Legendary NFL quarterback Tom Brady announced his retirement Tuesday after 22 record-breaking seasons.
The 44-year-old posted a photo and statement to his social media accounts explaining his decision to stop playing football. Brady wrote that he felt he could no longer make the commitment required to succeed in the NFL.
“This is difficult for me to write, but here it goes: I am not going to make that competitive commitment anymore,” he said. “I have loved my NFL career, and now it is time to focus my time and energy on other things that require my attention.”
Brady steps away from the sport after winning seven Super Bowls and setting a bevy of league passing records. The quarterback’s unmatched success came with a dose of venom from opposing fans, who may have watched him too often dispatch their favorite team or associated him with allegations of cheating that dogged the New England Patriots during his long tenure with the team.
In announcing his retirement, Brady posted a photo of himself playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with whom he spent the last two seasons of his career after 20 seasons with the Patriots. He thanked the Buccaneers organization, the team’s head coach Bruce Arians and its fans, but not the Patriots or the team’s head coach Bill Belichick. Brady and his Patriots coach won six Super Bowls together.
Before he posted his announcement Tuesday, Brady for three days had not confirmed an initial ESPN report that he planned to retire.
Brady said he plans to “take it day by day” after a football career that he called “a thrilling ride.” He mentioned that he would work to grow businesses he cofounded, including training and apparel company TB12 Sports and NFT platform Autograph.io.
Drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft, Brady leaves the NFL considered by many the greatest quarterback to play the sport.
Brady appeared in the Super Bowl 10 times, winning seven with two teams. He won five Super Bowl MVP awards, made 15 Pro Bowls, and was named Associated Press NFL MVP three times.
Brady finishes his NFL career first all-time in pass touchdowns (624), passing yards (84,520), and passes completed (7,263).
The player who many labeled the GOAT, or greatest of all time, was also famous for leading teams to victories in the final moments of games.
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