FILE - Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) reacts as he leaves the field after the team lost to the Los Angeles Rams during an NFL divisional round playoff football game Sunday, Jan. 23, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio, File)

FILE - Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) reacts as he leaves the field after the team lost to the Los Angeles Rams during an NFL divisional round playoff football game Sunday, Jan. 23, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio, File)

Tom Brady makes it official: announces retirement on Instagram

Football legend not going to ‘make that competitive commitment anymore’

Rick Stroud Tampa Bay Times

The last image of Tom Brady playing in the NFL will be of his team relying on his right arm to rally back from a 24-point deficit and tie the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ NFC division playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams with less than a minute to play.

Brady did everything he could but the Bucs eventually would collapse on defense and lost 30-27 on Matt Gay’s 30-yard field goal as time expired.

Well the clock has finally drained on the remarkable career of the NFL’s greatest quarterback, just when football fans — especially in Tampa Bay — we’re clasping their hands in prayer for a Brady comeback, if only for one more season.

Brady announced his retirement on Instagram on Tuesday morning, saying he’s not going to “make that competitive commitment anymore.”

“I have always believed the sport of football is an ‘all-in’ proposition,” Brady wrote. “If 100 percent competitive commitment isn’t there, you won’t succeed. And success is what I love so much about our game.

“There is a physical, mental and emotional challenge EVERY single day that has allowed me to maximize my highest potential. And I have tried my very best these past 22 years. There’s no shortcuts to success on the field or in life.

“This is difficult for me to write, but here it goes: I am not going to make that competitive commitment anymore. I have loved my NFL career, and now it’s time to focus my time and energy on other things that require my attention.”

The announcement comes on day after Brady said on his “Let’s Go!” podcast he was still undecided about his future. Brady goes out on his own terms and on top.

While the final season of his illustrious career didn’t end with confetti in his hair, he led the NFL in passing yards (5,316) and touchdowns (43), making the case that even at 44 years old, he was the best to do it at his position.

RELATED: Tom Brady’s company says he’s retiring at age 44

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