The New England Patriots will retire the number 12 shirt and build a statue in honour of iconic quarterback Tom Brady.

Brady was inducted into the Patriots' Hall of Fame on Wednesday, having led them to six Super Bowl titles during his 20-year stint with the franchise.

The three-time MVP is the all-time regular-season leader in pass attempts (12,050), completions (7,753), passing yards (89,214) and touchdown passes (649) in the NFL.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft said the statue would be placed outside the franchise's Hall of Fame to recognise Brady "not as the greatest in franchise history, but as the greatest in all of NFL history".

"I am eternally grateful. I am Tom Brady. And I am a Patriot," Brady said at the ceremony at the Gilette Stadium.

Former Patriots coach Bill Belichick added: "Thank you for all that you've done for us. Thank you for all you've done for me. And thank you for the example and motto you've been for all of us on a daily basis for 20 years."

Ezekiel Elliott is eyeing a Super Bowl run after rejoining the Dallas Cowboys, saying a return to the franchise where he started his NFL career had dominated his thoughts for the last year.

On Monday, the Cowboys struck a deal to bring Elliott back to Dallas after one season with the New England Patriots.

The Cowboys took Elliott fourth overall in the 2016 NFL Draft out of Ohio State, and he led the league for rushing yards both as a rookie (1,631 yards) and again in 2018 (1,434).

The three-time Pro Bowl running back was less impressive in his last three years with the franchise before being released, spending 2023 with the Patriots as they went 4-13 in Bill Belichick's final campaign at the helm. 

Dallas have moved to bring him back to AT&T Stadium after losing Tony Pollard to the Tennessee Titans in March, and he can't wait to get started again.

"It feels great to be home," Elliott said. "I definitely missed being here. 

"I missed this building. I missed the Cowboys nation. I'm definitely excited and ready to get this thing going."

Speaking to The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Elliott said he was always keen on coming back, adding: "This was my priority, doing what I could do to get back here. 

"I have a lot left to accomplish here. I'm excited to get back with the fellas and chase that ring.

"From 2016, we've been working on building this franchise to get a chance to win the Super Bowl. That is obviously the priority. That's the bar."

Asked what he had learned in New England, Elliott said: "Just showing I can be a starter in this league. I can still play at a high level, not just when running with the ball but also protecting the quarterback and catching the ball out of the backfield.

"Being in this league for as long as I have been, and being comfortable with who I am, and having as many reps as I have, I can focus on bringing other guys along and help them find their way.

"There's a lot of skilled guys and guys with a lot of different talents in our RB room. It'll be exciting to work with them, to push each other and help each other become better football players." 

Elliott ran for 642 yards and three touchdowns in 17 games with New England last season. He ranks third in Dallas franchise history for rushing yards (8,262), behind Emmitt Smith (17,162) and Tony Dorsett (12,036). 

The New England Patriots hope they now have their franchise quarterback after selecting North Carolina’s Drake Maye with the third overall pick in Thursday's NFL draft. 

Maye was the third straight quarterback selected after the Chicago Bears took Caleb Williams at No. 1 and the Washington Commanders chose Jayden Daniels second.

Since Tom Brady departed New England following the 2019 season, the Patriots used Cam Newton as their primary quarterback the following season before drafting Mac Jones 15th overall in 2021.

Jones had a strong rookie season with 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions but tailed off to 24 TDs and 23 picks combined the past two seasons and was traded to Jacksonville in March. 

Maye likely won’t be the Patriots’ starting quarterback at the start of the 2024 season after veteran signal caller Jacoby Brissett was signed to a one-year contract in March. Brissett has appeared in 79 NFL games with 48 starts and figures to serve as a mentor to Maye.

There is also the belief that Maye simply won’t be NFL ready in a few months and would be best served to sit a season, like what Patrick Mahomes did for the Chiefs in 2017.

Maye was the ACC Player of the Year in 2022 in his first season as a full-time starter at North Carolina, also being named the conference’s Offensive Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year. He broke Mitchell Trubisky’s school record and set an FBS freshman record with 4,321 passing yards and tied Sam Howell’s mark for passing touchdowns with 38 and threw just seven interceptions. He also displayed his mobility with nearly 700 yards rushing and seven scores. 

This past season wasn’t as productive for Maye, who before the season lost offensive coordinator Phil Longo and receivers Josh Downs and Antoine Green to the NFL. Maye was still named to the Second Team All-ACC team as he passed for 3,608 yards with 24 touchdowns and nine interceptions in 12 games.

