With Tom Brady Out Of The Pocket, It’s The Bucs Who Are Scrambling

August 18th, 2022

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“Least of our concerns,” my butt.

A week after Jason Licht tried to minimize Tom Brady’s absence, Buc Nation has every right to be concerned about the mindset of No. 12. Panic?

Absolutely not. Concern? You betcha.

When the head coach says he’s not sure about the future of his most impactful player, that tells you all you need to know about the level of anxiety sweeping through One Buc Place less than a month before the NFL starts keeping score.

Where is Tom Brady? The Bucs aren’t saying. At this point, you have to wonder if they know whether he’s home, on a beach or sprawled on a yacht off the coast of Italy with George Clooney.

When is Brady coming back? The Bucs aren’t saying.

According to Todd Bowles, this was all supposed to be worked out before training camp started. You’d think a firm return date would have been part of the arrangement and excused absence.

If Bowles knows, he’s not saying. If he doesn’t know, that’s more ominous.

The head coach of this football team is tied up in knots trying to explain the details of Brady’s hiatus.

At this point, it’s fair to ponder whether Brady is coming back at all. That shudder you just heard came from thousands of Buc fans who don’t want to contemplate life without Brady this fall.

The odds are Brady will return to the practice field before the Week 1 matchup at Dallas — but that’s no longer a given. If he returns, he’ll be asked to explain his absence. Brady will be polite and say
that he’s 100 percent focused on the Cowboys.

Next question.

Real-Time Concern

The issue at the moment, and it is an issue, is Tom Brady is not 100 percent focused on the Cowboys. He’s not even 100 percent focused on his own football team.

This column will rightfully be regarded obsolete next week if Brady returns.

But consider this: as of Thursday, the Browns have more certainty regarding the availability of Deshaun Watson than the Bucs have regarding Tom Brady.

No news is bad news, explains Ira Kaufman.

That’s a sobering thought.

Successful NFL teams embrace certainty. They yearn for a play they can call with confidence on third-and-2. They work on handling crowd noise and inclement weather. Doubt and distractions are enemies to be overcome.

Tom Brady, the best to ever do it, is now a humongous distraction.

He’s a source of apprehension Todd Bowles did not need amid the great expectations surrounding this franchise.

At the age of 45, Brady appears to be experiencing a midlife crisis. He’s no longer all-in, nor can he claim to be. That’s not a death knell for a roster this talented because Brady can report back during Dallas week and still end up contending for league MVP honors.

He’s that great of a player. But at the moment, Brady has his coach and his organization scrambling.
Bowles doesn’t quite know what to say, yet his body language says it all.

He’s uncomfortable talking about his legendary quarterback, and that’s a position none of us could have imagined a month ago.

There are no indications Brady is hurt or suspended, yet he remains apart from his teammates for an extended period. His coach says he’s not sure precisely when Brady is returning.

Does that sound like the least of Jason Licht’s concerns? It sounds more like the biggest story in the National Football League.

Until it’s not.

Ira loves that lifetime warranty on new and used vehicles!

Enjoy today’s Ira Kaufman Podcast! Ira Kaufman Talks Tennessee Highs & Blues, Tom Brady Fallout, Roster Tweaks And Priorities, And More

69 Responses to “With Tom Brady Out Of The Pocket, It’s The Bucs Who Are Scrambling”

  1. mark2001 Says:

    You Betcha? Oh man Ira, you are starting to sound like a Cheesehead.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    I don’t know how Ira can say that the Browns have more certainty with Watson… He won’t be eligible to play for another 4 months. A buffoon like that could ruin a lot in 4 long months!

  3. Hodad Says:

    Ira you’ve been hanging with Joe to long. We don’t need Brady till the games count. I’m more concerned with Wirfs being carted off, than your, and Joe’s attempts at making the last week of Brady’s vacation a soap opra. When will he be back, will his head, and heart be into it? Blah, blah.

  4. Goatfarmer Says:

    I have decided to day drink until there is certainty around Tom Brady.


  5. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Things are bad when I’m agreeing with Hodad 100%.

