Lavonte David hints at potential Tom Brady tampering by the Bucs in 2020

Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David was on the dais on Sunday night for the Tom Brady roast. Before that, he appeared on Rich Eisen’s show and shared a little nugget about Brady’s arrival in Tampa in 2020.

During David’s exit interview with former Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians after the 2019 season, Arians told David that Brady could be joining the team.

“I just remember in the exit meeting, talking to Coach BA,” David said, via “You know, you have a one-on-one with the head coach. I just remember him saying, ‘If we don’t get Jameis [Winston] back, we are going to get someone in here for you to get us over the hump . . . get us to the Super Bowl.“And he literally said this, ‘And it might be The GOAT.’”

That’s not necessarily evidence of tampering, but it shows that Brady was on their radar screen. Did they contact Brady prematurely?

It was clear in 2020 that they had, frankly. Arians openly spoke about pursuing Brady at the Scouting Combine that year. Then, after they signed him, they mobilized to sell the narrative that they didn’t talk to him at all before the official start of the league year.


Multiple teams have tampered with Brady in recent years, in part because Brady directly involved himself in those communications. He tried to finagle a path to the Dolphins while still under contract with the Bucs, and the Dolphins got whacked for it. Also, he was exploring his options with other teams while still under contract with the Pats.

That’s the common link to all of this. While it’s not a violation of the rules for Brady to be tampered with, he aided and abetted plenty of tampering from 2019 through 2022. Thus, David’s story is hardly surprising. And there likely are more stories about similar improper communications that Brady welcomed if not encouraged.

Ultimately, Brady was going to do whatever he wanted to do. And he wasn’t going to let something annoying like the rules to interfere with that.

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