Tom Brady’s Retirement From the NFL Would Crush Skip Bayless: ‘Like a Death in My Family’

Tom Brady is still an NFL player (at least for now). News broke announcing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback’s retirement from football. Brady has yet to substantiate the claims himself, though. Still, it would not be surprising at all to see him call it quits.

Skip Bayless has long been one of TB12’s biggest supporters in sports media, and the word of his potential retirement devastated him.

Skip Bayless does not want Tom Brady to retire

Buccaneers QB Tom Brady looks on before a game; Skip Bayless poses for a photo
Tom Brady of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers warms up before game against the New York Jets | Jim McIsaac/Getty Images; Skip Bayless is featured on ESPN’s First Take | Christopher Capozziello/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

ESPN insiders Adam Schefter and Jeff Darlington reported that Tom Brady was retiring from the NFL after 22 seasons. Neither the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback nor his camp has confirmed the reports. Still, there’s a realistic chance that this is it for the future Hall of Famer.

Fox Sports 1 personality Skip Bayless has long been a fan of Brady. In a recent episode of The Skip Bayless Show, he reacted to the retirement news.

“I have been rocked, and I have been shocked,” said Bayless. “By the very sudden news that Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. just might be calling it quits. It’s almost like a death in my family. I’m here to tell you, I’m having a hard time coming to grips with it.”

Bayless’s reaction to the news seems pretty dramatic. Still, the 15-time Pro Bowl selection has had a profound effect on many football fans.

“Is that it?” he added. “I couldn’t even fathom. I scoffed, I laughed. Not Tom Brady.”

Skip Bayless suggests Brady has about “five great years left,” but that his family is likely playing a significant role in his decision to retire or keep playing.

The Buccaneers QB didn’t go out the way he would’ve liked

Tom Brady could’ve easily called it quits after leading the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a 31-9 blowout victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV. Instead, he opted to run it back in an effort to repeat in 2021.

Unfortunately for Brady and the Bucs, their quest to repeat got cut short by the Los Angeles Rams. The NFC West champions outlasted Tampa Bay 30-27 in the Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs. The defending champs came out flat, and their late surge wasn’t enough to complete the comeback.

The Buccaneers appeared to be a solid bet to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. However, Bruce Arians’ squad lost some key players, particularly on offense. Chris Godwin suffered a season-ending knee injury, and Antonio Brown quit in the middle of a game.

With two of the team’s three best wide receivers in the lineup, Tom Brady had to rely on less-proven options to make plays. Ultimately, those absences held Tampa Bay’s offense back.

TB12 is the ultimate competitor, so it wouldn’t have been surprising at all for him to come back for one more season. While he wanted to get back to the big game, Brady has nothing left to prove.

Is TB12 the GOAT?

If Tom Brady indeed retires from the NFL, he won’t be riding off into the sunset with another Super Bowl ring. However, it’s doubtful that another player will ever accomplish what the Buccaneers quarterback has in his illustrious career.

Brady defied all logic and Father Time in 2021. He’s 44 years old, but he played some of his best football in his 22nd season. The California native led the league in completions (485), pass attempts (719), passing yards (5,316), and touchdowns (43).

TB12 accomplished feats in his career that most people could only dream of.

  • Seven-time Super Bowl champion (five Super Bowl MVPs)
  • Three-time NFL MVP
  • 15-time Pro Bowl selection
  • Three-time All-Pro selection
  • NFL’s all-time leader in passing yards (84,520), pass attempts (11,317), completions (7,263), and touchdowns (624)

No one can match Brady’s greatness statistically. He’s didn’t just achieve regular-season success. He was a perennial winner in the postseason as well.

The debate isn’t if Tom Brady is the GOAT NFL player — it’s about where he ranks among the greatest athletes across all sports.

All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference

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