We get it, he’s old
Tom Brady retiring marks the end of a piece of NFL history on many fronts. But the former Buccaneers and Patriots quarterback made all sorts of quirky history by officially retiring on Feb. 1, 2022, at the age of 44. Brady, who was selected in the sixth round of the 1999 NFL Draft, was the last active remaining player born in the 1970s.
However, NFL stats show that longevity is far from his greatest accomplishment on the gridiron. Brady lapped the rest of the weak quarterback class he came in with both in terms of Super Bowl wins, with seven, while compiling 84,520 passing yards and 624 touchdown passes.
Brady never finished with a losing record.
Of the 12 quarterbacks drafted in that draft class, only Brady and Marc Bulger, drafted in the sixth round by the New Orleans Saints but found success in St. Louis, would earn a trip to the Pro Bowl. Here’s a look at a few other notable names.
First-round guy wasn’t awful, but he wasn’t great either
Chad Pennington didn’t have a bad career with the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins, but he fell short of what is expected of a first round draft pick.
It took Pennington three years to take over as starter, and he flourished during 15 appearances in the 2002 season. Pennington passed for 3,120 yards and 22 touchdown passes against only six interceptions.
Pennington, however, could never channel that over an entire season. He led the Jets to playoff wins in 2002 and 2004 but never got them past the Divisional Round.
Pennington was twice chosen as Comeback Player of the Year in 2006 and 2008, but never fulfilled the potential of his draft slot. He finished his career with a 44-37 regular season record and a 2-4 mark in the playoffs.
What do you know about goat herding?
Giovanni Carmazzi may be one of the more tortured names on the list compared to Brady. Much is made that the 49ers chose him out of Hofstra in the third round, and Brady grew up loving San Francisco. Having to be constantly mentioned next to Brady thankfully hasn’t impacted Carmozzi much, as he is now a goat farmer in California.
Carmazzi never found professional success in three different leagues as a professional football player. He spent two seasons with San Francisco, never appearing in a regular season game. He was also on the roster of the Rhein Fire in NFL Europe and was listed on the roster of a few Canadian Football League teams.
Martin did what Peyton never did
Tee Martin led Tennessee to the first-ever BCS National Championship in 1998 before being chosen in the fifth round by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2000. Martin, however, wasn’t a good fit for the pro game. He bounced around several NFL rosters and would finish his career with a 37.5 completion rate and 69 passing yards.
Martin would later play in the CFL, throwing for 458 yards and a touchdown in a brief stint with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Bulger made most of his time
Marc Bulger was given the keys to the end of the “Greatest Show on Turf” with the St. Louis Rams and was asked to follow in Kurt Warner’s footsteps.
Trying to follow a legacy is something Bulger had experience with. In high school, Bulger broke passing records at Pittsburgh Central Catholic High School that Dan Marino set.
In 2002, Bulger had a career-best record as a starter and earned a Pro Bowl berth by passing for 3,845 yards and 22 touchdowns against 22 interceptions. The Ram suffered a soul-crushing double-overtime loss to the Panthers in the playoffs. Bulger would win his first playoff game the next year, leading the 8-8 Rams past Seattle 27-20 in an upset road victory.
Bulger’s chances of continuing the march were halted suddenly by the Atlanta Falcons, who pounded St. Louis 47-17. While Bulger had his moments, throwing too many interceptions would make him ineffective throughout his career.
Bulger finished with 22,814 passing yards with 122 touchdowns and 93 interceptions. His career record as a starter was 41-54.