It’s All On No. 12

August 18th, 2022

Where is he?

For Joe, there are very few ways to spin it.

The Bucs are painted into a corner. When have you ever heard a head coach openly admit that he doesn’t know (in the middle of August) when (or if?) his allegedly healthy franchise quarterback will return?

When have you ever heard of a healthy franchise quarterback just up and leaving in the middle of training camp and everyone from the head coach down to the dude on his fourth Bromosa sitting in the bar has no idea what’s up?

As the creator, curator and overall guru of Pro Football Talk, the great Mike Florio, often says, “Silence invites speculation.” So let’s speculate:

If you believe what Brady’s camp leaked last week to select national NFL scribes, Brady’s family is healthy, so what else could this mysterious vacation leave of absence be about?

Either Brady doesn’t want to deal with preseason, he’s holding out for a veteran center to come to Tampa Bay or he’s waffling about returning to football.

Without diving into the deep end of the pool, it seems pretty clear to Joe if the Bucs hope to be in the thick of a return to the Super Bowl, No. 12 must return. Cody Benjamin of CBS Sports types the Bucs’ hopes this year rests on Brady’s shoulders.

The Buccaneers are contenders as long as Tom Brady, still defying time at age 45, remains the QB, because the reality is he doesn’t just throw the ball but impacts the fabric of the organization with his aura, his history, his preparation and, somehow, still, his arm. Bruce Arians’ retirement as coach, leaving the reins to defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, could present some hurdles. So could lingering or new injuries to key starters up front (Ryan Jensen) or out wide (Chris Godwin). But this club has come together at the right times under Brady, who’s still got top-10ish weapons and support at almost every position on the roster.

Joe thinks the Bucs could still win the division with Blaine Gabbert at quarterback. Yes, he has looked that good in practice and yes, the Bucs offense has that many weapons. And yes, the division is that lousy.

Super Bowl? Ah, not without Brady.

Joe is trying not to freak out about this Brady situation. But when the head coach, less than a month before the season opener, doesn’t know when his franchise quarterback plans to return, that’s enough to begin day drinking.

Panic? Joe’s not there yet. But Joe will not sleep comfortably tonight.

87 Responses to “It’s All On No. 12”

  1. Gofortheface30 Says:

    Maybe his damn wife should stop being a NAG, and let the man do what he loves for as long as he would like

  2. SB~LV Says:

    My guess is
    Hold Out for Center
    does not justify the act and actions
    I’ll stop there.

  3. Smashsquatch Says:

    Take a deep breath Joe, no chance Brady pulls the rug after a botched retirement and unretirement. This will be non-story soon enough, don’t take the bait.

  4. beano Says:

    Tom did not want to return to play football, so he retired.

    Then he thought he thought he did want to play football, so he unretired.

    Then he realized he had it right the first time, so he left.

  5. CrackWise Says:

    no nO NO. We can’t win the Super Bowl without AssHat Brown. Now its Brady?

    Com on Man. We have the best Roster this team has ever had. I could care less RIGHT NOW who the QB is. Give me some BG or KT to start the year.

    Heck, Jamis Wiston could, awe crap, never mind, all is lost without Brady.

    Let’s call it a year and see what happens next training camp/preseason.

    You know what, in fact, I am going to protest the Bucs and not watch them this year because we don’t have a QB with 50 years of experience and a few Super Bowl rings.

  6. beano Says:

    I think the damage is done. Return or no return, there will be no Super Bowl.

  7. beano Says:

    Uh oh …

    “Kanye West, Tom Brady, Jared Kushner, Reese Witherspoon, other celebs had millions in PPP loans forgiven”

  8. CrackWise Says:

    NO ONE is bigger than the GAME! NO ONE.

    Well unless its Brady, then the team he is on sucks out loud, and the players and coaches are only considered to be riding his tailcoat.

    We really should think this through. Without Brady Tampa should tear down RJS and sell the team to some other country. In fact, why even try to read about the Team because the TEAM ended when Brady decided to skip out on training camp for “personal reasons” and everyone is sad they can’t know what his personal reasons are.

    I am done with this team and with JBF for that matter. There is no JBF without Brady anyways.

