Tom Brady says he still has more to prove as a player.
The 42-year old quarter-back has posted on social media for the first time since the New England Patriots' 20-13 defeat to the Tennessee Titans in the NFL Wildcard round.
Since that defeat it had been widely speculated that Brady would end his 20-year relationship with the Patriots, be it through retirement or a move south.
An Instagram post from the six-time Super Bowl champion thank the Pats' fans for their support and well-wishes in the wake of that loss to the Titans, adding he's "humbled by the unconditional support" shown to him over the past two decades.
Speaking with Off The Ball this week, Boston Globe writer Tara Sullivan claimed the relationship between Brady and coach Bill Belichick was at its most fractious in years, "That relationship between [Brady and Belichick] is the most fascinating and the most difficult to interpret, because every time Bill says good things [about Brady], he makes sure to say that negotiations are not a one-way street.
"He always seems to have a counter-balance when it comes to saying how good Brady is at football, because he has to also make a lot of the personnel decisions."
The statement in full reads:
"I just wanted to say to all of our fans, THANK YOU! After a few days of reflection, I am so grateful and humbled by the unconditional support you have shown me the past two decades.
Running out of that tunnel every week is a feeling that is hard to explain. I wish every season ended in a win, but that’s not the nature of sports (or life). Nobody plays to lose. But the reward for working hard is just that, the work!!
I have been blessed to find a career I love, teammates who go to battle with me, an organization that believes in me, and fans who have been behind us every step of the way.
Every one of us that works at Gillette Stadium strived to do their best, spent themselves at a worthy cause, and prepared to fail while daring greatly (h/t Teddy Roosevelt). And for that, we’ve been rewarded with something that the scoreboard won’t show - the satisfaction of knowing we gave everything to each other in pursuit of a common goal. That is what TEAM is all about.
In both life and football, failure is inevitable. You dont always win. You can, however, learn from that failure, pick yourself up with great enthusiasm, and place yourself in the arena again.
And that’s right where you will find me.
Because I know I still have more to prove."