Maye has all the physical tools to succeed in the NFL, namely excellent arm talent and good mobility for someone of his size (6-foot-4, 223 pounds). He made a host of impressive touch throws in college and understands where to deliver a ball for a receiver to make a play on it. 

There are some issues with Maye’s footwork and his tendency to trust his arm strength almost too much and force some throws. His weaknesses, though, seem like the kind that can be improved upon rather quickly and sitting for a full season - or at least most of one - would help greatly in this area. 

Maye has drawn comparisons to Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen and Justin Herbert of the Los Angeles Chargers. 

He isn’t quite the natural athlete that Allen is and probably doesn’t have Hebert’s arm strength, but it’s not far-fetched to think Maye could put up similar numbers to those two at the next level given the right coaching and situation. 

Former New England Patriots safety Duron Harmon has credited Bill Belichick with helping Tom Brady become the greatest player in NFL history, saying the legendary duo "needed each other".

Belichick and the Patriots parted ways last week, bringing an end to one of the most remarkable coaching tenures in league history.

The 71-year-old led the Patriots for 24 seasons, overseeing 18 playoff visits and taking the team to nine Super Bowls, winning six of those showpiece games with the most recent coming in 2019.

However, New England missed the playoffs in three of their last four seasons under Belichick, prompting team owner Robert Kraft to replace his long-serving coach with former linebackers coach Jerod Mayo.

Some have suggested Belichick's failure to win a Super Bowl without Brady diminishes his achievements somewhat, with the coach's overall NFL record without the quarterback standing at 85-102, but Harmon does not subscribe to that view.

"I think both those guys are motivated by one thing; being the best they can each and every day," Harmon – who played for Belichick's Patriots between 2013 and 2019 – told Stats Perform.

"Tom's job would be to be the best quarterback and rally his team. Bill's job was to be the best head coach and rally his team as well, and to make sure the coaches understand his vision so they can pass it to the players and put the best product on the field. 

"It's easy to try to put those two against each other, but I think at the end of the day, they needed each other. 

"They understand that they couldn't have accomplished what they accomplished in New England without each other.

"I think there's a great amount of respect that they have for each other. I'm still grateful and appreciative that I got to be around the greatest quarterback and the greatest head coach of all time."

Brady did manage to win one more title after he and Belichick parted ways in 2020, collecting his seventh ring by leading the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to glory at Super Bowl LV.

Harmon does not believe Brady was motivated by a desire to prove he could succeed without Belichick, saying: "I truly don't believe he needs any extra motivation. 

"This guy wanted to be the best player that he can be every day, whether it was with the Buccaneers, whether it was with the Patriots, he just wants to get the best out of himself every day. 

"I don't think it was, 'I want to prove I could do this without Bill', I think more so it was just him going to Tampa and doing what he does. 

"The thing that people don't realise, and I know Tom was always a great competitor, but the cultural style that came from Bill to him is what I believe gave him that extra motivation, that extra push to make Tom truly who he is. 

"As a young player, when he first took from Drew Bledsoe [in 2001], it was a very veteran-based team, so he wanted to gain the respect of not only the players, but also Bill Belichick. 

"Bill pushed him as best he could to be the best that he could be, and in the end, he became the best ever."

Having won three Super Bowls in six years in New England, Harmon is uniquely placed to offer an insight into the relationship between Belichick and Brady at the height of the Patriots' dominance.

"It was like yin and yang. It was Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson. Kobe Bryant, Phil Jackson," he recalled.

"I was fortunate enough to be captain one year with the Patriots and saw how they interacted in the captains' meeting and how they were always on the same page. 

"There were times when Bill got on Tom in front of everybody, and it wasn't to demean Tom, but it was to let everybody know that there is a standard in this organisation, it doesn't matter who you are, whether you're the best player or you're the last guy on the practice squad. 

"Seeing those guys work together allowed me to see what that head coach-quarterback partnership is supposed to look like at the highest level."

Duron Harmon's defining memory of playing for Bill Belichick is not one of their three Super Bowl triumphs together, but the coach using a jar of marshmallows to motivate him in preseason. 

Belichick's remarkable 24-year stint in charge of the New England Patriots came to an end last week after he oversaw a career-worst 4-13 season in 2023, with former linebackers coach Jerod Mayo taking charge.

The 71-year-old led New England to nine Super Bowls throughout his 24 seasons at the helm, winning six of those with the most recent coming against the Los Angeles Rams at Super Bowl LIII. 

