Brady was seen exiting the locker room and tunnel, before entering the field as a visitor for the first time. Fans reacted as Brady jogged out. He ran to an end zone, shouting, “Let’s go!”
Fans packed the stadium before the game with some fans eager to see Brady again.
Brady met with Patriots team owner Robert Kraft before the game. Video on Twitter also showed Brady talking to Drew Brees ahead of the game when Kraft appeared.
Brady is set to break Brees’ record for most passing yards in NFL history. He needs 68 passing yards to pass Brees for the record. He already was ahead of Brees in all-time passing touchdowns with 591 and could surpass 600 by the end of the year to put him further ahead in that category. Brady and Brees traded passing yards records last season, but Brees retired after the 2020 season.
Brady, 44, needs 350 passing yards for the most all-time in a single stadium. He called Gillette Stadium home from 2000 to 2019.
If the Buccaneers win the game, Brady will join Brees, Brett Favre and Peyton Manning as the only quarterbacks to defeat all 32 NFL teams.
Tampa Bay enters the game with a 2-1 record after a loss to the Los Angeles Rams. Brady set a dubious record last week, becoming the most sacked quarterback of all time.
He’s tried to downplay the matchup against the Patriots all week.
“I’m just excited to go up there and try to beat a really good football team,” Brady said this week. “That’s ultimately what this week is about. It’s not about the quarterback, it’s not about the fans or the home crowd or relationships of 20 years. It’s about two good football teams going at it, and we’ve got to do a great job. It’s going to be a huge test. Last week was a huge test, and we didn’t quite meet it. This is another huge test; we’ve got to go meet the challenge.”