Tom Brady has a spot on NFL’s Mount Rushmore, but one of the legendary quarterback’s teammates believed he is one of the greatest athletes of all time across any sport.
Former New England Patriots wide receiver Deion Branch agreed when he asked whether Brady deserved to mention as one of the greatest athletes of all time up there with Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky and Derek Jeter.
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“He’s on the Mount Rushmore as well with those guys,” Branch told TMZ Sports. I’m never the guy to sit here and nitpick on who’s the greatest in those other sports.
“We do know Tom is the greatest to ever put on a football jersey. Those other athletes – the Michael Jordans, the Wayne Gretzkys, the Derek Jeters – those guys did it in those particular sports … they did exactly what they were supposed to do for their sport and for their organization, but Tom will go down as the greatest football player to ever play the game.”
Brady announced in an emotional video he was “retiring for good” after 23 seasons in the NFL between the Patriots and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He won seven Super Bowl titles, was a five-time Super Bowl MVP and won three NFL MVPs.
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Branch appreciated how Brady went about his announcement, lauding him for doing it “his way” after all the fanfare came with the quarterback’s series of tweets when he thought he was going to step away in February 2022.
“Good morning, guys. I’ll get to the point right away,” he said in the video. “I’m retiring for good. I know the process was a pretty big deal last time. So, when I woke up this morning, I figured I’d just press record and let you guys know first so. I won’t be long-winded. You only get one super emotional retirement essay and I used mine up last year.
“I really thank you guys so much to everyone single one of you for supporting me. My family, my friends, my teammates, my competitors… I can go on forever. There’s too many. Thank you guys for allowing me to live my absolute dream.
“I wouldn’t change a thing.”
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Branch played with Brady from 2002 to 2005 and then again in 2010 to 2012. He was the Super Bowl XXXIX MVP.