Safety Harmon was present for that triumph, as well as wins at Super Bowls XLIX and LI, as a regular fixture in a dominant Patriots side led by legendary quarterback Tom Brady.

Harmon remembers his time under Belichick fondly, but it is the coach's personable side, rather than his tactical acumen, which stood out most prominently. 

Asked for his defining memory of Belichick while speaking to Stats Perform, Harmon said: "It's crazy. It's not even a football field memory. It was a training camp. I can't remember what year it was. It had to be 2016.

"We still had Logan [Ryan], it was me, Logan, Devin [McCourty], and I think at the time we were all maybe dealing with something, like little injuries. I don't think we were practicing. 

"Bill came up to us. Logan, Dev, and I were stretching. I look up and he says, 'you Rutgers guys, you know what? You guys are soft like marshmallows'.

"We're like, 'what are you talking about?' He was like, 'not even practicing'. He goes on his spiel. 

"The next day, when we go into the meeting room, there's three big jars of marshmallows at our seats. We just start dying, laughing, because a lot of people don't see that side of Bill, but for us, that's the side that we've seen all the time.

"Then that preseason game against the Panthers, all three of us got interceptions and he came up to us at the end of the game and said, 'maybe I need to put marshmallows by your seats weekly'. 

"His great coaching style that I really appreciated was one thing, but having memories like that, where we can have a personable connection, will always go a long way for me."

Harmon believes Belichick's incredible work ethic is the secret to his success, saying: "When we won the Super Bowls, he let himself loose a little bit. I will tell you that. That's when you see him really just take a step back and enjoy it.

"I've been very privileged to be in this league for 11 years, and I can honestly say I've never been around anybody who works as hard as him each day. 

"That is the reason why the Patriots organisation has been successful for as long as it has been. He believes that if you want to have a championship team, there has to be a standard of excellence no matter what you're doing."

The consistency Belichick instilled in the Patriots was perhaps his most impressive accomplishment, with the team enjoying 19 consecutive winning seasons from 2001 to 2019.

Harmon hailed his ability to motivate players to go again, saying: "When we came back after winning the Super Bowl, he'd let us know that it's over, we don't talk about previous years.

"There were even times when he wouldn't let us wear the Super Bowl gear that we got in the building anymore, because he wanted us to realise this is a new year. 

"He does a tremendous job of letting us know we've got to put that year to bed. Now it's time to get working on the new one. Everybody buys in, because we know what happens when we do."

Bill Belichick's exploits with the New England Patriots will never be replicated and mark him out as the best coach in NFL history, according to the team's former safety Duron Harmon.

Last week, team owner Robert Kraft announced the end of Belichick's remarkable 24-year stint in charge of the Patriots, who he led to six Super Bowl titles – the most of any coach in the league's history.  

Belichick led New England to 18 playoff trips after taking charge in 2000, but the team missed the postseason in three of his final four campaigns at the helm. 

Their 4-13 record throughout the 2023 season was their worst under Belichick, whose last playoff win came back in 2019 as the Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams at Super Bowl LIII.

Despite a less-than-stellar end to his distinguished run in New England, Harmon – who won three Super Bowls throughout a six-year stint with the team between 2013 and 2019 – says Belichick's place in the history books is secure.

Asked what Belichick's Patriots legacy amounted to, Harmon told Stats Perform: "In my opinion, he's just the best coach who ever graced the NFL. 

"What he was able to accomplish over those 20-plus years as a Patriots coach, we've never seen it before. It will never be duplicated. 

"He set the standard extremely high for when people try to talk about dynasties. I'm just forever grateful that he chose me to be a part of his team and to be a part of his legacy."

While Belichick will turn 72 in April, it has been suggested that he may stay in the league as he chases down Don Shula's all-time record of 347 wins (regular season and playoffs), a tally he is currently 14 shy of.

The Los Angeles Chargers have been touted as a potential destination for Belichick, but Harmon cannot see the Patriots legend coaching elsewhere.

"I just can't see it," he said. "He and Tom Brady are the Patriots. They're what the Patriots stand for, to do your job, hard-nosed gritty football, those two together built the Patriots organisation. 

"So to see him go somewhere else... me personally, I can't see it, but the beauty about sports is you just never know. In due time, we will figure out whether he'll be somewhere else."

For the Patriots, attention quickly turned to the search for Belichick's successor, and 37-year-old former linebackers coach Jerod Mayo became the league's youngest head coach when his promotion was made official on Friday.

Having shared a locker room with Mayo throughout his first three seasons with the Patriots, Harmon believes he has all the attributes required to be a success. 

