Future Hall of Fame quarterback Tom Brady led the defending champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a comeback win over the New York Jets Sunday afternoon.
Normally, Tom Terrific leading a team on a 93-yard game-winning touchdown drive would be the story around Buccaneers-land.
During said win, star wide receiver Antonio Brown lost his cool. He took off his jersey and made a fool of himself before heading to the locker room. This came after Brown refused Bruce Arians’ request to go back in the game.
“That’s obviously a difficult situation. We all love him and care about him deeply,” Brady told reporters. “I think everyone should be compassionate and empathetic toward some very difficult things.”
For his part, Brady was one of the driving forces behind Brown joining the Buccaneers ahead of last season. The two played together for a short time with the New England Patriots before Brown himself was released after just one game.
Tom Brady and the Antonio Brown situation
Brady’s comments came after Arians touched on the Brown situation following the game, too.
“He is no longer a Buc. That’s the end of the story. Let’s talk about the guys who went out there and won the game,” Arians said.
This will obviously have wide-ranging ramifications for Brady and the defending champs. It was just last month that Brown returned to the mix after being suspended three games for allegedly faking his COVID-19 vaccination card.
Initially, it did not seem like Tampa was going to welcome Brown back. However, a season-ending torn ACL suffered by fellow wide receiver Chris Godwin changed the dynamics here. Brown ultimately returned from suspension in Week 16 — recording 10 catches for 101 yards on 15 targets.
Without Brown and Godwin in the mix, Brady is working with a short-handed group of wide receivers. Tyler Johnson and Cyril Grayson filled in on Sunday, recording a combined 10 catches for 131 yards. That included Grayson’s game-winning 33-yard touchdown from Brady.
Still boasting an opportunity to earn the No. 1 seed and a first-round bye in the NFL Playoffs, Tampa Bay will close out its regular season against the Carolina Panthers next Sunday.