There aren't too many things Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady hasn't won in his NFL career. The seven-time Super Bowl champion and three-time league MVP, Brady somehow added a new award to his trophy case Saturday night.
Brady won "Best Athlete, Men's Sports" at the 2021 ESPY Awards, a first for his storied career. Brady beat out Nikola Jokic of the NBA, Connor McDavid of the NHL, and Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton in the category.
The Bucs weren't done winning either. In the final award of the evening, Tampa Bay was named the "Best Team" of the year over six other teams up for the honor. The Bucs, of course, won Super Bowl LV 31-9 over the Kansas City Chiefs this past February in large part because of Brady's performance.
The veteran quarterback completed 21-of-29 passes for 201 yards and three touchdowns in Super Bowl LV. Despite entering a new offensive system for the first time in his career and beginning the season at the age of 43, Brady found his groove in Tampa Bay en route to a 4,633 yard, 40-touchdown season in 2020. Brady's touchdown count was the second-highest in a regular season in his career.
Here's a look at the rest of the teams that were nominated for the Best Team award:
- Stanford Cardinal, NCAA Women’s Basketball
- Baylor Bears, NCAA Men’s Basketball
- Alabama Crimson Tide, NCAA Football
- Oklahoma Sooners, NCAA Softball
- Seattle Storm, WNBA
- Los Angeles Dodgers, MLB
Brady became the first NFL player to win Best Athlete in Men's Sports since former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees did so in 2010. Since Brees won the award, eight of the last nine Best Male Athlete winners have come from the NBA, including LeBron James who has won the award three times since 2011.
The Bucs are the first NFL team to win the Best Team award since the Seattle Seahawks won in 2014. Dating back to 2015, the United States Women's National Soccer Team has won the award twice following back-to-back FIFA Women's World Cup championships.
In a pre-recorded acceptance speech, Brady thanked his teammates and coaches. Bucs tight end Rob Gronkowski was on-site at the ESPY Awards to accept the award for his quarterback.
“I’m very honored to be chosen Best Athlete in Men’s Sports,” Brady said in the prepared video. “And I’ve always said that I don't play for individual awards or stats. I love football and I love that it’s a team sport and that our team won the Super Bowl.”