The recent news of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s two-year contract extension was noteworthy for two reasons.
Brady will be 42 when the contract expires at the end of the 2019 season. He brushes aside questions about his ability to play at that age with remarks inferring that he could play another 10 years. Anyone who watched him last season acknowledges that his throwing is still at an elite level, unlike that of five-time MVP Peyton Manning, who at 39, has only about a week remaining to announce his retirement or risk being cut by the Denver Broncos.
For Brady, then, the issue seems to be the same on that every player in the NFL confronts daily: Can he keep his legs healthy? He is still mobile in the pocket and will occasionally run if the situation warrants the risk.
The truly surprising aspect of Brady’s contract extension, however, is that he took a pay cut that lessened his impact on the team’s salary cap in order to help the team acquire free agent talent. His 2015 salary ranked 14 in the league, despite his easily being one of the NFL’s top three quarterbacks. Brady made less than two less-proven and effective quarterbacks, those being Chicago’s Jay Cutler and Sab Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick.