Many (many) others have made pilgrimages to the gated 30,000 square-foot mansion he rented from another famed Michigan Man with a supermodel wife, the Hall of Fame Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter. The curious come by land, cramming the quiet street, and by sea, docking boats on the bay abutting Brady’s home, straining for a glimpse.
On that street, Bahama Circle, bicyclists and dogs tend to outnumber cars. But one morning in April, soon after Brady moved in, a steady stream of traffic crept past the home, compelling a neighbor, John Hotchkiss, and his wife, Karin, to head up to their roof deck to survey the scene. In 20 minutes, they counted 163 cars or golf carts crawling past.
“I wasn’t sure what everyone’s expectation of Mr. Brady was,” John Hotchkiss, 46, who has lived on Davis Islands for 21 years, said in an interview. “Were they expecting he’s going to come out and be their best friend? Maybe they were trying to get pictures of Gisele.”
It is from a place of love and, really, disbelief that Matt Algeri — decked in red-and-black face paint, wearing a Bucs jersey — found himself on a boat behind Brady’s house a few weekends back, filming a segment with friends for a hype video.
“This whole thing,” Algeri said, “is still absolutely surreal.”
A six-time champion, Brady has won as many Super Bowls as the Buccaneers have playoff games over their 44 seasons. They have finished last in the N.F.C. South seven times in the past nine years. And their general futility since winning their only title, after the 2002 season — two playoff appearances, both losses, and the fourth-fewest victories over that span, according to Pro Football Reference — has instilled a deep longing within fans like Algeri.