Robert Kraft: 'We Will Do Everything' for Tom Brady to Retire as Member of PatriotsFebruary 2, 2023
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft made it clear Thursday that he wants legendary quarterback Tom Brady to symbolically retire as a Patriot.
Appearing on CNN (h/t CBS News Boston) one day after Brady concluded his 23-year NFL career by announcing his retirement, Kraft discussed his desire to sign Brady to a one-day contract to put a bow on his Hall of Fame career and honor him properly:
"I'd do it tomorrow. Not only do I want it, our fans are clamoring for it. And to us, he always has been and always will be a Patriot.
"We will do everything we can in our power to bring him back, sign off as a Patriot, and find ways to honor him for many years to come. He did so much to bring life and good cheer to our community and he's a beloved figure and he's earned the respect and love that people feel for him like no other athlete in our town and we've had some great ones."
Brady spent his first 20 seasons in New England before playing three years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to close out his career.
The Patriots gave Brady his chance by selecting him No. 199 overall in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft, but few could have anticipated what he would become.
Over the next two decades, Brady cemented himself as arguably the greatest player in NFL history, winning six Super Bowls, four Super Bowl MVP awards and three NFL MVP awards during his time with the Pats.
Brady and Bill Belichick established themselves as the best quarterback-head coach combination in NFL history, and when adding Kraft to the mix, there has never been a more successful organization hierarchy in the sport.
It seemed impossible that Brady and the Patriots would ever split up, but that is what happened after the 2019 season, as he signed with the Bucs and spent three years in Tampa.
Brady added one more Super Bowl ring, Super Bowl MVP award and Pro Bowl selection to his career totals in Tampa Bay, and he proved that he could win the big one without Belichick.
While many rumors have persisted about the relationship between Brady and Belichick breaking down, leading to Brady's departure, every indication is that Brady and Kraft have remained close and share a father-son type of bond.
Although Brady's tenure in New England didn't end in fairytale fashion, that can change if he agrees to retire as a member of the Patriots organization.
Brady remains a beloved figure in the New England area because of everything he accomplished with the Patriots, and the fans would love an opportunity to properly appreciate him.
While Brady has a commentary job lined up with Fox and may be focused on that heading into 2023, he seemingly has an open invitation to sign an honorary deal with the Pats and end his career in a fitting way.