  9. Bird Says:

    Why did you have to bring day drinking into this?

    It never did anything to you

  10. Stanglassman Says:

    Watson got 11 game suspension. Bucs play them week 11. I think he’s coming back the week after the Bucs v Browns game.

  11. Rod Munch Says:

    “Joe honestly thinks the Bucs could still win the division with Blaine Gabbert at quarterback.”


    As for Brady, he probably just doesn’t want to deal with preseason, and the Bucs should absolutely give him anything he wants.

    If Brady starts this is a legit SB contender.
    If Gabbert starts this is a 6-7 win team.
    If Trask starts this is a 3-5 win team.

    Whatever Brady wants, he gets. And if it was the Bucs needing a veteran center or he wouldn’t play – well Licht is trading a future 1st to get a veteran center. There’s nothing that Brady wants that the team isn’t going to give him.

  12. Caleb lee Says:

    I have a bad feeling this has to do with information that was found on Brady through the tampering investigations.

  13. D-Rok Says:

    This situation certainly merits some concern in my mind. However, I will start actually worrying while day drinking again IF Brady isn’t back “after the Titans” game.

    Not sure what the issue is, and we may never know. Until we hear something concrete from Brady or Bowles, I’m not panicking. Yet.

    Even if Brady doesn’t come back, we still have a season to be played and the Bucs team needs to be rooted for.


  14. daviegobucs! Says:

    I know I’m probably alone here but I’d love to see coach Bowles bench Brady for the first game. Probably earn a lot of respect from the players who must be secretly sick of this guys b s my now. Bowles seems like a nice guy who doesn’t need this garbage

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    It would be very hard for me to believe that Grady would quit on his team…..totally out of character and it would ruin his stellar reputation….

    That’s not the way to end a career…….he’ll be back next week.

  16. Joe Says:

    I have a bad feeling this has to do with information that was found on Brady through the tampering investigations.

    Ooooohhhhh! Sort of like when Michael Jordan got suspended by the NBA when he “retired” and began playing baseball?

  17. fern Says:

    so dramatic
    Guy can do whatever he wants and he will be throwing dimes.

  18. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Man losing the guy who has been playing pro football for over 20 years in a part of the year he wouldn’t be playing is so horrific.

    The football god insider that never makes stuff up Mike Florio himself said silence invites speculation. Cause that’s all he ever goes on speculation.

  19. Bucsfan13 Says:

    Bench Brady the first game? You have to be kidding. I’m upset about his absence, but let’s not get carried away.

  20. Oneilbuc Says:

    Make sure Joe you keep that same mindset when we lose games. I don’t want to hear about the team or the coaches when we lose but hear it was all because of Brady when we win.

  21. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Oneil go root for the saints already.

    QB here isn’t your preferred skin tone.

  22. daviegobucs! Says:

    Would love to see Bowles bench him the first game
    Probably earn a lot of respect from the players
    But don’t worry all you goat rump swabs it won’t happen

  23. Lt. Dan Says:

    “fourth Bromosa sitting in the bar has no idea what’s up?” Speaking of which – I’m driving down to FL from VA this weekend. Where can I pickup a 12 back to “bootleg” back to VA…it isn’t sold here. Mahalo in advance.

  24. Rod Munch Says:

    What kind of morons would be upset at this?

    Brady isn’t your 6th string WR that you’re going to teach a message to. He’s literally Tom Brady, there’s no message sending, no player with an IQ over 12 doesn’t get that. In fact if some player said “but Tom Brady did that and didn’t get in trouble” – you literally cut that idiot on the spot.

    Tom gets the super star treatment, whatever he wants. Only a world class loser wouldn’t get that. Or the world’s worst fans, ie, the Florida fanbois.

  25. SB~LV Says:

    Too much money
    He has lost touch
    Still pouting over losing his ownership gig in Miami

  26. Rod Munch Says:

    I think the Saints will maintain themselves for a year before they start to miss Payton, and I think they’re at least a 10-win team. The Bucs, with Brady, are likely a 12-win team, although I could see them only getting 11-wins as well if they get off to slow start. In other words, with Brady, I already think the division is close. With Gabbert? LOL! That guy stinks. Did you ever watch him before? He’s awful. I’m not the world’s biggest Trask fan, but I’d much rather take my lumps with him over sitting through a 6-11 season with Gabbert.

