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Earlier this week, we reported that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady had crossed the line when he outrageously said that playing in the NFL was like “going away on deployment for the military.” Now, he’s finally backtracking on this and apologizing for making this comparison.

Brady Apologizes

During this week’s episode of his “Let’s Go!” podcast, Brady was discussing his latest 23rd season playing in the NFL when he made the offensive comparison. 

“I almost look at like a football season like you’re going away on deployment for the military,” he said. “And it’s like, ‘Man, here I go again.'”

Backstory: Tom Brady Slammed After Comparing Playing In NFL To ‘Going Away On Deployment In The Military’

Daily Mail reported that during a Thursday press conference, Brady apologized as he talked to reporters.

“Earlier this week I made a statement about playing football and the military and it was a very poor choice of words, and I just wanna’ express that to any sentiments out there that people may have taken it in a certain way,” he said. “So I apologize.”

Brady doubled down on this later in the press conference, saying, “I have a tremendous amount of gratitude for everyone who served. And, in the end, we play a game, and the military is defending our country. It’s two different things and I shouldn’t have made the comparison.”

Brady Hit With Backlash

This came after Brady was hit with tons of backlash online for making the comparison in the first place, with many pointing out that he has made over $330 million dollars through his career playing football, and that number doesn’t even include endorsements.

“Oh Tom Brady… go f*** yourself. Being a football quarterback is not even close to military deployment,” one Twitter user who appears to be a veteran said. “I couldn’t see my children at all for a year (*except for the 2 week R&R at the halfway point). They couldn’t fly out to watch me do my job whenever they wanted.”

“Tom Brady says he looks at the football season like he is on the military and going away on deployment,” another added. “Really Tom? You never served a day, so staying in a five star hotel, eating anything you want and talking to family every day is not the same, you clown.”

“Tom Brady thinks playing football is like going on military deployment. We both wear a uniform, and our marriages/relationships can be strained, but the similarities end there,” a third user wrote. “He plays a game to entertain people. We risk our lives to defend this country.”

The backlash only continued from there: 

Brady’s Current Struggles

This comes at a difficult time for Brady, as his marriage to the supermodel Gisele Bündchen is rumored to be on the rocks, potentially over his decision to un-retire and play another NFL season. In his comments earlier this week, he admitted that he struggles to focus on his personal life during NFL seasons. 

“Whatever you may say – ‘I want to spend a little bit more time doing this’ – during the season, the reality is when it comes down to it your competitiveness takes over and as much as you want to have this playful balance with the work balance, you’re going to end up doing what you’ve always done and that is why you are who you are,” he said.

Related: Tom Brady Reportedly Devastated Over Wife Gisele Bündchen’s Alleged Decision To Hire A Divorce Lawyer

While that may be true, it still doesn’t make playing in the NFL anything like serving in the U.S. military. We’re glad Brady apologized, and we hope he refrains from ever making a comparison like that one again.