Does anyone care that Arena Football is coming back next year?

Cleveland Gladiators WR Michael Preston catches a 6-yard touchdown pass during the third quarter of an Arena Football League game between the Philadelphia Soul and Cleveland Gladiators on June 24, 2017.

The Arena Football League is making a comeback and is set to hit the field again in 2024. Arena football has been around in a couple of different incarnations since 1987 but hasn’t been active since 2019. For a long time, it was a primary alternative to the NFL in the United States. Now it feels like just another “professional” football league looking to compete in an already oversaturated market.

The USFL, XFL, and now the Arena League. Americans love football, but that doesn’t necessarily translate outside the NFL. Regionally, Division I college football is also huge in certain areas of the country. But do we really need this many pro leagues? Probably not, and the turnout for these games will prove that.

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If you watched even one minute of the USFL’s return last year, you saw the stands in these huge stadiums and how empty they were. But let’s give credit where it’s due. FS1 and mainly Colin Cowherd sold the hell out of that league in its return. And apparently, they’re ready to do the same again this spring.

The XFL reboot

On Saturday, Feb. 18, the XFL makes its long-awaited return to the gridiron. We all love The Rock and anything he’s involved with, but for goodness sake, this isn’t going to work. It didn’t work the first time Vince McMahon tried it over 20 years ago. Obviously, it’s great for all these young football players who don’t make the NFL and want to continue their playing careers. But if it’s not the NFL, the casual fan just doesn’t give a damn.

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That’s an issue the AFL will run into, along with fighting the XFL and USFL for popularity. This time, they’ll need to bring something different to the table to stand out from the crowd. During the 90s, when arena football was at its peak, the NFL still revolved around running the ball and playing great defense. The AFL brought that 7-on-7 passing league atmosphere long before the NFL resorted to the same brand of football.

Hopefully, these leagues can find a way to last for a while, but it will be tough. The USFL is already heading into the second year of its comeback tour, but who knows how much longer FOX will pour money into that pit. XFL, AFL, you’re on deck. Please don’t disappoint us. 

Alles zum Brady-Rücktritt und zum Super Bowl: Jetzt die neue Folge “Icing the kicker” hören!

Tom Brady hat seine Karriere erneut beendet, Sean Payton ein neues Team – und der Super Bowl wirft seine Schatten voraus. Reichlich Diskussionsstoff in der neuen Folge “Icing the kicker”.

Hat zum zweiten Mal seinen Rücktritt erklärt: Tom Brady.

Hat zum zweiten Mal seinen Rücktritt erklärt: Tom Brady.

IMAGO/ZUMA Wire

Diesmal wirklich? Am Mittwoch hat Tom Brady das Ende seiner NFL-Karriere verkündet – wie bereits vor einem Jahr. In der neuen Folge “Icing the kicker” diskutieren Host Kucze, Footballerei-Experte Detti, Berlin-Adler-Coach Shuan Fatah und kicker-Redakteur Michael darüber, ob der “GOAT” es diesmal ernst meint mit dem Rücktritt, was die Gründe für den Schritt sein könnten und welche Auswirkungen sich daraus auf den Quarterback-Markt in der Offseason ergeben.

Auch die zweite prominente Personalie der letzten Tage wird natürlich besprochen. Sean Payton, langjähriger Head Coach der New Orleans Saints, ist zurück in der NFL und heuert bei den Denver Broncos um Russell Wilson an. Ein guter Move oder zu viel Investment?

Nach dem News-Segment wird es hintergründig. Die Crew beleuchtet eingehend die “Road to the bowl” der beiden Super-Bowl-Teilnehmer Kansas City Chiefs und Philadelphia Eagles. Was die beiden Teams in ihrer Herangehensweise vereint und unterscheidet, warum Michael an der Konsole die gleiche Taktik fährt wie die Eagles und was das E-Bike von Shuans Mutter mit all dem zu tun hat: Jetzt hören bei “Icing the kicker”!

#43: Brady-Rücktritt! Super Bowl - Chiefs und Eagles unter der Lupe

02. Februar 202301:08:41 Stunden

#43: Brady-Rücktritt! Super Bowl – Chiefs und Eagles unter der Lupe

Die Kansas City Chiefs und Philadelphia Eagles stehen im Spiel des Jahres! Bevor sich die „Icing the kicker“-Crew nächste Woche mit den wichtigsten individuellen Matchups im Super Bowl beschäftigt, blicken Kucze, Shuan, Detti und Michael auf den Weg der beiden Teams ins Finale. Welche Entscheidungen im Front Office haben die Franchises in den letzten Jahren geprägt? Welche personellen Kniffe brachten die beiden Kader dorthin, wo sie jetzt stehen? Welche Rolle spielen die Head Coaches Nick Sirianni und Andy Reid? Vorab sprechen die Jungs natürlich noch über den endgültigen (?) Rücktritt von Tom Brady. War es das tatsächlich für den GOAT? Zudem werden die Verpflichtungen von Sean Payton in Denver und DeMeco Ryans in Houston diskutiert.

