Quarterback Tom Brady called it a career after 22 seasons in the NFL. Twenty of those years were spent as a member of the New England Patriots. His retirement statement was released on his Instagram page, and in the lenghty post, the 44-year-old quarterback did not mention the Patriots at all, not even once.
Former New England quarterback (1991-1998) and sports radio host Scott Zolak noticed the slight, asserting, via a New York Post article, that the quarterback was a “cold, calculating son of a bi**h”:
“On the day that he retires from the sport that gave him life — the game of football — that gave him opportunities to even have the ability to start his next three companies that he mentions in his final statement – the final part of his statement. I go back to the statement. I read it this morning, the one he released when he left New England, where he did thank all those New England people.” - Scott Zolak
Zolak graduated from Ringgold High School and the University of Maryland. He was selected 84th in the 1991 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. He, however, did not play in 1991; instead, he started four games in 1992. Statistically, this was his most productive season. When Drew Bledsoe was drafted in 1993, Zolak became his backup for the next six seasons. He would go on to act as a replacement for Bledsoe when he was hurt, but only started three games during this time. At the end of the 1998 season, he was released. He signed with the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins in 1999, playing in one game for Miami before retiring. Following his retirement, he became a sportscaster and football analyst in the New England area. He had the following to say:
“He’s either one cold, calculating son of a b—h where you can release that and say, ‘That’s it. That part of my life is done. This is my new venture and it was Tampa Bay and now I’m just gonna thank those. I already did New England, now I’m doing you.”
However, Brady did leave a message on his Instagram story, thanking the Patriots and its fans:
“Thank you, Patriots and Patriot Nation. Beyond grateful and love you all.”
Tom Brady and his time in New England
Brady was a sixth-round pick (199th overall) in the 2000 NFL Draft by the Patriots. He only played one game in his rookie season, throwing one pass for three yards versus the Detroit Lions in Week 13 of the 2000 season.
The quarterback played in 15 games and started 14 for the team the following season.
Brady replaced then-starting quarterback Drew Bledsoe after Bledsoe was knocked out of the game in the fourth quarter versus the New York Jets in Week Two of the 2001 season.
That season, the Patriots went to Super Bowl XXVI, defeating the St. Louis Rams to win their first-ever Lombardi Trophy. Brady was named Super Bowl MVP after throwing 145 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions.
Overall, he won six Super Bowls, 30 playoff games, and three MVP awards in his two decades with the Patriots. The 30 playoff games are the most in franchise history. He has won the most playoff games of all-time with 35, five of which were with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Without question, Brady is the best player to ever play for New England and maybe the best to ever do it. Either way, his legacy with the Patriots could be something we'll never see again.
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