Robert Kraft, Tom Brady embrace outside of the locker room prior to Patriots-Buccaneers matchup

Written by on October 4, 2021

FOXBOROUGH, Mass — Tom Brady is back in town. The Buccaneers quarterback has officially touched down at Gillette Stadium in the hours leading up to Tampa Bay facing off against the New England Patriots during “Sunday Night Football.” Of course, this is Brady’s first matchup against his former team since leaving as a free agent in the spring of 2020, making this head-to-head one of the most highly-anticipated regular-season games in NFL history. 

Prior to this showdown, NBC cameras caught one of the more noteworthy moments of Brady’s homecoming — a reunion with Robert Kraft. After walking around the Patriots sideline, Kraft departed into Gillette Stadium and toward the visitor’s locker room. There, he met with Brady and the two embraced before catching up. 

This meeting comes only hours after Kraft spoke about Brady’s return and told the NFL Network that he hopes the quarterback — that spearheaded a two-decade long dynasty in New England that resulted in six Super Bowls — ultimately retires as a member of the Patriots. 

“He did so much for us,” Kraft said, as transcribed by PatriotsWire. “We had 20 great years. How many other situations are there in the 102-year history of the NFL where a coach and quarterback have remained the same for 20 years? … Life has its twist and turns. And, look, I’m always rooting for Tommy except when he’s playing us. In the end, I hope and believe he’ll come back here, we’ll give him his red jacket, just like we gave you, and he’ll retire a Patriot.”

Brady is unquestionably the greatest player to ever put on a Patriots uniform, so his place in the team’s Hall of Fame is obvious. As for whether or not he’ll retire with New England, any sort of one-day deal may be a few years away as CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reports the Brady and the Bucs will explore and extension this offseason. 

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