Tom Brady may not be at the NFL Scouting Combine, but he's all the rage among conversations as the league's next set of prospects begin their journey from college to the pros. Before that happens, though, many around the league are anxiously awaiting the decision of Brady as he is set to hit the open market for the first time in his 20-year career.
While no team is able to speak directly with Brady or any impending free agent, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on Thursday that three teams have met with representatives of the New England Patriots quarterback during the combine.
Those teams are the Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Chargers and the Las Vegas Raiders, who have been among the most popular choices for where he will play in 2020.
Typically, teams do not make any contact with agents about upcoming free agents as that would violate the tampering policy. Rapoport notes that a league spokesman explained to him that, "teams are only allowed to talk about their own players in those conversations."
The clear violation, however, may not be a concern to the Patriots. The team could go to the league offices and claim tampering, but a report from NBC Sports Boston last month suggests the team isn't concerned. The report said the team would be fine with teams talking with his agent prior to free agency because it'll allow for him to get a sense of what he could get in the open market.0comments
Before free agency begins on March 18 at 4 p.m. ET, the Patriots can make one final offer, which is why that report says the team would not file for tampering as they see it beneficial that they could then come back to him with an offer after he gets a better sense of what those clubs may be willing to offer.
It's believed that Brady is likely to play elsewhere in 2020, as more reports are coming out with the belief that his tenure in New England is done. Vic Tafur of The Athletic shared that he has heard a lot of chatter during the Combine week that would suggest he is ready to move on.