Tom Brady missed a Tampa Bay Buccaneers walk-through on Saturday, the day before the team was upset by the Pittsburgh Steelers.
And while Bucs coach Todd Bowles has said Brady "didn't miss anything," a respected former player said Brady leaving his team the day before a game bothered him.
On "The Herd with Colin Cowherd," former Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth said Brady, who attended the wedding of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft on Friday night, may not need the walk-through in year 23 of his NFL career, but skipping it sends the wrong message to his teammates.
"It bothered me," Whitworth said. "It really did. Just to me, what Tom’s always been known as is just the guy that’s like, you will never out-work me, you will never out-prepare me, I will out-work every guy in this business. And I think every one of those guys looks up to you that way. And I know, like for me, it’s not like in year 16 I had to walk away from the game. I still played at a really high level. But one of the things that made me retire is I got to that point mentally where I’m like, you know what? I don’t always want to be here. And I don’t always want to do this. I know I can go out and play well, but I don’t ever want to be a disservice to the guys who look up to me that this is who I am and how I play the game. So for me, it just bothered me because that’s how I look up to Tom Brady, and for him to miss something that, that’s a pivotal day to get ready and prepare."
The missed walk-through is the latest in a long line of off-field headlines Brady has made since deciding to un-retire and return to the Bucs. He missed part of training camp in August and rumors have swirled that his marriage to Gisele Bundchen could be on the rocks.
Whether or not the missed walk-through had anything to do with it, Brady and the Bucs offense struggled to get going in Pittsburgh. During the game, Brady made headlines when cameras caught him yelling at his offensive line. The loss dropped Tampa Bay to 3-3 on the season.