Tom Brady, Bruce Arians, and the union of offensive geniuses

Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

Tom Brady shocked the NFL when he left the Patriots after two decades to join Buccaneers. A union with Arians can continue the quarterback’s dominance.

Tom Brady, a Tampa Bay Buccaneer, is a phrase still resonating on football fans’ minds throughout the 2020 NFL offseason. A New England Patriot for two decades, Brady will finally represent a different organization this upcoming season.

The era of Brady and Bill Belichick dominating the league has come to an end. But for the six-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback, there’s still plenty of reasons to believe that dominance won’t evaporate in the next phase of his career.

Bruce Arians cemented himself in this league as a quarterback whisperer, improving each signal-caller the coach got his hands on. Coaching the likes of Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Andrew Luck, and Carson Palmer gives the Buccaneers head coach experience dealing with superstar level of quarterbacks. Now, Arians works with the grizzly veteran in Brady, and the pairing of the two offensive masterminds should excite even the average football fan.

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Roethlisberger himself expressed his thoughts on why Brady will enjoy playing for Arians. The Steelers quarterback became a Pro Bowl quarterback for the first time in his career when Arians became the team’s offensive coordinator in 2007.

"“I was excited for him because I knew who he was going to play for in Bruce Arians,” Roethlisberger told SiriusXM NFL Radio. “And he’s going to enjoy the heck out of that because he was fun to play for.”"

Tampa Bay was the best landing spot for Brady, not named the Patriots. Not only do the Buccaneers have arguably the best receiver duo in the NFL in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, but the team also has the best offensive coaching staff built to handle the 42-year-old quarterback’s transition.

Tom Moore, the Buccaneers’ offensive consultant, is Arians’ right-hand man while also having a strong reputation around the league. Moore was Manning’s go-to coach on the Colts staff for the majority of his tenure in Indianapolis, which plays a part in Brady’s potential success with Tampa Bay.

The Denver Broncos back in 2012 brought Moore in to meet with the coaching staff after the team signed Manning. Moore expressed to Broncos head coach at the time, John Fox, to let Manning run the operation and that the quarterback knew what to do to win, so assist his preparation. Moore’s philosophy back in 2012 with Manning’s new team shall come into play with Brady as well.

Arians and Moore know from their experience with top quarterbacks in the league to let them do what they do best while the two put them in the perfect situation to succeed. Arians’ offensive system with the Buccaneers also bodes well for Brady’s post-Patriots success.

Arians’ vertical passing scheme has drawn questions if the aging quarterback can fit into what the coach asks of his quarterback. Still, there’s evidence that suggests Brady’s arm talent is on-par with the top signal-callers in the league.

The Patriots offense was at a loss of talented deep threats after the quick dismissals of Antonio Brown and Josh Gordon. From weeks 1-3 of the 2019 season, Brown and Gordon combined to play 129 receiving snaps. Brady tied for sixth in yards per attempt (8.6). In contrast, his 88.9 percent accuracy rate and 152.1 passer rating all on throws 20-plus yards ranked first and first among qualifying quarterbacks in the league during that span, according to Pro Football Focus.

Arians even came to the defense of Brady’s deep ball to reporters. The head coach sounded confident in his new quarterback’s ability to launch the football.

"“I think the perception is just wrong,” Arians said . “I thought his deep ball was outstanding last year. Through their play-action game, they hit a lot of deep balls. And our quarterback — I thought he put it as good as anybody — throw it to the guy who’s open.We don’t have to teach Tom that. But I think the freedom of looking downfield on certain routes and in certain situations, when the matchup’s perfect — take it, don’t be afraid to take it — some quarterbacks are afraid to take it. I’m not looking for a ‘checkdown Charlie’ quarterback.”"

Brady had a 43 percent completion percentage of throws that were 20 or more air yards, which ranked him the seventh highest in the league in 2019. That completion mark was also Brady’s third-highest percentage in his entire career, which proves the quarterback’s arm is still a threat.

Lack of weapons in New England appeared to be a massive indicator of Brady’s departure. Now the quarterback gets to work with the likes of Godwin and Evans, which appears to be the best duo Brady has worked with since Wes Welker and Randy Moss in 2007. Brady ranked first in passer rating from a clean pocket (127.3), third in passer rating under pressure (89.1), fourth in adjusted completion percentage (78.6), and eighth in passer rating on deep throws (100.6).

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Arians ended his brief retirement in 2019 when he accepted the job of becoming Tampa Bay’s head coach. The 67-year-old has his eyes on winning a championship as a head coach in this league immediately. Buccaneers’ former quarterback, Jameis Winston, provided a ton of promise after the team made him the first overall pick in 2015. But the constant turnovers, especially the single-season NFL record for pick-sixes, hindered Arians’ pursuit of a Lombardi.

The reason the Buccaneers were so hellbent on their Brady pursuit appears to be precise — Arians needs to win now, and he needs to win soon. Brady found the right situation for himself to continue winning. The two architects of the offense in Arians and Moore provide the required experience and understanding of handling a quarterback of his caliber.

The offensive concepts were forged through decades of NFL experience by Arians and Moore, but Brady will have full control to run the offense freely. Tampa Bay has the pieces in place to become a title contender. The next two seasons may prove to be Arians’ final ticket to become a Super Bowl-winning head coach. The arrival of Brady should instill a ton of confidence for the coach to become just that.