New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has accomplished so much in his NFL career, and the six Super Bowl rings he owns probably are his greatest achievement. Given the physical nature of pro football, and how hard it is to play for five, 10 or even 15 seasons, Brady's longevity should also go down as one of the most impressive bullet points on his Hall of Fame resumé.
Brady is in the midst of his 20th (!) NFL season. He's still one of the league's top-tier quarterbacks, too. The 42-year-old veteran has completed 65.4 percent of his passes for 1,743 yards with 10 touchdowns and three interceptions to help New England start the season 6-0 for the first time since 2015.
When you watch Brady play in 2019, it's clear he still loves the game very much.
"I love playing football, so those three hours and being on the practice field, I really love," Brady said Wednesday on SiriusXM NFL Radio. "To play 20 years in the NFL, I mean, I never would have imagined, and I'm sure nobody else would have ever imagined that. I love being out there. Every year has its challenges. To get to go play on 'Thursday Night Football', 'Monday Night Football' -- we've got a Sunday night game coming up -- when you're the only team playing, it's always a great feeling.
"Again, it's been -- to just play a sport I dreamed of playing has been a dream come true. And everyone always asks, 'What are you going to do when you're done? What are you going to do when you're done?' The reality is that I never thought of doing anything else. I never had to think about doing anything else. I've just thought about playing football. Part of it was being very naive that, 'Oh man, I'm going to make a roster and I'm going to play for as long as I want to play.' My life has had a very weird way of working out that way.
"I'm going to keep going and keep trying to be the best I could be for my team, and try to play at a championship level. Just continue to have fun and support my teammates and do my job as best as I possibly can."
Brady has talked in the past about playing into his mid-40s, and with he and the Patriots continuing to perform at a high level, there's no reason for him to leave the game barring some sort of injury.
The veteran QB still has things to accomplish despite all the success he's enjoyed. Brady has a few records in his sights, including Drew Brees' record for the most career passing yards, and Peyton Manning's mark for the most career passing touchdowns. Brady needs just 13 touchdown passes to claim Manning's record, so we should see that one broken later this season. Another Super Bowl title for the Patriots would be their seventh in team history and set a record for the most championships in the Super Bowl era.
Brady always has done a great job motivating himself, even after winning so many individual awards and championships, and you can bet that competitive fire will burn brightly all the way until the end of his career.
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