Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady admits the knee discomfort he felt this time last year has finally gone after reconstructive surgery and it now feels "really good" ahead of the 2022 season.
The six-time Super Bowl champion, 9/1 to be the regular season MVP, played through 2020 and into 2021 with a serious knee injury that was not disclosed on any of the Buccaneers' injury reports.
Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Brady played with a torn medial collateral ligament in his left knee - an injury he suffered in his final season with the New England Patriots.
It reportedly worsened during the Bucs' run to their home Super Bowl triumph, which is why Brady underwent surgery right after the team's memorable victory boat parade.
Having since healed up, played the 2021 season, retired and unretired, the 44-year-old feels refreshed and that's largely thanks to no longer being restricted by a gammy left knee.
"Last year was pretty tough, just from basically having the MCL reconstruction, and I basically tore it in my last season in New England and I went the whole off-season with a torn MCL," Brady said on Wednesday, via the Tampa Bay Times' Rick Stroud.
"I didn't get a reconstruction, because I thought it would just heal back. So I didn't do anything. The following year, I just taped it, basically, every day. And then finally getting it reconstructed last year, it felt for the first time this off-season, it's been really good."
Despite the off-season surgery, Brady went on to lead the NFL with a career-high 5,316 yards passing last year and he also finished with a league-leading 43 touchdown passes.
"It's been fun just to kind of, you know, run around a little bit," added Brady, speaking at a news conference ahead of The Match golf event on 1st June.
"Work on some sprinting stuff. I haven't done a single leg jump in I don't know how many years, because I couldn't do it because I never wanted my knee to be unweighted, because it was just kind of wiggling around. It's been good this year to do it."