Die nächste Folge „Icing the kicker” gibt es bereits am kommenden Sonntag – mit der erstmaligen Verleihung der „ITK Honors“. Seid gespannt! Foto Credit: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

#42: NFL Preview – Alles oder Nichts! Wer schafft es in den Super Bowl?

26.01.2023

#41: NFL Preview – Das beste Wochenende der Saison!

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#40: NFL Preview – So wild wird der Playoff-Auftakt!

12.01.2023

#39: NFL Preview – Der heiße Kampf um die letzten Playoff-Plätze!

05.01.2023

weitere Podcasts

“Icing” – jeden Donnerstag neu


“Icing the kicker”: Die neue Folge ist ab sofort verfügbar auf der kicker-App, der kicker-Website – und überall, wo es Podcasts gibt.
IMAGO/ZUMA Wire

Der Podcast “Icing the kicker” erscheint seit Beginn der Regular Season immer wöchentlich. Die neue Ausgabe gibt es dabei stets donnerstags ab Nachmittag – und damit als perfekte Vorbereitung auf das Wochenende in der NFL. 

Über Feedback, Fragen, Wünsche oder Anregungen freuen wir uns. Schreibt an info@kicker.de oder kontaktiert uns auf unseren Social-Kanälen.

“Icing the kicker” ist verfügbar auf der kicker-App, der kicker-Website sowie auf Spotify, Apple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts, Amazon MusicDeezer.

Houston Texans are going to do DeMeco Ryans like they did David Culley, Lovie Smith

DeMeco Ryans

Despite being an annual news story around this time of the year — due to the circus that’s caused by the way that coaches are fired and hired in the Lone Star State — DeMeco Ryans is returning home to be the newest head coach of the Houston Texans. They say “home is where the heart is,” but the Texans don’t love anybody — especially Black head coaches.

It’s not a question of “if,” but one of “when,” as Ryans has chosen to take the worst job in the NFL, and will ultimately walk in the same shoes as David Culley and Lovie Smith — the franchise’s last two head coaches, who are both Black, that were fired after one season on the job.

It wouldn’t be smart for a white coach to take the Texans’ job. And at this point, it’s nothing but a lucrative payday for Black ones — given that the Black coaches in the past who have led that franchise haven’t been allowed to make it through more than one training camp.

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Houston, he’s home

The Texans have agreed to a six-year deal with the San Francisco 49ers’  defensive coordinator, who was once a former Defensive Rookie of the Year who would go on to be an All-Pro and two-time Pro Bowler during his time as a player in Houston. The length of the deal is important, as it guarantees that Ryans will cash out whenever the Texans decide to be done with him. The “Houston Texans” have been a franchise since 2002, and in that time only Gary Kubiak (almost eight seasons) and Bill O’Brien (almost seven seasons) are the longest-tenured coaches in franchise history — as no one else has been able to stick around due to the team’s decision to either hire someone who was sorry, or fire someone before we knew if they were capable.

“DeMeco is a proven coach with a track record of success who has an innate ability to lead people,” Texans GM Nick Caserio said in a statement. “… We are working to build a sustainable program that has long-term success and DeMeco is the coach we feel is the best fit to help us achieve our goals. We know how important it is to get results now and we have a lot of work to do, but I’m excited to partner with DeMeco to build our football team together.”

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That’s cute. But, this is a franchise that has an all-time regular season and a postseason record of 146-201-1, which calculates to a .421 winning percentage.

And if that wasn’t enough, the “news” around Ryans became news itself, as it turned into a battle of he-said/he-said as two of the league’s insiders reported different stories on how it all went down. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the Denver Broncos spent Tuesday trying to convince Ryans, for a second time, to be their new head coach. But once they realized it wasn’t happening, they decided to go with Sean Payton.

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But according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter — the dude who has a history of being a mouthpiece for the league, agents, players, and front offices — Ryans was never in the running in Denver and wasn’t contacted by them this week, as Payton was who the Broncos wanted.

