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2020 NFL free agency: Tom Brady’s decision may not be his to make

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Should we be more focused on Bill Belichick’s role than we are Brady’s?

All anyone has been able to talk about in New England recently has been the fate of Tom Brady. Where will he decide to play next season? If that’s the question you’re asking, then you’re asking the wrong question.

Tom Brady is the best football player of all time. But, the Patriots are not his team, they are Bill Belichick’s team. He has final say and makes all the important decisions. Why would this decision be any different? Brady has leverage in the fact that he will technically be a free agent and can sign with any team he wants, however, he may not have as much leverage as you think. He has always put winning above everything else, and his best chance of winning, by far, comes here in New England.

Put aside the winning aspect, and you will see that not every team in the league would even be interested in Brady. It needs to be a team that is set up to win now and is just a quarterback away from making a serious Super Bowl push. Remember that Brady is going to be 43 this season, so to bring him, you are changing your offense to fit him for the next few years specifically to win now.

Do the Titans want him over Ryan Tannehill? Reports have come out that they are trying to sign Tannehill before the franchise tag deadline. He’s not at Brady’s level obviously, but he’s a whole lot younger, and played great in that system last season. If Tennessee makes that decision, who does that leave? The Raiders? Please. The Chargers? I guess, but that means you are trying to win the Super Bowl as a probable fifth seed at best. When you take a closer look, there are not as many great options for Brady out there.

That is why this comes down to a decision by the Patriots. Could Tom Brady he playing somewhere else next year? Yes, but I think it will be because Belichick decided it was time to move on. Would that hurt my soul? Absolutely, I’d be devastated, and football in New England would never be the same. The only solace for me would come in the fact that the decision was made by Belichick, who never does anything without having a plan.

And don’t give me the crap about Kraft forcing him to trade Jimmy Garoppolo in favor of Brady. Belichick knew could not afford to keep both quarterbacks in the long term, and he had to choose. Don’t believe me? Ask John Lynch, who said that Belichick laughed at him when he asked if Brady were available instead of Garoppolo. You can believe reports from anonymous sources, but I will take the word of a rival general manager over them.

This has been a very challenging offseason for Patriots fans. One of the worst, and longest, in a long time. Whatever happens, remember that it will most likely be on Belichick’s terms. The question you need to ask yourself is: How strong is your faith in Bill Belichick? Everyone has been saying “In Bill We Trust” for years. Will you stand by that if he moves on from Brady this offseason? I like to think I would, but I’m also hoping I don’t have to find out.

Pat is a host of The Patriot Nation Podcast

Interact with him on Twitter @plane_pats