Tom Brady retires after 23 seasons


Picture from CNN

Tom Brady, the seven-time Super Bowl champion and a sixth-round pick in the 2000 NFL Draft, has decided to hang his cleats up and call it a career, retiring one year to the date of his short-lived retirement on Feb 1, 2023.
Brady said that he was retiring “for good” this time, according to a video he posted Wednesday morning on his Instagram account.
Brady played college football at the University of Michigan. There, he set—what were then considered—school records for most pass attempts and completions, as well as completions in a single game.
He started two out of the four seasons, where he posted a 20-5 record and won the 1999 Citrus Bowl and the 2000 Orange Bowl.
Brady was drafted by the New England Patriots with pick 199 in the 2000 NFL Draft. He played the backup role to Drew Bledsoe in his first two seasons.
In Week 2 of the 2001 NFL season, Bledsoe suffered internal bleeding after a hit from New York Jets linebacker, Mo Lewis, in the fourth quarter.
Serving as his backup, Brady came in and finished the game, which was a 10-3 loss. Brady started the next game against the Indianapolis Colts and cruised to a 44-13 victory.
With Brady starting to find his footing as a starter, the Patriots benched Bledsoe in favor of Brady.
In his first season as a starter, Brady led the team to a Super Bowl XXXVI victory against the St. Louis Rams. From there, the Patriots would win back-to-back Lombardi Trophies, in Super Bowl XXXVIII against the Carolina Panthers and in Super Bowl XXXIX against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Many people dubbed the team a “dynasty” after the three Super Bowl wins in four seasons.
In the next two seasons, the Patriots made the playoffs but did not make it to the big game. However, in the 2007 season, Brady and the Patriots did something only one team had previously done—finishing at 16-0 and making it all the way to Super Bowl XLII against the New York Giants.
The team was one win away from accomplishing what the 1972 Miami Dolphins had done: have a perfect season. This accomplishment was cut short after the Giants upset the Patriots and claimed the Lombardi Trophy in a 17-14 win.
In the 2007 season, Brady was named league MVP. He would go on to win this title another two times in 2010 and again in 2017. He also racked up 4,806 passing yards, 50 touchdown passes, eight interceptions and a career-high 117.2 passer rating.
Brady made a return to the Super Bowl in the 2011 season, but lost to the Giants again, this time by a score of 21-17. He then made another appearance in the big game for Super Bowl XLIX where, for the first time since Super Bowl XXXIX, he won another championship, making it his fourth title.
In 2015, Brady was accused of using deflated footballs in the previous AFC Championship game, which was called “Deflategate”. Brady was suspended for the first four games of the 2016 season.
Upon his return, Brady led the Patriots to Super Bowl LI against the Atlanta Falcons. After trailing 28-3 in the third quarter, Brady scored 25 unanswered points, forcing the game to go into the first-ever overtime period in the modern Super Bowl era.
The Patriots ended up scoring a game-winning touchdown which resulted in Brady earning his fifth Super Bowl title. He also led the team to the next two Super Bowls, losing the first to the Philadelphia Eagles and winning the second against the Los Angeles Rams which gave Brady his sixth Super Bowl title.
In his final season, Brady and the Patriots were denied a first-round bye for the first time since 2009, with the Kansas City Chiefs getting the bye and eventually going on to win their franchise’s first Super Bowl in 50 years. The Patriots were eliminated in the Wild Card round by the Tennessee Titans.
On March 17, 2020, Brady announced that he would not be re-signing with the team, ending a 20-year run with the Patriots, and resulting in six Super Bowl titles and nine Super Bowl appearances.
Three days later, he signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on a two-year, $50 million deal. Brady led the Bucs to a Super Bowl LV victory while playing the game on their home field, something an NFL team had never done before.
The Bucs won the game against the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9 and took home his seventh and final Super Bowl title and his fifth Super Bowl MVP title.
After the 2021 NFL season, Brady announced his retirement from the league. Forty days later, he reversed his decision to retire and came back for his 23rd NFL season.
The Buccaneers won the NFC South at 8-9 and earned a spot in the playoffs. However, in the Wild Card round, the Dallas Cowboys beat the Buccaneers, and won the game 31-14.
Brady finished his 23-year-old career exactly one year after his initial retirement and while holding dozens of records for the Patriots, the Bucs and the NFL.
He finished with 89,214 career passing yards and 649 career passing touchdowns, both NFL records. He was a 15-time Pro Bowler, 7-time Super Bowl Champion, 5-time Super Bowl MVP, 3-time league MVP, 2-time Offensive Player of the Year, 3-time first and second-team All-Pro.
Brady was also a member of the NFL’s 2000s, 2010s and 100th Anniversary All-Time teams. He is eligible for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2028.