A.Q. Shipley Chooses To Blame Media Rather Than Refute Report Of Souring Tom Brady-Bruce Arians Relationship

April 24th, 2022

Tom Brady with former Bucs center and coach A.Q. Shipley

It’s odd how a Bruce Arians-loving guy caught in the middle of a major controversy jumped on a popular national show and punted an opportunity to explain how his former boss never did the things he’s accused of doing.

Joe’s referring to A.Q. Shipley, who officially has left the Buccaneers coaching staff. He was a guest on The Pat McAfee Show last week.

The 2020 Bucs center and 2021 offensive assistant coach told McAfee that “within a week after the [2021] season, I knew that coaching was not in my future.” Shipley wasn’t fired. He explained how seeing his young kids awake sometimes less than an hour per week was not something he wanted to continue.

In mid-February, a report from San Diego sports radio host Rich Ohrnberger emerged citing a source “who’s pretty embedded with the Bucs,” claiming the relationship with Arians and Tom Brady “soured” late last season. Ohrnberger was Shipley’s college roommate. They’ve remained close and Ohrnberger played with Brady in New England.

Ohrnberger spelled out that his source told him that Arians’ work time at One Buc Palace was cut slightly last season because he was rehabbing a blown Achilles, and the head coach would arrive late and then “red pen” and nix plays that Brady and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich had worked on as part of a given week’s gameplan.

“…Arians would walk in and red line and put the red pen to all of the work that Brady and Leftwich had done,” Ohrnberger wrote on Twitter. “And throughout the course of the season, real animosity started, you know, percolating between Brady and Arians, and between Leftwich, Brady and Arians. It just sort of turned into this thing where it’s like, ‘Listen, you’re coming in late to the party and you’re trying to make waves in the work we’ve done?”

Joe was the first to suggest Shipley was Ohrnberger’s source. The story quickly went national when ProFootballTalk.com ran with it and iconic PFT founder Mike Florio made a strong and loud case that he believes Ohrnberger and a likelihood Shipley is his source.

Fast forward to last week, and Shipley emerged on McAfee’s show. He and McAfee were Colts teammates and Shipley has been a frequent guest in past years.

McAfee opened with a playful shot surrounding the question of the hour.

“A.Q., why did you rat out B.A. and Tom Brady to Rich Ohrnberger? Why’d you do that, and how come you didn’t tell us?” McAfee said.

Shipley didn’t respond by calling the story a pile of crap. (Wouldn’t that be a normal reaction?) Shipley instead took a shot at the messengers.

“When did you start working for ProFootballTalk?” Shipley replied to McAfee. “I’m curious. I’m just curious to how we’re just guessing sources these days. I mean it is a wild world. A wild world.”

And that ended the conversation — on one of the biggest NFL stories of 2022. Why?

Later, the subject of Arians came up and McAfee sarcastically asked Shipley if he hates Arians.

“I love that guy, you know that,” Shipley said. “I mean the guy employed me for 10 of my 13 years in this business. So, you know, there’s not much else to get into besides that, except how much respect I have for him.”

It sure would be nice if someone tied to One Buc Palace besides Arians — especially guys with the last names Brady, Leftwich and Shipley — would specifically explain everything Ohrnberger said was wrong.

47 Responses to “A.Q. Shipley Chooses To Blame Media Rather Than Refute Report Of Souring Tom Brady-Bruce Arians Relationship”

  1. HC Grover Says:

    BA gone, Brady back. Over it. LFG

  2. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    BA was here but now he’s gon.
    He left Todd Bowles to carry on.

  3. SB~LV Says:

    Great revelation and the best insight into all the chafe since Brady “retired”
    I can’t blame Brady and those putting in the time game planning having someone that was not involved in the creative process “redlining “ the work . That would piss anyone off in any line of work.
    I feel much better now reading this explanation.
    That must have been one sobering meeting in England between the GBoyz and Brady, I’d guess the Glazers had no idea of the friction between Brady, BA and the upper offensive coaching staff.

