Tom Brady cuts retirement short, returns to Buccaneers for 23rd NFL season

Legendary quarterback Tom Brady has cut his retirement short and will be returning to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a 23rd NFL season.

Brady made the announcement Sunday on social media just six weeks after calling it a career.

“These past two months I’ve realized my place is still on the field and not in the stands,” Brady wrote. “That time will come. But it’s not now. I love my teammates, and I love my supportive family. They make it all possible.

“I’m coming back for my 23rd season in Tampa. Unfinished business.”

The 44-year-old Brady holds several all-time QB records in the NFL including yards passing (84,520) and touchdowns (624).

Widely considered the greatest quarterback to play the game, Brady has won three NFL MVP awards, was a first-team All-Pro three times and was selected to the Pro Bowl 15 times. He holds a 243-73 record in his career in the regular season and 35-12 in the playoffs.

Brady went from 199th pick in the 2000 draft to replacing an injured Drew Bledsoe in 2001 and leading New England to a Super Bowl victory over the heavily favored Rams that season.

Brady led the Patriots to consecutive Super Bowl titles following the 2003-04 seasons. 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 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 for No. 5. Brady got his sixth championship when New England beat the Rams following the 2018 season.

He joined the Buccaneers in 2020 amid a pandemic, instantly transforming a franchise that hadn’t won a playoff game in 18 years. His buddy Rob Gronkowski came out of retirement to join him and they helped the Buccaneers become the first team to play in a Super Bowl in its stadium.

He’s the only player to win more than five Super Bowls and was MVP of the game five times.

— With files from The Associated Press.

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