Patriots QB Tom Brady reiterates he will play in 2019

Tom Brady dodges comment about him dealing with significant injury

Despite that, the Patriots have struggled at times this season and now sport a record of 10-5. Yet as he appears to be having a down year statistically - for him, at least - it's fair to question if Brady, 41, has changed his stance.

"I absolutely believe I will".

In his weekly interview Monday with Westwood One's Jim Gray following the Patriots' victory Sunday, which clinched the AFC East for a record 10th straight season, Brady addressed the rumors about his retirement. "And I'm going to try to do it as best as I possibly can".

"It will certainly be a challenge".

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When asked recently whether or not he wants to play beyond his current contract, which ends in 2019 when he'll be 42, Brady responded like this. "I don't take any of these things for granted, but I hope I can keep playing, and I hope I can keep playing at a championship level". This year, he's seen a slight dip in his numbers, throwing for 4,105 yards with 25 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He doesn't expect to feel that way next season or any time in the near future.

Brady has said several times he'd like to play into his mid-40s, and that goal didn't seem too unreasonable last season after he led the Patriots to another Super Bowl berth and earned NFL MVP honors. "It's been 15 weeks of football, and there's always bumps and bruises you deal with". I know I've talked about it for a long time, " said Brady.

The Patriots aren't just any franchise though, and head coach Bill Belichick has a tendency to ditch players too early rather than too late.

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