Tom Brady made sure to note that despite being named best male athlete, football is a team sport

Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers celebrates in the final seconds of their 31 to 26 win over the Green Bay Packers during the NFC Championship game
Tom Brady
| Credit: Dylan Buell/Getty

One pro athlete's year just got a little better.

Tom Brady was named the best athlete, men's sports during the 2021 ESPY Awards at The Rooftop at Pier 17 at the Seaport in New York City on Saturday.

Brady wasn't on hand to accept the award, which was presented by his Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammate Rob Gronkowski, who teased, "What a surprise he couldn't show up."

A pre-recorded message from Brady played after the announcement, with the 43-year-old quarterback thanking his team and saying, "I hope you guys are enjoying yourselves in New York, I certainly wish I could be there with you guys and all my teammates to celebrate ... I love football and that it's a team sport and that our team won the Super Bowl."

Earlier this year, the Buccaneers beat the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium to win Super Bowl LV. It marked Brady's seventh Super Bowl victory.

Other nominees in the ESPYs category included Edmonton Oilers player Connor McDavid, Danver Nuggets star Nikola Jokić and Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton.

Past winners of the coveted best male athlete award have included swimmer Michael Phelps, quarterback Drew Brees and NBA player LeBron James.

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Earlier in the night, tennis star Naomi Osaka was named the 2021 best female athlete, and accepted the award in her first appearance since withdrawing from the French Open and Wimbledon due to mental health concerns.

The 2021 ESPY Awards, hosted by Anthony Mackie, are broadcasting live on ABC from The Rooftop at Pier 17 at the Seaport in New York City on Saturday.