Bucs’ Tom Brady needed all offseason to recover from knee surgery: Source

Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady might be more excited than anyone to finally put the offseason in the rearview mirror.

Brady, who already admitted to having left knee surgery after Super Bowl LV, hasn’t disclosed the nature of the procedure. However, it was serious enough that the recovery spanned his entire offseason, according to a source.

Brady had to follow a detailed rehabilitation plan over the course of several months to get himself ready for Thursday night’s season opener against the Cowboys. The 44-year-old played through the knee injury during the 2020 season while knowing he’d eventually need the surgery.

Brady also had COVID-19 after the Super Bowl parade. Despite that and the knee rehab, Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians told The Athletic last week that Brady is way ahead of where he was last season when he debuted in Tampa.

“Totally different because last year he was still learning everybody’s name,” Arians said. “When we came to training camp (in 2020), he didn’t have any practices. He had a group of guys he’d been working out with, but he hadn’t met anybody. He was learning how to get to work, where to go, where to eat in the facility and all that kind of stuff himself. So he couldn’t really be Tom Brady.

“And he didn’t know the offense. When you don’t know the offense, you’re not going to jump out there and try to be a super leader. His work ethic and all that, that’s his leadership anyway. I think that part, having a player who has been there and done it on this team, it basically had put them all over the hump mentally.”

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Brady still completed 65.7 percent of his passes for 4,633 yards, 40 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 2020, and he was the Super Bowl MVP in the 31-9 victory against the Chiefs.

After adjusting to the new offense, the knee rehab and recovery from COVID-19, Brady can finally settle into the new season Thursday night.
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