It’s Official: Tom Brady Is Retiring
One day after saying on a podcast that he was "day-to-day" in making his decision to retire, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady says he's walking away from pro football after 22 years.
Brady, who won six Super Bowls with the New England Patriots and a seventh with the Bucs, posted his retirement announcement on Instagram early Tuesday morning.
In that message, Brady thanked his Bucs teammates and coaches, the team's owners and support staff, his agent, his business partners, and his family.
"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 published just after 8:30 a.m. Central Standard Time. "This is difficult for me to write, but here it goes: I am not going to make that competitive commitment anymore (sic). I have loved my NFL career, and now it is time to focus my time and energy on other things that require my attention."
What's Next for Tom Brady?
Those "other things that require (his) attention" include new business endeavors. Still, Brady isn't committing to any particular roles or schedules with those companies or anyone else.
"The future is exciting," Brady wrote on Instagram. "I'm fortunate to have cofounded incredible companies like @autograph.io @bradybrand @tb12sports that I'm excited to continue to help build and grow, but exactly what my days will look like will be a work-in-progress. As I said earlier, I'm going to take it day by day. I know for sure I want to spend a lot of time giving to others and trying to enrich other people's lives, just as so many have done for me."
The companies Brady reference in his tweet are Autograph, Brady Brand, and TB 12. According to its website, Autograph "brings together the most iconic brands and legendary names in sports, entertainment, and culture to create unique digital collections and experiences." Brady Brand is a sports apparel outlet. TB 12 produces and sells workout and nutritional products and supplements.
Tom Brady, Family Man
The previous reports of Brady's retirement stated that he had a desire to spend more time with his family. Brady's Instagram post showed how much his wife and children mean to him.
"You are my inspiration," Brady wrote, referring to his wife, Giselle Bündchen, and his three children, Jack, Benny, and Vivi. "Our family is my greatest achievement. I always came off the field and home to the most loving and supportive wife who has done EVERYTHING for our family to allow me to reach new heights professionally, and I am beyond words what you mean to me and our family."
Tom Brady's Legacy Looms Large
Brady lays claim to being the greatest of all time, and the evidence is overwhelming.
He's the only quarterback to have played in 10 Super Bowls and the only quarterback to win seven world championships. He reached a conference championship game in 14 of the 20 years in which he was the starting quarterback for his team. Only once in those 20 years did Brady fail to reach the playoffs. That was in 2002, his second year as the Patriots' starter, when the Patriots finished in a logjam atop the AFC East at 9-7, missing the postseason because of tiebreakers.
Brady will be atop the league's record books for quite some time. He's in the top five of every statistical category for a quarterback and holds every major postseason record.
Brady holds the all-time records for most passing yards (84,520), completions and attempts (7,263-11,317), passing touchdowns (624), starts (316), wins (243), three-touchdown games (101), and four-touchdown games (39). He also holds the postseason records for total appearances (19 season), starts (47), wins (35), completions (1,165), passing yards (13,049), passing touchdowns (86), game-winning drives (14), and fourth-quarter comebacks (9).
On top of all of that, Brady appeared in 15 Pro Bowls, was three-time first-team All-Pro, three-time Associated Press NFL MVP, and a five-time Super Bowl MVP.
Even if Brady would have retired 10 years ago, he still would have been a first-ballot hall-of-famer. According to Tampa Bay Buccaneers writer Carmen Vitali:
From 2000-2011, Brady went 140-41, passed for 45,264 yards, threw 338 touchdown passes, won 16 playoff games, three of which were Super Bowls. From 2012-2021, he went 138-44, passed for 52,305 yards, threw 372 touchdowns, won 19 playoff games, FOUR of which were Super Bowls.
Compare those numbers to Hall of Famer Joe Montana, who in his career went 133-54, passed for 46,323 yards, threw 318 touchdown passes, won 16 playoff games and four Super Bowls, Brady has nearly doubled all of that. Hat tip to NFL Research for all of that.
Not bad for a sixth-round draft pick.
Hall of Fame, Here He Comes!
Brady's next stop will be Canton, Ohio and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He'll no doubt be a first-ballot inductee. Considering how great Brady was and what his impact on the game has been and will be, the Hall of Fame may have to give Brady the Wayne Gretzky treatment: Waive the mandatory five-year waiting period and let him in now.