Tom Brady, the seven-time Super Bowl champion who holds every major NFL passing record, announced in an emotional beach-side video, he was “retiring for good.”
The video was posted to his social media accounts one year exactly he said goodbye to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to focus on commitments off the field. He would announce his return less than 2 months later.
“Good morning, guys. I’ll get to the point right away,” he said in the video. “I’m retiring for good. I know the process was a pretty big deal last time. So, when I woke up this morning, I figured I’d just press record and let you guys know first so. I won’t be long-winded. You only get one super emotional retirement essay and I used mine up last year.
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“I really thank you guys so much to everyone single one of you for supporting me. My family, my friends, my teammates, my competitors … I can go on forever. There’s too many. Thank you guys for allowing me to live my absolute dream.
“I wouldn’t change a thing.”
Brady posted several photos of his family, friends, teammates and coaches on his Instagram Stories.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback led his team to the playoffs even as the team was dealt with a ton of injuries and finished with an 8-9 record. Brady finished the 2022 season with 4,694 passing yards and 25 touchdown passes. It was the sixth straight year he topped 4,000 or more passing yards.
He led the league this season in pass attempts (733) and completions (490).
In Wednesday’s video, Brady alluded to a message he sent on his Twitter account on Feb. 1, 2022, detailing his thought process when he stepped away last season. He didn’t mention specifically he was retiring from football in either post.
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“This is difficult for me to write but here it goes: I am not going to make that competitive commitment anymore,” he said in part in 2022. “I have loved my NFL career and now it is time to focus my time and energy on other things that require my attention.
“I have done a lot of reflecting the past week and have asked myself difficult questions,” his statement read. “And I am so proud of what we have achieved. My teammates, coaches, fellow competitors, and fans deserve 100% of me, but right now, it’s best I leave the field of play to the next generation of dedicated and committed athletes.
“My playing career has been such a thrilling ride, and far beyond my imagination, and full of ups and downs. When you’re in it every day, you don’t really think about any kind of ending,” he continued.” As I sit here now, however, I think of all the great players and coaches I was privileged to play with and against the competition was fierce and deep, JUST HOW WE LIKE IT. But the friendships and relationships are just as fierce and deep. I will remember and cherish these memories and revisit them often. I feel like the luckiest person in the world.”
Brady later announced his return on March 13, 2022.
Back in October, Brady addressed retirement rumors that ramped up as the Buccaneers struggled in the beginning of the season.
“I love the sport, and I love the teammates,” he told the media on Oct. 20. “And I want to go do a great job for this team like I always have. No retirement in my future.”
Should this be it for Brady, it’s been a helluva career.
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He’s retiring at age 45 and played longer than anyone thought he would.
He was a sixth-round draft pick out of Michigan. The New England Patriots selected him with the No. 199 pick of the 2000 draft. He was thrust into the starting role after Drew Bledsoe went down with an injury in 2001. The rest is, essentially, history.
Brady would win three Super Bowls in the first four years he was named a starting quarterback. He wouldn’t win again until the 2014 season but launch a second Patriots dynasty that saw him win rings through the 2018 season.
He hit free agency after the 2019 season and join the Buccaneers for the 2020 season. He became the first starting quarterback to lead two teams to Super Bowl championships. In 2021, he would put up MVP-type numbers with 5,316 passing yards and 43 touchdown passes. It was the most passing yards he’s thrown and the second-most touchdown passes in a season in his career.
He will “retire” as the all-time leader in passing touchdowns with 649, passing yards with 89,214, completions with 7,753 and attempts with 12,050.
He was a 15-time Pro Bowler, three-time NFL MVP, three-time All-Pro, five-time Super Bowl MVP and two-time Offensive Rookie of the Year. He was named to the Hall of Fame’s All-Decades team for the 2000s and 2010s.
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Brady is set to join the FOX Sports booth as an analyst once he finished with football for good.