”He Made An Appearance In The NFC Championship Game”

July 30th, 2021

A good buddy of offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich and a former Bucco Bruce Arians player says the Bucs have the greatest receiving corps the NFL has seen in the past 10 years, and he thinks Tampa Bay is a stone cold lock for the NFC South crown.

But he did toss out a scary negative.

Why ”scary?” Because it represents the biggest threat to the Bucs’ 2021 success.

Retired Steelers and Rams guard Max Starks, the Florida Gators great and two-time Super Bowl champ, was hosting on SiriusXM Radio last night and was glowing about all things Bucs.

Predictably, Starks was asked about Father Time catching up to Tom Brady. And Starks had a very quick reply. ”He made an appearance in the NFC Championship game,” referring to Brady looking older and throwing three interceptions.

Still-giddy Bucs fans, Joe included, tend to forget about Brady’s struggles in that game, bailed out by Green Bay’s sloppy late defensive penalties and highly questionable coaching decisions.

Joe found Starks’ comments intriguing only because Starks has spoken publicly about his tight friendship with Leftwich. Was Starks parroting what he was hearing?

As former Bucs guard Ian Beckles said on WDAE radio recently, Brady may be the first QB in ages to win get to a Super Bowl after throwing three picks in a conference championship. Joe has no idea whether that is accurate, but it sure is comforting.

The Bucs surviving three picks in Green Bay lets the world know how good the team is around Brady, which also was emphasized by Starks when he said the Bucs are set for the next two seasons even if they lose some players outside the QB position.

10 Responses to “”He Made An Appearance In The NFC Championship Game””

  1. mark2001 Says:

    Honestly.. I think father injury may have had more to do with that.

  2. Tom Freemany Says:

    Two of those second half picks were arm punts that did not hurt the Bucs much. They were calculated. Brady managed that game, including the second half, very well. Some interceptions hurt much more than others. Brady knows that.

    I had a relative tell me after the NFC Championship game, “yeah well, Rodgers outplayed Brady” mainly citing the interceptions.

    Brady’s 3 interceptions combined were not as bad as Rodgers poor decision not to run for the end zone on their last possession. Thus, Brady outplayed Rodgers. That’s how I see it.

  3. TSmitty3000 Says:

    That’s probably why Brady chose Tampa. Understandably, Brady isn’t the same guy as he was in his prime where he could carry a team. That’s fine. The sign of a good team is the QB doesn’t have to be great for the team to win. There are some games where the QB doesn’t have it and that’s where the defense picks it up and vice versa.

  4. ClodHopper Says:

    They say Father Time catches up to you fast. It seems Father Time is catching up to Brady slowly. I’m ok with that

  5. PassingThru Says:

    I agree with Tom Freemany, two of those were situations where if the ball was turned over, it would have placed GB in a similar field position to a punt. It was disconcerting, but in context they were definitely on the Arians side of the aggressive football spectrum, rather than the more conservative approach of Belichick.

  6. Devin DiPalma Says:

    I also tend to remember at least one of those being a deflection off of one of our receivers hands. Brady was lights out the first half and for most of the rest of the playoffs

  7. Pewter Power Says:

    So he aged for one game because of the three picks then recovered for the Super Bowl ok got it thanks for letting us know Brady aged for half of a football game. Max kellerman type stuff there buddy

  8. SlyPirate Says:

    mark2001 … solid take

    The Bucs offensive line may deserve more credit than we know. Keeping TB12 clean while he was injured won a lot of games.

  9. WillieG Says:

    If this were true, how was Brady able to throw DEEP interceptions? Wouldn’t he have looked more like Drew Brees who had no zip on the ball on 10 yard passes?

  10. Wild Bill Says:

    Haha Pewter nailed it. One bad half and retirement looms. I was more worried in the first half of the season. Just took time for the offense to jell. Every great qb has had a bad half or game. To build momentum like he did through the second half of the season is far from slowing down from age. I think Brady was going deep to stick a dart in Greenbays heart. And did just that with the bomb to Scotty as the half ended. Barring key injuries the Bucs should start and finish this season just like they did the second half of last season. There are three or four teams that will test the Bucs but a repeat season has a high probability.