It’s no secret that Brady and former head coach Bill Belichick don’t have the greatest relationship. The pair shared a glorious 20 years before an estranged Brady left for Tampa Bay. Nonetheless, Belichick had a dignified and classy reaction to the news of Brady’s retirement. He described him as the “ultimate winner” in a brilliant statement (via Clutchpoints).
Belichick said: “His work ethic and desire to win were both motivational and inspirational to teammates and coaches alike. Tom was a true professional who carried himself with class and integrity throughout his career. I thank Tom for the positive impact he had on me and on the Patriots and congratulate him on his amazing career.”
Brady wasn’t the first NFL legend to retire in 2023. J.J. Watt was one of the best defensive ends of his generation and a quarterback’s nightmare. However, he walked away from the sport with his head held high after a few injury-riddled seasons. He reacted to Brady’s retirement with a funny message on Twitter (via NFL.com).
Watt tweeted: “Greatest of All Time. No question, no debate. It’s been an honor and a privilege [Goat Emoji]. PS – The newly retired group meets on the golf course every morning at 10 am. Drinks are on the new guy, so bring your wallet.” It’s safe to say that Brady won’t be short of spending money because he has a $350 million FOX Sports television contract waiting for him.
Brady divorced Gisele Bundchen in 2022 but he can rest easy because he has no shortage of female fans. Kate Hudson led the way and had an emotional reaction to Brady’s retirement. The Academy Award-nominee tweeted a passionate statement about his departure from the sport (via Hello!).
She wrote: “I know I can say this for my whole fam, it’s been an honor to watch such a phenomenal career. You brought us all much joy for so many years. Welcome to the next chapter, may it bring as many blessings as the last two decades.” This heartfelt message surprised a lot of people but Hudson is a diehard sports fan.
Many fans think that they’ll see Brady line up for another NFL franchise. But one Redditor believes that Brady’s retirement is legitimate. He had a hilarious analysis of the quarterback’s career trajectory. The Redditor wrote: “The dude unretired and played another year, just so he could be the one to announce his retirement. I’m convinced.”
This is a fair reaction and it does seem likely that it’s all over this time. However, it may be wise to wait until Week Two of the NFL season before buying Brady’s final touchdown ball. Spare a thought for the poor man who forked out many thousands the last time Brady said that he quit (via The Spun).
Rob Gronkowski was one of Brady’s favorite teammates and also retired twice in his career. He departed from the NFL a season before his former quarterback. Gronk had a hilarious reaction to Brady’s retirement on Twitter. Remember, he delivered a heartfelt message in 2021 after the first one.
This time the tone was very different but he still showed his respect. The legendary tight end wrote: “Tommy, since I already wrote you a long retirement message last year, this time I shall say, welcome to the 2x retired club. You’re a legend and you always will be, my friend.” Maybe they can do a reality show together because their chemistry is magnificent.
Brady’s former Patriots’ backup, Matt Cassel, also had a funny reaction to the retirement news. He tweeted: “I would post a tribute to Tom but did one last year. No more. Congrats on a great career, buddy!” Hopefully, he saves this tweet and saves it for the third time when Brady quits again.
Cassel had an interesting career in New England. He received an unexpected opportunity in 2008 after Brady tore his ACL. The quarterback led the Pats to a winning record but they barely missed the playoffs. Brady’s injury changed his career because he joined the Chiefs for a few seasons after his return.
One fan commented that this time it appears that his retirement appears to be legitimate. The Redditor wrote: “This feels real this time. After games, other players were getting autographs and such. It looked like a swan song-type season.” We’re not saying that Brady was clocked out but it was statistically one of his weaker years.
He went under .500 for the first time in his career and was lucky the Buccaneers played in a horrible division. Nobody wanted to see him take hard hits but he didn’t put his body on the line. It feels like the right time for the 45-year-old to walk away from the sport. Let’s hope that he enjoys his retirement.
It says a lot about Brady’s stature in the NFL that his former head coach described him as a great teammate. Todd Bowles succeeded Bruce Arians in Tampa Bay after Brady announced his comeback. Arians said that he quit because Brady returned. The veteran coach wanted to leave his replacement in the best situation possible (via Sports Illustrated).
Bowles appreciated Brady’s knowledge and professionalism on the field. He released a statement where he explained his admiration. Bowles said: “I have always had the utmost respect for Tom Brady as a football player, as a winner, and as a person. It wasn’t until he joined us three years ago that I was able to truly appreciate him as a teammate.”
Here’s one of the nicest fan responses that we’ve seen. A Bucs supporter wrote: “One of the greatest free agent signings in history. Won a chip and completely changed a culture. Thanks, Tom. Now it’s time for a true rebuild.” The fan isn’t wrong because Brady brought an unprecedented era of success to the franchise.
His Super Bowl win was a fairytale ending and arguably he should have retired with that seventh ring on his finger. But he held on for another couple of seasons. It will be interesting to see what happens in Tampa Bay because it’s impossible to replace the GOAT. They’re entering a transitional period without Brady leading the way.
Stephen A. Smith said the following about Brady’s retirement: “He’ll be remembered as the greatest ever. … You don’t just talk about him as a football player, you talk about him as a leader.” This is a great point because Brady inspired everybody he played with. His work ethic and professionalism were beyond question (via Daily Wire).
