Future Hall of Fame quarterback Tom Brady won’t be coming out of retirement to play for the New York Jets, but the door isn’t officially closed to his NFL return yet.
Brady announced his retirement following the 2022 season, declaring he would not be making a comeback. In the months since his retirement, Brady has lost significant weight and stated publicly that he isn’t interested in returning to the field.
- Tom Brady career stats: 251-83 record, 89,214 passing yards, 649 passing touchdowns, 97.2 QB rating, 64.3 percent completion rate, 58 game-winning drives
The seven-time Super Bowl champion agreed to a deal this summer to buy a stake in the Las Vegas Raiders from owner Mark Davis. It’s part of his broader plans for his post-football career, which included becoming a part owner of the WNBA’s Las Vegas Aces.
While NFL rules regarding player-owners would typically prevent Brady from making a comeback, with the Jets or either team, he reportedly isn’t eligible for those restrictions quite yet.
According to Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL Network, Brady’s purchase of a minority stake in the Raiders’ franchise has not been finalized. The soonest it could be voted on is the Fall League Meeting in October, but there is significant work ahead.
Anyone who is looking to become an NFL franchise owner goes through an extensive vetting process. While Brady’s reputation and history are coveted by league officials and team owners, he must still be approved by the financial committee. For the time being, the rules are strict but that could change in the months to come.
How Las Vegas Raiders sale impacts Tom Brady
For now, Brady is allowed to entertain a second NFL return without encountering any restrictions from the league. If the 46-year-old quarterback decided he wanted to attempt a comeback later this season, that option is available to him.
- Tom Brady career earnings: $332.962 million
However, NFL owners will vote on his deal with Davis during the 2023 season. If there were any signs of Brady wanting to play football again, he would likely either have to postpone his purchase or NFL owners would just reject it until he’s retired for good.
Once Brady is officially a minority owner of the Raiders, the door to an NFL return is effectively closed. NFL rules require 24-of-32 owners to approve of anyone with an ownership stake to play a down in the NFL. It’s a guarantee that Brady wouldn’t have the votes to make an approved comeback.