  4. GOB Says:

    Strange how Arians got “promoted” within 24 hours of Brady returning. If BA was trying to ensure one of his subordinates would get the job, why let them interview? Why not simply retire after the season? Instead BA became quite bullish, telling the world he was calling plays again, and coaching until he couldn’t. I believe Brady and BA like each other, that’s not what this is about. It’s about Brady wanting a coach that actually puts in the time.
    Also, look at the various strange behaviors BA exhibited last year. Smacking a player, having sideline blowouts, playing obviously injured starters to mention a few. It’s obviously to me that BA had difficulty controlling himself, and needed to go. I think it became increasingly clearer to Brady, as the season progressed

  5. Proud Bucs Fan Says:

    The part time, broken down golf cart, head meddler Bruce Arrogance, according to Tom Brady.

  6. Wild Bill Says:

    So behind the scenes: Brady “retires” because of Arians, Bucs wring their hands, do they lose Brady or ditch Arians? Arians gets a sweet exit deal, Brady “unretires” life goes on at One Buc Place. Bucs needed Brady more than pudgy, grumpy red faced Arians. Arians gets sweet “retirement” package. Brady gets more control. Bucs regain Super Bowl possibility. All is well in Buc land. Haha.

  7. gotbbucs Says:

    Coaches and players disagree. Players and coaches disagree. Coaches and other coaches disagree.
    I don’t doubt that Arians got on people’s nerves. From what I’ve read and what he’s freely admitted, Arians basically sat all week with his feet up relaxing. What im sure got under peoples skin was how he then trotted out there like king sh!t on Sundays and tried to throw his weight around. That confused look on his face many times during games was probably because he didn’t really have a full understanding of what the weekly game plan was.
    I’m appreciative of the guys journey and respect his career, but I’m not sad that he’s off the sideline. He’s basically been along for the ride since Brady came to town, and what little good he may have still been doing was being overshadowed by stupid stuff like fighting with AB on the sideline and slapping Andrew Adams on the head. At a certain point, the players can feel the control being lost and at that point the respect goes too.

  8. Cobraboy Says:

    Let’s muck around the girl’s bathroom rumor mill some more…

    It’s over.

  9. Goatfarmer Says:

    Proudgirl — how about sitting down on a stick of lit dynamite?

  10. Rod Munch Says:

    Well the press is complete and total fake news agenda driven garbage, so I’m not sure what the issue is here.

    Joe, you’re not the press, you’re a blog that presents news – and I mean that in the nicest way. You guys insert opinion in your articles, you’re snarky, you’re entertaining, that’s why you’re so popular. But people know you have an agenda and there’s nothing wrong with that so long as people are aware of the agenda. Have no clue what you’re referring to. Joe writes what Joe finds interesting about the Bucs, and Joe wants the Bucs to win Super Bowls. That’s the scope of the operation here. –Joe
    You guys don’t go around saying you just report the facts, nothing else, and anyone who questions anything you write is a threat to democracy.

    But anyone taking shots at the traditional media, not answering their loaded and leading questions, they always have my support.

  11. GOB Says:

    Cobraboy, it’ll only be over when people admit the truth about BA and Brady. Many here still labor under the delusion that the coach was actually a reason they won the superbowl, instead of an impediment that needed to be overcome. As for the Miami stuff, I’m with you. It’s ancillary and akin to gossip

  12. Ash Says:

    Cant wait for the draft.

  13. Rod Munch Says:

    “Have no clue what you’re referring to. Joe writes what Joe finds interesting about the Bucs, and Joe wants the Bucs to win Super Bowls. That’s the scope of the operation here. –Joe”

    Yeah, that’s basically what I meant, I just put wrote it very poorly I guess.

