These 5 Tom Brady records, among others, might never be broken

Brady goes out with accomplishments few, if any, players will ever approach.

Tom Brady Patriots
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady celebrates with the Vince Lombardi Trophy following New England's come from behind victory after the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI. (Jim Davis)/Globe Staff)
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Tom Brady made it official Tuesday, announcing his retirement from the NFL after 22 historic seasons.

It marks the end of one of the — if not the — greatest careers professional sports has ever seen, with most of it unfolding in front of lucky Boston sports fans.

The combination of Brady’s championship pedigree (seven Super Bowl titles) and pure longevity (22 seasons) will leave behind a legacy few can ever hope to match. That’s not even accounting for the fact that he would be retiring after leading the NFL in passing yards and touchdowns at 44 years old, somehow going out as one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL long after most would even still be playing.


Along the way, he also captured just about every (good) major record tied to throwing a football for a living as well as redefining standards for postseason success.

Assuming the NFL keeps its 17-game format going forward, some of those records might become more vulnerable to the likes of Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes, in particular, if he continues on his current trajectory for about 18 more seasons.

But no matter what ends up happening in the future, Brady’s accomplishments are truly unparalleled at this moment as he hangs up his cleats for good.

35 postseason wins. 7 Super Bowl titles.

This one is borderline ridiculous.

Comparing him to other quarterbacks honestly isn’t even fair. Brady has more than twice as many wins as Joe Montana (16), who’s second on the all-time postseason wins list. So let’s take a look at the GOAT compared to entire franchises.

Brady, by himself, has won more playoff games as a starting quarterback than 28 of the NFL’s 32 franchises. (His 35 wins tie him with the Dallas Cowboys all-time.)

Even crazier: his playoff winning percentage of 74.5 percent would place him first among all active NFL teams. Only two quarterbacks with higher winning percentages in the playoffs (Bart Starr, Jim Plunkett) have started at least 10 games. (They both have 10 starts.)


Consider this, too: Brady played in three or more games 11 times in his postseason career, with his 2021 championship with the Buccaneers marking the first time he played in four games.

Mahomes, who has eight playoff wins right now, will at the very least threaten the total wins record, if not break it, if he has a lengthy career. But it wouldn’t be surprising if he had to play until age 44 to do it.

The Super Bowls, though? That’s going to be tough.

Funny story about that: Brady has more Super Bowl wins (seven) than every NFL franchise thanks to his lone win with the Buccaneers and more title game appearances than all teams except the Patriots (11).

97,569 total passing yards

Brady very notably took over the top spot on the regular-season passing yards list in his win over the Patriots in Week 4 last season. He retires with 84,520 yards during regular-season play.

Tack on his 13,049 postseason yards, and he has the second-highest combined yardage total (Drew Brees’ 85,724) beat by more than 10,000 yards in total.

The wildest part of that stat: Brady nearly doubles the number of postseason passing yards Peyton Manning put up (7,339) in his Hall-of-Fame career.

Adding an extra game to the schedule will certainly put the regular season record in some jeopardy down the line from a Patrick Mahomes or Justin Herbert. But unless the NFL tacks an extra postseason game onto the slate, that playoff passing mark is going to be hard to catch.

22,938 yards after age 40

Want a real trip? Get this: Brady would be one of the top 100 passers of all time if you only included his statistics from 2017 (his age-40 season) and on. Those 22,938 yards would slot him just above Marc Bulger for 91st in NFL history.


He and Brett Favre are the only quarterbacks to top 4,000 yards after turning 40 yards old. Here’s the difference, though: Favre only did it once. Brady did it five times. With two different teams.

Even with the 17-game season added, it’s almost unfathomable to think another quarterback is going to lead the league in passing, with 5,300 yards no less, when they’re 44 years old. So good luck breaking that mark.

710 total touchdown passes

For starters, no one else in NFL history has topped 600 touchdown passes, which he did earlier this season. (By the way, can we talk about the fact that he threw 43 touchdown passes at 44 years old?)

His 86 postseason touchdowns put him in another stratosphere entirely. No else has more than 45 (Joe Montana, Aaron Rodgers).

Put it all together, and Brees, who would have the second-highest touchdown total (608), falls behind Brady’s overall tally but 102 touchdowns. That’s almost three whole seasons worth of touchdowns between them.

Oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl — twice

Brady’s actually been at the top of this list on three separate occasions all told.

First, he tied Peyton Manning as the oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl when he and the Patriots won the famous “28-3” Super Bowl against Atlanta in 2016. Then, he beat that record at age 41 when New England knocked off the Rams in 2018.

Two years later, he did again with the Buccaneers, making him the oldest quarterback and oldest player, period, to hoist a Lombardi trophy. (Jeff Feagles, 41, and Mike Horan, 40, both won Super Bowls as punters.)

To this point, Brady is the only non-kicker or punter age 40 or older to be on a Super Bowl-winning team. If the Rams win a title this year, Los Angeles left tackle Andrew Whitworth (40) would become the second.


There might eventually be a third, fourth or even more to win a title after age 40. But leading a team to a Super Bowl at 43, not to mention being named Super Bowl MVP? That one might never happen again.


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