  6. allen Lofton Says:

    Wirf walked off the field with a coach and Ira sounds like a drama queen with the TB event – IF he’s not coming back, he would have said so

  7. Lt. Dan Says:

    Lets suppose there was a hiatus time frame agreed upon for what ever Brady felt like he needed to address. Ok – real life stuff here…things come up, things change. It’s called life. It’s entirely possible Brady has said something along the lines of, “Hey coach I’ll need another day or two or three to finish this up. I’ll be Dallas ready.” So yea the Coach Bowles has to say, “not sure when he will return.” It’s life folks.

  8. #8 Says:

    TB12 holding out for Suh.
    Get it done Tom!

  9. Lol Says:

    Idk Ira have you seen Trashk sling it. Bucs might be better without Brady. Lol #sarcasm

  10. GOB Says:

    GF, nothing better than pouring that first drink at 11am. I’m glad you’ve turned this Brady saga into a St. Patrick’s Day like drinking schedule. I’m with you. Pancreatitis be damned.

  11. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    This is all lending to mass hysteria. I’m not one bit concerned. Tom will be here when he comes back…probably after this next game.

    In a week, this will be a distancing memory. And when we win the superbowl, it will mean even less.

    In the meanwhile, Trask is getting some much needed playing time.

    Ira let me pose this possibility: The Bucs wanted to get Trask playing time because he’ll be starting next year. Tom doesn’t really need to be here until one game left in the preseason…so he gets some family time and Trask gets some coaching.

    I see no issue here at all.

  12. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I DO believe we’re going to see a player return that we thought would not. Either Gronk (most likely), Suh, or JPP.

  13. DBS Says:

    Bowles said NEXT WEEK. Now they want day, time, type vehicle. Will he be alone?
    Leave the poor guy alone. You people are causing this. Kevin O’Donnell and the rest.

  14. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    I’m confused how players can leave mid-season last year because of “mental health”, yet Brady decides to check on the mental health of his family during a time when his top-3 receivers are out with no games and people are freaking out?

  15. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    The subtext of the above post is the former is ok but the latter is not?

  16. GOB Says:

    Joe, GOB implores you to dig until you hit granite.

  17. Howard Cosell Says:

    Just ermergerd!!

  18. #8 Says:

    Cats & dogs, living together. Mass hysteria!!

  19. Howard Cosell Says:

    Wert erf Brudy dersernt pray?!

  20. Mark A Swygert Says:

    Talk is cheap. Speculation without any information to back it up has negative value. It’s worth even less than talk. The only guy who has the real scoop is the one everybody is wondering about. Tom will let the world know when he is ready, and not before. Until then , eh, it’s a free country. Panic if you want to. It won’t change anything.

  21. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Booger told me that Tom would be back by Thanksgiving……so there!!!

  22. WillieG Says:

    Tom is in England signing a part ownership contract for Manchester United. Then he’s going to come back here, sign a 3 year deal with the Bucs which will include an ownership stake when he retires. Gronk will be so happy, he will come back too. He won’t get any ownership stakes in either team though. He will just get some cool shirts and hats.

  23. JimmyJack Says:

    There is a deadline for his return. Its next week. If Tom aint back by next week Buc fans around the globe will freak out.

  24. SufferingSince76 Says:

    I’m going to have an ulcer before this is over. 🥴

  25. Howard Cosell Says:

    Well I was just standing here, and Tom Brady went on vacation. I asked myself “Why is Tom Brady on vacation?” Nobody has no answers, and so I pull out my gun! Tell me why Tom Brady is on vacation or else I’m gonna shoot someone!

    R Kelly

  26. #8 Says:

    Has anyone called J G Wentworth & asked about Brady?
    J G knows-


  27. 55 99 47 20 Says:

    More concerned about Wirfs instead, any news on that

  28. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Let’s see, would Brady want to trade his last 2 weeks family time before next February in Nashville and Indianapolis? For meaningless pre season games?
    They’ll have 2 weeks to get ready for Cowboys.
    Bucs are getting Brady at 80% off rates this year, – Bucs really don’t have much leverage…

  29. CrackWise Says:

    Wirfs had cramps in his ribs. Nothing to worry about.

  30. Jeff Says:

    Brady’s gonna retire again. This time for real. His marriage is falling apart. It’s over Bucs’ fans.

  31. CrackWise Says:

    When the Brady returns, I fully expect him to announce this is his last season and that was part of why he took this time off.

    Additionally, he is going to say that he thinks the world of Trask and that if he can’t make it through the season. Trask will be given the GOAT juice.