"My time there with him… he's a tremendous, tremendous leader. A leader of men, an intelligent person," Harmon said of Mayo.

"Most people say he's just a smart football player, but he's just an intelligent person. Straight out of retirement, he went and worked for a company, a big Fortune 500 company. 

"It shows who he is as a person and as a leader, that as soon as he gets done playing, somebody wants to hire him to lead this division of their company. 

"If I had to put my hat on or give my blessing to anybody, it would be Jerod Mayo."

Bill Belichick is still the right coach for the New England Patriots despite their struggles this season.

That is the view of Duron Harmon, who played for the Patriots between 2013 and 2019, winning three Super Bowl rings in that time.

All of those triumphs came under Belichick's guidance, with the 71-year-old having been head coach of the Patriots since 2000.

His 24th straight season in charge has proved a dismal one, with the Patriots sinking to a 2-10 record.

New England have lost their last five games including their 6-0 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 13.

Their displays have cast doubt over the future of veteran coach Belichick, but Harmon – who is on the practice roster at the Cleveland Browns – does not think making a change is the right solution.

"I just think it's timing," he told Stats Perform. "How many organisations do you know that are this successful for this long? That's life.

"You look at all the great organisations, the [Chicago] Bulls when they had their run, then eventually, you've got to go through [hard times]. 

"That's just a part of sports that happens because when you're at the top, everybody's gunning for you. Everybody's trying to figure out how to get better.

"They're taking from you, they're taking coaches from you. They're taking players from you. That's sports, it's life.

"We've come where it's time for the Patriots to be on the other side for a little bit. I think if there is one person that can reverse it and turn it the other way, it's the man that's right there, and that's Bill Belichick – he's done it before.

"If he has the, I don't want to say patience, but if he wants to go through that again, I think he's the man to do it."

Harmon also believes Belichick would choose to stay on with the Patriots, rather than end his tenure on a low ebb.

He added: "Besides Tom Brady, he's the most competitive person I know. People don't realise, Bill is a competitor. He loves to win, but he hates to lose even more. And you can kind of just see it in his demeanour.

"Losing is not a part of his nature and I can't see him just going out like this.

"I think this would be the motivation. He does everything there. He's the coach, he's the front office. It's all on him."

The New England Patriots preseason game against the Green Bay Packers was called off Saturday night after rookie Isaiah Bolden was carted off the field early in the fourth quarter.

Bolden, a seventh-round pick by New England out of Jackson State, appeared to collide with teammate Calvin Munson while attempting to make a hit on a pass completion to Malik Heath of the Packers.

Bolden lay motionless on the field as medical officials tended to him. He was eventually carted off the field and the Patriots said after the game that Bolden had feeling in all his extremities. Bolden will be held overnight at a hospital in Green Bay for observation.

The teams conferred and decided not to continue the game with the Patriots leading 21-17 with 10:29 left in the fourth quarter.

The incident came more than seven months after Buffalo’s Damar Hamlin went into cardiac arrest and was resuscitated on the field on what appeared to be a routine tackle against the Cincinnati Bengals on Jan. 2.

Hamlin has since returned to the Bills and played in his hometown of Pittsburgh earlier in the day and had three tackles in a loss to the Steelers.

Former New England Patriots linebacker D'Onta Hightower has retired from the NFL.

A first-round pick in the 2012 draft out of Alabama, Hightower spent his entire career with the Patriots, playing a pivotal role in three Super Bowl championships.

After helping the Patriots defeat the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX at the end of the 2014 season, bringing down Marshawn Lynch short of the endzone on the play prior to Malcolm Butler's game-winning interception, Hightower made a key contribution in their remarkable comeback against the Atlanta Falcons two years later.

His strip sack of Matt Ryan in the fourth quarter gave the Patriots the ball deep in Falcons' territory, allowing New England to cut it to a one-score game as they incredibly fought back from 28-3 down to prevail in Super Bowl LI.

Hightower also capped the 2018 season with a title, the Patriots' defense holding the Los Angeles Rams to a field goal in a 13-3 success in Super Bowl LIII having lost a thriller to the Philadelphia Eagles a year earlier.

A two-time Pro Bowler, Hightower did not play in the 2022 season after his contract expired.

Hightower wrote in an article for the Players' Tribune: "Today, I am officially retiring from the NFL. I know these announcements always feel bittersweet, but I can't think of a better story than the one I wrote in New England. A decade, three Super Bowls, two Pro Bowls, and the birth of my son — all playing for one franchise. How many guys have a story like that?

