Tom Brady sparks backlash after comparing football season to military deployment: ‘Disgraceful’

Tom Brady sparks backlash after comparing football season to military deployment: ‘Disgraceful’

Posted For: AriesTonto

Chelsea Ritschel

Tom Brady has sparked intense backlash after comparing leaving his family for a season of football to a military deployment.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback, 45, who is in the midst of his 23rd season with the NFL, made the comparison during the 17 October episode of his SiriusXM podcast Let’s Go! with Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald and Jim Gray. He told Nets star Kevin Durant that he looks at the football season as “going away on deployment”.

“I almost look at like a football season like you’re going away on deployment in the military, and it’s like: ‘Man, here I go again,’” Brady said. “And there’s really only one way to do it … The reality is you can really only be authentic to yourself, right?

Despite wanting to have a work-life balance, Brady then claimed that when the football season begins he finds that he ends up doing “exactly what [he’s] always done”.

“Whatever you may say, ‘Oh man, I want to, you know, make sure I spend a little more time doing this this season,’ the reality is, when it comes down to it, your competitiveness takes over, and as much as you want to have this playful balance with the work balance, you’re going to end up doing exactly what you’ve always done, which is why you are who you are,” he said. “You’re going to go: ‘How the f**k do I get it done?’ You know: ‘What do I got to do to get it done?’”

The athlete’s comments have been met with criticism on social media, where many military service members condemned the comparison.

“Tom Brady thinks playing football is like going on military deployment. We both wear a uniform, and our marriages/relationships can be strained, but the similarities end there,” Jax Persists, who identifies themself as a veteran, wrote. “He plays a game to entertain people. We risk our lives to defend this country.”

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Another person tweeted: “Out of my eight(ish) deployments, I have never made $15m, went home every night, or spent time with my family. Not sure where @TomBrady thinks his playing in the NFL rates a comparison to military service.”

Someone else accused the football player of “insulting” military members and their families with the comments, with the individual writing: “Please don’t insult not only military members but their families by saying football is like a deployment @TomBrady.”

“Just in case you needed another reason to dislike him, Tom Brady compares his football lifestyle to being deployed in the military.  Well on behalf of myself and my fellow veterans, go f**k yourself @TomBrady,” another person said.

The comments also received a critical response from veteran Brad Thomas, who spent 20 years in the US Army, and who was on the ground in Mogadishu, Somalia, during the 1993 incident that became known as Black Hawk Down.

“Hey @TomBrady, this statement is naive and offensive on many levels. You play a game, for entertainment, and seem to have lost your perspective,” Thomas wrote on his Instagram Stories.

In a follow-up post, the veteran poked fun at the quarterback’s comments by sharing a 2003 photo of himself dressed in his army uniform in Iraq. The image had been edited to include a photo of Brady kneeling in his football uniform.

Military veteran Brad Thomas condemns Tom Brady’s comments comparing football season to military deployment (Brad Thomas)
Military veteran Brad Thomas condemns Tom Brady’s comments comparing football season to military deployment (Brad Thomas)

As of now, Brady has not responded to the backlash. Though, he also revealed during the podcast episode that he “ignores” social media.

“I think the point is everyone should just be authentic to who they are,” the quarterback said. “You know, some people approach it in different ways and it just has to work for them as part of your personality. So I definitely say things in the moment, you know, with me, my style is just to ignore as much as possible. And realise that most of the people in the conversation don’t have a full idea of what’s really going on.”

Brady’s comments come amid reports that he and his wife Gisele Bündchen are allegedly divorcing after 13 years of marriage.

The football star, who retired from the sport in February before announcing his return for the 2022 season just 40 days later, has been open about the toll his career has taken on his family. The former supermodel also spoke candidly about her husband’s career during an interview with Elle last month, where she revealed that she feels like she’s done her “part” supporting her husband and their family.

“I’ve done my part, which is [to] be there for [Tom]. I moved to Boston, and I focused on creating a cocoon and a loving environment for my children to grow up in and to be there supporting him and his dreams,” she said, adding: “I feel very fulfilled in that way, as a mother and as a wife. And now it’s going to be my turn.”

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