NFL superstar Tom Brady retiring from football after 22 seasons, 7 Super Bowl titles: ESPN

Tom Brady retires from football after 22 seasons, 10 Super Bowls; ESPN reports family and health were factors in his decision

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Sunday, January 30, 2022
Is Tom Brady retiring? ESPN sources say so
Tom Brady, the NFL's superstar quarterback, is retiring after 22 seasons, 10 Super Bowls and seven Super Bowl titles, sources tell ESPN.

Tom Brady, the NFL's superstar quarterback, is retiring from professional football after 22 seasons, 10 Super Bowls and seven Super Bowl titles, sources told ESPN's Jeff Darlington and Adam Schefter.

Widely considered one of the greatest in the sport's history, the 44-year-old quarterback holds several NFL career records, including most games won by a player, most touchdown passes (624) and most passing yards (84,250), according to ESPN.

Brady played for the New England Patriots for 20 seasons before joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020.

In a tweet that has since been removed from Twitter, Brady's TB12sports account wrote: "7 Super Bowl Rings. 5 Super Bowl MVPs. 3 League MVP Awards. 22 Incredible Seasons. Thank you for it all, @TomBrady"

His agent Don Yee has since released the following statement to ABC News: "I understand the advance speculation about Tom's future. Without getting into the accuracy or inaccuracy of what's being reported, Tom will be the only person to express his plans with complete accuracy. He knows the realities of the football business and planning calendar as well as anybody, so that should be soon."

When Brady "left the field following the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' loss to the Los Angeles Rams last week, he knew it was likely his final act as a football player, sources said. In the days since, he has spent time digesting that mindset and is preparing his retirement announcement along with the next chapter of his life and career, sources said," Darlington and Schefter reported.

ESPN reported that family and health were factors in his retirement decision. It is unknown when Brady will formalize his plans to retire.

Despite reports that he is retiring, Tom Brady has told the Tampa Bay Buccaneers he hasn't made up his mind, two people familiar with the details told The Associated Press.

Brady called Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht to say he has not made a decision, according to two people who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the conversations.

Overlooked by every team coming out of Michigan, Brady was eventually selected by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL draft with the 199th overall pick. He replaced an injured Drew Bledsoe as the starter in 2001 and led New England to a Super Bowl victory over the heavily favored Rams that season.

Brady went on to lead the Patriots to Super Bowl victories over the Panthers following the 2003 season and Eagles after the 2004 season. No team has since repeated as champions.

But New England wouldn't win another one for a decade, twice losing to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl, including a 17-14 defeat on Feb. 3, 2008 that prevented the Patriots from completing a perfect season.

Brady earned his fourth ring when the Patriots held off Seattle thanks to Malcolm Butler's interception at the goal line in the Super Bowl after the 2014 season.

Two years later, in the biggest Super Bowl comeback, he led the Patriots out of a 28-3 deficit in the third quarter against Atlanta to win in overtime.

After losing to the Eagles and backup quarterback Nick Foles the following year, Brady got his sixth championship when New England shut down the Rams following the 2018 season.

He joined the Buccaneers in 2020 amid a pandemic, instilling a winning culture to a franchise that hadn't won a playoff game in 18 years. With his old friend Rob Gronkowski joining him in Tampa, Brady helped the Buccaneers become the first team to play in a Super Bowl in its stadium. Naturally, Brady won again.

Brady threw more touchdown passes in his 40s (168) than in his 20s (147).

"It's astonishing what he's done," said Patrick Walsh, Brady's football coach at Serra High School in San Mateo, Calif., where he grew up.

"And we know it's inevitable, we know the end is near. It could be now, could be today, whenever. But it's sad when an era ends. Watching greatness. Watching here in San Mateo where he's from."

This is a breaking news report. Check back here for new developments.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.