Tom Brady on Bucs' Preparation for 2020 Season: 'Clock's Ticking on Everybody'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 6, 2020

FILE - In this Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020 file photo, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady walks to the sideline after throwing an interception late in the second half of an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Tennessee Titans in Foxborough, Mass. Nearly every one of the NFL's eight divisions has a team or teams with a quarterback quandary. With the exception of the NFC West it's easy to argue that there's a major hole behind center somewhere. Yep, after two decades of unmatched success, Tom Brady is without a contract. (AP Photo/Bill Sikes, File)
Bill Sikes/Associated Press

The COVID-19 pandemic has limited how much Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady has been able to work out with his new team. Brady doesn't think his situation unique, though.

"I think the reality is, the clock's ticking on everybody," Brady told reporters Thursday. "We're going to have to work as hard as we can, to not waste any minutes of any day trying to get used to one another, to embrace the challenge and see it as an opportunity to see what we can become."

The NFL already canceled the preseason because of the pandemic, and players had to conduct most of their workouts and meetings virtually before they were permitted to report for training camp.

Brady's comments underscore how one can't assume the NFL can continue with business as usual.

Every Power Five conference in college football has reduced its schedule amid the pandemic, and players from both the NFL and NCAA ranks have opted out of the upcoming campaign altogether.

The MLB season, meanwhile, is a possible harbinger for the NFL, given that both leagues are staging games in home cities rather than one or two central locations, like the NBA, NWSL, MLS and NHL have adopted.

Two MLB teams have already experienced COVID-19 outbreaks, and league officials have already had to postpone numerous games in a regular season that's only two weeks old.

NFL rosters are larger than those in MLB, and there's far more person-to-person contact during a game. As a result, it's fair to wonder whether the NFL can avoid a similar outcome even if its officials work to avoid the mistakes their MLB peers have made.

As Brady said, time might not be a luxury afforded to football players this fall.