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DeMeco Ryans once sued the Houston Texans

Who knows, but no matter how Ryans ended up in Houston, there’s still the fact that this is a man that once sued his former team and current employer. In 2016, Ryans brought litigation against Harris County, who owns NRG stadium, the management company, the turf company, the Texans, and the league for more than $10 million due to tearing his Achilles in a game against the Texans when he played for the Eagles. Ryans felt like the field conditions led to his injury. Eventually, the league and the Texans were dropped from the lawsuit as the case was settled in 2021.

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Houston’s history with Black coaches

The marriage between Ryans and the Texans has become a hot topic given the franchise’s history of being one of the preeminent examples of how Black coaches are mistreated in the NFL. On one side, you have a team that’s on its fourth Black head coach if you add Romeo Crennel’s 12-game interim stint in 2020 to the lone seasons that Culley and Smith had before Ryans signed on. But on the other hand, you can’t point to the Texans’ decision of hiring three consecutive Black coaches as being an example of “diversity” and “racial progress” when, to date, none of those Black men have been allowed to stay on the job as long as the white coaches that preceded them.

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Never forget that this is a team that used to be owned by a man who once doubled down on saying, “We can’t have the inmates running the prison,” when Black players were kneeling in peaceful protest against racism and police brutality during the national anthem. The team is now run by that man’s son, who made a public racist remark about Asians at a charity event in 2021.

Hiring a Black person, or any other minority, to do a job without empowering them is useless, as it’s proof that they were brought in to make a quota — not an impact. History has shown us that this is how the Texans operate.

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When Ryans blows his whistle at training camp, it will be one of his first official moves as the head coach of the Houston Texans. He will be following in the footsteps of the Black men that came before him. And like them, he will more than likely feel a sense of pride as being one of the select few Black head coaches in NFL history. But what DeMeco Ryans must also recognize is that no matter how much he believes that he can be the exception to the rule, he now works for a franchise that’s proven that they won’t let that happen. The Houston Texans only hire Black coaches to fire them.

Chad Johnson gives pro athletes a crash course in frugality

Chad Johnson

“Frugal” would be one word to describe Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson during his playing career in the NFL. During a recent sit-down interview with Shannon Sharpe on his “Club Shay Shay” podcast, Johnson revealed his secret to holding onto most of his earnings from football.

So, Johnson, a former NFL star, isn’t above flying Spirit airlines and wore fake jewelry during his days in the league. This is something every professional or potential pro athlete needs to hear. Regular people working 9-5 jobs claim they won’t fly Spirit. This is certainly advice athletes making millions per year should consider.

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Instead of wearing jewelry that costs thousands and flying private planes, it’s ok to save a little bit of that money. Indeed, there are some things Johnson splurges on, like vacations, and he probably has a nice car or two in his garage. But not feeling the need to stunt every minute of every day like many pro athletes is smart.

Don’t give in to the pressure

Ochocinco mentions how it’s hard to always uphold that persona for multiple years. It’s hard and expensive. And what’s the point? Most players will never make as much money as when playing their chosen pro sport, especially NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL players. To spend it all frivolously before retiring is senseless, but it happens far too often.

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Most of these players run through a majority of what they earn within five years of retirement. We all know that story; although this generation of players seems to be doing a little better with their money, some end up near broke before turning 40. Obviously, Johnson was thinking ahead about his future and took measures to ensure he didn’t end up on a documentary for squandering all his money.

Being the flyest doesn’t always mean you’ve spent the most money. Confidence shouldn’t be based on how much your watch or shoes cost. Swag is what you make it out to be. Johnson’s flex is knowing he has the money but also having the discipline not to flaunt it all the time. Working hard and buying nice lavish things is great, but that shouldn’t define a person. High-level college athletes should also be paying attention to this in preparation for the life some could lead soon.

Tom Brady’s pre-Super Bowl retirement makes things awkward for Fox’s Greg Olsen — but here’s a solution

Former NFL tight end and current color commentator Greg Olsen

The comeback king may finally be done, but Tom Brady’s football obituary should begin with his error of making one comeback too many. The venerable Patriots legend Tampa Bay Buccaneers mercenary-for-hire announced his retirement in a no-frills social media post on Wednesday morning.

Prior to his final season — we hope! — Brady signed a 10-year, $375 million megadeal to become the network’s lead analyst. By leaving the starting spot in Fox’s booth open for a year, he allowed Greg Olsen to cement himself as a broadcasting powerhouse and the timing of his retirement also made things awkward for the former tight end as the fervor for Super Bowl LVII amped up. Suddenly Tom Brady looks like the Drew Bledsoe of color commentary.

