A.Q. Shipley Talks Byron Leftwich, Bruce Arians & Tom Brady

January 31st, 2021

Serious Bucs fans will remember that newcomer backup center A.Q. Shipley made two starts this season before a career ending neck injury.

It is the 34-year-old’s 12th NFL season, and his third team under Bucco Bruce Arians, so Joe was very interested to hear him speak last week.

Some highlights:

*First, Shipley called his neck injury “a little freak thing,” the same kind of hit he’s taken 1,000 times, he told 98.7 FM in Arizona. “I can walk and live a normal life, and I’m grateful for that.”

*On Tom Brady: “Unbelievable to just watch him kind of make everyone around him better.” … “He’s so intense, football and winning is everything.” Shipley advises to watch The Last Dance documentary on Michael Jordan to get an idea.

*Brady, per Shipley, is dissecting the game plan all week long until a couple hours before the game, and it’s a relentless process to watch unfold.

*The Bucs offense? It’s great, but it’s not the future. He says Cardinals offense with Kyler Murray is the future as the Brady and Ben Roethlisberger-style of quarterbacking completely becomes yesteryear with the end of the Manning brothers, Phillip Rivers and Joe Flacco in the NFL

*On Arians, “He’s taken a step back. He’s done a fantastic job of letting Byron [Leftwich] kind of run the show. He’s letting Byron control the offense. … It’s been cool to watch how things evolved with Byron, with obviously B.A.’s stamp on it. You know, [Arians] is not like overstepping his boundaries. … He’s not second guessing what [Leftwich] is doing.”

*On the touchdown bomb to Scotty Miller that closed the first half against the Packers,  “The balls it took for Byron to make that call, right?” Added that it took the air out of the stadium.

*Shipley says Bucs have changed a lot through the season and since last facing the Chiefs, mostly the growth of the run game, the elimination of penalties and the recent rise of the defense.

27 Responses to “A.Q. Shipley Talks Byron Leftwich, Bruce Arians & Tom Brady”

  1. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    “On the touchdown bomb to Scotty Miller… “The balls it took for Byron to make that call, right?”

    Balls is right! If that play did not work – if Scooter did not catch it, or Brady was off – the criticism BL and BA would have gotten would be all anyone is talking about – “what a stupid call to not go for the FG…”. Heck, the Bucs very likely would not be playing next week.

    Balls to the wall BA/BL! I promise you Andy Reid will be throwing in some surprises.

  2. Hawk Says:

    Not enough has been said about the difference that penalties (or lack thereof) has made on the Bucs win/loss record. It has definitely been a factor.

  3. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    I may be in the minority but I think the “future” of offense in the NFL has nothing to do with the Murray type of QB but that those types of players are just a flash in the pan.

    They will be a fad for a few years or even a decade but the game will return to its original roots as more and more people realize that the most effective offensive style inevitably revolves around QBs who can stand in the pocket and deliver pass after pass with accuracy.

    People said Michael Vick and similar players were the “future”. How did that turn out? Yes, three out of four of the QBs that played in the NFC and AFC championship games have mobility (Mahomes, Rodgers, Allen), but the main reason they are successful is they are excellent passers. That will never go out of style. Mobility is just a bonus to help extend plays.

    Guys like Lamar Jackson, etc, are definitely not the future of NFL football. They are temporary, the current “style”, but in the end a team’s long-term success will always revolve around having a QB that is an excellent passer. Period.

  4. Sport Says:

    If we play Buc Ball, we can beat anyone. How often was it said this year the Bucs only played 2 quarters? And we were still 11-5.

    After finally beating the Saints and going into NFC favorite Lambeau. We face the best team in football.

    4 quarters! White, Vea disrupting on defense.

    Chiefs starting tackles out.

    Brady Bunch running, slinging and calmly executor.

    I like our chances.

    Lets Go!

    In BA I Trust!

  5. Bird Says:

    Thank you joes
    Best buc site by a freaking mile!

    3 million views record
    It may have something to do with brady making bucs relevant again and playing in playoffs to a super bowl

    Glad your site is being viewed by peeps even likely outside of our normal fan base too

  6. Winny Testaverde Says:

    I agree with you FLBoy. Look no further than Jackson’s playoff failures. It was interesting/fun to see the trajectory of both Murray and Brady once the Pro Bowlers were named ( not that the Pro Bowl is the end all/be all ). Maholmes is a thrower first but can move around extremely well. He was “choked out” on the run that but him in the concussion protocol. Eventually…you have to have a great QB to advance in the playoffs unless you’re the 2000 Ravens.

