VIA TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS COMMUNICATIONS -
Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady today announced his retirement from the National Football League after 22 seasons, in which he became the NFL’s all-time leader in Super Bowl wins (seven), Super Bowl Most Valuable Player awards (five), Pro Bowl selections (15), regular season wins (243), playoff wins (35), total wins (278), pass completions (7,263), passing yards (84,520) and passing touchdowns (624). He earned NFL MVP honors three times (2007, 2010, 2017) and Comeback Player of the Year honors in 2009, in addition to his three first-team All-Pro selections and two Associated Press Offensive Player of the Year accolades. The team released a tribute video that can be seen here.
“Tom arrived in Tampa Bay with an unprecedented level of expectations and delivered some of the most memorable moments in our franchise history,” said the Glazer Family. “His impact on our team and community was immediate and profound. Tom’s remarkable NFL journey has come to an end, but we will continue to celebrate his legendary career as the greatest quarterback of all time and are appreciative and grateful for the time he spent as a Buccaneer. Saying goodbye to a legend is never easy, but we wish him continued success in retirement.”
Winning 243-of-316 career regular season starts, Brady’s 76.9 career winning percentage ranks first in the Super Bowl era among quarterbacks with at least 75 starts. In addition, he has led his team to 12 or more wins in a season 13 times, which are the most such seasons by a quarterback in NFL history. Brady has appeared in an NFL record 10 Super Bowls and 14 Conference Championship Games, tacking on 18 division titles in his 20 seasons as a primary starting quarterback. Brady also holds NFL records with his 32 Player of the Week honors and 11 Player of the Month awards throughout his career.
“It is hard to put into words what Tom has meant to me and the entire Buccaneers organization. I have had the distinct pleasure of being with Tom at both the beginning and end of his incredible NFL career,” said General Manager Jason Licht. “These past two seasons, I had the privilege to see up close the way he operates and the impact he has on a franchise – from coaches to players to staff. He set a standard for accountability, work ethic and performance that resonated through our building and in our locker room. His list of career accomplishments speaks for itself, but to finish a 22-year career while still performing at his peak, was nothing short of extraordinary. I wish we had more time with Tom, but I understand and respect his decision to leave the game in order to spend more time with his family. I am grateful for the moments we shared.”
Solidifying his place in NFL annals, Brady was selected to both the 2000s and 2010s All-Decade Teams, and was honored as part of the NFL 100 All-Time Team, recognizing the best 100 players of the league’s first century of play.
“Tom joined us as the greatest football player of all time, and he quickly showed everyone in our organization what that meant,” said Head Coach Bruce Arians. “He set a standard and helped create a culture that took our team to the mountaintop. It has been an honor to be his head coach for the past two seasons. I wish it didn’t have to end, but few players have the opportunity to leave the game on their own terms. Even fewer can do it while playing at an elite level. Tom is the exception. I have a deep appreciation and respect for what he has done for our franchise, and I wish him and his family nothing but the best in this next chapter of life after football.”
Brady has tallied 108 career games with 300 or more yards passing in his career, joining Drew Brees (123) as the only players to have recorded at least 100 such games. Including postseason, Brady’s 67 game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime are the most in the NFL since the merger. Additionally, Brady has displayed a knack for taking care of the football, with his 1.8 interception percentage standing as the third-best in league history among players with at least 2,500 career pass attempts. He also has an NFL-record 66 games with three touchdown passes and no interceptions and has the third-highest touchdown-to-interception ratio (3.07) in NFL history (min. 2,500 attempts).
In 2021, Brady led the league in passing yards (5,316), passing touchdowns (43), completions (485) and attempts (719), joining Drew Brees (2008) and Peyton Manning (2013) as the only players to have led the league in all four categories in a single season since 1991. His 5,316 passing yards marked a career high and the third-most in NFL history. Brady’s passing and yardage totals in 2021 each set new single-season franchise records as he guided the Buccaneers to an NFC South division title.
In his first season in Tampa Bay in 2020, Brady led Tampa Bay to an 15-5 overall record, capturing the franchise’s second Super Bowl title and earning Super Bowl MVP honors in the team’s 31-9 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs. Brady’s 40 passing touchdowns in 2020 marked the most by a player in his first season with a team in NFL history, while his 4,633 passing yards ranked as the second-most by a player in his first season with a team, trailing only Peyton Manning’s 4,659 yards in his first season with the Denver Broncos in 2012.
Brady came to Tampa Bay after spending 20 seasons with the New England Patriots (2000-19). In 2001, Brady led New England to a Super Bowl victory in his first season as the team’s starting quarterback, earning his first of four Super Bowl MVP awards and his first of 15 career Pro Bowl selections. The Patriots went 11-3 in Brady’s 14 starts that year, as the former sixth-round draft selection completed 264-of-413 passes (63.9%) for 2,843 yards and 18 touchdowns.
Just two seasons later in 2003, Brady guided New England to another championship on the heels of a 14-2 regular season, culminating with his second-career Super Bowl MVP honor. It began a stretch of five-straight seasons in which Brady guided his team to a double-digit win total – a stretch that included back-to-back Super Bowl championships in 2003 and 2004, with another Super Bowl appearance in 2007.
During his 2007 NFL MVP season, in which the team went 16-0 during the regular season, Brady led the league with 4,806 yards passing, a 68.9 completion percentage, a 117.2 passer rating, 8.3 yards per attempt and a career-best 50 touchdown passes. Those 50 touchdown passes were an NFL record for a single season at the time and still rank tied for the second-most in league history, trailing only Peyton Manning’s 55 in 2013.
Brady bounced back from a knee injury that cost him the 2008 season to win NFL Comeback Player of the Year honors in 2009, posting the third of 13 career 4,000-yard passing seasons, adding 28 touchdowns and another Pro Bowl selection to his résumé.
Beginning with that 2009 season, the Patriots went on to win 11 consecutive division titles with Brady under center, racking up 10 or more wins in all 11 of those seasons. The 11 straight division titles are an NFL record for a starting quarterback. The 2010 campaign saw Brady earn his second league MVP award, as he led the NFL with 36 touchdowns compared to just four interceptions, securing a career best 0.8 interception percentage.
He appeared in an unprecedented eight consecutive AFC Conference Championship Games from 2011-18, advancing to the Super Bowl in 2011, 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2018. He hoisted the Lombardi Trophy three more times during that stretch in 2014, 2016 and 2018. At age 40, Brady became the oldest player to win the league’s MVP award when he did so in 2017, leading the NFL with 4,577 yards passing in addition to his 32 touchdowns.
The San Mateo, California, native played collegiately at Michigan prior to being drafted by the New England Patriots in the sixth round (199th overall) of the 2000 NFL Draft.
PHOTO COURTESY GETTY IMAGES