TAMPA ― Shortly after beating the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game, Bucs quarterback Tom Brady excused himself from the on-field celebration to climb the railing and hug his oldest son, Jack, who was at the game.
Brady has always been a big family man, so he was shaken by news at the start of the 2020 season that both his parents had COVID-19.
In fact, his dad, Tom Sr., was so sick that he was hospitalized for three weeks with Brady unable to see him.
“You know, I think one thing as you get older as an athlete, one thing about me experiencing a lot of different things and over the course of my career, there’s a lot of different family things that take place,” Brady said Thursday. “My situation, it could be my parents, but also I have kids.
“You know, there’s just a lot of things that happen in your life. Like all of us, as you get older, there’s more you take on. I still obviously love going out there and competing, but on the other side of that there are a lot of family things that are important to me. Certainly, the health of my parents are important to me. Although I was far away, I had three sisters who were doing everything they could to help at the time, too.”
Tom Sr. said during interviews that he was extremely sick he didn’t get to watch several of Brady’s games.
“When the season started this year I was in the hospital with COVID for almost three weeks, and my wife was sick with COVID at the same time,” he told ESPN. “We didn’t even see the first two games of the year. It was the first two games I ever missed of his career, because I was sick as a dog and my wife was as sick as a dog.”
He added: “I didn’t even care if they were playing, much less missing the game. It was a matter of life and death, just like anyone who goes into the hospital. It was serious stuff. Tommy fought through it, and now it’s in the rearview mirror. We’re healthy, we’re happy and everything is good.”
Brady’s mother, Galynn, is a cancer survivor. She was able to attend Super Bowl 51 in February 2017, when her son led the Patriots to a 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons.
“I’ll be very excited to certainly know my parents will be in the stands for the game on Sunday,” Brady said. “They only made it to one game this year. It wasn’t a very good outcome, the Saints game at home, which was pretty rough for all of us. But I’ll have a full contingent all coming in, I think, on Saturday afternoon and ready to watch the game and to cheer us on.”
Tampa Bay Times Super Bowl coverage
HOME SWEET HOME: After all these years, Bucs finally feel at home in the Super Bowl.
A WARM WELCOME: See Super Bowl-bound Bucs return home to adoring fans.
HOW THEY STACK UP: Ranking the first four Super Bowls staged in Tampa
Stay updated on Tampa Bay’s sports scene
Subscribe to our free Sports Today newsletter
You’re all signed up!
Want more of our free, weekly newsletters in your inbox? Let’s get started.Explore all your options
MORE BUCS PHOTOS: Follow the Tampa Bay Times Bucs coverage on Instagram
BUCS NEWSLETTER: Sign up for the Bucs RedZone newsletter with team reporter Joey Knight:
We’re working hard to bring you the latest Super Bowl news from around the Tampa Bay area. This effort takes resources to gather and update. If you haven’t already subscribed, please consider buying a digital or print subscription.