Ex-Buc: Tampa Bay Is “Probably 2 To 3 Times Better” With Antonio Brown

December 10th, 2021

Opinionated former Bucs blocking icon receiver Michael Clayton (2004-2010 preseason), is always good for a firm and well-considered take — not counting when he screamed for the Bucs to sign a female kicker to replace Chandler Catanzaro midway through the 2018 season.

This week on WDAE radio, Clayton was barking about how the Bucs “are probably 2 to 3 times better” when Antonio Brown is on the field.

And Clayton thinks Brown’s value may be enhanced now that “Chris Godwin has earned over-the-top coverage” and Rob Gronkowski is back. Simply stated, “it’s impossible to cover our receivers,” Clayton said of the Bucs’ offense when Brown is available.

“He runs great routes. He knows how to be quarterback-friendly,” Clayton.

Perhaps most interesting was Clayton explaining how Tom Brady coached up Bucs receivers on how to protect the throw from being picked off and Jameis Winston didn’t know how to do that.

37 Responses to “Ex-Buc: Tampa Bay Is “Probably 2 To 3 Times Better” With Antonio Brown”

  1. Medicated Pete Says:

    Mike Evans still hasn’t learned that & that’s why TB12 needs AB & Gronk

  2. Capt.Tim Says:

    Brown is critical to our offense.
    Even now- he is unstoppable

  3. #8 Says:

    I am happy it’s almost time to eat lunch.

  4. PassingThru Says:

    Antonio Brown is the de facto WR1. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: AB and Gronk are by far the best route runners on this team.

  5. Casual Observer Says:

    AB is a wizard at WR. With him, ME, CG, and Gronk, TB is unstoppable. Probably the best set of receivers on one team in NFL history.

  6. geno711 Says:

    Boy Pete, I can’t wait till Mike Evans learns some things.
    Think what he might be.

    PassingThur — I get it, AB and Gronk are already Hall of Famers.

    But what is it in your eyeball test that is telling you that Godwin and Evans don’t know how to run superior routes. They have only played with a HOF quarterback these last two years where AB and Gronk had already been playing with not only HOF quarterbacks but HOF coaches.

  7. Tampabaybuscfan Says:

    Would like to have AB back this week and next week vs Saints….but he probably isn’t 100 %………
    The thought of having a 100 % healthy team for the playoffs is exciting.

  8. Robert Says:

    Gronk is a good route runner, but I would say AB and CG are our best WR route guys…but thats obvious.

    Gronk is great at routes but even better at knowing where the open spot on the feild is and TB trusts he will be there. Throw where the DB’s aint and Gronk will make it there.

    ME is one hell of a route runner as well…

    (in a straight line that is)

  9. Winny Testaverde Says:

    But…does he block as well as the block-handed Clayton did?!

    Irv CoughMan™️ , Mikey Florio and possibly Drew Brees demand an explanation if not “justice” for Chef Boy Are Dee and The Covid Card Coalition.

  10. PassingThru Says:

    geno711, Godwin is better than Evans as a route runner, he does a better job at finding seams than Evans and has better short-area cutting and quickness which is why you see him moving the chains. He’s good, but he does not create the separation that AB creates, that’s the eyeball test. It isn’t just speed, it is the craftiness of disguising the route or flawlessly executing a double move. Evans strength is that he’s outstanding at making contested catches. You won’t see Evans create separation like AB and Godwin, but in the red zone when the defenses are more compact you tend to not see the same degree of separation anyway. And that’s what Evans is: a quality red zone threat. He’s also a devastating weapon on go routes when the defense isn’t providing safety help, but defenses have wised up and have been providing safety help this season on the deep routes.

  11. Craig Says:

    At the moment his routes are music to Brady’s ears.

    Grayson, Miller, and Perriman are as fast, but their routes have a variability Brady doesn’t parse. They can be used to blow the top off the defense, but passes their way fail more often. That makes AB more important than they are.

    Not sure if that also works for CG and ME, they are different beasts.

  12. Lamarcus Says:

    Seems like alotta Ints are thrown targeting ME13. But reports like this is why its not going to be alot of Bucs getting into pro bowls

  13. cover deuce Says:

    This offense, for better or worse, wants to break the huddle with veteran receivers who can line up in multiple positions and who know how to adjust their routes to pre-snap keys wrt coverages and Toms preferences. Its probably the main reason BP has played more than Scooter so far (the for worse part). And it’s probably why they’re so f@cking tough to stop when AB is in there (the for better part).

  14. Jb kickback Says:

    Couldn’t agree more
    One of the greatest receivers I’m NFL history

  15. BucsFanSince1976 Says:

    AB is a freaking BUM – and BA may very well cut him.