"So this is a happy day for me, and I just wanted to let you all know how much I appreciate you embracing a Southern kid from Lewisburg, Tennessee.

"I appreciate everyone who helped me make this dream come true. But I especially want to thank my mom. None of this happens without her. Now that I got my own 40-pound two-year-old running around the house like a little wrecking ball, I don’t know how you held it down for us all by yourself.

"I just want to say thank you for helping me live my dream.

"To you, to my beautiful wife, Morgan, to all my coaches, my team-mates, my mentors, my teachers, my friends, my entire family, and to all the fans at Bama and New England....

"Thank you. Just, thank you. I wouldn’t rewrite a single chapter of this story."

The New England Patriots have secured free agent tight end Mike Gesicki to a one-year deal.

A second-round selection by the Miami Dolphins in the 2018 NFL Draft, Gesicki will reunite with new Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien – who recruited him to Penn State in 2014.

Gesicki caught only 32 passes for 362 yards in the 2022 season, his lowest totals in both since his 2018 rookie season, and did not fit into Mike McDaniel's offensive scheme in Florida.

Prior to that, the 27-year-old caught 73 passes for 780 yards in 2021, both career highs, ranking fifth among tight ends that season for the most receptions.

According to ESPN, Gesicki's one-year deal is worth up to $9million with the Patriots.

In five seasons in the NFL, Gesicki has totalled 231 receptions for 2,617 total yards, scoring 18 touchdowns.

The Patriots have rejuvenated their offensive options in free agency, signing wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster, running back James Robinson and offensive tackles Riley Reiff and Calvin Anderson.

JuJu Smith-Schuster will join the New England Patriots after winning the Super Bowl with the Kansas City Chiefs last season.

The wide receiver has agreed a three-year contract worth $33million to sign for the Patriots despite the Chiefs attempting to retain him, according to NFL Network.

"Excited for my next chapter in New England!" Smith-Schuster wrote on Twitter after the news broke on Wednesday.

"I will give this organisation everything I have, thank you for believing in me!"

Smith-Schuster had 78 receptions for 933 yards and three touchdowns with Kansas City in 2022.

He then grabbed seven catches for 53 yards as a thrilling Chiefs comeback saw them win Super Bowl LVII against the Philadelphia Eagles in Arizona, also drawing a crucial late holding penalty from James Bradberry.

Smith-Schuster spent the first five seasons of his NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers after being picked in the second round of the 2017 draft.

He made the Pro Bowl in 2018 after an impressive year that saw him record 111 receptions for 1,426 yards.

A shoulder injury impacted his last year in Pittsburgh but a productive season catching passes from Patrick Mahomes helped the 26-year-old to get his NFL career back on track.

Possession receiver Smith-Schuster was rated as one of the top pass-catchers available on the open market this offseason along with Odell Beckham Jr. and Jakobi Meyers.

He now joins a Patriots team that was in need of receiving talent, particularly after losing Meyers - their leading receiver for three straight seasons - to the Las Vegas Raiders.

As well as expressing his excitement over his free agency deal, Smith-Schuster showed gratitude to the Chiefs.

He added: "Thank you to Kansas City for the giving me the opportunity to come in and contribute to a Super Bowl, the most unforgettable experience of my life.

"I will always love my team-mates, the coaching staff, and the fans for being so great to me."

Devin McCourty has announced his retirement from the NFL after 13 seasons and three titles.

McCourty spent his entire professional career with the New England Patriots, having been selected in the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft.

The two-time Pro Bowler, who was a second-team All-Pro on three occasions, was part of the Patriots' Super Bowl-winning teams following the 2014, 2016 and 2018 seasons.

Safety McCourty spent three seasons playing alongside his twin brother Jason, winning Super Bowl LIII together.

The cornerback retired after the 2021 season and took up a position with NFL Network, and he played a role in announcing his brother's retirement on Friday.

Devin McCourty joined Jason in a social media video and said: "I'm officially retiring from the NFL. It has been a great ride.

"I think it's always tough to come to the end. This whole offseason has been so much back and forth for me mentally, but ultimately I think this is the best decision for me, for my family and my career."

Tom Brady has filed his retirement letter with the NFL and National Football League Players Association (NFLPA), effectively rubber-stamping the end of his professional career, according to reports.

The veteran quarterback originally announced his retirement last year following two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, before walking back on his decision.

Following Tampa Bay's defeat in the Wild Card round to the Dallas Cowboys last month, however, the 45-year-old announced he was to quit for good.

