A new book by New York Times Magazine's Mark Leibovich says playing for the New England Patriots has become a "dismal grind" for quarterback Tom Brady.
Quoting unnamed friends, teammates and relatives, Leibovich reinforces reports that first surfaced late last season that a rift had developed between Brady and head coach Bill Belichick.
"He has spoken—to friends, teammates, and relatives—about how playing in Foxborough had indeed become a dismal grind," Leibovich writes. "He felt he had earned more deference and gratitude from a coach who probably owes his Hall of Fame career more to him than to anyone else.
Because of Brady's unwillingness to speak, Leibovich is forced to rely on excerpts from the player's "Tom vs Time" Facebook series and other interviews and media reports to support his claim.
The writer said he tried to interview Brady last April, but the QB only agreed to answer questions by email. When he finally responded, it was via an emailed audio file.
Asked what he planned to do once he's finished with football, Brady replied, "I still love being involved in creating things. And there’s definitely ways to fill this creative outlet that’s been filled by football for so long." But he didn't get into specifics.
And though he hadn't told much of the world if he planned to play in 2018 yet, Brady did tell Leibovich that he wouldn't be retiring, adding that he also didn't intend to get traded but "they can do whatever they want.
"It’s just, I’m training and getting ready to play like I always do, so that’s not in any controversial way, that’s reality," he said. "Obviously, I love coach Belichick."
Click here to read a longer excerpt from Leibovich's new book, "Big Game: The NFL in Dangerous Times."