  16. crazybucs_CL Says:

    i’m glad people are talking, and mention AB’s exceptional values, finally.
    The truth is that a very insignificant “event”, important to the present government’s narrative, was blow-out of proportion, first from a VERY unfriendly local news-paper to successful people, then from the rest of national loser media, and finally from NFL vaxx police.
    AB and ME are normal law-abiding citizens, not better nor worst than the rest of us.
    ..but having AB playing with TB12, make us much more dangerous, and ALL that are against us, will use anything possible NOT to allow that.

  17. crazybucs_CL Says:

    @”…AB is a freaking BUM – and BA may very well cut him…”
    I don’t expect less from TV🤡; With ZERO medical education, he is been showing himself since May on local TVs ads, promoting the Vaxx.
    Be a football coach first; that’s what you were hire for, because you are NOT anymore.
    I hope no important decisions are left for him to take.
    AB is a NORMAL man, and an extraordinary player, playing for us.
    Can’t wait to see him on the field.

  18. Show Me the TDs Says:

    Clayton is an idiot. By his reasoning if AB were playing the Bucs would be scoring 60 to 90 points on average, since our average is over 30 now.

  19. Dyno-White ! # 45 Says:

    I hesitated to read the comments because many people will never get how great Evan is, and has been. He lifts the whole team with getting at least double covered, gets more DPI calls than anyone in the NFL, breaks records for consistency, has broken NFL record(s) held by Rice and Moss. He blocks, takes pay cuts for the team. Oh and he just got nominated for Man of the year in the NFL for the 3rd straight year. Without Evans, Brady never would’ve put on a Bucs jersey. Best offensive player in Bucs history. If he cured Cancer, somebody would complain he didn’t cure Covid. Dang , somebody look at the field sometimes

  20. BucsFanSince1976 Says:

    Well said DYNO , but if you are wanting intelligent , thought provoking analysis you will only get a small sample here.

  21. Swampbuc Says:

    And unlike the failure Clayhands, our receivers can catch the football AND block.

    I don’t care what Clayhands has to say.

  22. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    ME is one hell of a route runner as well, just not as good a route runner as AB.
    ME got open a lot early in his career by pushing off, but the NFL Officials have started really watching him for pushing off.

  23. SOEbuc Says:

    Bucs 5-0 this year when AB is on the field. Most ppg. Maybe the best oline (Rex Ryan says so, so I’ll take it) and the GOAT to spread it on with every offensive weapon that we have which means everyone. We will see Sunday if the Bucs may be looking to get on another role. LFG!!!

  24. Gordon Brook Says:

    Antonio Brown has always been an outstanding player in the NFL. He honors and respects Tom Brady and other members of the Bucs. team. When he returns there are only three games left to play in the regular season. Yes, we expect to play in the playoff games. It is very smart to keep AB because he is valuable to us. If AB works hard and helps us win like we did before he can be with us again next year as well. Tom Brady was so upset when the Patriots release AB after one game and it resulted in misery for the Patriots that year. To me we should keep AB because we need him in our final games.

  25. Boo Radley Says:

    Mike Evans has to learn to run thru the ball. Whenever on a go route and sees the Safety waiting out front 10 yards or more, about to backpedal because it’s MIKE EVANS, Mike almost subconsciously takes his foot off the gas, almost as if the safety’s emitting a ‘force field’ pushing Evan’s away. Almost like he spots a zone where he can sit. By the time Evan’s looks up to track the ball, it’s sailing overhead and landing where he WOULD have been had he not quit on the route. Mike Evan’s is a big and FAST man. Any Safety seeing him coming at top speed is going to backpedal furiously and turning his hips. It’s THEN that Evans has to force him back and off his spot. At speed, when Mike finally turns his head to track the ball, the worst case is a jump ball (advantage Evans/receiver) if the Safety plays the pass correctly. As long as Mike has his head turned ready to high-point the catch, the Safety can’t impede. If he does, 9/10 it’s a PI call as Mike rarely, if ever, pushes off. How many INTs have we seen, this season and last, sail over Evans’ head almost directly into a Safety’s arms BECAUSE Mike didn’t run through the ball? Don’t ANYONE say that Brady OVERTHREW Mike Evans if this keeps up. Brady is too darn accurate to be missing a receiver by 10 yards. (He’s on record beating himself up if he’s off by a foot or less!). Being the GOAT he is, TB12 just lowers his head after these missed opportunities and just looks disappointed. I read somewhere, perhaps here, about Evans allegedly complaining because he was “wide open” in the Red Zone and didn’t get the ball. Reading that really bothered me and I hope it’s not true for Mike Evan’s sake. I’d like to think that the GOAT and Mike are taking time together to go over film of all these plays even at practice. To be fair to Mike, I know that there’s an expectation that receivers develop almost a quasi-telepathy with Tom Brady. As Gronk (“channeling” Yogi Berra) said this week, “[Tom] knows what I’m thinking before I even know what I’m thinking”. lol. Whatever it is, it is possible to learn as we’ve seen 2 decades of over 100 different Pats receivers, Gronk especially, AB and Chris Godwin, all learn it, by picking up on whatever vibe Tom Brady is giving out. Once Brady and Evans are finally “5×5” on their communication skills there will be no stopping the duo and the rest of Tampa Bay Buccaneers. P.S. I know the GOAT has hooked up with MJ in the past playing a little half-court BB. Maybe these two should also and concentrate on the “alley-oop”.

