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Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers to golf against Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen

Aaron Rodgers, left, and Tom Brady were on opposite sides in a July 2021 edition of “The Match” but will team up in June. (Stacy Revere/Getty Images for The Match)

After starting as a head-to-head showcase for Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, “The Match” quickly began incorporating NFL quarterbacks into its golfing competitions. For its next installment, the made-for-TV event will feature nothing but huge names at football’s most glamorous position.

As announced by Turner Sports on Monday, the sixth “Match” will see Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers square off against Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen. The old-vs.-young showdown will unfold over 12 holes on June 1 at the Wynn Las Vegas golf course.

Mahomes and Allen, of the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills, respectively, will participate in “The Match” for the first time. In the second edition of the event, staged in May 2020, Brady teamed with Mickelson against Woods and Peyton Manning just weeks after the longtime New England Patriot departed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady and Mickelson paired up again in “The Match IV,” held in July 2021, to take on Rodgers and PGA Tour star Bryson DeChambeau.

Organizers of the event went back to a one-on-one matchup of golfers for the most recent installment, which pitted DeChambeau against frequent antagonist Brooks Koepka last November. Now, for the first time, no PGA Tour players will be involved, although that’s no surprise in the cases of Woods, Mickelson and DeChambeau.

Woods returned to competition after a long layoff at the Masters earlier this month, when he showed the lingering effects of a car crash over a year before that inflicted major damage to his lower body. He said afterward that he “won’t be playing a full schedule ever again … just the big events” and did not even initially commit to playing in the next major tournament, the PGA Championship in May.

Mickelson has continued to stay off the radar since his apology in February for comments about the PGA Tour and a Saudi-backed rival circuit that caused a major furor. He said at the time that he needed “some time away” and declined an invitation to play in this year’s Masters, breaking a streak that dated back to 1995. DeChambeau, meanwhile, recently underwent surgery for a wrist injury and will be out of action for several weeks.

For his part, Brady could have been spending much more time on the golf course, but he reversed course last month and ended an NFL retirement he’d announced earlier this offseason. Back with the Bucs, Brady will be looking for his first win in “The Match,” but Mahomes said Monday that his pair’s relative youthfulness will have its advantages. Mahomes and Allen have a combined age of 51, compared with 82 for Brady and the Green Bay Packers’ Rodgers.

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“I think the reason we’re going to win,” declared the Chiefs quarterback (via NFL Network), “is we’re going to be able to play the course a little differently than old Tom and old Aaron over there. They’re going to be playing it nice and easy. They might get us on a couple of par-3s and stuff like that, but whenever we can really open it up and use the drivers, it’s going to be nice to be able to use our little wedges while they’re using their 6-irons. That’ll help us a bit.”

Brady, though, implied on social media that he viewed Allen, the youngest member of the foursome, as a short hitter. Brady posted an edited image Monday of himself watching a child, with Allen’s helmeted head superimposed on the body, taking a swing with a fairway wood. In a caption, Brady joked that it was an artist’s rendering of how Allen would need at least three strokes to reach the green on a par-4 hole.

Allen quickly fired back, using a reply to Brady’s post to take a shot at a clothing line the latter unveiled earlier this year.

“2 old bulls, 2 young calves,” Allen opined in another tweet.

Rodgers, though, deemed the matchup “not a fair fight.” According to golf.com, the Packers star projects as the best golfer of the four with a handicap under five, while the other three hover in the range of eight.

“The Match VI” will feature four of the past five NFL MVP award winners. The past two went to Rodgers, with Mahomes being honored after the 2018 season and Brady the year before for the third time in his lengthy career. In its announcement, Turner Sports pointed to the nine Super Bowls won by the four quarterbacks, without specifying that Brady alone accounts for seven of those triumphs.

After making a huge purse for the winner — and nothing for the loser apart from the chance to win any number of side bets — a prominent part of its first installment, “The Match” subsequently pivoted and became a fundraising vehicle for philanthropy. Turner Sports said Monday that nearly $33 million in proceeds from past events has been directed to various charitable organizations, and that nearly 17 million meals have been donated to a nonprofit network of food banks.

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