Tom Brady, Sports Betting and Fantasy Hero, Announces NFL Retirement

  • Tom Brady retired Wednesday, exactly one year after his first “retirement”
  • No quarterback covered the spread more than Brady
  • Brady also retired with the most fantasy football points
  • The G.O.A.T. can join the Hall of Fame in 2028 along with J.J. Watt
Tom Brady throwing
Tom Brady retired from the NFL Wednesday morning, ending an unmatched career on the field and in the annals of sports betting. [Image:]

Calling it quits

Tom Brady announced his retirement Wednesday, marking the end of not only the league’s most esteemed career, but also the sportsbooks’ number one villain.

most spread covers in the Super Bowl era

Brady set a number of records when it comes to sports betting, including the most spread covers in the Super Bowl era and the best underdog cover percentage among qualified quarterbacks.

The longtime New England Patriot and recent Tampa Bay Buccaneer briefly retired exactly one year before his midweek announcement. If he is gone for good this time, he leaves behind an unmatched resume.

Tom Brady: the money printer

Brady was famously taken with the 199th overall draft pick in the 2000 NFL draft. He had a decent career at the University of Michigan and threw for 2,217 yards, 16 touchdowns, and six interceptions as a senior, but nobody ever thought that he would blossom into the face of the NFL.

All in all, Brady finished 190-163-7 against the spread, which is the most covers of any modern quarterback, per ESPN. His cover rate of 58.1% is also the third-best among QBs in the Super Bowl era, behind only Joe Montana and Joe Theismann.

won outright in 56.6% of games in which he was an underdog

Brady also consistently defied the odds. He won outright in 56.6% of games in which he was an underdog (30-23), which is the best among QBs that were underdogs at least 30 times in the Super Bowl era. That number jumped to 67.3% for covers instead of wins.

Brady got his start in New England at the age of 24 in the second week of his sophomore season after Pro Bowl quarterback Drew Bledsoe suffered internal bleeding after a hit during a game against the New York Jets. Brady stepped into the lineup and remained atop the depth chart for another 20 years, leading them to six Super Bowl titles before heading south to Florida, where he also won a Lombardi trophy.

Brady was also the captain of a Patriots squad that was favored in a record 67 straight games from Week 3 in 2015 to the divisional round of the 2018 playoffs – that game was against MVP Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, which the Pats won en route to a sixth Super Bowl championship over the Los Angeles Rams.

A legacy of dominance

Sports bettors were not the only ones that cashed in on Brady’s excellence throughout his illustrious career. The G.O.A.T. also steps away from the game as the all-time leading scorer in PPR fantasy football, ahead of Drew Brees and Jerry Rice.

Six times Brady finished with 300 or more fantasy points in one season; two of those came after he turned 40. He had the 25th-most fantasy points this season and the fourth-most the year prior and finished with a career total of 5,944.36.

holds the record for most 25-point fantasy games (66)

Brady also holds the record for most 25-point fantasy games (66), ahead of Rice (64), and Aaron Rodgers (62).

The NFL now needs a new face to represent it not just on the field, but in areas such as sports betting and fantasy football. Mahomes, and to a lesser extent, Joe Burrow, look like the two most likely candidates, but they have enormous shoes to fill.

A player must be inactive for at least five straight seasons before they become eligible to join the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Assuming Brady does not lace ‘em up one more time, he will be eligible for a bust in Canton in 2028. 

Three-time Defensive Player of the Year and five-time First-Team All-Pro, J.J. Watt, will be eligible for the Hall at the same time. They should be two slam-dunk first-ballot nominees.

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