  32. BucBrad53 Says:

    Anybody saying this isn’t a concern either doesn’t understand pro-ball or has pewter glasses on so thick that they block out the truth.

    He has multiple new members of the OL (including a CENTER), he has new TEs, he and new WRs. He needs to be on the field getting reps. Part of the reason the Bucs won the SB is because of the sweat and reps put in at Tampa parks getting timing and chemistry down.

    This is not the actions of a winning team. I’m starting to think Brady doesn’t want to line up until he has a better center than Hainsey in front of him.

  33. Trask To The Future Says:


  34. T REX Says:

    I am starting to think he is not coming back


    This is real

  35. richbucsfan Says:

    He’ll come back and retire.

  36. Capeaceiskaput Says:

    I love the Joes and Ira but it seems it is more you guys making this a humongous distraction. There are 100’s of things you could be writing about but you keep dragging us to Brady. When all this happened if I recall, Bowels said he would be back after we were through with Tennessee. So if Brady comes back that Monday or Tuesday or even Weds after Tennessee, are you going to hound him? If it plays out like Bowles said. Why does Bowles or Brady have to answer for it. He is the best thing that ever happened to this franchise, lay off the man. Still love you..

  37. BuxfaninTX Says:

    I’m starting to get the feeling that Licht is inquiring about Jimmy GQ about now…..

  38. CrackWise Says:

    Trask To The Future.

    Kyle “The Marksman” Trask is really behind all of this. Didn’t you hear, he peed in The Brady’s Cheerios and gave him the “CLAP” back.

    This is all Kyle’s fault to be sure. The Brady don’t want to come back with The Marksman looking over his shoulder. Thats why Brady CHOKED in the first half of the Rams game last year and cost us a chance to win another SB.

    If Trask would have been in there. No way he lays a turd in the first half and cost us a chance at the repeat.

    Isn’t this FUN, IRA and JOEs

    No one is concerned about something that hasn’t happened yet. Unless you scare them into thinking what they were told is really a smoke screen and BS.

    Stop scaring people. For what? So you can say, HA I TOLD YOU SOMETHING WAS UP.

  39. Arn platz Says:

    Brady is finishing up filming in Miami. He is staring with Samuel L Jackson in a Miami Vice reboot. Javier Braden is playing LT. Castillo. He just has to reshoot a few scenes. 2-3 weeks and he’s back. Not going to be advertised until the playoffs

  40. View from 132 Says:

    This is udder nonsense said the cow examining the dairy free cheese.

  41. adam from ny Says:

    tom is like one more significant team player injury from sailing into the sunset, and hiring a lawyer…

    no gronk, no jensen, that’s 2 strikes…

    let’s hope there is a no strike 3, because tommy b is already disconnecting

  42. GOB Says:

    I fully expect a detailed report from Joe by Monday. This situation demands some investigative reporting.

  43. Mike Johnson Says:

    Hell yes, I am concerned. Look Brady said he was retiring. Then it was not. He says he will be back..until not? One thing this modern-day society has taught us, Nothing ever is until it is. You just can’t put your faith or trust in many things nowadays. And guys, thats a fact.

  44. ATLBuc Says:

    We don’t need TB12. We have Kyle Trask. Go Gators!!!

  45. Old School Nole Says:

    I’m starting to wonder if my mother-in-law is behind a few of these user names. Probably not, because her hysterical worrying is usually concerned with the latest medical news from Dr. Oz.

    Calm down, Nancy. It will be alright.

  46. geno711 Says:

    Tampabaybucfan Says:
    August 18th, 2022 at 4:50 pm
    Booger told me that Tom would be back by Thanksgiving……so there!!!

    Loved this comment the best!!

  47. ATLBuc Says:

    I think this situation is a great opportunity for the team to galvanize themselves. For them to look at each other and ask: Just because TB’s not here are we going to just curl up like babies and cry? Or, are we going to show him that we don’t need him because we Got KYLE!!! LFG!!!!!

  48. Hail2dabucs Says:

    Brady can literally roll out of bed and be right there at the end . He would also not leave the team and the new head coach hanging like this.once again , this was planned and the only people making this bigger than it needs to be is you Joe.

  49. Chris Tucker@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Some of the guys at the sports bar used to live in Boston when Brady was there.
    They said Brady never had near the Drama he has brought to Tampa, when he played for New England.
    One reason they gave for Brady’s lack of Drama in New England was Bill Belichick.
    It is hard to argue with them.