  14. Bucsfan13 Says:

    This is ridiculous! The internet would be totally on fire during the Walsh/Montana and Elway/Reeves days. Of course there are disagreements between coaches and players, especially QBs. I listened to the entire interview, and AQ did knock it down. Maybe not to your liking. Good luck finding in that interview Shipley saying what Ohrnberger said was wrong. No reason to make things up. –Joe Also, this Rich guy reported on the same day that Mahomes had demanded that his then fiancé and brother not attend games. He later retracted his reports. This is the guy you find credible? What happened to critical thought?
    Critical thought is what led to the question: why would a San Diego radio host randomly start quoting embedded sources with Tampa Bay? A quick search revealed Ohrnberger is a close friend of Shipley, who we now know had recently retired from coaching the Bucs.–Joe
    Why are theories being passed along as facts? Theories are passed along as facts every day. Don’t think that’s what is being “passed along” here. –Joe
    Leftwich and Brady are enjoying their offseason. They don’t owe anyone an explanation, and if they deny it, you won’t believe it because you have your mind made up. It’s all confirmation bias at this point. BTW, Florio also said Brady would be the starting QB for the 49ers this season. This was believed by you (you don’t get to tell Joe what Joe believes, especially when it’s not accurate.) –Joe and others even though the facts were that Brady’s son lived in NYC and he wanted to be closer to him. That’s one of the reasons he chose TB. Most people who have eaten up this story are bitter jealous ex Patriots fans, and some Bucs fans who are acting liking insecure jealous girlfriends.

    I listened to your new podcast. I love Ira, but I couldn’t believe that he would even suggest that Brady might not be all in. Are you kidding me?! Say what you will about Brady, but he only knows all in. He’s a damn psycho. He’s addicted to football like a crackhead. The man would rather watch 50 hours a film a week than play with his son. Matter of fact, Clyde Christensen said that Brady called him about 12 hours after his retirement with a list that he and the team needed to improve. He didn’t even dispense with the niceties. He went right to work.

  15. JA Says:

    In this issue of AS THE STOMACH TURNS, read on as previously referred to ‘nice guy’ Bruce Arians takes his red marker and goes home after being outed for siring ten children with ten different player’s wives and attempting to poison the ball boy after he caught Arians secretly recording personal conversations with a hidden recording device in his walking boot.
    Next week: Tom Brady demands to be traded after former coach “Hunk” Arians puts the moves on his supermodel wife.

  16. Mort Says:

    Why would he correct you, Joe? You’re seeing things that were never written here. –Joe
    Florio (and you, apparently) have already decided who is lying and who isn’t. Why does anyone have to be lying? Why can’t everything be accurate and just be a part of elite competitors doing business together en route the 22-5 run the Bucs are currently on? Your comment is very negative. –Joe AQ has nothing to gain and no reason to tell you whatever you want to hear.

  17. Bucsfan13 Says:

    Brady throughout his career has shown that he doesn’t care about media speculation and what they might think. However, if you start to hear rumblings from his teammates about this endless speculation, I think most definitely you will hear from him. He only cares about his teammates. You saw how quick he responded to Wirfs.

  18. SufferingSince76 Says:

    It’s time to put this in the past and move on. Todd Bowles is the head coach. He gets the final word.

  19. BUCman Says:

    Shipley’s a trader! He quit before he could be fired! Now he’s out for revenge. Hopefully he’s never employed in the NFL again. Can’t be trusted!

  20. Stanglassman Says:

    They need to teach media literacy in school. Most people have no idea what the difference is between news and opinion editorial on news and current events.

  21. Winny Testaverde Says:

    AQueen will be selling Aflac, divorced or both within 12 months. An inked up softy no longer making NFLoot will be broomed outta his own house before he knows it. BA had nothing but love for this turncoat.

  22. Eddie Marz Says:

    Spilled milk.

  23. Mort Says:

    BA already directly said AQ wasn’t saying this nonsense to Mitch, and that he never, NEVER did any of this stuff about a red pen. I guess you’re directly calling Bruce a liar?
    First, the term red-pencil or red-pen is in the dictionary and doesn’t actually mean a real red-writing implement. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/red-pencil#:~:text=Definition%20of%20red%2Dpencil,2%20%3A%20correct%2C%20revise
    Second, nobody’s calling anyone a liar.
    Third, Joe sure would hope the head coach, the greatest head coach in Bucs history, the guy who designed the offense, came in and killed a play or two once in a while after a week of watching film of an opposing defense. –Joe

  24. DoooshLaRue Says:

    Doesn’t AQ stand for An*l Queen?

