The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have suffered through a litany of problems in 2022 and all of said problems have been major contributors to their 6-7 record.
But on Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers, it was clear the Buccaneers had a Tom Brady problem.
And there’s no guarantee it goes away anytime soon.
Brady easily had his worst game in red and pewter. It wasn’t just the overall poor play and inefficiency from the Buccaneers offense -and defense, for that matter- Brady himself made several poor throws in certain situations that could’ve prevented the final score from becoming the 35-7 debacle it was.
It all started on the Buccaneers’ first offensive drive of the game. Brady misfired on a second-down throw to Julio Jones and it created a 3rd and 9. The Buccaneers could not convert and the subsequent result was Ryan Succop’s missed 55-yard field goal attempt.
Then there was the awful throw from Brady to Mike Evans on the 4th and 2 from the 49ers 9. Brady had Mike Evans open for an over-the-shoulder throw, but the throw fell by the backside of Evans’ waist instead, which left zero chance for the three-time Pro Bowler to make the play.
Evans dusts Jimmie Ward, but Brady… pic.twitter.com/ruuZQ3KpGv— Billy M (@BillyM_91) December 11, 2022
“It was a shitty throw,” Brady admitted to reporters after the game.
The third indictment came on the overthrow to Evans on the Buccaneers’ first drive of the second half. Tampa Bay was down 28-0 at this point and it needed everyone to be the best versions of themselves during the opening drive.
But, instead, Brady overthrew Evans on a 3rd and 5 and the end result was a Tashaun Gipson interception that gave the 49ers the ball at the Tampa Bay 38 after a 36-yard return.
And, last but certainly not least, Brady underthrew a wide-open Scotty Miller on the next drive. Instead of a touchdown, the Buccaneers offense had to continue to piece together a drive and said drive resulted in another interception as Brady targeted Evans, but instead connected with a 49ers defender in Dre Greenlaw.
Which was again, another bad throw.
Brady finished the game with a final stat line of 34/55 that registered 253 passing yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. He finished the game with a quarterback rating of 63.7, which is his lowest QB rating in 2022.
All of these throws added to the blowout that was the Week 14 matchup against the 49ers. And while the game got quickly out of hand, the Buccaneers could’ve remained in the game if Brady makes these plays.
And he should have. Hands down.
Brady certainly hasn’t been at his best in 2022 and it hasn’t held the team back, but it’s certainly kept the team from overcoming the obstacles it has faced.
But what we saw against the 49ers was a completely different Brady. One can easily argue that he was one of the main catalysts behind the aborrhent loss.
We saw a Terrible Tom Brady in Santa Clara, California.
Is there hope Brady’s bad performance is left on the West Coast? Sure. But at the same time, when you weigh his entire season, there is zero guarantee Sunday’s problems go away anytime soon.
I’m sure it’s safe to bet the Buccaneers hope said problems go away, however. They have an extremely underachieving roster and their last four games against Cincinnati Bengals, Arizona Cardinals, Carolina Panthers, and Atlanta Falcons are going to be pivotal when it comes to both their division title aspirations and playoff aspirations.
But as the injuries continue to mount and as the coaching staff continues to underwhelm, the bigger the burden is placed on Brady’s shoulders.
And, understandably, he can’t carry a team at 45-years-old, like he could when he was 35-years-old or even 25-years-old.
That’s something no one can change, either.
Featured image via Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
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