Network broadcast A-teams

Serving on the network A-team has been a prestigious honor through the years. John Madden and Pat Summerall set the standard. Olsen and his play-by-play partner in the No. 1 booth, Kevin Burkhardt, replaced former Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman and Joe Buck after the pair peeled out for bigger money to be the faces of ESPN’s Monday Night Football.

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Olsen’s insights and analysis on Fox’s No. 1 play-by-play team have been a pleasant surprise to viewers and especially to Fox. Super Bowl LVII is his breakthrough moment though. As a veteran tight end in the NFL, Olsen was consistently overlooked. Wide receivers and quarterbacks always stole the limelight from the two-time All-Pro, but as a sportscaster, Olsen was finally the leading man. And he was killing it.

Meanwhile, Tony Romo is getting dragged

Over Championship weekend, Olsen’s CBS counterpart Tony Romo was getting dragged for his wet labrador retriever energy during the riveting Cincinnati Bengals-Kansas City Chiefs game, while the former calmly and professionally supplemented a subpar product over at Fox.

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Olsen knew this day was coming

However, Olsen was always aware of the $375 million meteor heading toward his career Everest. During an appearance this week on ESPN 1000’s “The Waddle and Silvy” radio show, Olsen said it would “suck” if Brady retired, but sounded like he was in good spirits and taking it all in stride.

“We all know the reality,” Olsen said. “I know what I signed up for this year. My goal — and I said this before the season even started — my goal was to try to do the best job that I could. Give people a fun listen. Give people maybe a little bit of a different perspective and insight into the game. Do the best job that I can.”

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Now on the verge of his career apex, Olsen is staring down a demotion. The timing of Brady’s announcement a week and a half before the Super Bowl is a stark departure from his mission to avoid being a distraction before the Big Game. He went in the opposite direction this time around. Is it too late for Brady to pop in and replace Olsen or play an active part in the network’s Super Bowl coverage in some capacity? Possibly in the pre-game show alongside James Brown, Howie Long, Jimmy Johnson, Michael Strahan, and Terry Bradshaw? (TMZ reported that Brady is not in the network’s Big Game plans.)

Soon the Fox pregame crew will swallow the earth whole, but at least Brady is familiar with both teams. Brady’s Bucs eliminated Jalen Hurts’ Eagles in the Wild Card round in 2022 and dueled with Patrick Mahomes’ Kansas City Chiefs in Week 4. Olsen’s job is probably safe for two more weeks, but a quarterback controversy is over the horizon. Fox has too much invested in Brady to bench or have him learning the ropes on the B-team. However, there’s also a real possibility his football celebrity doesn’t translate to broadcasting.

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A choice to make

The conventional thinking is that Fox will have to choose between the excellence of the low-key Olsen and the lucrative money they shoveled at Tom Brady — but there is another option. Make the Olsen-Burkhardt duo a trio. It’s been done before successfully. Dick Enberg’s booth with Phil Simms and Paul Maguire is often regarded as one of the great A-teams in broadcasting lore. Maguire eventually formed a new troika with Mike Patrick and Joe Theismann. Before Aikman and Buck were an inseparable pair, they formed a transcendent three-man booth with Cris Collinsworth. It didn’t last long, but their chemistry was undeniable. Brady to a tight end in the booth just feels right. Don’t screw this up, Fox. Do the right thing for yourselves and for the fans.

Nach über fünf Wochen: Tagovailoa nicht mehr im “Concussion Protocol”

Tua Tagovailoa hat das “Concussion Protocol” der NFL verlassen. Trotz seiner besorgniserregenden Historie wollen die Miami Dolphins weiter auf ihn setzen.

Hofft trotz Bedenken auf eine Rückkehr aufs Football-Feld: Tua Tagovailoa.

Hofft trotz Bedenken auf eine Rückkehr aufs Football-Feld: Tua Tagovailoa.

Getty Images

Wie NFL-Insider Ian Rapoport am Mittwoch vermeldete, hat Tagovailoa das Protokoll erfolgreich durchlaufen und ist somit wieder für NFL-Spiele freigegeben. Er habe sich mit mehreren Spezialisten getroffen, die optimistisch seien, dass der Quarterback wieder bei 100 Prozent sei, sobald er wieder auf dem Platz stehen müsse, heißt es.

