe I’m just caring about certain things that really matter, like my family, like people’s health, like life and death. But to worry about a lot of bulls— that people may say or think or feel, like, I really don’t care anymore.”
And, after an offseason where it seemed unclear if Brady would even play in 2018, he steadfastly maintained in this video that he hopes to play until he’s 45 years old. He made no guarantees that he’d be able to do it, but he explained his mind-set for reaching that goal.
“I would love to play five more years. Would love to play 41, 42, 43, 44, 45. It’ll be a challenge for me. I don’t think it’s going to be easy. It’s [expletive] gonna be hard to do. I think it’s gonna be very hard to do. But, I think I can do it,” Brady asserted. “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’d be like getting close to the top of the mountain and being like, ‘Ah, that’s good, I’m good.’ It’s like, no, you worked really hard to get to this point, why not finish it off?
“Look at my career from 30, 32, 33 on, you know. A lot of players retire at 33. You look at in football, a 10-year career, that’s an amazing career. I mean 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.”
Brady stated earlier this offseason that he didn’t plan on bringing back Tom Vs. Time for a second go-round, but a teaser trailer surprisingly hit the internet on Tuesday, a day before the release of this new video.
The epilogue is the latest instance of Brady taking time this offseason to share a message via his own chosen methods. He’s sat down with Jim Gray at a conference, with Oprah Winfrey for a TV special, and he’s partaken in “interviews” with Religion of Sports and the TB12 center. On the contrary, he’s twice expressed disapproval for a couple of questions from the rest of the media — first a scrum of reporters during minicamp, then a radio show last month — after being asked questions about trainer Alex Guerrero which he did not seek to answer.
Brady — along with filmmaker Gotham Chopra — debuted this series in January, with five episodes leading up to the Super Bowl, and one more episode coming in the aftermath of the Super Bowl loss. In the docuseries, Brady examined his present and his future in football, ending the series with a statement about what it would take for him to continue playing football for a living.
“It’s a big commitment,” Brady said. “You go, ‘What are we doing this for? Who are we doing this for? Why are we doing this?’ You gotta have answers to those questions, and they have to be with a lot of conviction. When you lose your conviction, then you probably should be doing something else.”
That was a comment that garnered quite a bit of attention, particularly when Brady uncharacteristically skipped the aforementioned voluntary offseason program. But Brady said in late July that he found his conviction, and he’s been all systems go for 2018 since then. And the epilogue served as a pretty clear statement that the Brady plan is back on track.