FOXBOROUGH, Mass (CelebrityAccess) — Tom Brady, arguably the greatest quarterback in the history of the National Football League announced he’s leaving his longtime team The New England Patriots.
After months of rumor and speculation, Brady’s exit was announced in statements posted to his social media, where he thanked the team and his fans.
“To all my teammates, coaches, executives and staff, Coach Belichick, RKK, and the Kraft family and the entire organization. I want to say thank you for the past twenty years of my life and the daily commitment to winning and creating a winning culture built on great values. I am grateful for all that you have taught me – I have learned from everyone. You all have allowed me to maximize my potential and that is all a player can hope for. Everything we have accomplished brings me great joy and the lessons I have learned will carry on with me forever. I couldn’t be the man I am today without the relationships you have allowed me to build with you. I have benefited from all you have given me. I cherished every opportunity I had to be a part of our team, and I love you all for that. Our team has always set a great standard in pro sports and I know it will continue to do just that.
“Although my football journey will take play elsewhere, I appreciate everything that we have achieved and am grateful for our incredible TEAM accomplishments. I have been privileged to have the opportunity to know each and every one of you, and to have the memories we’ve created together.”
Brady, who is 42, was drafted by the New England Patriots in the 6th round of the 2000 draft and took over as the starting quarterback for the team in 2001 after Drew Bledsoe was sidelined by an injury, and Brady led the team to his first Super Bowl win.
Since 2001, the Patriots, with Brady at the helm, have won more than 200 games, including 15 division titles, played in eight consecutive AFC championship games between 2011 and 2018 alone, and 6 total Super Bowls.
For regular season and postseason combined, Brady holds the record for career passing yards and touchdown passes and he is one of only two players in the history of the NFL with a career total of 70,000 passing yards and 1,000 rushing yards.
Brady indicated that he plans to continue playing and is currently a free agent and is reportedly in negotiation with several teams. Free Agency for the NFL begins on Wednesday.
Following news of Brady’s exit, team owner Robert Kraft issued the following statement:
“How do I possibly sum up the depth of my gratitude to Tom Brady for what he’s given us these past 20 years, or the sadness I feel knowing it’s ending? I love Tom like a son and I always will. He has brought so much happiness to me personally and to all of our fans. I had hoped this day would never come, but rather that Tom would end his remarkable career in a Patriots uniform after yet another Super Bowl championship. Unfortunately, the two sides were unable to reach an agreement to allow that dream to become a reality. While sad today, the overwhelming feeling I have is appreciation for his countless contributions to our team and community.
“When Tom arrived in New England as an unheralded, sixth-round pick, no one could have imagined the fairytale story that would be written, the records that would be broken or the joy he would bring to an entire region. He leaves 20 years later as the winningest quarterback in NFL history with six Super Bowl victories, nine AFC titles and 17 division championships. He has been an exemplary teammate and leader. There simply will never be another Tom Brady. I now look forward to the day we can bring him back home to New England to celebrate his Patriots career, his endless achievements and his legacy as the greatest of all time. I love him very much.”