  7. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Teams with the supposed running QBs are playing with fire. The injury percentage goes up astronomically every time they run. Mahomes damn near got his neck broke against the Browns. Murray got hurt and wasn’t the same at the end of the season. These guys have a relatively short shelf life. Yes u can get hurt in the pocket also but do u really think Brady would still be playing if he was a running QB. Lamar is more running back than quarterback. Read the article on the evolution of the linebacker. Sooner or later one of these types of guys is going to catch u if u run and let’s face it QBs aren’t built to take the kind of hits they can deliver.

  8. Capt.Tim Says:

    Flboy and Winnie
    Yup, spot on .
    A running Qb is always one hit away from being lost for the season.
    Let your RBs run, and your Highly valuable QB stay in the pocket and Throw.
    Brady has always been a pocket passer. Mahomes is a pocket passer with speed.
    Jackson, watson, etc., are watching the Superbowl from the couch.

    By the way. Since both are moving on, wouldnt a Stafford for Watson thing make sense?
    I think both are taylor made for the other guys team.

  9. Capt.Tim Says:

    Ooops, nevermind on the trade idea. Looks like Stafford is going to LA, for Goff. Good for Stafford!!

  10. adam from ny Says:

    brady to scottie miller before the half was not balls to the wall…

    that was precisely “balls to the chin”


  11. Winny Testaverde Says:

    Capt. T:

    Stafford was traded last night ( official on March 17th ) for Jared Goff. Rams get rid of his lead balloon contract but had to give up a 3rd and 2 future 1sts to make the deal happen. The Rams hate first round picks more than Joe does a leafy green salad. 🙂

  12. alton green Says:

    Flboy, you nailed it!!! Been Brady fan since his freshman year at Mi. Of course I read most of these comments. I remember QBs from Y.A. Tittle to Brady. What was Fran Tarkenton famous for? Scrambling. Wanna guess what else he’s famous for? Never winning a Superbpwl. Just look at Lamar Jackson. He’s an amazing athlete. BUT defenses have started figuring him out. Here’s one of several reasons why Brady has played 20 yrs. He knows how to take a hit. Thats why a couple of ints have baffled me. I think he was just trying to please BA. He would normally have thrown those passes into the parking lot. I predict NONE of “today’s QBs will make it 10 yrs. Yes I said it 10 yrs! Not even Mahomeboy.

  13. gofortheface30 Says:

    FLBoyinDallas – I agree but that’s what Shipley meant. He didn’t imply QB’s that will just take off and run after first read. Shipley is talking about the style of QB that provides that added dimension of athletic ability so you can do more things with them. When you run a boot/roll out with a Murry type, defenders may bite a bit more quickly because theyre scared of his ability to scramble. He is grouping Murray with Josh Allen, Rodgers, Mahomes etc. Actually im not even sure how you interpreted it as “running” qb’s at all, because even the players on the Ravens came out and said that they need to work on being more balanced. He IS correct in that the statue quarterbacks are kinda being phased out and the Josh Allen/Watson/Mahomes types are the future and you can see it at the college level with damn near every team running some RPO variant

  14. alton green Says:

    I divided this in two parts because most people, including me, don’t have attention levels to read a long post. Back to “todays QBs” Defenses are paid to do 2 things basically. That’s stop the run and get to the QB, rip his head off and crap down his neck. QBs like Jackson and Murray are on borrowed time. It took Brady approx 17 years to reach 1000 yds rushing hahahhaaha. One would think that DCs would be in Heaven KNOWING the QB’s not going to run. That my friends, is why he’s the GOAT. Just look at Cam Newton. The man is a frickn beast. BUT defenses have pounded him into being a soso QB

  15. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Once your out of that pocket your fair game for guys coming full speed. In the pocket half speed at best. Yeah these guys can extend plays. They can also extend their visit to the e E R.

  16. FLBoyInDallas Says:


    I totally understand where you’re coming from, but I didn’t misunderstand what Shipley was saying. I just didn’t want to make my previous comment several paragraphs long so I left out commenting on the run-pass-option (RPO) which is so common in the college ranks today.

