Tom Brady faced a tough task on Thursday night.
This won the NFL MVP award after it became clear Aaron Rodgers had become the overwhelming favorite.
Rodgers won, but Brady finished second in what has been a tight race all season.
The second place also marked the history of professional sports.
Tom Brady is the first NFL, NBA, NHL or MLB player to finish in the top 2 in MVP voting in his final season since Sandy Koufax in 1966. pic.twitter.com/prK3E1Obaf
— ESPN Stats and Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) February 11, 2022
He became the first professional athlete since Sandy Koufax in 1966 to finish top 2 in MVP voting in their final season.
This is quite an achievement and raises the question of whether this statistic will be true in a few years.
Can Brady compete for an MVP award again?
So far, Brady has finished second overall in MVP voting in his final season.
But was it really his last season?
Rumors continue to swirl about whether he would like to return in 2022, or even take a year off and make one last run at a Super Bowl in 2023.
Should he return, many records from the past season would have to be rewritten until he hangs up his boots for good.
Finishing so high in the MVP vote explains why his return is being rumored.
In his final season in the league, Tom Brady led the NFL (at age 44) in…
▫️ Passing yards (5,316)
▫️ Success attempts (719)
▫️ Passing yards per game (312.7)
▫️ TD Pass (43)
My MVP. pic.twitter.com/OnXgggTyJx
— Jordan Moore (@iJordanMoore) February 11, 2022
Brady did not retire or withdraw because his abilities were diminishing.
Instead, he made a conscious decision to spend more time with his family and just take a break from football.
There is no indication that his body is breaking down or that he was in severe pain at any time.
He just wanted a break.
But if he played well in 2021, why can’t he do it again in 2022 or 2023?
His potential return will remain a rumor until he makes a concrete decision one way or the other on his retirement.
Until then, records like the one he shares with Koufax remain tentative.