Week 1 Film Review: Looking at Tom Brady’s performance against the Saints
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers debut for Tom Brady didn’t quite go as we all had hoped Sunday afternoon against the New Orleans Saints.
Brady and the Buccaneers fell short by a score of 34-23 and the 43-year-old veteran threw two interceptions, including a pick-six that proved to be costly in the outcome of the game.
He finished the afternoon completing 23-of-36 passing attempts for 239 yards and two touchdowns and a rushing touchdown.
We went back and watched the entire game again and broke down each of Tom Brady’s throws and his decision-making process. Here’s a look at a video that shows each of his passes and rushes.
Tom Brady shows his age on film, but not how you think
Of course, when I say ‘shows his age,’ you’re likely thinking I’m talking about him as a washed up veteran who doesn’t have much to offer a team any more. You’re likely thinking that I’m saying the Buccaneers are going to have to tailor their offense to his strengths to hide his geriatric weaknesses.
Well, that’s true but it’s also false.
When you look at Brady and what he was able to do Sunday, the truth of the matter is pretty clear: His arm is fine.
Maybe he doesn’t have quite the pop he did 10 years ago, but there’s no question in my mind from watching the game on Sunday that the veteran quarterback can still sling the football. Look at his deep ball. Look at the touch and accuracy that he puts on his passes. There’s no question that Tom Brady still has arm strength- and can still excel at the professional level.
Where did he show his age, then? Well, you find that in his pick-six and in some of the sacks/QB hits seen throughout the game.
That pick-six is a perfect example of a throw that Brady used to be able to fit into a tight window and simply couldn’t this time. He telegraphed it and made a mistake, but it’s a mistake that likely wouldn’t have been noticeable in years past. In years past, that throw is probably thrown much harder and the defensive back doesn’t get to make a play on it. Instead, it falls incomplete.
The other area is in his elusiveness. Now, we all know that Tom Brady has never been a dual-threat, elusive quarterback. However, he simply doesn’t have the speed or athleticism any more to take off and run the ball for any amount of yardage.
Defenders simply close in too fast on him any time that he tries to take off and run or scramble. He has to be confined to the pocket because he simply doesn’t have any type of speed anymore to break off a run on a ‘3rd and moderate’ situation, for example. We all knew that wouldn’t be the case well before he signed elsewhere, but it’s something that still needs to be taken into account.
Overall, yes Tom Brady is getting older. But he still exhibits elite arm strength and accuracy for the most part. He made a few mistakes in Week 1, but he’s still one of the top-10 quarterbacks in the league and that will be proven out over the course of this season.