It would’ve been a shock for Tom Brady, a quarterback so used to winning, to suffer a 38-3 defeat in any NFL game. But that was the reality which faced the multiple Super Bowl MVP recently, as his Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost heavily to the New Orleans Saints.
After so many successful years with the New England Patriots, the taste of defeat is not one that comes readily to Brady, a six-time Super Bowl winner. This is his first season with Tampa Bay, having made a high-profile move in the off-season, and it’s been a wake-up call for the 43-year-old, whose team has begun the 2020 NFL season with a record of seven wins and three defeats — not a bad start, but not the gold standard Brady is used to.
Any thoughts that Brady’s move to Florida would represent something of an Indian Summer for the ageing quarterback, as his career winds down towards retirement. There is no doubt that the fires of victory still burn hot and bright within Brady, but he’ll have his work cut out if he’s to add to his impressive Super Bowl haul.
Despite Brady’s sizeable reputation, there is no sense that the quarterback is unwilling to get his hands dirty in the Buccaneers’ quest for success. After the defeat to the Saints, Brady made it clear where much of the blame lay.
“It’s about playing better and execution and we all have to do our jobs a lot better,” he said. “When you play good teams there’s little margin for error. They’ve been a great team for a long time. They’ve got a lot of good players. If we’re going to beat them we’ve got to play a lot better than we did tonight.”
There is plenty of time for the team to recover and find their way again in the quest to make the post-season play-off games. The signing of Brady automatically made Tampa Bay a more attractive prospect for those that be on sites like Betdaq. When he arrived, there’s no doubt that Buccs fans were imagining their team at the Super Bowl, and if the 43-year-old can find his most scintillating form, then those dreams perhaps need not be quashed just yet.
After all, Brady is among the greatest players of all time to grace the NFL — indeed, many would argue that he is the greatest. Having that star quality makes the team a more formidable prospect for every opposition. Conversely, it can also motivate opponents, and the task for Buccs coach Bruce Arians is to get his players to hammer home the advantage of having Brady on the team, and to play to his strengths.
Tampa Bay have one Super Bowl victory to their name, having defeated the Oakland Raiders in the 2002 showpiece. Bringing Brady to the franchise was seen as a move toward repeating that success in the near future. On the evidence of that latest defeat to the Saints, there is still a lot of work to do to reach that level. But Brady is the kind of quarterback that can produce moments of magic from nothing. Bucs fans will be hoping that the 43-year-old still has some of that wizardry left in the tank.