By CBSBoston.com Staff

BOSTON (CBS) — Tom Brady’s on-field performance in 2020 at the age of 43 gave no indications that the GOAT is having any issues playing and thriving at an age where 99 percent of quarterbacks are long retired.

Off the field, though, Brady admitted that things have not been exceptionally easy for him this year.

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Now 44, Brady is working himself back into playing shape after undergoing surgery for a torn MCL — an injury that he played on for the entirety of the 2020 season, and an injury that didn’t stop him from being named Super Bowl MVP for the fifth time in his career.

In an interview on SiriusXM Radio — as transcribed by JoeBucsFan.com — Brady admitted that it’s been difficult to get his body back to full speed.

“It was a tough offseason in terms of the rehab,” Brady said. “When you miss time and you don’t continue to train the way you’re capable of training, it’s tough because your body just wants to, you know, it feels like, ‘OK, I get time off.’ And then when you get your body going again, it’s hard. You’re body’s like, ‘No, no, no, no. We’re not working out. We’re chilling.’ And I’m trying to get it going and it just doesn’t want to do it. So I’ve had to push through different things and even the early part of training camp, just getting my legs under me and getting my football legs.”

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Of course, rehabbing a knee injury at 43 and 44 is a lot different from 2008, when Brady worked to recover from his torn ACL and torn MCL, suffered in Week 1 of that season, when he was a spry 31 years of age. So this revelation is not necessarily surprising. It is, however, an admission that even the ageless Brady is facing limitations that he’s never felt before.

But lest any opponents think the quarterback is vulnerable this season, Brady did express confidence that he’s gotten where he need to get physically this summer.

“I feel like I’m really just now kind of feeling — not from a rehab standpoint but from a football standpoint — like my legs are feeling bouncy and ready to go,” Brady said. “My arm’s feeling live.”

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The world will get its first glimpse of 44-year-old-coming-off-knee-surgery Brady when he and the Bucs begin their Super Bowl defense on Sept. 9 against the Dallas Cowboys. We’ll see fairly early just how ready Brady is for his age 44 season.

CBSBoston.com Staff