Reports of Tom Brady’s retirement on Saturday set off a chain of events and reactions on social media. ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Jeff Darlington reported that Brady was indeed hanging up his helmet after 22 seasons, though that report was later refuted by Brady’s agent as well as his father.
Family and long-term health are reportedly two key factors that will determine Brady’s ultimate decision, but another report stated that money is behind the decision. It was reported that Brady is due $15 million as part of a signing bonus that is set to be paid out on Feb. 4th.
The Athletic’s Greg Auman is refuting that notion.
“This is completely wrong,” Auman said. “Just misreading contract to portray Brady as having incentive to wait on retiring.” Noting, “His contract pays him a deferred $15 million bonus Feb. 4, but he’s already earned it. Doesn’t need to be on roster to get it. And if he retires, he pays back $16 million.”
In the meantime, ESPN has stood by its reporting of Brady’s retirement, and Mark Maske of The Washington Post reported that Brady “is indeed retiring,” and that the developments on Saturday were related to “the public announcement of Brady’s retirement more than to the decision itself.”
As it stands now, it’s not a matter of if, but when he makes the announcement.