Terrell Suggs is one of the few people on the planet who passionately hate Brady. But Suggs doesn’t know why Brady has this effect on him because he has a vanilla personality. Brady’s competitiveness came out during his Super Bowl-winning season with Tampa. He famously chastised teammates when they didn’t perform to his expectations.
Many people think that Brady’s return from his first retirement was the worst decision of his life. They believe that this was the moment that destroyed his family. But it’s possible that it was the catalyst rather than the main reason. The speed of the divorce suggests things were already broken before Gisele Bundchen left him.
Nonetheless, the Brazilian supermodel had kind words for the greatest quarterback ever. She released a message that attracted a lot of praise because it was very classy. “Wishing you only wonderful things in this new chapter of your life,” Bundchen wrote. It’s good that they have an amicable relationship for their children’s sake (via ABC News).
Julian Edelman was one of Brady’s most important weapons during his Patriots’ days. He won three Super Bowl rings with Brady under center and the pair struck up a fearsome partnership. It wasn’t surprising that he had a hilarious reaction to Brady’s retirement. Edelman also issued him a challenge that Brady can’t decline (via NESN).
“You only get one super emotional reaction to the goat retiring, and I used mine up,” Edelman tweeted. “So I’ll just say this. Learning from you as a player, teammate, leader, son, brother, and father has been the experience of a lifetime. Love you buddy. PS. Pickleball partners?”
It’s safe to say that Conor McGregor knows less about gridiron football than he does about the legal system. But this didn’t stop the polarizing MMA fighter from commenting about Brady’s retirement. He joined a pantheon of sports stars who sent Brady their best wishes after he hung up his cleats (via TalkSport).
McGregor celebrated Brady’s Irish heritage because the quarterback’s grandparents hailed from the old country. He said: “No finer Irish American football legend! I know the next chapter will continue your winning streak – Sláinte!” The final word was a toast of respect from the UFC star.
Brady holds an unbelievable number of records because he played in the NFL for so long. This doesn’t mean that he was the most technically-gifted QB of any generation that he played in. But he was the most consistent and durable. However, one clever Redditor noticed that there’s one record that he retired without.
They wrote: “Holds every major QB record except one: number of times he said he’s retiring and then unretired. (Brett Favre).” This is brilliant because it felt like Favre retired every season after he turned 30. Favre was a great player but Brady is an icon beyond anything the former Green Bay man can imagine.
Derek Jeter was one of many athletes to celebrate Brady’s career. The 14-time All-Star knows all about greatness and recognized Brady’s brilliance. He tweeted his reaction to Brady’s retirement as he showed his admiration. “Congrats @TomBrady on an unbelievable career. It was fun to watch!” Jeter wrote (via FOX News).
Athletes from across the sporting hemisphere showed their respect for Brady. Soccer icon David Beckham and tennis hero Serena Williams also tweeted their congratulations to the former Patriots legend. Likely, we won’t see an outpouring of emotion like this again until LeBron James retires.
Many fans underestimate Brady’s leadership qualities. However, he demonstrates these off the playing field by encouraging his teammates. Tampa Bay center Ryan Jensen thanked Brady for believing in him. It’s amazing that the quarterback inspired other professionals and motivated them through his presence.
“Thanks for pushing me every day this season mentally and physically to get back on the field,” Jensen said. “I’m glad I was able to take the field with you one last time! Enjoy retirement, don’t dog me too much in the booth. Love ya man!” This is a beautiful statement and shows how important Brady was to his franchises (via Tampa Bay Times).
One Redditor had a cynical reaction to Brady’s retirement. They don’t think that he’ll return but they believe they know why his initial retirement didn’t last. They wrote”Safe to retire now, ex’s cut is finalized and now she doesn’t get a piece of the $352mil broadcast contract. Smooth operator…”
This is a brilliant piece of business if it is true. It means that Brady and his representatives are smarter than we give them credit for. We’re not sure if it played out this way but would it surprise anybody? Money makes the world go round and Brady knows more about this than most people.
It’s not often that the Pro Hall of Fame comments about a player’s retirement. They didn’t say anything when Drew Brees walked away even though he’s a guaranteed first-balloter. But Canton’s official Twitter account told fans to keep an eye on 2028 because that’s the year when Brady will be eligible (via Roar Detroit).
“Should this morning’s retirement announcement truly be the end of @TomBrady’s illustrious career, 2028 is a year worth noting,” they wrote. It’s funny that they were also uncertain about Brady’s retirement. However, this time it does feel like it’s for real and that we’ve seen him play for the last time.
“Imagine throwing away a marriage to Giselle for an 8-9 season with Todd Bowles,” one ruthless Redditor wrote about Brady’s final season. This is possibly the harshest summary of Brady retiring we’ve ever seen but it’s technically true. The only positive we can say about this is that the Buccaneers made the playoffs.
It remains to be seen how kind history will be about Brady’s swan song year. Most people agree that he should have walked away after his seventh ring. But the 46-year-old’s competitiveness wouldn’t allow this. It may have cost him his marriage and he risked long-term health problems. But he stayed true to his sport until the end and that’s why he is the greatest player ever.