    With that said Brady will be back next week.

    And if he’s not, well, it doesn’t actually make any difference, the team is screwed either way, and will become the laughing stock of the NFL once again, the moment Brady is no longer associated with the team.

  27. Jason Says:

    So none of these news agencies can afford to hire a good private investigator to find out where Brady is at?
    Doesn’t really matter where he is, not really the football media’s business, he’s not with the team. And that’s the important context for most fans.–Joe

  28. steele Says:

    While it’s unlikely, what happens if he changes his mind and retires again? Easy answer: an ugly losing season, and high draft picks next offseason. Schedule and roster question marks = a .500 proposition even with Brady.

    Or as Ira and others have speculated, does he have an injury that he doesn’t want to reveal?

    Among the more benign options is that this is an agreed-upon-by-Licht vacation time. But why the mystery? Would it create dissension in the locker room?

  29. tampafishman Says:

    I’m getting tired of this prima donna. We’re not going to win the SB this year anyway so let’s turn the page and start building for the future.

  30. Joe Says:

    Would love to see Bowles bench him the first game
    Probably earn a lot of respect from the players
    But don’t worry all you goat rump swabs it won’t happen

    For good reason it won’t happen.

    Tom Brady: Hey Jason, Todd, I’m going to take some time off in August. You guys good with that?

    Jason Licht and Todd Bowles: Sure Tom, whatever makes you happy. What’s good for you is good for us.

    Aug. 20

    Todd Bowles: Hey Tom, welcome back. You’re benched for at least Week 1.

    Tom Brady: Bye fellas.

    An hour later, intercom in Joel Glazer’s office.

    Receptionist: Mr. Glazer, I have DeMaurice Smith on the line screaming about a lawsuit he’s about to file on behalf of the NFLPA about Tom Brady and that he’s calling for a league-wide walkout of the players.

    (Joe won’t include how Bowles will fully lose his team for benching the guy so many signed with/returned to the Bucs because of.)

  31. SB~LV Says:

    Need to get TMZ on this story 🙃

  32. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Yawn. Fishing at the lake today. Nothings biting. Guess I need to put my beer down and actually cast a line in the water. Nah

  33. Herbiebuc Says:

    😂😂😂 Where is Tom Tshirts are coming!!

  34. J Ghotier Says:

    This article is why I respect and appreciate

  35. ATLBuc Says:

    | the Bucs’ hopes this year rests on Brady’s shoulders. |
    Actually, as long as we have Kyle we will be okay.

  36. Caleb lee Says:

    I have a bad feeling this has to do with information that was found on Brady through the tampering investigations.


    Ooooohhhhh! Sort of like when Michael Jordan got suspended by the NBA when he “retired” and began playing baseball?

    It’s a decent bet. 🤦‍♂️

  37. Goatfarmer Says:

    Kentucky – I like your style. Love fishing for that reason.

    Maybe the rumors are accurate about G-hag. And Jane Fonda.

    The kids are traumatized.

  38. Goatfarmer Says:

    ATL – you are certifiable, unless you miss the days of 2014.

  39. Hodad Says:

    Since he’s not do back till after the Titans Joe, can you maybe keep your panties from swisting till next week?

  40. Kgh4life Says:

    Tom ain’t coming back, sorry to say.

  41. Pewter Warrior 813 Says:

    If Brady and back this time next week then something fishy is happening… Until then chill

  42. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Bucs fans, what if the deal was, I’ll try this Bowles HC experiment with you but if it looks BAish, I’m out of here. If Wirf is gone for any amount of time then adios TB12, last way Brady wants to leave the game is in a body bag. It came awful close to that in the Rams game. Even better, Bowles overruled some offensive play(s) Brady was working on and he said well, ok Todd buddy, it appears you got this. Bucs fans, why do you think he wanted Payton in Miami? He can’t take the clown posey. One more point to ponder, BA shows up to practice in his golf cart then by coincidence Brady.gone the next week?

