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Brady prioritizing family in deciding future: 'It's not always what I want'

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As Tom Brady weighs his options between a possible 23rd campaign or retirement, he says his family will have a significant say in whether he returns to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the 2022 season.

"I think as I've gotten older, I think the best part is, is football is extremely important in my life, and it means a lot to me, and I care a lot about what we're trying to accomplish as a team, and I care a lot about my teammates," Brady told Jim Gray on the "Let's Go!" podcast.

"It's not always what I want," Brady added. "It's what we want as a family. And I'm gonna spend a lot of time with them and figure out in the future what's next."

The seven-time Super Bowl champion indicated that he plans to spend time with his three children and wife Gisele Bundchen following the Buccaneers' 30-27 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the divisional round.

The 44-year-old passer said there is no rush to decide on his future. Brady led the league with 5,316 passing yards and 43 touchdowns while completing 65.7% of his pass attempts.

Although Brady didn't indicate whether he was leaning toward retiring or returning, he said he's "proud" and "satisfied" with everything he accomplished this year. "I know when I give it my all, that's something to be proud of," Brady said.

The NFL's all-time leader in both career passing yards and touchdowns has one year remaining on his contract and has previously expressed a desire to play past the age of 45.

Head coach Bruce Arians said there's no timetable for the future Hall of Famer to choose a path. "I haven't talked to him yet," Arians said, according to The Associated Press' Fred Goodall. "Take all the time he needs."

Meanwhile, Tampa Bay has emphasized retaining as many of its pending free agents as possible in a bid to reload ahead of the 2022 campaign.

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