An upcoming book suggests that Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick's relationship was so fragmented that Brady grew tired of playing under Belichick.
Belichick: The Making of the Greatest Football Coach of All Time, is a book about the life of Belichick set to be released on Sept. 25. ESPN's Ian O'Connor, the author, spoke with 350 people (excluding Belichick).
"If you're married 18 years to a grouchy person who gets under your skin and never compliments you, after a while you want to divorce him," a source told O'Connor. "Tom knows Bill is the best coach in the league, but he's had enough of him. If Tom could, I think he would divorce him."
Brady and Belichick have won five Super Bowls during their 18 seasons together. According to the book, Brady grew so disenchanted with Belichick that in March he wasn't sure if he wanted to come back for his 19th season. But when New England traded away backup quarterback Jimmy Garappolo to the 49ers, Brady felt obligated to return.
"Had he retired or requested a trade, he would have risked turning an adoring New England public into an angry mob," O'Connor wrote.
Throughout the past year or so, Brady and Belichick's relationship has increasingly come under the microscope. In late April, Brady spoke at the Milken Institue Global Conference with sportscaster Jim Gray, and when Brady was asked if he felt appreciated by the organization, he plead the fifth.
"He's not the easiest coach to play for," said Brady, before adding, "he's the best for me."
Brady turned 41 in August, and has repeatedly said he wants to play into his 40s. He's contracted to play for New England through the 2019 season.