Perhaps maybe it is the end of the Pats' dynasty, but Tom Brady insists he's leaning toward returning to the NFL in 2020 for a 21st season.
"I would say it's pretty unlikely. ... Hopefully unlikely," Brady said.
TB12 is set to be a free agent, and his contract doesn't allow the Patriots to use the franchise tag on the QB.
Brady didn't want to get into his future moments after his team just suffered its first home playoff loss since 2012.
"Who knows what the future holds? We'll leave it at that," he said.
It's nearly impossible to imagine Brady wearing anything but a Patriots No. 12 jersey. Still, after a disappointing year, there is a murkiness to New England's offseason for the first time in a generation.
"I love the Patriots. They have the greatest organization," Brady said. "Playing for Mr. Kraft all these years and coach Belichick, there's nobody who has had a better career than me, just being with them. I'm very blessed. I don't know what the future looks like, so I'm not going to predict it."
The Patriots' offense was brutal to watch nearly all season. Brady had his flashes of brilliance at moments and also looked like a 42-year-old at others. With an offensive line that struggled most of the year, a receiving corps that was never settled, zero tight end help with Rob Gronkowski retired, and a ground game that couldn't find consistent traction, Brady wasn't given much to work with in 2019. Still, his struggles were notable at his age.
Saturday's playoff tilt against the Titans was no different. The Pats had plenty of opportunities in a one-point game to turn the tide, but the offense came up short. First was getting stuffed at the goal-line on three straight plays to settle for a field goal in the first half. Then it was picking up a measly five first downs in the entire second half. The ever-reliable Julian Edelman dropped a would-be first down on a pivotal drive. Brady's final pass was popped off the hands of Mohamed Sanu for a Logan Ryan pick-six.
Surely, that can't be Brady's final throw in New England, right?