Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles says he expect Tom Brady to return to the team in the coming week, after the quarterback’s recent absence from the team.
“It’ll be this week, early,” Bowles told reporters on Sunday. Brady has been away from the team since 11 August to deal with what Bowles had described as “personal things”. The absence had been agreed with the team in advance although last week Bowles said there was “no definitive date” for Brady’s return.
Brady has had short absences during preseason in the past, but this is the first time in the 45-year-old’s long career he has taken significant time off during training camp or preseason. Stars such as Brady usually play very little part in preseason games in order to avoid injury, and Bowles said he was unsure if his quarterback would appear in the team’s final warm-up against the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday.
“We’ll see how practice goes and we’ll make those decisions at the end of the week,” Bowles said.
Brady led the NFL in passing yards and touchdowns last season but will be without Pro Bowl center Ryan Jensen for a large part of 2022 due to a knee injury. In addition, two of his key receivers, Chris Godwin and Mike Evans, are recovering from injury.
The Bucs open their regular-season campaign against the Dallas Cowboys on 11 September.