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Tom Brady excused from Bucs practice again, plans extended break

Rick Stroud, Tampa Bay Times on

Published in Football

TAMPA, Fla. — Something besides playing quarterback has become more important to Tom Brady.

The seven-time Super Bowl champion was excused from practice for the second time in a week for personal reasons. He was never slated to play in Saturday’s preseason game against Miami.

Bucs coach Todd Bowles said Thursday after a joint practice with the Dolphins that the absence was planned before training camp and that he expects Brady to rejoin the team following the Bucs’ preseason game at Tennessee on Aug. 20.

“He’s going to deal with some personal things,” Bowles said. “This is something we talked about before training camp started. We allotted this time because he wanted to get in and get chemistry with the guys and get two weeks of training camp, knowing he wasn’t going to play the first two games. He didn’t want to take away reps from Blaine (Gabbert) and Kyle (Trask) as well as (Ryan Griffin) as far as going into these next two games.

“It’s something he needed to handle. We trust him.”

Bowles said he would be worried about his starting quarterback “if he didn’t have the years and the experience that the guy has and comes in and works diligently.”

 

Brady already has missed three of the past six Bucs practices. The Bucs begin joint practices at Tennessee on Wednesday. He also wasn’t expected to play in the preseason finale at Indianapolis.

Bowles said “there’s always going to be doubt” about Brady’s availability for the regular season but he has a “pretty high level of confidence” that Brady will start the season opener against the Cowboys on Sept. 11.

Brady, 45, retired for 40 days following the 2021 season because he didn’t feel as though he could make the same commitment to the game due to the increased demands of his family.

“There is a physical, mental, and emotional challenge EVERY single day that has allowed me to maximize my highest potential,” Brady said in his retirement statement Feb. 1. “And I have tried my very best these past 22 years. There are no shortcuts to success on the field or in life.

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