This family moment is even sweeter than a touchdown.
Tom Brady returned to Gillette Stadium for a special reason on Sept. 10. The former New England Patriots quarterback, who spent 20 seasons with the team and earned six Super Bowl championships during his tenure—was honored in a special halftime ceremony during the team’s home opener. And he had three extra special guests at his side—his three kids, 16-year-old Jack, who he shares with ex Bridget Moynahan, as well as his and ex-wife Gisele Bündchen’s children, Ben, 13, and Vivian, 10.
And to make the special moment that much more meaningful, all three donned a number 12 jersey for the occasion—the number Tom wore throughout his NFL career—as they waited on stage for their father to run out onto the field. In a photo from the ceremony, the proud dad can be seen hugging Vivian while his two sons stand by his side.
After Patriots owner Robert Kraft said a few words, during which he dubbed Tom the greatest to have ever played the game, the 46-year-old had the opportunity to speak to the thousands of fans watching.
“This is an incredible celebration for me, for our family, for my teammates, for all of us to come back and thank you guys for what you’ve done for us,” he said during the speech. “I was so fortunate to be drafted here two decades ago, 23 years to be exact, not even knowing where New England was on the map. And not that we put it on the map, but I think a lot more people in the U.S. know where the New England Patriots play.”
And to loud cheering, he added, “All our lives take us on different journeys, they take us to different places, they bring different people into our lives, but one thing I am sure of—and that will never change—is that I am a Patriot for life.”
And for the former football player, who officially retired from the sport earlier this year after two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he’s enjoying seeing others following in his footsteps—namely, his two sons.
“My son is gonna play football this year, Benny,” Tom revealed during the Sept. 4 episode of his SiriusXM show Let’s Go! With Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald and Jim Gray. “So, I’ve been throwing the ball to him in the backyard. He’s gonna be a little beast. He’s an amazing kid and he’s got a lot of talents. He’s a really talented musician and artist. And then he told me this year, ‘Dad, I’m playing football.'”
Tom had previously shared that Jack was playing football on his high school’s team. “I don’t give a s–t how well he does,” he said at the time. “I just love watching him and seeing him enjoy it with his friends and the camaraderie at a young age.”
And of course, the boys aren’t the only ones keeping their dad on his toes.
“My daughter’s got me kicking the soccer ball,” he added. “[I’m] really enjoying this new experience. There’s so much to life that is here to live.”