One of the NFL’s power couples — well maybe THE power couple — Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen finalized their divorce after 13 years of marriage.
Brady, who is in his 23rd NFL season, briefly retired during the offseason, he said to focus on family. But he reversed that decision just 40 days later.
He’s been transparent about the difficulties of balancing a football career and family life.
“We arrived at this decision to end our marriage after much consideration,” Brady wrote in a statement Friday. “Doing so is, of course, painful and difficult, like it is for many people who go through the same thing every day around the world.”
Here’s a timeline of Brady and Bündchen through the years.
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2006: Brady and Bündchen meet
The couple met through mutual friends. At the time, Brady was a three-time Super Bowl champion and Bündchen a former Victoria’s Secret angel, both with plenty more opportunities ahead in their respective careers. They started dating late in the year.
2007: Brady becomes a father
In February, news broke that Brady’s ex-girlfriend Bridget Moynahan was pregnant with his child. The event caused friction in his fairly new relationship with Bündchen, but they stuck through it and welcomed the child in August, a son named John Edward Thomas Moynahan.
In her memoir, Bündchen said she thinks of John in the same light as her biological children, calling him her “bonus child.”
2009: Two weddings and the start of a family
To ring in the new year, Brady put a ring on it and asked Bündchen to marry him. She said yes.
After a month-long engagement, the couple married in February with an intimate ceremony in Santa Monica and a casual backyard barbecue. The quarterback served as grillmaster.
In April, they had a destination wedding in Costa Rica with a slightly larger crowd, but still, only close family was invited.
They closed out the year in December by welcoming their first child, Benjamin Brady, together.
2012: Baby No. 2
The couple welcomed their first daughter, Vivian Lake Brady, on Dec. 5.
2015-18: Brady and Bündchen share struggles, divorce rumors begin
After the Deflategate scandal involving Brady using deflated footballs during the AFC championship game, rumors began to swirl about tension in the marriage.
These were the first rumblings of divorce for the pair, but Brady told a Boston radio station in September that they were in a “great place.”
A month later, Bündchen released her memoir, “Lessons: A path to a meaningful life” and detailed the difficulties she and her husband faced following the birth of their first child.
In 2017, Bündchen spoke publicly about her concerns over Brady’s long-term health, saying: “I just have to say, as a wife, I’m a little bit — as you know, it’s not the most, let’s say, unaggressive sport right?” she said on “CBS This Morning.” “Football, he had a concussion last year. … I mean, we don’t talk about — he does have concussions. I don’t really think it’s a healthy thing for your body to go through, through that kind of aggression all the time. That cannot be healthy for you, right? I’m planning on him being healthy and doing a lot of fun things when we’re like 100, eventually.”
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2019: Another Super Bowl win and a special anniversary
Brady helped the New England Patriots defeat the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC championship game, sending the legendary quarterback to his ninth Super Bowl.
“I first want to say hi to my wife. I love you so much,” Tom said during an interview on the television broadcast after that game.
The Patriots went on to beat the Los Angeles Rams and hoist the Lombardi trophy once again. Bündchen and the kids were there to celebrate with Brady after the victory.
In February, Brady and Bündchen hit a special milestone: their 10-year wedding anniversary. They gushed about each other on social media and posted pictures of their wedding day.
Throughout the rest of the year, Brady opened up about his “successful” marriage in multiple interviews and a continued effort to balance football and family.
2020: A big move to Tampa, more challenges in the relationship
Brady left the Patriots after 20 years and joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The entire family uproots and moves to Tampa Bay. The coronavirus pandemic hits, and while in quarantine the couple relishes extra time together, but cracks also begin to show.
During an April appearance on “The Howard Stern Show,” Brady said:
“There was a couple years ago, she didn’t feel I was doing my part for the family. She felt like I would play football all season and she would take care of the house, and then all of a sudden when the season would end, that I’d be like, ‘Great, let me get into all my other business activities. Let me get into my football training.’ And she’s sitting there going, ‘Well, when are you going to do things for the house? When are you going to take the kids to school and do that?’
“I had to, like, check myself. Because she’s like, ‘I have goals and dreams, too.’ … She wasn’t satisfied with our marriage.”
2021: Another Super Bowl ring, retirement rumblings
Brady kicks off 2021 with his seventh Super Bowl victory in February, capping an incredible first season in Tampa Bay. Rumblings quickly emerged that Brady would walk off into the sunset, but the quarterback decided to run it back with the Buccaneers.
2022: Celebrating retirement, un-retiring and divorce
As the NFL playoffs bled into the new year, the Buccaneers fell to the eventual Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams in the NFC title game 30-27. Brady officially announced his retirement in February but decided to return just 40 days later, citing “unfinished business” with the Buccaneers. In a tweet, Brady thanked his “supportive family” in a post that featured a photo of Bündchen and his three children.
In August, Brady took an 11-day leave of absence from the Buccaneers during training camp. Rumors swirled that the time off was related to family issues, but a definitive reason for Brady’s time away from the team was never provided.
Bündchen spoke publicly in September about her commitment to Brady, saying, “I’ve done my part,” in an exclusive interview with Elle magazine.
It was reported by Page Six in early October that both Brady and Bünchden hired divorce lawyers amid strife in their relationship.
Meanwhile, the Buccaneers started the season with a 3-5 record, including Brady’s first three-game losing streak since 2002. Brady hadn’t been the starting quarterback of a team two games under a .500 winning percentage since the 1998 season at the University of Michigan.
Both Brady and Bündchen announced their divorce Oct. 28 after the Buccaneers’ 27-22 loss to the Baltimore Ravens one night before.
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