After just about a week of speculation and conflicting reports, NFL star Tom Brady has officially announced his retirement.
In a lengthy thread posted to Twitter on Tuesday morning, the quarterback confirmed he won’t be returning to the game next season. “I have always believed the sport of football is an ‘all-in’ proposition – if a 100% competitive commitment isn’t there, you won’t succeed, and success is what I love so much about our game,” he wrote, adding that he is not going to make that commitment anymore.
Brady’s retirement comes after more than two decades in the league – most of which was spent with the New England Patriots, though Brady did not mention them in his post. He leaves as a Buccaneer, playing his final two seasons in Tampa Bay, and largely thanked Bucs fans and staff.
Reports of his retirement first surfaced last week, but Brady was reluctant to confirm them. The quarterback posted a statement on Instagram, saying he hadn’t made any final decision yet.
“I understand that at this stage in my career, there is going to be interest in my future whenever a season ends, but this week, all that is on my mind is the gratitude I have for this team and the fans that have supported us all year long,” he wrote. “This year has been incredibly rewarding personally and professionally and I am appreciative of everyone who worked their ass off to help our team achieve so much.”
Brady is a three-time league MVP and five-time Super Bowl MVP, among his many other honors as a star player and quarterback. He held the NFL’s Iron Man streak for quarterbacks, not having missed a game since 2016. He was suspended that year for four games for his involvement in the DeflateGate scandal.
In his statement on Tuesday, Brady admitted that he’s not sure what exactly comes next, but he knows what his priorities are.
“I know for sure I want to spend a lot of time giving to others and trying to enrich other people’s lives, just as so many have done for me,” he wrote.
To cap off his post, Brady promised that “I will remember and cherish these memories and re-visit them often. I feel like the luckiest person in the world.”
You can read his full message through the thread linked below.