8,292 days: Buccaneers QB Tom Brady has spent half of his life playing in NFL

Nick Shook, Around The NFL Writer

Tom Brady, as we all know, has been doing this football thing for a long, long time.

In fact, he’s been in the NFL for half of his life. Yes, you read that correctly.

Brady officially reached the milestone Thursday, his 8,292nd day spent in the NFL since being drafted on April 16, 2000. He lived the same amount of days between being born (Aug. 3, 1977) and drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round on that fateful day.

“That’s crazy. No, that’s crazy, that’s crazy,” Brady said Thursday. “Stats and data’s everywhere. It’s a data-driven world, but that’s crazy. That’s hard for me to imagine.

“I’ve loved it. I’ve loved my opportunity to play and it’s been a lot of memories and relationships. I’ve certainly had my fair share.”

Spending half of anyone’s life in the NFL is remarkable achievement of professional longevity in the unforgiving sport that is football. It’s also nearly unfathomable to most everyone else — and doesn’t include the days and years Brady spent playing football at lower levels, including at the University of Michigan.

When one wonders why Brady, who can clinch another playoff trip with a win over the Panthers on Sunday, continues playing at 45 years old, this milestone can serve as an explainer. It’s essentially all he’s known for the vast majority of his life, and it’s no surprise he has as broadcasting job waiting for him whenever he hangs up his helmet and pads.

If anyone can’t quit football, it’s Tom Brady. As has long been the case, there’s no reason for him to do so — at least not yet.

The National Football League (NFL) is a professional American football league consisting of 32 teams, divided equally between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four major