  26. PassingThru Says:


    I forgot to add: I’m not convinced Mike Tomlin is a Hall of Fame coach.

    Pro: Like Dungy, he did win a Super Bowl as head coach.

    Con: When you consider that Pittsburgh had the most talented teams in the NFC on a seemingly annual basis, with a HOF QB, an outstanding RB, the best WRs, and perhaps the best defense, Tomlin really underachieved badly.

  27. David Says:

    Boo…. Edit

    As for Clayton‘s take… I don’t know about 2 to 3 times but of course they are better than Browns on the field. He’s a Hall of Fame wide receiver who catches anything near him and knows how to get open.

    As for Clayton himself… Man he had one awesome year. If the Buccaneers had a real quarterback and some real coaches back then, it would be all of his records that Mike Evans is breaking right now.

  28. PassingThru Says:

    BTW Boo, I’m seeing that too and I just don’t get why Evans doesn’t complete routes or get under the ball. Perhaps Evans isn’t confident about over-the-shoulder catches and prefers to pull-up and high-point. Or perhaps he’s baiting the CB into a PI call. Or both. But running a route like that is dangerous because it can lead to INTs.

  29. SB Says:

    What a tool. Are we better? DEFINITELY!!!!
    2 to 3x better???? No WAY!!
    We are the highest scoring Offense in the league at nearly 32 points, so if Brown comes back we are going to score an average of at least 64? To 96?
    I think Clayton is hanging out with Pete

  30. SB Says:

    Brown has had 6 1,000 yard seasons in 11 Years with Big Ben, Tom Brady, and Derric Carr throwing to him

    Mike Evans has SEVEN Straight from a rook with Josh McClown, Mike Glennon, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jameis winston throwing to hijm.

    Do you guys even lift bro?

  31. crazybucs_CL Says:

    “….2 to 3x better???? No WAY!!…”
    Yes way; that does not mean you going to multiply the points score by 2 or 3 or 10. Obviously they are not going to score 500 points!!!!
    The point he is making is: 2 to 3 more chances to WIN., and that is TRUE 100%.

  32. SB Says:

    “He’s a Hall of Fame wide receiver who catches anything near him and knows how to get open.

    Then WHY does he have NONE of ME’s stats? He was on superior teams with superior QBs.

  33. Jmarkbuc Says:


    You and Boo are on point. ME sure has been short arming catches and abbreviating routes a lot lately. Frustrating. I believe TB is frustrated with it too. TB is accustomed to extraordinary effort by his teammates.

  34. Izod Says:

    AB is the type of receiver Brady was bred on in NE… his ability to create lateral separation and not be a downfield threat, fits well into the type of throws Brady feels “safe” making.

    Between AB, Evans, and Godwin we’ve got the best of almost every skill a receiver could possibly have (except maybe blazing deep speed).

  35. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Dynamic & Bucsfan, if you cannot see the difference between Evan’s route running and AB you have NO clue on how football is played. Not only does he run better more precise routes, he is a master at finding open space (where it’s obvious ME has problems) and what he does after the catch. The Bucs are 5-0 with AB on the field, the numbers don’t lie. AB is the best receiver on the team and BL, BA & Brady know it.

  36. Ed Says:

    Evans is great at what he does best, jump ball, back shoulder catch, go routes, sideline tippy-toe catches and his specialty fade route.

    What he doesn’t do is dig his feet in the ground, get low and make sharp cuts. He is what I call a “strider”.

    As a former basketball player I see his game in terms of that game. His striding running style is perfect for a running, fast breaking team. His big body is conducive to posting up and getting position as a rebounder.

    That skill set makes him a great one-on-one player. In an offense like Phil Jackson ran where there is a triangle with lots of cutting and picking, a Mike Evans athletic strengths don’t fit in because he isn’t a quick, stop and go guy. He needs space.

    I believe that’s why when the Bucs went away from the deep shoot no biscuit offense they ran with Jamies to the shorter, quicker throws, Mike isn’t going to be the first option. His routes take more time to get separation than Godwin’s or Brown.

    I think he is the greatest receiver to ever play in Tampa and will be in the HOF. His skill set is better suited with quarterbacks that have escapeabiliy and hold on to the ball for more than 2.3 seconds.

    A quarterback like Aaron Rogers fits his strengths more than TB12 because when Rogers escapes pocket and it’s a scramble drill he would throw it up and Mike can go get it.

  37. #1bucsfan Says:

    I agree with Clayton. Brown makes our offense better. No need to release him just makes sure he’s ready to produce come playoff time.