The New England Patriots seem to be on a collision course with a franchise-altering offseason, at least according to one team insider.
Per Tom E. Curran, legendary quarterback Tom Brady is actually poised to leave the team at the end of the season barring a "radical course change" over the next three months of action.
How'd we get here? And do we buy it this time, coming from Curran?
In all honesty, if not for Brady's previously-established fealty to New England, it would make perfect sense. Though the Patriots are still 10-2 and at the top of the AFC East, something about this year just feels different.
The 42-year-old star has been in a massive rut in part because he seems unable to get on the same page as his receiving corps. He hasn't posted a passer rating over 100 since Week 5, and he has just an 88.3 passer rating on the year, his lowest mark since 2013.
The team's defense has created turnovers and carried the Pats through an easy schedule with dramatic intensity thus far, and Brady feels as deemphasized as ever (though he can still zip it when he needs to, and makes an exceptional throw or two per week).
A Brady departure from New England would mark a seismic change in the NFL's balance of power. After two decades together, it would mark the end of the dominant relationship between him and head coach Bill Belichick.
Time will tell if this pans out, but it seems like the end might be in sight for the Brady era in New England.