Tom Brady Helped Defense Become “Elite”

March 1st, 2021

What kept him with Bucs?

Joe has long maintained that if the Bucs brought back Mr. Entertainment, America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston, Jason Pierre-Paul may not have returned and it’s doubtful Ndamukong Suh would have been back.

In his hour-long sitdown on Shannon Sharpe’s podcast “Club Shay Shay” recently, Suh did nothing to dispel Joe’s hunch.

Sharpe asked Suh what went through his mind when he learned the Bucs signed Tom Brady. Suh, who was still a free agent at the time, sure sounded as if that was a key move to keep the beast from Nebraska on the Bucs roster.

“Knowing that the majority of our front-seven was coming back intact, I was excited about that,” Suh said of when he learned about the Bucs signing Brady. “Knowing that [Brady] is the type of elite quarterback that is going to give us rest and time to make plays and obviously [help us] become as elite of a defense as we can.”

So Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht tagged sack king Shaq Barrett and re-signed JPP and then added Brady. Those three moves, Suh seemed to suggest, led him to believe the Bucs were building something special.

Suh referenced “time” on the field right away about the Bucs signing Brady. That sort of tips off a viewer that the defense was on the field way too much last year.

Interestingly, the Bucs played much better defense late in the season than they did earlier in the season.

32 Responses to “Tom Brady Helped Defense Become “Elite””

  1. Robert Says:

    I’m sure playing when you are winning or at least in the game is fun compared to playing like a dog chasing his tail and then getting dumped on while your QB, mr 5000, crabby, grabby Jdub is saying check yo sheets!

  2. Youngbucs Says:

    Hey suh oneilbucs says you are a liar and don’t know football.

  3. Youngbucs Says:

    I’m not trying to be funny when I say this it’s the truth. The defense was not given enough credit for what they accomplished in 2019. And don’t give me that second half of the season bull crap the had good gms before that. You can start with week 1 for example against the 49ers also the run gm was there against the 49ers wondering why we lost anyone. Also in 2019 the Bucs defense scored 7tds I believe most in franchise history not counting 2002 playoff tds regular season only. The were 5th in takeaways but go look at the differential. I think 7th in sacks had the worst starting field position in the league not even close give me a break. This team was ready to win the QB was not there is no excuses for 35 turnovers ever ain’t that much bad luck in the world.

  4. Rod Munch Says:

    The defense wasn’t elite until the 2nd round the playoffs, they certainly weren’t elite during the regular season. But frankly, who cares, they got hot at the right time. If they can keep it together, and Bowles gives up on the soft zone nonsense (the defense was playing a zone defense in the SB, but not a soft zone), it would be interesting to see what they could do over a full season.

  5. kyle Says:

    better check your sheet….

  6. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    i can’t imagine how demoralizing it must have been for our defense to make a stop just to have JW turn it over…..what a difference.
    They all had to be thinking constantly….we’ve got Tom Brady….we can win this.

  7. PSL Bob Says:

    TBBF, exactly. You make a great play on 3rd down, only to have you know who give it back to the other team deep in Bucs territory. I’m sure the guys are professional and always strive to play their best football, but jeez. Those turnovers had to sap their motivation. Now they’re playing like crazy to get the ball back for TB to put up some more points. Much more of a motivation.

  8. Defense Rules Says:

    Suh’s the man IMO, but I’m not sure I understand the comment about ‘a QB that’s going to give us rest’ and this ‘time on the field’ thing.

    Bucs time of possession (TOP) for our offense in 2019 averaged 30:54 (#9 in the NFL) with Jameis at QB. Our TOP in 2020 with Tom Brady at QB averaged 29:06 (#21 in the NFL). Using those averages, seems like our defense would’ve been on the field in 2020 almost 2 minute per game MORE than in 2019.

    Maybe a better way to look at it though is snaps. In 2019 our offense had 1140 offensive snaps, but that decreased to 1073 snaps in 2020 (67 fewer offensive snaps). In comparison, our defense had 1130 defensive snaps in 2019, but that decreased to 1063 in 2020 (67 fewer snaps on defensive also).

    Seems strange, but even though our TOP (and our number of offensive plays) was considerably less in 2020, our defensive snaps (and opponents’ offensive plays) went down instead of up. Obviously fewer giveaways is always appreciated by the defense.

  9. buxsxntkt Says:

    Hey Joe, is their a place to see minutes played by defense per game/season.
    Curious how much time the Bucs defense played last year versus this year.

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:


    There is also field position that somewhat dictates time of possession & # of snaps….
    I’m not sure whether we ran the ball more in 20 or not…..(sure you would know)…..
    Regardless….turnovers are a a ticket to losing….

  11. DingleBerry Says:

    Idk Defense Rules. There is a wide range of opinions at headquarters. I think under review it would be hard to say that Suh was vital to our ferocious pass rush. Oh but before you get the wrong idea I’m not saying anything bad about him or even questioning his impact. Even though I just directly questioned his impact and how important he was.

    See how little sense this makes Joe?

  12. BuccoDav Says:

    Turnovers are the key… The defense was young on the back end but improving. JW would consistently turn the ball over on a short field, and put the defense in a very vulnerable position. But hey! He threw for 5000+ yards, so he had that going for him.

  13. Defense Rules Says:

    TBBF … “Regardless….turnovers are a a ticket to losing”.