An den in dieser Woche stattfindenden Pro Bowl Games, in die er gewählt worden war, wird Tagovailoa allerdings nicht teilnehmen. In den Play-offs waren die Miami Dolphins ohne den 24-Jährigen in der Wild Card Round an den Buffalo Bills gescheitert.

Vater bestätigt: “Er wird zurückkommen”

Seitdem sich der Quarterback im Spiel gegen die Green Bay Packers am ersten Weihnachtsfeiertag eine Gehirnerschütterung – vermutlich die dritte in einer Saison – zugezogen hatte, war Tagovailoa ins “Concussion Protocol” aufgenommen worden. Das Protokoll soll verhindern, das am Kopf verletzte Profis zu früh aufs Feld zurückkehren. Um es verlassen zu können, müssen bestimmte Tests absolviert werden.

Da Tagovailoa dies nach einem Monat immer noch nicht getan hatte, waren zuletzt Zweifel und Sorgen rund um den 24-Jährigen aufgekommen. Auch ein Karriereende wegen Gesundheitsbedenken wurde diskutiert. Diese Gerüchte hatte sein Vater Galu aber zerstreut. Dem hawaiianischen Sender “KHON2” hatte er gesagt: “Er wird definitiv zurückkommen. Das ist ihr Mann.”

Mit “ihr” meinte er die Miami Dolphins. Diese wollen trotz der besorgniserregenden Verletzungshistorie, die auch Tagovailoas langfristige Gesundheit stark gefährden könnte, am Linkshänder festhalten. Das Team aus Florida, das immer wieder mit dem am Mittwoch zurückgetretenen Tom Brady in Verbindung gebracht worden war, hatte einem “ESPN”-Bericht zufolge bereits vor Bradys Karriereende Abstand von einer Verpflichtung des 45-Jährigen genommen, weil man weiter auf Tagovailoa setzen wolle.

‘Visit Saudi’ sponsorship furthers FIFA’s tone-deaf record ahead of Women’s World Cup

Image for article titled 'Visit Saudi' sponsorship furthers FIFA’s tone-deaf record ahead of Women’s World Cup

The Women’s World Cup is nearing, and as is tradition, FIFA marked the occasion with controversy. Host countries Australia and New Zealand are urging the soccer federation to back out of its sponsorship with Visit Saudi. The main issue with the deal is Saudi Arabia’s ever-present, awful record of women’s rights violations.

A letter authored by representatives Chris Nikou of Australia and New Zealand’s Joanna Wood was sent to FIFA on Wednesday, voicing concerns about how such a sponsor could “severely tarnish the reputation” of the tournament.

“We write to express our serious disappointment and concern at the news of the apparent appointment of Visit Saudi as a sponsor.

“We cannot express strongly enough the potential repercussions and fallout that could result of this decision.

“Australia and New Zealand, both as sovereign nations and as football associations, have for decades placed the utmost importance on gender equality, and have sought to promote these ideals around the world.”

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Incidentally, Visit Saudi also was a sponsor at the men’s World Cup late last year, and I guess we missed that with the flood of human rights stories that plagued host country Qatar. (While I do remember the Visit Qatar ads during that tournament, I would not be surprised if this is one of a number of gross stories that went overlooked or unreported.)

It’s nothing new for the Saudis to attempt to improve their reputation via sportswashing. They literally have half the world’s golfers on retainer for the divisive LIV Golf League. However, I’m not falling for the bullshit, and clearly neither are the Aussies or the Kiwis.

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The USWNT is more or less deified in the states because of how good they are on and off the pitch, so don’t be surprised if any number of players speak out about this or a bunch of other shit that FIFA will inevitably screw up as we close in on the Women’s World Cup.

Mit 45 ist Schluss: Brady verkündet zum zweiten Mal sein Karriereende

Tom Brady hat einen Schlussstrich gezogen. An diesem Mittwoch veröffentlichte der 45-Jährige ein Instagram-Video, in dem er sein Karriereende verkündete. Es ist bereits das zweite Mal, dass Brady abtritt.

Abschied: Tom Brady tritt ab.

Abschied: Tom Brady tritt ab.

IMAGO/ZUMA Wire

Das soll es also gewesen sein. Wie schon vor exakt einem Jahr hat Tom Brady über seine sozialen Kanäle das Ende seiner Laufbahn bekannt gegeben. In einem Videobeitrag ließ der Quarterback wissen: “Als ich heute Morgen aufgewacht bin, dachte ich mir, ich drücke einfach auf ‘Aufnahme’ und lasse es euch zuerst wissen.” 

