New England Patriots insider Tom E. Curran of NBC Sports mentioned in an interview with “Dale & Keefe” show that head coach Bill Belichick wants veteran quarterback Tom Brady to return to the team next season but at the right price. Curran added that the amount of Brady’s contract would be the most contentious part of their negotiations. However, another NFL insider, Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, debunked this notion, saying he believes that team owner Robert Kraft and Belichick are on the same page when it comes to the contract value that will be offered to Brady.

Earlier, Rapoport reported that the Patriots are willing to pay in excess of $30 million per season to entice Brady to stay in New England. “I don’t believe that Belichick and Kraft are on different pages as far as what they would be willing to pay Tom Brady,” Rapoport said in an interview on WEEI’s Dale & Keefe. Based on information from his sources, Rapoport said contract price would not be an issue when the Patriots begin negotiating with Brady. He said the Patriots want Brady to return and they are “willing to go where they have not gone before to do it.”

Brady never demanded top dollar from Patriots

Rapoport also stressed that based on Brady’s history on contract negotiation with the Patriots that he never demanded top dollar from the team despite his status as the greatest quarterback of all time.

“He has always wanted to make whatever money he makes, but to make sure they have weapons,” said Rapoport. The 42-year-old Brady will turn unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career on March 18. The Patriots can sign Brady anytime between now until March 18, but other teams can start negotiating with Brady when the legal tampering window starts on March 16. The Patriots need to sign Brady before March 18 for them to avoid the $13.5 million dead cap hit, but Rapoport said it would not be happening.

The NFL insider said he expects Brady not to sign with the Patriots before the start of the free agency period. "To me, the way it works now is there are almost no deals done before free agency,” said Rapoport. Also, Brady said in a recent interview that he would be open-minded to the free agency process and embrace whatever the future brings. The veteran quarterback also shrugged off rumors about his future, saying he will make his decision when the time is right.

Brady reflects on reunion with ex-Patriots

During Super Bowl Sunday, the NFL 100 All-Time Team before the showdown between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV. Five Patriots made it to the team, including Brady, Belichick, tight end Rob Gronkowski, wide receiver Randy Moss and kicker Adam Vinatieri. When the NFL shared their photo together on its official Instagram page, Brady posted a heartfelt comment, saying he couldn’t be more blessed to share the field with these NFL legends as well as all the other teammates and coaches that we represent!!” Recently, Brady shared an Instagram story where he declared that he doesn’t intend to wear a blazer in next year's Super Bowl, meaning he intends to play.

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