On Friday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Brady has written to the league and the NFLPA to formally confirm his decision to retire.

The move makes the seven-time Super Bowl winner eligible for the Class of 2028 in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, to which he is likely to be an immediate inductee.

Across a two-decade-plus tenure following his selection by the New England Patriots, Brady became one of the NFL's undisputed greats.

During his time in New England he won six Super Bowls, before adding a seventh ring to his collection during his spell in Florida with the Buccaneers.

Brady is set to take up a role as a broadcaster with Fox Sports for their NFL coverage following his retirement, though he will not start in the role until 2024.

He is due to instead take a year out from the sport, missing the 2023 season in all capacities, before he joins the commentary booth the following year.

J.J. Watt, the former Houston Texans and Arizona Cardinals defensive end who announced his retirement in December, quoted tweeted Schefter's report with the caption: "I was unaware there was paperwork... Definitely not gonna [sic] fill that out, but definitely retired."

Rob Gronkowski thinks Tom Brady could have played on until he was 50.

Brady had a short-lived retirement last year but confirmed he was calling time on his playing days for good on February 1.

The 45-year-old heads into retirement with seven Super Bowl rings, five Super Bowl MVP awards and three NFL MVP prizes to his name among countless records.

Gronkowski played alongside Brady for nine years with the New England Patriots and then linked up with the QB again for two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

He thinks Brady could have played at the top level for another five years.

"Yes, I was [surprised] but I wasn't at the same time," Gronkowski said.

"Football is a tough sport. But the only reason why I'm surprised that he's retired is because I think he could have easily played until like 50 years old, just the way he carries himself, the way he takes care of his body, just the way he preps every single week, week in and week out.

"At the same time, not really surprised. He had an unbelievable career. If you really think about a 45-year-old and was top three in passing yards... so he still went out on top, there's no doubt about it.

"Whatever he wants to do, whatever is going to make him happy, I'm going to support that."

Gronkowski, who retired after the 2021 season, is unsure where Brady might have ended up had he decided to continue his career.

"I don't know, wherever he decided but just loves the game of football," he added. "He just loves it so much. So I really wasn't sure what his plans were or anything.

"But I'm just super excited for him and just happy for him in whatever situation, he decides to do anytime."

Patriots chief executive Robert Kraft mooted the possibility of Brady ending his career at New England, potentially on a one-day contract.

Asked if he would be open to such a situation for himself, Gronkowski replied: "I think that offer's only open for Tom. 

"I don't know. If it was offered and presented, it would definitely be a possibility. I love New England. I loved my time there. I've learned so much. I love Mr. Kraft. I love the whole organisation.

"Coach [Bill] Belichick, everyone, I've learned so much there over the nine years. So, if that was presented then that would definitely be something to consider. All because of just how much that place means to me for the rest of my life."

Tom Brady will wait until the 2024 NFL season to launch his new career in broadcasting with Fox Sports.

The seven-time Super Bowl champion retired last week after a 23-year career with the New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Brady signed a 10-year deal to become Fox Sports' lead analyst last May once his playing days had come to an end, reported to be worth $375million.

However, the 45-year-old will not be involved in any capacity in next season's coverage as he intends to take his first year out from the sport since 1999.

"I want to be great at what I do," Brady told Fox Sports 1's The Herd.

"I was talking even last week with the people at Fox Sports, and the leadership there allowing me to start my opportunity in the fall of 2024 is something that's great for me.

"I'll take some time to really learn, become great at what I want to do, become great at thinking about the opportunity and make sure I don't rush into anything."

Brady announced his retirement in a short video posted on his social media channels last Wednesday.

He had called time on his illustrious career a year ago, on February 1 2022, only to announce 40 days later that he was making a comeback.

And the legendary quarterback says he wanted to make the latest retirement announcement a low-key affair.

"For me, I know in my heart how I feel," he said. "I put it out on the field for 23 years and I'm super proud of what's been accomplished. 

"I just wanted to keep last week really short and sweet. I felt like I've given a lot, I've gained a lot, I've learned a lot, and life is about exciting things ahead, too.

"I've loved my time in football. It's absolutely an incredible love in my life. It's hard to make decisions like that, but it's certainly the right time."

On his next chapter away from the field, Brady added: "I want to be great at what I do, and that always takes some time, strategising, learning, growing and evolving. 

"I have so many people to rely on and support me in that world, too. 

"It's going to be a great opportunity for me to take some time to prepare for my broadcasting job, but also catching up on other parts of my life that need some time and energy."

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