Here's How Bucs Landed Tom Brady, According To New Book

By Jason Hall

October 19, 2021

Super Bowl LV
Photo: Getty Images

An excerpt from author Lars Anderson's new book on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' recent Super Bowl run reveals how the franchise landed Tom Brady during free agency in March 2020.

Anderson shared the passage from A Season in the Sun: The Inside Story of Bruce Arians, Tom Brady, and the Making of a Champion with the Guardian to coincide with the book's release on Tuesday (October 19).

In the excerpt, Anderson details a conversation between Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht and Brady's longtime agent Don Yee that took place at 12:15 a.m., 15 minutes after the team was permitted to make contact with the legendary quarterback in adherence with league rules, on March 16, 2020.

Yee emphasized that Brady respected Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians and was impressed by his work with quarterbacks throughout his NFL career, having watched a documentary on the veteran coach,

Yee also crediting Licht for putting together "a good nucleus of talent at Tampa" before the general manager made initial contact with Brady.

Licht drove to Arians' house for a call with Brady two days later just as free agency officially began.

“What’s up, babe?” Brady said, answering his cell phone immediately. “Jason, this is going to be a hell of a lot of fun."

Anderson wrote that "Brady then gushed about the Bucs' talented wide receivers, the way the Tampa Bay defense had played during the second half of the 2019 season, and the way Arians had coaxed great seasons out of so many quarterbacks during his career," even saying "I think we've got something. We've got a chance to be very special," even before making his own pitch for the Bucs to sign him.

Licht said he locked eyes with Arians after Brady uttered those words and silently mouthed: "I think this is happening."

Licht continued to pitch the idea to Brady for 30 minutes before handing the phone to Arians, who promised, "If you come here, we will win the Super Bowl. You're the missing ingredient. We're a very talented team, but they just don't know it."

Arians continued to pitch Brady on the positives of playing in Florida and alongside receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin before Brady interrupted saying, "Hey, I think [Rob] Gronk[owski] might want to come out of retirement."

“Let’s get you signed up first and then we’ll work on that one,” Arians replied, before eventually acquiring the legendary tight end weeks later.

You can read the full excerpt from A Season in the Sun on The Guardian's website here or purchase a hardcover copy the book on Amazon for $24.49.

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