Tom Brady did not look like himself on the final Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive play against the Chicago Bears as the quarterback held up four fingers appearing not to know fourth down had already been completed. After the game, Brady was asked if he knew what down it was and the quarterback dodged the question. Brady admitted he was trying to “gain a chunk” of yardage rather than secure the first down.
“Yeah, you’re up against the clock and you’re up against the — I knew we had to gain a chunk, so I should have been thinking more first down instead of chunk in that situation,” Brady noted, per ESPN’s Jenna Laine. “I knew we needed a chunk and I was thinking about more yardage. It was just bad execution. We had a great opportunity there so … just didn’t execute when we needed to.”
Multiple replays indicated Brady believed the Buccaneers had one more down as the quarterback was seen holding up four fingers after the fourth-down play had been completed. Another replay showed Brady asking an official if it was still fourth down after the Bears had already stopped the Bucs’ drive.
Brady Is Frustrated by Penalties: ‘They Stop Drives’
The Buccaneers continue to rack up penalties notching 11 for 109 yards against the Bears. Brady’s frustration was seen on the sidelines several times, particularly with the penalties committed by the offensive line. Brady cited penalties as something the team must clean up noting “they stop drives.” The Buccaneers found themselves on third-and-long far too often against the Bears.
“Penalties, they stop drives,” Brady explained, per Buccaneers.com. “We had so many third-and-longs. We just could never get in any rhythm in the second half. Just poor execution. If you don’t execute on first and second down you have third-and-forever, and those are tough to convert time after time after time. We’ve got to tighten that up and just play more consistent-type of football. We obviously have a lot of work to do.”
Arians Denied Brady Did Not Know It Was 4th Down
Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians dismissed the notion that Brady did not know it was fourth down. One thing that is clear is the Buccaneers need to get healthy, and Arians is hoping the extra few days until their Week 6 matchup against the Packers will help the team’s recovery.
“We need to get healthy, that’s for sure,” Arians noted, via Buccaneers.com. “We’ll take the break and get back to work for the next one. But I feel like we left this stadium with a fourth-quarter lead and didn’t maintain it. We’ll see who we are next week. This is one game that I feel like we got out-coached and out-played, so we’ll find out next week.”
To be fair, Arians likely had not seen the highlights where Brady very clearly was confused about the downs. It will be interesting to see if Brady and Arians will maintain their same stories as Week 6 gets closer.