Brady, who grew up in nearby San Mateo, California, attending 49ers games and idolizing Joe Montana and Steve Young, never realized his dream of being the man under center in red and gold. That ship sailed in the 2000 NFL Draft when the 49ers passed on him six times.
In 2020, however, there appeared to have been a chance to make it happen. Brady was a free agent with San Francisco rumored to be interested. A deal never came to fruition and Brady instead signed with Tampa Bay. Head coach Kyle Shanahan still admires Brady from afar and showered him with praise ahead of the Week 14 matchup.
I’d like to say, ‘Of course not,’” said Shanahan, when asked if he’s surprised that the 45-year-old Brady is still playing at a high level. “but… when you watch him that first week in Tampa, you’re like, ‘What the hell was anyone ever thinking?’”
Shanahan continued, saying Brady is “definitely the GOAT.”
“He plays the position better than anyone ever, and he’s definitely the GOAT from what I’ve seen, but I don’t say that just because he has won Super Bowls,” Shanahan said. “I say it because of how he plays the position. The ball always goes to the right spot, and that answer is based off of a thousand different things that could be matchups, it could be the coverage that could be based off of down and distance, the time in the game, how the defense is playing.”
Tom Brady Looking to Manage Emotions in Return Home
Sunday’s game with be an emotional one for Brady — perhaps his last at home with tons of friends and family in attendance. It is still, though, a game — an important one at that for Tampa Bay. Snapping the 49ers’ five-game winning streak is no easy task and it will take a clean football game out of Brady and the Buccaneers.
“I think my emotion is to do everything I can to win the game,” Brady said Thursday. “We’re a competitive team and we haven’t had our best moments this year all the time but we’re going to go out there and try to play our best ball this year. That’s what it’s going to take because they’re a great football team.”