Brady announced his shocking departure from the franchise in dual posts on Twitter and Instagram on Tuesday morning. In his messages, the 42-year-old quarterback thanked Patriots fans for their unwavering dedication since he joined the team in 2000.
“I love your commitment and loyalty to your teams and winning for out city means more than you will ever know,” he wrote. “… I have been so blessed to share them with you all.”
“I tried to represent us always in the best and most honorable way, and I fought hard with my teammates to help bring victory and triumph even in the most dire situations,” he continued. “You opened your heart to me, and I opened my heart to you.”
Bündchen, 39, left a touching message to Patriots fans in the comment section of the post, which echoed her husband’s sentiments.
“Te amo,” wrote Bündchen, who has been married to Brady for 11 years. “So much gratitude for all the wonderful experiences and friendships we had in beautiful New England this past few years.”
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen
Brady, largely considered to be the best quarterback of all-time, was selected by the Patriots with the 199th pick after he fell to the sixth round of the NFL Draft in 2000.
“You know, [my parents] were just so supportive of me,” Brady told ESPN while recalling the difficult day that beckoned the start of his professional career. “They take it as emotional as I do. Finally, when the Patriots called, I was so excited. I was, like, ‘I don’t have to be an insurance salesman,’ you know?”
Against all odds, Brady would lead the Patriots to the Super Bowl in 2002 after their starting quarterback, Drew Bledsoe, was injured in the second game of the season. He won his first of six championships with the team that year.
Gisele Bündchen/Instagram Gisele Bündchen and Tom Brady
Now, NFL fans are left to speculate what franchise will be next to land the all-time great quarterback.
As of now, many analysts agree the current favorites are the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Chargers, who will be opening a new stadium next year. According to Sports Illustrated, both teams have already offered a $30 million per year contract to Brady.