Zeit seiner Karriere gewann Brady sieben Mal den Super Bowl. Er gilt als größter Spieler der Football-Historie. 

Bereits am 1. Februar 2022 des vergangenen Jahres hatte Brady sein Karriereende bekannt gegeben, doch Mitte März revidierte er seinen Entschluss und verkündete den Rücktritt vom Rücktritt, um ein weiteres Jahr bei den Tampa Bay Buccaneers zu spielen. 

“I love you all”: Mit 45 Jahren verkündet Brady zum zweiten Mal sein Karriereende

Tom Brady hat einen Schlussstrich gezogen. An diesem Mittwoch veröffentlichte der 45-Jährige ein Instagram-Video, in dem er sein Karriereende verkündete. Es ist bereits das zweite Mal, dass Brady abtritt.

Abschied: Tom Brady tritt ab.

Abschied: Tom Brady tritt ab.

IMAGO/ZUMA Wire

Das soll es also gewesen sein. Wie schon vor exakt einem Jahr hat Tom Brady über seine sozialen Kanäle das Ende seiner Laufbahn bekannt gegeben. “Als ich heute Morgen aufgewacht bin, dachte ich mir, ich drücke einfach auf ‘Aufnahme’ und lasse es euch zuerst wissen”, sagte der Quarterback in seiner Stellungnahme und dankte dann mit brüchig werdender Stimme seinen Weggefährten und den Fans. 

Er habe seinen Traum gelebt und würde im Rückblick nichts anders machen, erklärte Brady und schloss schließlich mit: “I love you all.” Betextet war das Video mit den Zeilen: “I love my family. I love my teammates. I love my friends. I love my coaches. I love football. I love you all. I am truly grateful on this day. Thank you”.

Sieben Super-Bowl-Titel und weitere Rekorde

Zeit seiner Karriere gewann Brady sieben Mal den Super Bowl: sechs Mal mit den New England Patriots, die er 2020 nach 19 Jahren verließ – und einmal mit den Tampa Bay Buccaneers, die er ebenfalls zum NFL-Titel führte. 

Bereits am 1. Februar 2022 des vergangenen Jahres hatte Brady sein Karriereende bekannt gegeben, doch Mitte März revidierte er seinen Entschluss und verkündete den Rücktritt vom Rücktritt, um eine 23. Saison zu spielen. Von Erfolg war diese allerdings nicht gekrönt. Die Bucs gewannen zwar die NFC South, verabschiedeten sich allerdings schon im Wildcard-Game gegen die Dallas Cowboys aus den Playoffs. Das 14:31 war nun also das letzte Spiel, das Brady in seiner langen und außergewöhnlich erfolgreichen Karriere bestritten hat. 

Der 45-Jährige tritt mit einer ganzen Reihe an Rekorden ab. Niemand gewann mehr Super Bowls als Brady, niemand wurde häufiger als Super-Bowl-MVP ausgezeichnet (fünf Mal), niemand gewann mehr Spiele, niemand warf mehr Touchdown-Pässe. Nun macht Tom Brady Schluss. 

How long until Tom Brady unretires again?

Image for article titled How long until Tom Brady unretires again?

No team with a shot to win the Super Bowl next season wanted a quarterback who’ll be 46 when he plays his next NFL game. That’s gotta be why Tom Brady is retiring. After a prolific 20-year career with the Patriots and a three-year run with the Buccaneers, Brady said in a video on social media Wednesday morning that he’s retiring “for good” because last year’s hanging up of the cleats lasted less than six weeks.

Brady had a truly disappointing season to end his career, looking like an average NFL quarterback for most of 2022. That happened a year after a phenomenal season where Tampa Bay lost in the NFC Divisional Round to the eventual Super Bowl champion Rams. The Buccaneers squeaked into the playoffs this season in the worst division in football at 8-9 and fell in the Wild Card Round to Dallas. Brady’s 2022 was whacko, from rumored appearances on The Masked Singer and a high-profile divorce from ex-wife Gisele Bündchen.

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On to Fox Sports?

Brady’s next stop is likely Fox Sports, who signed him to a 10-year, $375-million contract before he retired to be an on-air analyst. Likely landing spots for Brady, beyond the golf course, were thought to be the Raiders now that Derek Carr is officially moving on, or possibly Brady’s local team, the 49ers, who just lost in the NFC Championship Game for a second straight season and were likely the 45-year-old’s only option for a winning team wanting to acquire his services. Let’s check back in six weeks to see if Brady interrupts Selection Sunday again to say he’ll play in the NFL for one more year.

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