Unlike his playing career, Tom Brady’s retirement was short and sweet.

Well, maybe not so sweet if you’re the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. And, maybe not so short, either. Considering time seems to slow down drastically when one receives bad news.

Regardless, Brady is back in the fold as the Buccaneers quarterback for the 2022 season.

But, it appears as if he was going to return, all along.

Brady explained in an interview with Variety‘s Ramin Setoodeh via NFL.com, that he wanted to un-retire in July, but instead of ruining the Buccaneers’ offseason direction, he decided to come back in March.

“I would have preferred to un-retire in July if I wanted to play. But I couldn’t,” said Brady. “If I said I’m not playing, they’d make plans. So I felt there was a lot of pressure to make a decision quickly. And then ultimately, I just decided, “Yes, let’s do it.” And once I said that, it was like — OK, here we go.”

But that wasn’t the only time Brady had the Buccaneers’ best intentions in mind. He had the same mindset when he announced his retirement in February.

“I made the decision in the moment, and I felt it was the right thing for the team to let the Bucs know,” said Brady. “You need time to plan. And then through conversations with Bruce [Arians], Jason [Licht] and my wife, I felt like I could still play and compete.”

It’s easy to see why Brady is the champion he is. He’s proved to be the ultimate leader by always putting whichever franchise and whatever teammates he’s apart of, first.

And, it’s possible that we could see more of him in 2023 and even beyond.

“I really don’t (know when I’ll be done playing),” said Brady. “I would say it’s year to year: Could this be my last year? Absolutely. Could I change my mind? Absolutely. I’ve realized I don’t have five years left. I want to do it my way. I want to give it everything I got and see where I’m at. My body feels really good. I’ve had a lot of traumatic injuries over the years, but if things go really smoothly and we win, that’d be great.”

I’m sure the Buccaneers, if Brady chooses to stick around after 2022, would love to be a part of that.

You can check out Variety’s full interview with Brady, here.

Featured image via Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports