Brady’s legacy pre- and post-retirement

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A football sits against a grey gravestone in a garden with the words “RIP 2000-2023” inscribed on the stone.
He’s not really gone and will never be forgotten, but we’ll be missing Brady’s impact for a long while. Lee Lim

Started at the bottom (of the draft pick), now we’re here (holding enough records to make heads spin) 

Who is the greatest athlete of all time? This is the ultimate question for sports fans, and is a hotly contested debate across all sports. One of the athletes considered to be the greatest of all time is former NFL quarterback Tom Brady.  

Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. is considered one of the greatest football players of all time. He is the most accomplished and successful National Football League quarterback in the league’s history. Brady is known for his extreme health regimen, which allowed him to play 23 seasons in the NFL.  

His health regimen involves transcendental meditations, yoga, hydration, and a diet known as the 80/20 diet. His diet avoids most fruits, mushrooms, tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, coffee, Gatorade, white sugar, flour, gluten, diary, pop, cereal, white rice, potatoes, and bread. Brady explains his diet through the TB12 method, which includes recipes that follow his strict diet – a diet which has been seen as controversial. Athletes who are considered the greatest of all time often use extreme regiments in all aspects of their lives in order to accomplish their goals, dreams, and aspirations. Tom Brady is no exception.  

Brady started his elite football career at the University of Michigan. He was then selected 199 overall by the New England Patriots in the 2000 NFL draft. He became the starting quarterback during his first season when Drew Bledsoe got injured in week two of the 2001 season. Brady spent 20 seasons with the New England Patriots, where won six Super Bowls in 2002, 2004, 2005, 2015, 2017 and 2019.  

During his 23-season, career Brady started 381 games, which included 333 regular season games and 48 playoff games. Brady’s 2008 season was the only season he didn’t play due to an ACL injury. He also has the most career games in the Super Bowl, with 10 games. In 2020, Brady joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he won his seventh Super Bowl against the Kansas City Chiefs.  

Brady has been awarded Super Bowl MVP five times, NFL MVP three times, NFL Offensive Player of the Year twice, NFL Comeback Player of the Year once in 2009, and has made the Pro Bowl 15 times. He holds records for most career quarterback wins, most career passing attempts, most career passing completions, most career passing touchdowns, and most career passing yards.  

On February 1, 2023, Brady announced his official retirement from football. Brady will be eligible for the Pro Football Hall of Fame starting in 2028. In addressing speculation that he would run for political office, Brady explained in 2022 that he doesn’t “think anyone’s fond of politics these days.”  

In 2020, the New York Post reported that Brady signed a $375 million deal over 10 years with the NFL on Fox. Brady is set to begin his role as a lead colour commentator for the NFL on Fox in 2024, where he will join play-by-play announcer Kevin Burkhardt to offer background information and an expert look into each game. It will be interesting to see his transition into the commentary booth, since some athletes’ transitions to commentary have been rocky.  

His career is considered extraordinary due to having a career of over 20 years in the NFL – a league whose acronym has been parodied as ‘Not For Long’ – along with his incredible accomplishments throughout his career, and all considering he was drafted 199 overall back in 2000.  

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