Tom Brady downplays Bill Belichick's phone call upon Patriots departure, focused on 'huge test'

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Tom Brady is doing his best to keep the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ matchup with the New England Patriots this weekend about football and football only.

On Thursday, Brady was asked during his media availability if he knows why Patriots coach Bill Belichick said his goodbyes over the phone rather than meeting with him in person.

Brady’s No. 12 Patriots jerseys are still plentiful in the stands on game days at Gillette Stadium. With Brady’s new Tampa home just as rabid about the player who brought it a championship in his first season, it’s created a tug-of-war between the fan bases as he gets set to return to the place where his career began.
(AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady throws against the Los Angeles Rams during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021, in Inglewood, Calif.
(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

“That’s what happens in life. You go through these experiences, you don’t know where life’s going to lead,” Brady said. “And I think the only thing I know how to do is give it all I can in every day, moment. And the people that really bet on me, I want to do really well for them. [Bucs General Manager] Jason [Licht] and [head coach] Bruce [Arians], I think them coming into my life and saying, ‘Hey, we really want you to be here,’ has been an amazing thing for me. 

“I’m just excited to go up there and try to beat a really good football team. That’s ultimately what this week is about. It’s not about the quarterback, it’s not about the fans or the home crowd or relationships of 20 years. It’s about two good football teams going at it, and we’ve got to do a great job. It’s going to be a huge test. Last week was a huge test, and we didn’t quite meet it. This is another huge test; we’ve got to go meet the challenge.”

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick looks on during an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021, in Foxborough, Mass.
(AP Photo/Mary Schwalm)

The phone call was brought up to Belichick earlier in the week after a new book revealed the coach turned down an in-person meeting with Brady. Several excerpts from the book were released Wednesday, and Belichick reportedly denying an in-person meeting with Brady was among them. The legendary head coach shot down the claim during a press conference.

Sunday night’s game will be Brady’s first playing against the Patriots. He left New England during the 2020 offseason to join the Buccaneers.

Fox News’ Dan Canova contributed to this report.

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