Tom Brady sent Twitter into a craze Thursday night by tweeting a cryptic photo with no caption.
But what if the soon-to-be free agent quarterback was just paying tribute to Kobe Bryant?
That’s a new theory offered by ESPN’s Mike Reiss, who has covered Brady for the entirety of his Patriots career. He reported that people close to Brady told him not to read anything into it football-wise — a sentiment also reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, who said he was told it was not related to Brady’s uncertain future.
Instead, Brady may have just been offering his own version of an iconic Bryant image.
The former Lakers star, who tragically died in a helicopter crash Sunday, once filmed a Nike commercial that showed him walking down the tunnel in a dark arena. It looked similar to the photo Brady tweeted Thursday night, a black-and-white image that showed him walking the tunnel at a football stadium.
Reiss pointed out that Bryant played 20 years for the Lakers just as Brady has played 20 for the Patriots.
Brady did offer a clear tribute to Bryant earlier this week on Instagram, posting an old photo of the two of them with the caption, “We already miss you my brother RIP. God Bless you and your family.”