Tom Brady is retiring. The most successful footballer of all time is retiring – and this time “for good”. When the NFL legend retired last time, editor Dominik Rosing was happy, now he is bitterly disappointed. A comment on Tom Brady’s end of career.
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It’s been exactly one year. On February 1, 2022, Tom Brady retired from the NFL. The most successful footballer in NFL history quit and retired with seven rings on his fingers.
The ordeal of those crushed under two decades of dominance was over. The Brady opponents were redeemed.
I as well. My first reaction was a sigh of relief. I was almost always against Brady, he was just too good. When someone is so successful over such a long period of time, don’t you want to see them fail?
For days after that, Brady was all over my football bubble. Highlights of his career, his biggest wins, his (few) biggest defeats. His rise from nobody in the league to the greatest of them all. Private stories, this and that. And somehow I became wistful.
Because I realized what a special role the man played in my life as an NFL fan. I loved being against him. He was the ultimate boss.
Just 40 days after his resignation, he pulled us all out of that void and announced his quick comeback. He still has unfinished business to do. In German: He wanted more titles. It was a threat to his opponents and doubters.
How can someone with seven titles, three MVP awards, all the records, how can someone like that want more? His mentality, his ambition, his dedication – you had to respect this man for what he had already achieved and still wanted to achieve.
But his last year went as I would have dreamed of him a few years ago. He lost more than he would have liked, for the first time in his career he even had a negative record with eight wins and nine losses. His personal life dominated the headlines. The marriage with supermodel Gisele Bundchen, the separation from the family.
Still, he somehow saved his Tampa Bay Buccaneers into the playoffs. Should we see the typical Brady again? The Brady who, against all odds, leads an underdog to victory? The invincible January Brady? No. Against the Dallas Cowboys it was over immediately, his team had no chance. Brady’s last playoff appearance ended without any glory.
A few weeks later, February 1st again, this time in 2023. Brady again announces his resignation. This time it’s “final,” he promises. He would do everything the same way again and by that he means the screwed up bonus year. The video, which he shared on his social networks, lasted only 53 seconds. He films himself on a beach, the wind howling through the microphone.
He could have chosen any frame of his farewell. On a big talk show, live in front of an audience of millions. In an elaborately produced PR video, high gloss and 4k. On the lawn of his arena in front of thousands of fans.
But Brady does it for himself, alone. In selfie mode. “I know last time it was a bigger deal,” he begins. “Now I want to do things differently. When I woke up this morning I thought, I’ll just hit record here and let you guys know.”
So delightfully atypical of the NFL world, so delightfully atypical of the great of a sport. It’s a bittersweet end to an unparalleled career. I’m kind of sad now.
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