    My take is this: the RPO style of play will peak in the next few years but then it will fade away and become what it once was…a fluke style that isn’t used as a base offense with any NFL team. Similar to how the Wildcat was effective for a season for the Dolphins back in 2008 but teams eventually figured out how to defend it and they started sharing that information with each other. After awhile the “book” was written and everyone knew how to defend it, negating its effectiveness

    Never underestimate NFL minds in their ability to adapt to ANYTHING, including the so-called “future” RPO offensive style. There’s nothing new under the sun and the RPO offenses and QBs will not take over the NFL in the long term. This is my prediction.

    The “statue” QBs, as some call them, have only won just about everything there is to win in NFL history. I’m 100% certain that the current crop of mobile QB’s will never win as much or put up the statistics and longevity as the current group of “statues” like Brady, Manning, Brees (yes he’s been pretty much a statue for quite some time now), Roethlisberger, Rivers, Stafford (somewhat mobile but effectively a pocket passer), Ryan, etc, much less the old school group of pocket passers like Marino, etc, etc, etc as far back as the beginning of the NFL.

    My point is that every few years we have this fad of anointing a “new era” in the NFL. It always turns out to be hype. The promises come and go as fast as the talking heads on television who spout this stuff. It never materializes because the GMs, coaches and players in the NFL are so damn good at adapting to anything you throw at them that it eventually negates all fads and brings the style back to its roots…a league driver by QBs who can throw the ball with accuracy and consistency. That style always wins.

  17. Coburn Says:

    Pretty sure we have been hearing this rhetoric for quite a while now. Don’t see pocket passers disappearing. My old man was just saying the other day mahommes may not hold up for long run and he may be right about that. Think he has had a a bit injury or two already.

    So who would have thought we would have such good blocking after losing two interior offensive lineman?

  18. Kentucky Buc Says:

    This mobile qb stuff is in its 3rd (at least) incarnation in my lifetime. Amazing how people act like teams are reinventing the wheel.

  19. Brian Says:

    The reason you had so many hits in January is because we are talking real football, not the draft!WOOO!

  20. FanO’Bucs Says:

    Congrats, JBF!!

    Good content and you keep the market more honest with your non ring kissing approach, calling it as you see it.

    So much of the media are just paid to shill.

    Breathe of fresh air to hear and read real journalism.

    Good work. Keep it up.

  21. Beeej Says:

    How many running QB’s are effective after they reach 30? It seems they never acquire the defense-reading skills of pocket passers, and the inevitable injuries they pick up along the way prevent them from running anymore

  22. Snook Says:

    Is he joking about the future of offenses? Hilarious. The NFL will always be a league where smart QBs who can read defenses and make accurate throws will be the ones who win championships.

  23. Ben green Says:

    The only way”running” qb’s take over the nfl is if they clone steve young. If he were playing now, he’d be almost unstoppable. Problem with running qb’s has always been accuracy. Scrambling when everyone is covered is fine, but points come from the passing game. Ask the ravens if lamar is the future of the nfl. Throws from the qb must be able to beat you from the pocket. Also something about mahomes bothers me, he always seems to have these little injuries. Turf toe here, ankle there. It’s only a matter of time before these little injuries turn into big injuries.

  24. Chesapeake Bay Bucco Says:

    FLBoyInDallas, I agree and have been saying that all along: running QBs will get badly hurt, its only a matter of time. And then we’ll be back to the pocket passer after the fad passes.

  25. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    The best QBs are pocket passers who have at least a little mobility, or an ability to at least side step pressure.
    Brady is fantastic, but if he would have no offensive line, he would be doomed.

  26. Dan Williamson Says:

    Listen. We are better than KC. Their defense us pedestrian. Their offensive line us riddled. They gave hill and kelce and mahomes. We are the better team. Prep and execution will be the difference and no one does that better than brady. We will win. Now lets believe, support and when your drinking that beer and watching enjoy every moment we have of the GOAT gracing Ttown with his awesome talent and heart. His greatness lies between his two ears. Now…..LETS GOOOOOO!

  27. Ne+ bucs fan Says:

    Dallas boy be like altongreene and break it into 2 parts damn ADHD lol just a joke don’t attack