When Tom Brady last competed against Aaron Rodgers, the Bucs beat the Packers in the NFC Championship game 31-26.
Rodgers was pretty miffed that the Packers kicked a field goal to cut the margin to five points rather than go for it on fourth and goal late in the fourth quarter.
That sparked the post-game talk about his future with the Packers being a “beautiful mystery,” which has since devolved into Rodgers not wanting to play for Green Bay anymore. Last week, he skipped the team’s mandatory minicamp and has been hanging out in Hawaii with his fiancee, actress Shailene Woodley.
Nevertheless the rivalry between Brady and Rodgers will continue on the golf course when they compete in The Match in Big Sky, Mon., on July 6. Brady will be back with partner Phil Mickelson while Rodgers will team with Bryson DeChambeau. The event will be aired live by TNT at 5 p.m.
All four players took time for some good natured trash-talking on a video call.
Brady went right after Rodgers and the Packers’ decision not to go for it on fourth and goal.
“You do have a partner that would probably would’ve liked to go for it a little more often than he has in the past,” Brady said. “So Bryson, I’m glad you’re encouraging him to kind of go for it when it’s on the line so rather than just knock it in the fairway or something like that and try to play for the next shot.
DeChambeau responded by saying, “I’ll never push anyone to do anything, so he can choose what he wants to do."
That prompted Rodgers to take a little shot at Packers coach Matt LaFleur.
“Well, I usually don’t get the option,” Rodgers said.
Brady, 43, poked some fun at himself for being the oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl.
“Yeah, I’m definitely getting older. I think I’m the oldest guy in the league. I think I’m older than most of the ... players but (also the) NFL stadiums at this point, I’ve been around so long. Except Lambeau. That one has been around quite a while. They’ve added some things to that.
“But I’ve actually had a good offseason. I had knee surgery, so that’s an excuse. I’m going to put one of those on the board so if things don’t go well.”
Brady said he’s only played golf one time with Rodgers, who is pretty good at the game.
“We played at Riviera one time, a nine-hole match,” Brady said. “I will say he made a clutch putt on the ninth hole to beat me. Still very disappointing so there’s a chance for redemption of course, which I’m prepared to do.”
Rodgers has been in the news almost every day since the NFC Championship Game with the future of the MVP’s career in Green Bay in doubt.
“It’s been one of those quiet offseasons that you just dream about,” Rodgers said. “You can just got through your process on your own quietly. That’s all you can ask for as an older player in the league and someone who has been around for a long time, just enjoy that time to yourself and just relax, not be bothered and not have any obligations or anything going on. I think this is what this offseason has been about.
“It’s been about really enjoying my time and spending it where I want to spend it and not feeling like I have to go anywhere and not having any responsibilities as an NFL player.”
The Match will be played without fans on the course. The heavy-hitting DeChambeau said he was relieved because he won’t have to worry about launching golf balls over the greens and into the gallery.
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