In a 40-day period during the offseason, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady retired and unretired, deciding that he wasn’t quite done with football as he returned for his 23rd NFL season.
The return has not gone as planned.
The Bucs have struggled, going 4-5 to start the season with an offense ranked 25th in the NFL in points per game (18.0). Prior to last week’s last-second win over the Los Angeles Rams, Tampa Bay had lost three straight with Brady throwing for just two touchdowns in the three-game stretch.
But the struggles have not left a sour taste in Brady’s mouth on his decision to return to football after retiring in the offseason.
“Zero. No definitely not,” Brady said Friday when asked whether he has any regrets about unretiring. “I think I returned because I felt like I wanted to compete. And I spoke to the team about it, and they were excited to have me back. I don’t really regret those types of things. When I commit to it, I mean it, and I do my best and try to give everything I can to this particular opportunity.”
Even at 4-5, the Bucs are still in first place in the weak NFC South with a matchup against the first-place Seattle Seahawks in Germany on Sunday
“I think the frustrating part is we just haven’t played to the way we’re capable of playing. And that’s for a number of different reasons,” Brady continued. “This is a very important game for us – we have a bye week after this. It gives you a chance to kind of evaluate where you’re at, and I’d much rather evaluate being 5-5 than 4-6. We’ve got to just win this game, and it’ll take care of that.”
His return to the football field has also coincided with issues in his personal life, with Brady and Gisele Bündchen announcing the end of their marriage in late October.
“In recent days, my wife and I finalized our divorce from one another after 13 years of marriage,” Brady wrote in a post on social media. “We arrived at this decision amicably and with gratitude for the time we spent together. We are blessed with beautiful and wonderful children who will continue to be the center of our world in every way.
“We will continue to work together as parents to always ensure they receive the love and attention they deserve.”
Tampa Bay’s 18 points per game are the lowest through nine games of Brady’s career, according to ESPN.