Tom Brady Issues a Clever Non-Denial Denial of the Rumor He'll Re-Un-Retire

First of all, I understand the confusing grammar of that headline. I wrote it. Or more to the point, Tom Brady wrote it, by his own actions. When an athlete won't stayed retired and every February-March becomes a cycle of rumors, speculation, innuendo and suggestion on his future, you're naturally going to get a lot of made up words with multiple prefixes and qualifiers. So don't take it out on me; I'm just the one who has to sort all this out. And when Rich Eisen comes back from the Combine with a list of rumors he kept on hearing and Brady's latest unretirement is No. 1:

... don't put that bad juju on me. I just go where his indecision takes me. 

And despite what Rich Eisen kept hearing and Mike Florio semi-confirmed, Brady responded this afternoon with this adorable Girl Dad post that does, at first glance, seem to contradict the rumors:

Ha! Good one, GOAT! Nice joke. It's good to see he hasn't lost his touch in semi-retirement. Sweet sentiment. Relatable to anyone who's ever had kids, pets or both. And effectively ends the controversy before it gets any traction. At least according to every single post about it on the internet. 

Except this one. 

I mean, does this really tell us a damned thing? Without me bothering to look for them, I'm sure Brady was saying things a lot more definitive than this last year at this time. Saying you're busy helping your daughter raise a cat isn't the same as saying you are definitely not coming back. It's not even in the same galaxy. 

What's more telling is what he didn't say. He didn't add a "But seriously, I'm not coming back." Or tempt fate with, "If I unretire this time, may lightning strike me dead." (Not that 300 million volts and 30,000 amps of pure electricity would so much as mess up the part in his perfect, pH-balanced hair.) He didn't so much as say, "I told you; I'm officially done." It's one of those Sherlock Holmes "the dog that didn't bark" situations. 

So consider me very skeptical that this is confirmation of anything. If he comes out and officially declares he's going to start working for Fox Sports beginning in preseason or starts filming 80 for Brady II: The Old Bags Head to Atlanta, I'll maybe consider believing he's gone for good. Even just a simple admission of "I just don't have any more football left in me" would do the trick. This vaguely worded bit of self-deprecation most definitely does not. 

Like I said this morning, last year he announced his unretirement on March 13th. The anniversary of that is Monday. When we get past that point, I'm willing to reconsider. For now, this Tweet means nothing. Good luck with the kitten, though.