Tom Brady A Surgeon With Clean Pocket

January 15th, 2021

Getting plenty of time.

Joe knows it is a favorite hobby of Bucs fans to holler about the offensive line, particularly about a guy from Penn State who almost always answers the bell.

Joe never bought into the easy if not lazy narrative that the offensive line is a sieve. Why? Because Joe has seen godawful offensive line play by the Bucs with his own eyes. Thankfully, that was six years ago.

Offensive line play has always been hard to get a hold of in terms of what team is blocking better than the other, outside of the good ol’ eyeball test. At every other position, you can look at stats to get a good grasp if not a definitive answer. Not so much with offensive line play.

(Caution: Please remember “grades” are not “stats.” And as former NFL GM Michael Lombardi likes to say on his podcast, ‘who is evaluating the evaluators?’ So be very careful with “grades.” Joe is confident you know the tribe to which Joe is referring.)

Dan Pizzuta, who types for Warren Sharp’s outfit, has an interesting and stat-heavy piece about the Bucs offense (sadly, it reads more like technical writing than something produced for public consumption).

Joe won’t bore, distract, or annoy you with some of the acronym graffiti Pizzuta used but in short, Bucs park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring, down-forgetting, handshake-stiffing, jet-ski-losing, biscuit-baking Bucs quarterback Tom Brady is absolutely on fire. And as Pizzuta points out, Brady could not be doing what he did unless he got excellent protection.

The book on Brady has always been about getting pressure with four and that’s what Washington could do. Brady even took three sacks and was hit seven times total. The problem is that pressure has to be constant because Brady has been incredible with a clean pocket this season. … [Some] 76% of his pass attempts were [from a] clean [pocket] during the season.

Brady was pressed on 39.5% of his dropbacks [last week], but that didn’t always come with just a four-man rush. Washington sent extra rushers 41.9% of the time, per Next Gen Stats.

With time to throw, Brady has been able to push the ball down the field. Against Washington, he was 13-of-23 for 280 yards and two touchdowns on throws that went 10 or more yards beyond the line of scrimmage. His average completion came 11.4 yards past the line of scrimmage, per Next Gen Stats, the highest figure of the Wild Card round and well above his 7.0-yard mark from the regular season, though that ranked as sixth-highest among quarterbacks.

Can this or will this continue Sunday against the Slimy Saints? Well, the first area of concern is the loss of right guard Alex Cappa, who was quietly having a helluva season. He fractured his ankle last week and is likely lost for the season.

Cappa played roughly half the game last week. His replacement, Ted Larsen, coughed up two sacks. Aaron Stinnie will be starting for Cappa Sunday night, the first NFL start of his three-year career.

So what can we expect from the slimy Saints pass rush? Well, defensive end Trey Hendrickson is having a helluva year with 13.5 sacks, but he is working through a neck injury and missed the Saints’ last game. Fellow bookend mouthy Cam Jordan has 7.5.

Statistically, New Orleans and Washington are similar when it comes to a pass rush. Washington had 44 sacks and 162 pressures through 17 games. New Orleans? 46 sacks and 158 pressures.

With all Brady’s weapons, he just needs time for that right arm of his has turned into a scalpel.

13 Responses to “Tom Brady A Surgeon With Clean Pocket”

  1. dmatt Says:

    It’s playoffs iet’s some players on both sides of the ball. Suh has experience on offense. On certain pass plays put him in against Hendrickson or CJordan. If they wanna impress me let me see either bull rush or beast mode Suh. I seriously doubt that happening. This is where BA need to get creative at. It’s playoffs baby.Do any and everything to get to the big dance. Good riddance of that bland n generic way of approaching the playoffs.

  2. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Agree with dmatt, time to throw the kitchen sink at them, whatever that looks like. P R O T E C T Grampa Brady and he will outduel Uncle Drew. GO BUCS!!!!!

  3. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Brady has been extending plays as the season progressed with lateral movement.
    He will need to do that and and BL should move pocket at times and max protect
    when necessary. Saints D line is one of the best in football at present.

  4. mg Says:

    This will be TB-12’s 16 divisional playoff game. He is 13 and 2.
    A whole season of Divisional playoff games after Saturday night.

  5. Listnfrmafar Says:

    The difference now versus Brady’s previous playoff wins is coaching. Belichick has always had a great DC plus he is a defensive minded coach. Joe, you gave stats on WFT & NO D line but where are the DB stats? The WFT had no answer for Brady. I hope if you add in the dropped balls maybe they equal out. I am assuming NO DB’S are better.

  6. Razor Ramone Says:

    Tom looking and playing much younger than Drew.

  7. Bird Says:

    Im with you joes Our oline has exceeded expectations this year .

    Wirfs should be offensive rookie of the year
    Cappa most improved and dont think he gave up even 1 sack this year
    Jensen the enforcer/ tough/mean/ leader of oline
    Marpet would have gotten pro bowl if he didnt miss 3 games / most consistent
    Smith has played well this year. Not great but we may have to find way to bring back

    I think they were top 5 at one point

    Trust me brady is stoked about his decision to come to tampa. He is stoked about this offense except maybe play calling which got better and you need a receiving running back cause brady loved to use one in New England. Other then that lets keep offense intact. Get free agency DB cause we suck at drafting them. And draft defensive end and defense tackle x 2 in first 4 rounds. Get the top guy from smaller school in round 3 and 4. I think AB will go somewhere for bigger contract cause he has legal expenses for next few years but maybe brady can talk edelman his boy into the brady tampa bay discount for next year.

  8. Nick2 Says:

    Scalpel?? Wow well then I say carve them up Tom, carve them up!!!

  9. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    WFT team’s secondary was one of the highest ranked in the NFL; #2 I believe behind the Rams. If it were not for all the dropped passes, WFT would have resembled the Lions when the Bucs played them

    For the negative Nancys and non-believers, all you have to do is look at the Browns.

    Smacked down by the Steelers in their first game, the Browns could barely beat the Steelers JV team in the 2nd regular season game and that game decided if the Browns would go to the playoffs. What did the Browns get as their reward? A wild card game with the Steelers the next week.

    Result? Browns were up 28-0 at one point and that was with TWO backup Oline men.

    Better than closing the Vet? #PoundBressIntoRetirement

  10. Bobby M. Says:

    I think we found a formula that works for a pass rush…..let Gronk help out on the edge and have Fournette back there to protect and get out in the flat.

  11. Listnfrmafar Says:

    What Bucs have going for them is Payton will probably make very few changes and use the same scheme used in game 2. The question is, will Bucs change things up? Sunday is just around the corner.

  12. Brandon Jeff Says:

    1. Max Protect -Give Tom time to throw. He will
    carve them up.
    2. Gronk and Fournette help at tackles and release
    into flat.
    3. Unleash AB – Saints will have best defenders
    on Evans and Godwin.
    4. Mix run and pass – Keep them on their heels.

    1. Man coverage please. Engage wr’s at line
    to throw off timing routes.
    2. Have David and Devin split time shadowing
    Kamara while free man blitzes.
    3. Allow no uncovered receiver in the flat.

    Defensive Summation

    Brees is allergic to pressure. He gets ball off in
    less than 2 seconds to stymie that. He also doesn’t
    Have the arm strength to go deep. If we apply
    tight coverage within 15-20 yards with a safety
    beyond that, it will throw him off his game
    and allow pocket pressure to develop.

  13. 813bucboi Says:


    bowles and the defense has to do the same….

    GO BUCS!!!!