OK — now it’s official.
After 22 seasons, three MVP awards and seven Super Bowl rings with the Patriots and Buccaneers, Tom Brady officially announced his retirement Tuesday morning.
“I have always believed the sport of football is an ‘all-in’ proposition — if a 100% competitive commitment isn’t there, you won’t succeed and success is what I love so much about our game,” Brady wrote in an Instagram post. “There is a physical, mental, and emotional challenge EVERY single day that has allowed me to maximize my highest potential. And I have tried my very best these past 22 years. There are no shortcuts to success on the field or in life.
“This is difficult for me to write, but here it goes: I am not going to make that competitive commitment anymore. I have loved my NFL career, and now it is time to focus my time and energy on other things that require my attention.”
Reports swirled that Brady would retire all weekend, and while he initially denied it, Brady is now officially leaving the game as arguably the best to ever play it.
Brady was famously drafted as the 199th overall pick in the 2000 NFL Draft, the greatest draft steal of all time, and quickly took over the starting QB job for the Patriots. In his second season, he helped guide New England to their first of six Super Bowl championships, winning again in 2003 and 2004.
In his 18 full seasons as the Patriots’ starter, he won under 10 games only once (nine, in 2002) and made it to 14 Pro Bowls. He was named league MVP in 2007 — a historic season when he logged 4,806 passing yards and 50 touchdowns — as well as in 2010 and 2017.
After the 2019 season, Brady announced he would not return to the Patriots, and signed a two-year deal worth $50 million to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In his first season in South Florida, Brady won his seventh Super Bowl, defeating Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.
He had one of his best statistical seasons in his final year in the league, throwing for 5,316 yards (a career high) and 43 touchdowns in 2021. However, the Bucs were bounced in the Divisional Round by the Super Bowl-bound Rams, despite a furious comeback in the second half. What will you remember most about Tom Brady’s career?
Brady had previously hinted that he would consider playing until 50, but announced that he would hang up his cleats at age 44. He implied that his family obligations contributed to his decision: He shares two children, Vivian and Benjamin, with wife Gisele Bündchen, as well as son Jack with his ex-girlfriend Bridget Moynihan.
In his retirement note, Brady thanked his Bucs teammates, Bucs fans, the Glazer family (who own the team), general manager Jason Licht and head coach Bruce Arians. He curiously left out any member of the Patriots in his retirement note, even though he played a majority of his career in New England.
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