(Reuters) – Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady on Tuesday criticized the decision to expand the National Football League’s regular season to include a 17th game, a move he described as “pointless”.
The seven-time Super Bowl champion, speaking on the latest episode of the “Let’s Go!” SiriusXM show, said the decision to lengthen the season is not in the game’s best interests.
“It’s pointless,” the 44-year-old said when asked about the expanded regular season. “I thought it was a terrible decision.
“I think 16 is plenty. And, again, you’re eight games into the year and you’re not halfway through, so that’s kind of a little frustrating aspect. So whatever, I mean, we’ll play it. It’s there.”
NFL players agreed to the expanded regular season as part of their current collective bargaining agreement (CBA), which gave the league an option to expand the schedule when at least one new media deal was reached.
The schedule expansion was the NFL’s first since the 16-game format was adopted in 1978.
“Usually what the owners want the owners get. So, you know, that’s just the way the business has gone,” said Brady, who capped off his first season with Tampa Bay by winning a record-extending seventh Super Bowl in February.
“Right now it’s more like we get told what to do and, yeah, there’s a vote and a CBA, but the choice is: don’t play or play under these circumstances. And we’ve essentially agreed to play under their circumstances.”
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Toby Davis)