The clock is ticking on Tom Brady and his future with the Patriots.

Brady would officially become a free agent for the first time in his career on March 16, when his agent, Don Yee, can legally begin conversing with other teams about signing his client. ESPN detailed a series of events Sunday that gave a potential reason why there’s been a standoff between Brady and the Patriots.

During last year’s training camp, the two sides began discussions on a new deal that included a multi-year extension, with Brady’s preference not to add any years, according to the report. He also hoped to include a no-tag provision “to ensure him the right to test the market if he desired,” per ESPN.

The Patriots then granted Brady his request for total freedom after 2019, giving him the chance to be a free agent for the first time in his career. But ESPN reports that the Patriots extended an offer to Brady in August and are now waiting for the 20-year veteran to convey to them whether that offer is acceptable.

The only report on negotiations came just last week, when NBC Sports Boston reported that Brady and Patriots coach Bill Belichick spoke by phone. The report claims nothing was accomplished and Belichick remained “all business” during the conversation.

It would appear the Patriots believe it is up to Brady to jump-start discussions considering they already extended an offer back in August.