TAMPA, Fla. — Internet sleuths were intent on finding the whereabouts of Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady on Friday, and one user on reddit has a theory that’s getting a lot of attention.
On Thursday, Bucs head coach Todd Bowles said there is no definitive date for Brady’s return.
Reddit user “CANN0NFIRE” posted to the Dynasty Fantasy Football subreddit on Friday with their take, in a post titled “Stop freaking out about Brady, he’s just off filming for the Masked Singer.”
The user began the post by explaining the basics, like Brady’s absence and the premise of the show. On “The Masked Singer,” contestants keep their identities a secret throughout the tapings.
It’s not clear what Brady’s been up to, but could the nature of his absence hold an important clue?
“It was also explained in those reports that the absence was known about and approved in advance by the team, which would also make sense,” CANN0NFIRE said in the post.
The Athletic’s Greg Aumann reported that Brady’s absence was planned before training camp started and said he is “not worried” about the absence affecting Brady’s ability to play at a high level this season.
The user, admitting that it is pure speculation, suggested Brady might have signed a contract to appear on the show while he was briefly retired from football and now has to fulfill his “Masked Singer” obligation after deciding to return to football.
CANN0NFIRE notes that Brady signed a deal in May to work for Fox Sports as a lead analyst after finishing with the Buccaneers this season. “The Masked Singer” airs on Fox.
The Reddit thread then cites “the smoking gun,” which is a website where people can sign up to be in the audience for tapings of “The Masked Singer,” which begin Saturday.
The user does note that tapings were scheduled for when Buccaneers training camp began, but not all contestants are on all episodes.
Others pointed out that one Brady’s all-time favorite targets on the field, fellow Super Bowl champ Rob Gronkowski, had his own appearance on “The Masked Singer.”
With all of that information in hand, the internet went wild with speculation and theories, including comments on the Reddit thread itself, which now has more than 600 comments, as well as on Twitter.
“I don’t even care if this doesn’t turn out to be true, this … concept is extremely funny,” one commenter said.
The thread also began to gain steam on Twitter, with both “Brady” and “The Masked Singer” trending on the site throughout the day after a tweet about the thread also went viral.
“Lindsey, you’ve sold me on this. I’m with you hear, ole tommy boy is boutta fire up the windpipes,” said one user.
“Sold me, hook line and sinker,” said another.
Whatever you may believe, Brady won’t be playing in Saturday’s game against the Tennessee Titans at 7 p.m. and there is no word on his return for the Buccaneers’ final preseason game.
Nexstar reached out to the publicity team at “The Masked Singer” but didn’t receive a response by publishing time.