  50. gotbbucs Says:

    Happy wife, happy life. My guess is there were some concessions made with wifey pooh if he was going to be allowed to come out of retirement.

    Give the family more time or come home to an empty house.

  51. geno711 Says:


    I agree to some degree. Whether it was his wife or Tom himself, I think as the Bucs kept the door open for Tom Brady, he expressed how much he hated training camp itself.

    He loves to work 1 on 1 with his receivers on routes. But hates training camp itself. My guess is that the concession was that he could get his butt out of 10-14 days of camp itself. Then, he would be back.

    I think there will be less outdoor practices after this, and Tom will be just doing more in season type reps.

  52. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Loweezy and Elviney out on the gossip fence again I see.

  53. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Within a week of Brady’s return…Gronk will return.

  54. CharlieV Says:

    Best theory yet on why/where 12 is. Check out the lady’s take at this twitter address.

    Fantasy Life

  55. Howard Cosell Says:

    CharlieV Says:
    August 18th, 2022 at 9:16 pm

    Best theory yet on why/where 12 is. Check out the lady’s take at this twitter address.

    Fantasy Life

    ^ The plot thickens

  56. Jerry Says:

    Ira is right. There is reason to be concerned. Brady retired. Then he unretired. Then it was revealed that he trying to angle his way to the Dolphins. Then he disappears from camp. And now the Bucs struggle to explain the situation.

    Too many people here are refusing to connect the dots because they are afraid of where it will lead.

  57. GOB Says:

    Chris Tucker @ARTC, that’s true, to a point. This diva behavior with Brady started long before he departed NE. Go watch Tom vs. time, especially the episode after Superbowl 52. Mr. Kraft managed to keep things together, and they won another ring. Brady is now an entity unto himself. When you allow a singular player, no matter how great he is, to dictate to a team instead of vice versa, it’s trouble. You can’t tell me that his teammates are just fine with this, but what’s the alternative. Kyle Trask?

  58. timbucs2 Says:

    Much has been made of TB’s absence, but we all likely remember how Brady spoke of how upset Gisele is every year that he spends so much time away at camp in the preseason. I think this was a deal made when he came back, a deal between Brady, Gisele, and the Bucs.

    He gets as much preseason off as possible, Brady stays married to a supermodel, and the Bucs get one more season.

    Everyone is happy. Except the pass-catchers.

  59. Oxycondoms Says:

    Remember when Brady first got here he got kicked out of parks. Getting reps in with everyone at local high schools. Even if he returns he wont be the same tom brady. He’s finished

  60. RGA Says:

    Brady never misses practice until now. He’s always been all in, it’s obvious he’s not all this year. If he shows up, hopefully he plays well.

  61. RGA Says:

    Better get Trask ready just in case. Not Gabbert, been there done that.

  62. Cobraboy Says:

    Tom Brady, The Masked Singer.

    Wouldn’t that be a hoot!
    I gotta say I am concerned about a guy who’s supposed to be “all in” taking an extended absence, no matter how great he’s been. I’m not sure that helps team chemistry.

    Although winning cures all bad thoughts.

  63. Craig Says:

    I hope Giselle knows how to navigate the new yacht. With Tom tied up in the bilge he can’t help with it.

    The Coast Guard will find them, but will it be before the season starts?

  64. Goatfarmer Says:

    The G-Hag needs to be Gisettisoned. Tom- your legacy is at stake. Dump the dud and play three more years drama free.

  65. destinjohnny Says:

    6 win team without TB12

  66. Sparky Says:

    I don’t understand how someone with his profile has disappeared. No one knows where he is? Really?

  67. Bluesnred111 Says:

    I don’t think Brady is coming back. He never walks away during training camp. He is usually the first in, and the last one out. Gisele is up his ass about quitting and doing more house chores. He’s done. He’ll hide for a year and come back to his 375 million dollar deal with Trump, I mean Fox sports.

  68. Bluesnred111 Says:

    He is done. The Bucs will announce that due to more personal issues he is retiring again. Tom will hideaway for a year, and then go to Trump, Oops Fox sports and start making his 375 million. Gisele wins.

  69. Your Mom Says:

    I’m telling you, sex change.