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Tom Brady booted out of park in Tampa Bay due to coronavirus ‘stay-at-home’ rule

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You can win six Super Bowls on your way to becoming a shoo-in first-round Hall of Fame quarterback, but even Tom Brady doesn’t have enough mojo to overcome a coronavirus stay-at-home order.

The longtime New England Patriots signal-caller was spotted working out alone in a park in Tampa Bay on Monday, but was approached by a staff patrol officer and asked to leave because of the rule, The Associated Press reported

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor told reporters during a news conference that the newly-signed Buccaneers QB had “been sighted” in the park by a staffer who didn’t recognize him until she walked up to Brady.

“Our parks are closed down, so a lot of our parks staff, they patrol around just to make sure people aren’t in there with contact sports and things,” Castor said, according to ESPN. “She went over to tell him that it was closed, and it was Tom Brady.

The city tweeted from its official account Monday, “Sorry @TomBrady! Our @tampaparksrec team can’t wait to welcome you and our entire community back with even bigger smiles — until then, stay safe and stay home as much as you can to help flatten the curve.”

The AP noted that Brady recently moved his family out of the New England region into a furnished mansion in Tampa that he is renting from Major League Baseball star Derek Jeter.

Brady, 42, a four-time Super Bowl MVP, has played his entire career up to this point in New England. He joined the team in 2000 after leading setting passing and completion records at his alma mater, the University of Michigan.

He signed a two-year, $50 million contract with the Bucs in the off-season, which will pit him against another likely first-round Hall of Fame winner and fellow 40-odd-year-old QB Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints, who have won the NFC South for three straight years.

ESPN noted that the NFL’s offseason training program would have normally begun his week were it not for the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

It’s not clear yet whether there will even be a 2020 NFL season; other organized professional sports leagues have either canceled their seasons or postponed them.

“Instead, teams will be holding virtual offseason programs, with the expectation that players work out on their own while following CDC guidelines,” ESPN reported.

It’s not the first time that Brady has received a shout-out from a Florida elected official. Gov. Ron DeSantis mentioned the QB last week during a discussion about when professional sports could return.

“I mean, people are watching, we’re watching, like, reruns from the early 2000s, watching Tom Brady do the Super Bowl then, which is neat because he’s gonna be in Tampa, and I think they have a chance to win a Super Bowl this year,” DeSantis said. “But I think people, to be able to have some light at the tunnel, see that things may get back on a better course, I think from just a psychological perspective, I think, is a good thing.”

Some NFL officials have expressed confidence that the season — which formally begins in August with pre-season games — will, in fact, be held, but there has been no official confirmation of that.

The 2020 NFL Draft will kick off Thursday and last through Saturday, but it will be a virtual event, without players and fans, in Bristol, Conn. It will be simulcast across ABC, ESPN, and the NFL Network, the league reported.

Jon Dougherty

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