Tom Brady announced Wednesday morning that he is retiring from the NFL – again. And, this time, for good.
One year to the day after his first retirement announcement, Brady said on social media that he is officially and finally walking away from professional football, closing the book on an iconic career that spanned 23 NFL seasons, featured seven Super Bowl titles and cemented the 45-year-old quarterback as one of the sport's all-time greats.
"Good morning guys, I'll get to the point right away: I'm retiring. For good," Brady said in a brief video posted on social media.
"I know the process was a pretty big deal last time, so when I woke up this morning, I figured I'd just press record and let you guys know first. I won't be long-winded. You only get one super emotional retirement essay, and I used mine up last year."
Brady, who spent the final three seasons of his career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, then choked up as he proceeded to thank his family, friends and teammates.
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"I could go on forever. There's too many (people to thank)," he said. "Thank you guys for allowing me to live my absolute dream. I wouldn't change a thing. Love you all."
Truly grateful on this day. Thank you 🙏🏻❤️ pic.twitter.com/j2s2sezvSS
— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) February 1, 2023
Tom Brady's uncertain offseason
Brady's future had been one of the major unanswered questions heading into the upcoming offseason, following a lackluster season in which he underperformed and the Buccaneers were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.
A year ago, Brady announced his retirement but then decided to return to Tampa a little more than two months later, citing "unfinished business." He was due to become a free agent this spring, prompting rumors that he might continue his career but with a new team.
In an appearance on SiriuxXM's "Let's Go!" podcast last week, co-host Jim Grady asked Brady about his future, and whether he had a timetable for making a decision.
"Jim, if I knew what I was going to (expletive) do, I would've already (expletive) done it," Brady replied. "I'm taking it a day at a time."
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Tom Brady's career stats
A scrawny sixth-round draft pick out of Michigan, Brady went on to become arguably the greatest quarterback in NFL history – and is a surefire pick to be inducted into the Hall of Fame when he becomes eligible in 2028.
Over 23 seasons in the NFL, including 20 with the New England Patriots, the California native won three Most Valuable Player awards and five more Super Bowl MVPs. He earned 15 Pro Bowl appearances, the most ever. And he is credited with leading 46 fourth-quarter comebacks, also the most ever.
The more granular numbers of Brady's career paint an even more impressive picture – both of his consistency and his longevity.
He retires as the NFL record-holder in both passing yards (89,214) and passing touchdowns (649), with nobody else particularly close behind him in either category. In total, Brady attempted nearly 1,500 more passes than any other quarterback in NFL history. He completed 64% of those passes, with 5.4% resulting in touchdowns. Only 1.8% were intercepted.
"Greatest of All Time. No question, no debate," recently-retired NFL defensive end J.J. Watt wrote on Twitter. "It’s been an honor and a privilege."
Tom Brady's future
Barring a change in plans, Brady will now spend the 2023 season in the broadcast booth. Fox Sports announced last year that it had signed Brady to be its lead game analyst upon the conclusion of his playing career. The New York Post reported that the deal is worth $375 million over 10 years.
"Brady will not only call our biggest NFL games with Kevin Burkhardt, but will also serve as an ambassador for us, particularly with respect to client and promotional initiatives," Fox chief executive officer Lachlan Murdoch said in the announcement last year.
Burkhardt is set to call the Super Bowl for Fox alongside Greg Olsen next week. The network also holds the broadcast rights for Super Bowl 59 in 2025.
Contact Tom Schad at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Tom Brady announces NFL retirement again, this time 'for good'