  43. PassingThru Says:


  44. Lamarcus Says:

    Probably suspended and saying he’s away from the team. This guy literally is responsible for all teams losing 1st round picks, cheating, quitting, lying, etc.

    But all is well because of SB rings that fans don’t get and gets passes.

    No. This is a huge issue. Who quits in the middle of camp? Even it’s pre determined…you should know the date is in the middle of camp

  45. Capt.Tim Says:

    Agree Joe.
    We would be a winning team with Blaine Gabbert.
    Hes a decent QB
    But we wont win the Super Bowl with Tom Brady.
    But Brady may want that Oline addressed
    I wouldnt blame him

  46. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Or Giselle says, Jenson gone, Tommy your gone. What does confuse me is, he recruited Gage (maybe he found out that was a mistake), Lenny back & Julio Jones took a hit to play with him, is he gonna shove it up their arses?

  47. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Brady is not an issue…this year.

    Gabbert is not going to ever win a Superbowl. Heck, if Brady goes down, we’ll be luck to see him play 3 games…either due to injury or bad play.

    Which makes Trask the fall-to guy. Coming in with no real pressure because everyone will assume the season is shot by that point.

    It’ll be up to Trask to step up at that point.

  48. JimmyJack Says:

    The onliest thing that bugs me is the major difference between offseason/preseason in 2020 and now. In 2020 Tom was putting in extra work on HIgh Shool fields and playgrounds. He was having provate workouts with his teammates.

    This is a totally different mindset and alls i know is 2020 led to a Lombardi.

    All that said I still expect Tom to put up 300 in Dallas and this story will be distant memory.

  49. kyle Says:

    can we get johnny football?? i bet he could win it all!!!

  50. Josh Says:

    Does anyone really believe Brady spends months recruiting players to come and then bails on them right before the season? I don’t think Brady would take that chance of hurting his image. But this is pretty unprecedented so who know..

  51. Goatfarmer Says:

    There is no one on the Bucs to play QB that can lead the team to a W through the first four games . But this is stupid – Brady is off, not late. Like someone said, if he’s still out by a week from today, uh oh. If he’s been asked to choose between the Bucs or his marriage, any good counselor evaluating the situation objectively would tell Tom to dump the G-Hag and play football as long as he wants and as he can.

    He married a ‘trick, not a wife.

  52. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Lamarcus, get your facts straight. It was just revealed Troy Vincent held back evidence that would have proved Brady innocent in the deflategate witch hunt set up by the Colts? As far as tampering? They ALL do it and Belichick, the biggest rule bender in the league purposely sent a fake text to Flores claiming it was for Brian Dabah to blow the whistle on Ross & Brady.

  53. Crickett Baker Says:

    Tom says, “Well really I didn’t know BA was not going to be HC when I unretired. I need a few weeks to cry about it”.
    😀 😀

  54. SufferingSince76 Says:

    We hope you’ve enjoyed the latest episode of As The Brady Turns. Tune in tomorrow when we ask the question so many want answered. Is Tom transitioning? 🙄

  55. T REX Says:

    5-12 without him

    Let’s go TOM!

  56. RPK Says:

    So what are we thinking the chances are that Tom Brady is going to pull an AB and quit the team weeks before the season starts?

    After reading this article and the comment section, I’d put it at 50% for most of you.

    That’s lunacy, IMO.

    Imagine what that would do to his legacy.

    Obviously Tom is aiding the wild speculation, so I don’t blame any of you.

    We will all find out very soon!!

  57. TorontoBucsFan Says:


    Some hysterical-ass Bucs fans here!

    When they stomp the Cowboys in the opener I’m guessing most of us will forget all of this nonsense.

  58. 55 99 47 20 Says:

    Let’s not be ridiculous. Tristan Wirfs left practice and it will be detailed in Joe’s practice notes. Nothing appeared serious in any way, shape or form. Joe was a couple of steps from Wirfs when he was working with the trainer. It sure didn’t appear to be anything related to a back injury. The team won’t update formally. Joe’s hardly freaking out, nor should you. –Joe

  59. BigMacAttack Says:

    Look Joe, the Bucs are stacked but they have to believe in themselves. I hope TB12 returns but I think the Bucs can win with Defense and TRASK can get the job done. I believe the kid can play. He’s got the goods and a lot of fire in his belly. Who’s to say he’s not the next Josh Allen. There’s 53 players who all need to make it happen and they can do it if they believe, with or without Tom Brady. If he walks the Bucs can still go all the way. I think Tom’s arm got tired toward the end of the season and collectively they’re saving him reps that he doesn’t need right now.

