Bucs' Tom Brady Says He Still Has 'A Lot of Love' for Boston, Patriots FansFebruary 3, 2021
Tom Brady isn't forgetting where he came from.
Gearing up for his 10th Super Bowl appearance and first with a team other than the New England Patriots, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback said he's appreciative of the support he receives from fans in New England, where he spent the first 20 years of his NFL career.
"Any time you change teams you don't know how it's going to go, but there's been incredible support from the team I used to play for, all the New England fans," he said (h/t Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk). "I have a lot of love for Boston and all of New England. Incredible support over the years. It was an amazing two decades of my life."
With their legendary quarterback headed to another Super Bowl amidst New England's worst season since 2000, Patriots fans have been split on whether or not they're rooting for Brady—and former tight end Rob Gronkowski, who came out of retirement to join Brady and the Bucs—this season.
According to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post, the NFC Championship game had a 39.9 rating in the Tampa-St. Petersburg viewing area, just slightly more than that in Providence and Boston, which posted numbers of 37.9 and 36.0, respectively.
Cam Newton had big shoes to fill when he took the reins in New England this season, filling in for a player who won six Super Bowls (four of which resulted in him being named MVP) along with 17 AFC East titles and 13 AFC Champions appearances. Instead, the dynasty came crashing down to reality, with a 7-9 record and a missed playoff appearance for the first time since 2008.
Patriots fans—and the Patriots themselves—will have to watch as Brady attempts to win his seventh ring, but they'll get a chance to see him again in the fall when the Patriots host the Buccaneers at Gillette Stadium.