National Football League (NFL) legend and seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady on Tuesday announced his retirement, bringing an end to his astonishing career spanning 22 seasons.
The 44-year-old quarterback, who played his final two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, confirmed his decision in a statement released on social media.
The decision marks the end of an extraordinary career across which Brady won more Super Bowls than any one team in NFL history, as well as being a three-time NFL MVP, five-time Super Bowl MVP, a 15-time Pro Bowler, two-time NFL Offensive Player of the Year and a member of the past two All-Decade teams and the NFL’s 100th Anniversary All-Time Team
“I have always believed that the sport of football is an ‘all-in’ proposition – if a hundred per cent competitive commitment isn’t there, you won’t succeed, and success is what I love so much about our game. There is a physical, mental, and emotional challenge EVERY single day that has allowed me to maximise 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,” Brady said in a statement on Twitter.
“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.
“I’ve done a lot of reflecting on the past week and have asked myself difficult questions. And I am so proud of what we have achieved. My teammates, coaches, fellow competitors, and fans deserve a hundred per cent of me, but right now, it’s best I leave the field of play to the next generation of dedicated and committed athletes,” he added.
Brady won six titles with the New England Patriots before his final triumph with the Buccaneers last year.
He played in 10 Super Bowls, including an incredible comeback from 28-3 down against the Atlanta Falcons in 2017, and had a perfect 16-0 regular season with the Patriots in 2007.
The NFL legend won a Super Bowl in three different decades. He also claimed records for all-time completions (7,263), passing yards (84,520), passing touchdowns (624), starts (316), Pro Bowl selections and Super Bowl MVPs while never registering a losing season across his time with the Patriots and Bucs.