  60. Pickgrin Says:

    Anyone who thinks the Bucs would have a losing season in 2022 if Brady was not the QB is detached from reality….

    The Bucs have one of the strongest rosters top to bottom in the league. Perhaps THE most talented roster overall – but that is obviously debatable.

    Bucs will have a top 10 defense this year and will easily have a top 10 Offense with or without Tom Brady. Probably #1 or 2 WITH Brady – perhaps 7th or 8th if Gabbert or Trask were under center.

    This is a balanced team with talent galore on offense. If Brady gets his knee blown up in the 1st quarter of the Dallas game – the Bucs still win 10+ games this year. Just sayin….

  61. brooks Says:

    Who cares social media at its best. What would you do if you could skip camp? No Brainer cruzing on the yacht…..

  62. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Pickgrin & BigMack, you’re both in dreamland. You have a weak oline, a unproven secondary and where is the improvement on ST’s. Your best receiver is coming off a acl injury, so so TE, a potentially washed up Julio Jones and Gage has done nothing to prove he can meet expectations. Much of Lenny’s success came from check down passes from Brady and NO #2 back. Buffalo better, Raiders better, Green Bay better, Saints better, KC better, San Fran better, Indy better, Rams better, Baltimore, Chargers better, Cincy better. ALL better if you don’t have Brady. Delusional if you think Bucs are a contender with Gabbert or Brady.

  63. Ghost of Tom Brady Says:

    Anyone that believes Brady is “all in” this season is wrong, wrong, wrong. What starting QB has ever done something like this unless there was a family emergency? I can’t remember any.

    Will Brady be ready for the Dallas game, sure he will. Will his new center and guards? I doubt it. They needed to get used to his cadence, inflections, etc.

    I’m sorry, but I think we’re getting TB 2.0 this season instead of TB12, which is basically ‘Yeah, I know I said I’d play so I guess I have to’ Brady.

  64. T REX Says:

    5-6 wins without Brady

    Some people are homers

  65. Bucsfan13 Says:

    First Brady calls Jensen and tells him to return. He then calls Gage and asked him to come play and join something special. He then calls Lenny and tells him not to sign elsewhere. He then calls Rudolph and asked him to join. Finally, he pulls in Julio who had offers from other good teams. If Tom quits, this is by far worse than what AB did by leaving. It’s totally unfair that he’s leaving the organization out to dry by not putting out a statement. Maybe it’s understood he would return on Monday and Bowles is just horrible at messaging.

  66. Goatfarmer Says:

    With the Goobert, 8-9 or if lucky, 9-8.

    If Trashk, 4–13 or 3-14.

    Griff would give us the best chance because of his brains.

  67. Bird Says:

    Whats positive when brady does call it quits ?

    All these fake buc / patriot fans will be gone forever
    They Make me want to take a huge dump

  68. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Brady said I’m done making half arse coaches HOFers. Bowles and BL are showing him something he doesn’t like. Brady leaves the Bucs are stuck with the losing Jets coach and a average ex-QB OC.

  69. NCBucfan Says:

    This would be the biggest bi@@h move in nfl history if he walks away now. Most of our FAs signed because of him! Why TF did he unretire in the 1st place???????????

  70. Bucsfan13 Says:

    I know it was reported that his absence wasn’t medically related, but I’m not so sure that his mom isn’t sick. Bowles may not want to be specific because it would give something away about the reason for his absence. No one has even seen him. That’s strange. If he was on vacation somewhere, I would think some photos would have surfaced. Has any of the Joes stalked his home in Tampa?
    What about his parents home in California?

  71. T REX Says:

    Brady owes us nothing.

