NFL legend Tom Brady’s extended absence from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ offseason training camp has been blamed on marital issues being experienced between him and his supermodel wife Gisele Bundchen, according to US outlet Page Six.
Brady, 45, missed 11 days of Tampa Bay’s offseason schedule ahead of the next weekend’s NFL season kick-off, with the team citing ‘personal reasons’ for the iconic quarterback’s prolonged absence from team affairs.
But recent reporting has suggested that a row between Brady and Bundchen, 42, is the primary cause of him skipping the Buccaneers’ training camp – with Page Six claiming the couple had a series of “heated arguments” following Brady’s shock decision to un-retire in March, just weeks after he initial said he was ending his soon-to-be Hall of Fame career.
“Tom and Gisele are in a fight right now,” Page Six quoted a source close to the situation as saying.
“There’s been trouble in the marriage over his decision to un-retire. Gisele has always been the one with the kids,” another anonymous source added.
Speculation had been rampant as to why Brady, who is usually considered to be a permanent fixture in his team’s preparations for a new season, missed much of the preseason training this time around, with some speculation even suggesting that he was instead filming an appearance on US television show ‘The Masked Singer’ – a rumor later shot down by Brady himself.
He again made headlines when he returned to the Buccaneers facility appearing somewhat gaunt, and hinted to the media that he was dealing with some issues behind the scenes.
“Everyone has different situations they’re dealing with and we all have unique challenges to our lives,” he told the media last week.
“I’m 45 years old, man. There’s a lot of s**t going on, so you just have to try and figure out life the best you can. You know, it’s a continuous process,” he added.
However, his appearance only added to the questions. NFL insider Dan Orlovsky expressed concern, saying that Brady’s physical appearance was highly unusual.
“When was the last time you saw him at a press conference look that way?” he said on ESPN.
“For some reason, he’s been away for 11 days and he comes back and he looks like that, we should be concerned,” added former NFL wide receiver Michael Irvin.
Prior to Brady’s hastily-retracted retirement earlier this year, he said that his family had often taken a ‘back seat’ to his NFL career.
“It’s very challenging when you’re 43 or 44 because there are a lot of other things that are pressing and a lot of other things that are really important in your life, like your kids and your wife and different relationships,” the seven-time Super Bowl winner said.
“Things have always taken a back seat to football. That’s just how it has gone for me. I have a very tricky, complex life in different aspects and I’m just trying to navigate it the best way I can.”
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers open their NFL schedule on September 11 when the visit Texas to take on the Dallas Cowboys, and all eyes will once again be on the sport’s greatest ever player – but this time for a variety of different reasons.