    Yea verily! Amazing what a difference this past year’s PLUS 8 Turnover Differential made versus 2019’s MINUS 13 Turnover Differential.

    And believe it or not (I was surprised to see this), we ran the ball quite a bit LESS in 2020 than in 2019 (40 fewer rushing attempts; roughly 10% less, although we got almost exactly the same total rushing yardage 1519 vs 1521 yds).

  14. Defense Rules Says:

    Dingleberry … “See how little sense this makes Joe?”

    Actually I have a feeling that at it probably makes a lot of sense.

  15. DaBux Says:

    I guess old JJ Watt wants money over rings. Enjoy buying copies loser. Bucs D just has to reset and keep Shaq, David, and Suh and build on those guys from there.

  16. Hissylizzard Says:

    Brady also and told the corners/safeties things to look for ,he is a.coaxh too……he is probably more responsible for the turnaround in the post season….Devin White was huge too

  17. Mike C Says:

    Thank you Timber wolves for taking over the worst win percentage in all of North America sport. Buccaneers are no longer at the bottom of the pile! To be honest two championships puts them past a whole host of other franchises.

  18. Im not tired anymore we Super Bowl Champs!! Says:

    Not gonna lie I loved Winston reason for my old monogram. I was wrong and so glad we got the Goat! It goes to show how great he is. It had nothing to do with Belechick and all about Brady. Go Bucs! SB champs! I’m not gonna complain.

  19. Im not tired anymore we Super Bowl Champs!! Says:

    Oh also I have on recording Romo calling the SB game back when the Bucs and Chiefs played during the regular season. I saved that recording knowing it was an important piece. I told everyone I knew next time the game would be different. Go Bucs!

  20. SlyPirate Says:

    Suh and JPP are interesting when it comes to Brady. One lost to him (Suh) and one beat him (JPP).

  21. DingleBerry Says:


    Lmao yeah you make an interesting point there. Sorry if I caught you off guard there, I was just parodying Joes Vita Vea article from yesterday if you hadnt gathered that already.

  22. 6throundpick Says:

    During the last third of the season, the TB12 Offense started to control the ball/clock much better. TB12 is a master at this, particularly towards the end of the game. It was just a matter of getting the flow; playing together. Anticipate for more than a third of the upcoming season.

  23. Destinjohnny Says:

    Suh is a really smart guy.
    Could see him running a team one day

  24. Buxszntkt Says:

    Interesting article, just saw Peter King’s article , JJ Watts most likely landing spots. He pegged the SIX teams most likely, Cleveland, KC, Buffalo, Indy, Tennessee and GB. Hmmmm , which team is missing ? Oh, the one he signed with. Well, I suppose he had pretty good odds when picking 6 teams.

  25. REDZONE BA Says:

    Per reports – JJ Watts will be an AZ Cardinal. Take JJ off Bucs wish list.

  26. Buc4evr Says:

    JJ Watt is getting 31M from the Cardinals. The Bucs are focused on signing our own guys, not an injury prone player looking for a payday.

  27. REDZONE BA Says:

    Hmmn…not sure I will write off JJ Watts just yet, in our 2021 SB quest. Dude is pretty good….

  28. REDZONE BA Says:

    I prefer our “Bucs Guys” more than JJ, FWIW. Not sure we can re-sign all of them. Just sayin’ that JJ will be a beast if we (Bucs) have to face him in 2021. Regarding payday – JJ is doing OK w/his commercial residuals….dude is playing for a trophy.

  29. Mike Says:

    The time of defense in 2019 was shorter than that of 2020 can be easily explained by shorter field of defense. The Bucs might quickly gave up a TD with a shorter field.

  30. Mike Says:

    Another factor of feeling tired is you have to defend a touchdown with a short filed compared to a long field. That is in the head of player!

  31. Bucsfanman Says:

    Football is a complementary sport. The most glaring difference between Tom Brady and the previous QB is…wait for it..TURNOVERS.
    No statistic, other than scoring, dictates wins and losses more closely that TOs.

    I would agree with Rod Munch in that our defense was NOT elite, but only played elite when it really mattered. Imagine the potential with our defense playing all year like it did in the playoffs and SB.

  32. Dan Williamson Says:

    I listen to you young bucs fans and I cringe. Your brashness, your bravado and opinions far exceed your knowledge of the game. Suh hit nail on head. When your defense is on the field because your qb turns the ball over like a flapjack short order cook(Jameis)then the defense tires and starts becoming a defense that doesnt attack a play. That doesnt fly to the opposing qb. That is a split second behind the offense, that doesnt fill holes. Hes right. Ive said it all along. We had the personel. They were being worn out by winston and his poor play. Winston compiled numbers, but anything he put in the record book was bad. I dont want to hear his name from his fluffers anymore. Let the GOAT be the GOAT. He has the only formula that works and hes the only one able and willing to work it. Working out the proper way, eating the proper way, watching film constantly, processing the info and then prepping a game plan and executing it. For all you Brady naysayers, you are forgiven. For all of you Brady haters , you displaced yankees who hold no loyalty to the Bucs or Brady…DOG GONE YA! Band wagons full. Haul ass!. To the true and faithful Buc, longsuffering fans I say rejoice with me and love and revel in every moment hes here. Welcome him into the community so that he will stay when his time as a player is done and give thanks. Thank you Robert Kraft.Thank you Bill Bilicheck.Thank you for being such faithless dumbasses. We got him nowww! 😂