    He won us a SB…at home…

    More to life than a game

  72. Vgb Says:

    Brady sure as hell knows how to keep his name in the media…instead of where’s Waldo its where’s brady…Bowles said was going to be after titans game…Damm get a grip …Brady probably told Bowles don’t say nothing let the media dangle .Brady cannot stand the media….Brady is a professional and honorable..he does not sign contract or give his commitment and than back out…get a grip!!!!

  73. NCBucfan Says:

    T Rex,

    I agree, but why unretire in the first place???? He owes us to play this year when he committed to it in March.

  74. NCBucfan Says:

    And if it really is because his mom or dad, or any other family member for that matter is very sick, I would totally understand if he retired again. But he was already trying to cheat on us with the dolphins, so something stinks, and it’s not Joes burps from the Bromosas!

  75. Bucsfanfrom76 Says:

    Vgb is absolutely correct. There is absolutely no way Tom Brady will let that be his legacy. There is no way He will be Antonio Brown. In fact, he comes back..go as far as the health of the team will take them and Glazers offer him part ownership after they place his name in the ring of honor.

  76. Bucsfanfrom76 Says:

    That’s the dream anyway

  77. Tampa P.I. Brady 4 MVP #Vegas Says:

    Everything should be fine, he’s just waiting on the DMT he got from Rodgers at the golf match to finish getting out of his system before he turns back up; that’s why he’s been so quiet on social media too

  78. DiehardBucs Says:

    Brady will be back from South America soon, just chill. We love you G.O.A.T

  79. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Brady is far from the first player to retire during training camp, off the top head John Lynch and Reggie Wayne are two.

  80. RGA Says:

    I thought Brady’s absence might be due to a family health issue. Brady has always been gung ho and totally into training camp. He’s always been 100% committed and he has repeatedly says so year after year. There is something seriously off with his absence. He has never abandoned his team throughout his career in training camp while preparing for the season.
    Something is off here.

  81. Goatfarmer Says:

    Day drinking….good. Leads to night drinking…..very good.

    Leads to morning drinking. Better yet.

    All day drinking. The best.

    Thankfully, strong livers abound in Bucland.


    Lamarcus, yawn.

  83. Rod Munch Says:

    Think of this… if Gabbert was the Bucs starting QB, the Bucs would have the worst starting QB in the NFC South, and would be vying with Seattle for the worst starting QB in the NFL.

  84. Wild Bill Says:

    I am old enough to remember watching Vince Lombardi remake the GreenBay Packers into the best NFL team way back when. I was still in high-school in Wisconsin back then. So flash forward to the Brady controversy: never in all my years of watching the NFL do I remember a situation like Brady’s mysterious absence. Disgruntled players sitting out while making demands, sure. But a top flight qb leaving the team in the middle of preseason with no public explanation? UNPRECEDENTED! Very hard to visualize a happy outcome. Bizarre to say the least.

  85. Infomeplease Says:

    It is very possible while TB12 was retired that him and his agents made financial commitments for this time frame that if broken could cost him millions $. You know like TV commercials that needed to be rewritten and staged because of his unretiredness.

    I believe that is why TB12 looked so mad during those last days in camp. He wanted to be practicing with his team but was contractually forced into taking a non football working leave!!!!!


  86. Infomeplease Says:

    TB12 will be back! TB12 will be well rested! TB12 will Kick Ash!!!

  87. Browsing from DC Says:

    @infomeplease I was thinking it could be something like that or related to the movie, etc. Whatever it is, it was approved and is “PERSONAL”. His business not ours. Like a bunch of damn Gladys Kravitz clones in here from Bewitched. Peeking out the window wondering what those neighbors across the street are up to.. Bunch of damn crybabies and gossip tw*ts. Who cares what he’s doing? I will put good money on he’s stretching, working out, throwing, watching film and touching base regularly with the team during his free time away from whatever commitment he had to handle. There’s nothing else we “need” to know.

    Yes, he’s missing a little valuable time away from teammates that he needs to get on the same page with, but what has he actually missed? A handful of practices and two preseason games that he wouldn’t be playing in anyway.. When he comes back after Tennessee he will bust his ass extra hard (like he always does) and be primed for week 1. And he’ll probably see some action in the final pre-season game as well.

    Until then, some of you “fans” need a hobby instead of acting like butt-hurt little girls whose date stood her up for the prom. Jeez