Tom Brady didn’t lose the Saints game, no matter what Buccaneers fans say
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers debut didn’t quite go as Tom Brady had planned Sunday afternoon, but the veteran QB can’t receive the entirety of the blame.
Tom Brady, the six-time Super Bowl winner, had plenty of pressure on his shoulders heading into the game and he certainly didn’t live up to the hype. Brady threw two interceptions- including a pick-six- and posted a QB rating of just 78.3. It was just the second time in his career that Tom Brady had throw multiple interceptions in a season-opener.
He finished the game completing 63.9 percent of his passes for 239 yards and two touchdowns to two interceptions and a rushing touchdown. (Very Jameis Winston-like if you asked many)
Yes, there’s plenty of blame to go around and Buccaneers fans are already jumping off the bandwagon and talking about how the franchise made ‘such a huge mistake’ by bringing in the 43-year-old veteran, but the fact of the matter is this: Brady didn’t lose the game.
Tom Brady certainly shoulders portions of the blame, but there’s another aspect that needs to be discussed that played an even bigger role in the loss
We can blame Brady all day- and that’s fine- but there are three facets of the offense that were absolutely inept that didn’t give him any help whatsoever:
- The offensive line play
- The lack of a rushing attack
- The lack of creative play-calling
You can talk all day about that pick-six- and it was a bad decision- but what about all the other throws he put exactly on a dime? What about the fact that there were drops by this receiving core that simply shouldn’t happen? What about the fact that he had to take sacks on multiple 3rd down opportunities that could’ve swung the momentum of the game?
The offensive line didn’t get a push for the vast majority of the afternoon and they did a poor job in pass-protection.
Byron Leftwich is a smart guy, no doubt, but this fact still remains, as well: The Buccaneers brought in Tom Brady and only attempted eight passes in the first half. Eight.
When the running game wasn’t working, they continued to force it. I understand the importance of establishing a run game, but when your offensive line is being overpowered and your running back is breaking off any type of a rush, it’s time to spread the ball around to your play-makers and open up the defense that way.
They simply didn’t do that.
We can blame Tom Brady as much as we want to- and I’m not here to say that he doesn’t shoulder some of the blame- but there were greater issues within this offensive unit Sunday afternoon in New Orleans that reared their ugly head and had nothing to do with quarterback play.
The fact remains: Brady is going to be fine. Yes, he has work to do, but he’s going to be fine. The question is if the other facets of this offense can improve because if they can’t, it’s going to be an extremely long season.