Two years ago, Tom Brady signed a deal with Fox to become their next lead NFL analyst whenever he retired. His deal was a record-setting one, obliterating any other broadcasting contract at 10 years, $375 million.
However, after retiring (again) earlier this year, Brady and Fox both agreed to wait until 2024 to start his deal, allowing the future Hall of Famer to take a year off from football completely, and also learn and get more comfortable as a broadcaster. In the meantime, Greg Olsen will remain Fox’s lead analyst alongside Kevin Burkhardt during the 2023 NFL season, but it’s possible Olsen’s tenure in the lead booth will not just be a stopgap.
Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reported on Thursday during an episode of The Marchand and Ourand Sports Media Podcast that he was now leaning more toward Brady backing out of his massive deal entirely.
Marchand says he’s spoken with some close to Brady recently who noted the former star isn’t sure he wants to commit to the travel schedule of calling games full-time, noting he wouldn’t want to go into it at anything less than 100 percent, which means 4 days on the road each week as opposed to arriving on game day. While that’s not exactly a huge lift for someone making $37.5 million per year, Brady isn’t exactly hurting for money right now and, as Marchand notes, he shares custody of his children with ex-wife Gisele Bündchen.
It was always fairly surprising that Brady agreed to such a long-term deal to be in the booth immediately after retiring, because the travel requirements and general workload is the reason Peyton Manning has turned down every network’s overtures to land NFL broadcasting’s white whale. ESPN finally was able to land him for the Manningcast, but that’s 10 weeks during the season and is done from the comfort of his home (which, the brothers not being in the same room and stepping on each other and guests remains the biggest issue with the show). Brady now seems to be realizing he may also not want to commit to that lifestyle, and will have the next year-plus to decide whether he wants to move forward with his deal with Fox or if he’ll be turning down $375 million.