Patriots

NFL legend Joe Namath offers interesting take on Tom Brady's Patriots future

NFL legend Joe Namath offers interesting take on Tom Brady's Patriots future

There have been many great NFL quarterbacks who enjoyed a lot of success with one team for most of their career before joining a second team shortly before retirement.

The best example is Joe Montana, who played 13 seasons for the San Francisco 49ers and won four Super Bowl titles with them before leaving to join the Kansas City Chiefs for the final two years of his career.

Another legendary QB who left a team he played on for a long time was Joe Namath. He played 12 seasons with the New York Jets and led them to a Super Bowl III win in the 1968 season. Namath played the final season of his Hall of Fame career with the Los Angeles Rams.

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So, Namath has some understanding of the situation that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady currently finds himself in. Brady will be an unrestrictred free agent for the first time in his career in March unless he and the Patriots work out a new contract before the market opens. 

Namath, similar to many Patriots fans who have watched Brady for the last 20 years, has a hard time envisioning the 42-year-old quarterback leaving New England, recently telling ESPN's Rich Cimini the following:

It's almost beyond my belief that he would go to another team under any circumstances. I can't imagine that separation. Moving out of the New England area that he's been so accustomed to, and his family, that's a hard thing, too. I don't think he'll ever leave that totally behind, I really don't.

I want to see him play as long as he physically and mentally wants to, man, because we've all seen over the years the execution that has been superb more times than not. We don't get to see that kind of player, that kind of character, very often. It's very rare.

Hall of Fame caliber players spending their entire career with one team is becoming increasingly rare in today's professional sports. Player movement has increased so much, particularly in the NBA, where even the very best players change teams multiple times in one decade.

Brady has played 20 seasons for the Patriots and crafted a résumé more impressive than any other player in league history. He's won six Super Bowl titles and set many records. He doesn't owe the Patriots anything, but it would be nice, for many reasons, to see him finish his career in Foxboro.

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Report: Ex-Patriots WR Danny Amendola to re-sign with Lions

Report: Ex-Patriots WR Danny Amendola to re-sign with Lions

Scratch that Danny Amendola-Patriots reunion.

Peter Schrager of the NFL Network reports the free-agent wide receiver is re-signing with the Detroit Lions, where he spent last season and had 62 catches for 678 yards. Former Pats defensive coordinator Matt Patricia will enter his third season as Lions coach in 2020. 

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The 34-year-old left the Patriots after five seasons to sign with the Miami Dolphins in 2018 and may have burned a bridge or two with Bill Belichick. 

It had been speculated that perhaps bringing in a former reliable Tom Brady receiver might be part of a plan to lure Brady back to New England, with a report in late January that Amendola could come along to wherever Brady lands in free agency, but a Brady-Amendola reunion in Detroit isn't happening, either. 

Next Pats Podcast: Will Patriots go mobile at QB if Tom Brady leaves?

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Next Pats Podcast: Will Patriots go mobile at QB if Tom Brady leaves?

There's one big question that New England Patriots are facing this offseason. Who is going to be their starting quarterback in 2020?

For the past 20 seasons, the team hasn't really had questions at the position. It has always been Tom Brady's job. But with the 42-year-old set to hit free agency, the Patriots can't necessarily count on him returning unless they want to pay him what he's worth.

So, now the question for the Patriots becomes, what will life look like if Brady departs?

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On the latest episode of The Next Pats Podcast, which returns for its first episode of the 2020 offseason, Phil Perry is here to explore that question. And really what it all boils down to is what the Patriots are looking for in a potential successor.

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As Perry notes, it's likely to be one of two types of quarterback: The traditional pocket passer or a more mobile athlete in the mold of some of the recent success stories at the position.

Do the Patriots look for the next Brady? Uber-accurate, somebody who's going to sit in the pocket and absolutely dissect every little aspect of the defense that he is looking at. Or, do they go a different route? Do they go with an athlete? Do they get more mobile? Because talking to people this offseason, I'm getting a whiff -- I'm getting a scent that people believe the pocket passer might be dead.

Perry is joined by guests including Pro Football Focus' Steve Palazzolo, Greg Cosell of ESPN and NFL Films, and NFL Network's Kurt Warner to answer questions about Brady's future and what his game has looked like in recent seasons.

For more thoughts about the Patriots offseason, check out the latest episode of the Next Pats Podcast, available as part of the NBC Sports Boston Podcast Network.