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Tom Brady said earlier this past week he might play until he's 50. Maybe he'll be trying to beat his 2021 NFL single-season touchdown record by then.
Brady is 44 years old. Among all quarterbacks at least 44 in NFL history before this season, there were 14 passing touchdowns. Combined. That's it.
Brady has nine passing touchdowns through two games.
Brady was great yet again on Sunday, throwing five touchdown passes. When the Atlanta Falcons were challenging the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and cut the lead to 28-25, Brady hit Chris Godwin for a score to take all the momentum away. The Bucs had two defensive touchdowns after that and won 48-25. If you had no idea how old Brady was, you'd guess he was 34. Maybe 24. He shows absolutely no signs of slowing down at an age in which every other quarterback was retired or washed up.
The single-season touchdown record is 55 by Peyton Manning. Brady seems like he's taking aim at it.
And why wouldn't the Buccaneers let Brady throw as much as he wants? He has endless receiving threats. He's passing as well as ever. We have never seen anything quite like this in any sport. Jack Nicklaus won The Masters at age 46 and Phil Mickelson won a PGA Championship at age 50, but that's one weekend and they didn't have defensive ends trying to plant them in the turf. There's really no comparison to an athlete in his mid-40s playing at Brady's level in a violent team sport.
Perhaps at some point a running back will get a touchdown or two, or the Bucs will face a defense that doesn't let Brady throw touchdowns at will. But right now, Brady is on pace for 76.5 touchdowns. That won't continue, but perhaps Manning should be a little concerned.