Halfway through the 2019 NFL season, jerseys of top NFL players have been flying off the shelves.
Which is the most popular?
It isn’t reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes, defensive monster Khalil Mack, or even budding star Saquon Barkley. Instead, it’s a veteran quarterback who is one of the best players to suit up in NFL history.
That’s right, Tom Brady.
In his 20th season, Brady continues to rack up the accolades while his jersey continues to leave stores in bulk. After spending the last five seasons as one of the top five most popular selling jerseys, including a third-place finish last year, Brady has taken the top spot from Mack through the first eight weeks of 2019.
Mack is third this year trailing Dallas Cowboys’ running back Ezekiel Elliott. The NFL revealed the full top-10 this week.
It’s the first time Brady has been the top-selling jersey since 2015. That season, Brady had just come off his fourth Super Bowl championship and third Super Bowl MVP while leading an injury-riddled offense to another AFC Championship game appearance.
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20 Years and Still the Same
Brady has played with the Patriots for his entire 20-year NFL career, racking up Super Bowl rings and countless NFL records along the way. But could his time in New England be numbered?
Whether he retires at the end of the 2019 season or not, it appears as if this could be Brady’s final go-around in a Patriots uniform. If that were to be the case, his future is still undecided. Don’t believe it, well the quarterback himself insists.
Brady, on his weekly radio appearance with Westwood One, attempted to put an end to all speculation:
“I said last week nothing has changed with my status of my team and my standing. I have really been focused on my job. A lot of the hype, a lot of the media speculation is just that. It is probably that time of year where you don’t need to focus on so much on the wins and losses, you staring to focus on a lot of other things. I think the media has the right to do that. I certainly don’t. I am focused on what I need to do this year and we’re off to a good start. I want to capitalize here in the second half of the year and that is where I am at personally.”
Even if he is to depart next season and play another year or two in the NFL, Brady jerseys will still be traditionally spotted at Patriots’ games among other Boston sporting events. And regardless of where he goes after he finishes playing for the Patriots, no other player will don the number-12 for New England ever again.
Brady would become the eighth retired number in New England Patriots’ franchise history, and rightly so for a team that doesn’t typically do such things.