  25. GOB Says:

    Bucsfan13, Bill Walsh created and embraced the QB controversy in SF. You’re correct, it would’ve broken the internet, had it happened recently. I fail to see the analogy. The bucs went out of the way to create plausible deniability, therefore allowing BA sycophants to continue living in a dream world.

  26. Iamabuc Says:

    This is stupid. Show me an HC in the NFL who doesn’t go over the game plan and start red penciling everything their staff did. It’s their job!!….Duuuuh…I don’t believe this crap.

  27. SB Says:

    Four words…………Who the Fock CARES?

    It is what it is. Lets get the Season STARTED!!!!!

  28. Boston Says:

    “…Arians would walk in and red line and put the red pen to all of the work that Brady and Leftwich had done,” Shipley wrote.

    Where did Shipley write that?

  29. Bucsfan13 Says:

    @Joe. That San Diego radio host also reported with certainty that Mahomes banned his family from games, and he had to retract. What would a San Diego radio host know about Mahomes? He’s not even a reporter!If a reporter had to retract a news story, no way in hell you would believe anything else reported by said reporter. You would at least be skeptical. You’re totally acting on confirmation bias here with this story.
    Ohrnberger publicly stated he was duped with the Mahomes story and wrote “I will delete this tweet today along with the original thread. Please pass this along.” Mahomes really has nothing to do with the Bucs comments. There’s no bias, only observation. You are the one reading into this, not Joe. Whether he is a reporter or not is irrelevant. If Ohrnberger had broken, say, a story two months prior to his comments on the Bucs, that wouldn’t be relevant, either. Joe’s writing here is about Shipley passing on the chance to set the full record straight. For some reason, he didn’t.–Joe

  30. BigMacAttack Says:

    Work expands to fill time, especially in the media

  31. HomerSimpsonRocks Says:

    Florio is not a credible person.

  32. August 1976 Buc Says:

    This whole post is exactly why I have not had much to say, and visit JBF less and less until the season starts, with training camp and then games. So over the top. Oh well.

    GO BUCS!!!!

  33. Allbuccedup Says:

    I am glad Arians retired.

  34. Red-sparrow Says:


    Most Head coaches are way more involved in game planning than Arians. That’s the point. So if you have a fully engaged coach throughout the week, you wouldn’t have much of an issue with him changing certain things because then you feel like it’s a true partnership. And case in point; if Arians was actively involved all week with game planning then he wouldn’t have to red pen anything at the end of the week. He could just make his changes/adjustments throughout the week. So yeah just seems like he wasn’t involved enough for an obsessive game planning detail oriented guy like Brady that comes from the Belichick school of football where you don’t have a life but football during the season. Arians doesn’t fit that mold and Brady being an old dog, wasn’t really willing to do change to the loosey goosey Arians philosophy of football preparation. The Joes need to stop beating around the bush too. They have common sense and can put two and two together from a situation that doesn’t add up based on arians and the glazers explanation of his discontinuation of coaching. Shipley didn’t deny it cause it’s true. No need to wonder and guess and speculate and all this other stuff.

  35. DaBux Says:

    Can we just kill this story please? It’s getting older than BA’s beard sweat.

  36. Nprbuc Says:

    My God! Who really gives a squat if Brady and Arians had a dust up? Arians is in the front office, Bowles is Head Coach and Brady will be under center for at least one more year. Those are the ONLY facts that should matter to any fan. Why does any of this crap,that may or may not have happened LAST YEAR, have any bearing on where the Bucs are going this year? You guys are starting to sound like a replay of Peyton Place ( for those old enough to remember that miserable show) or the crew of The View! It’s over and done with. Last years “news” Get a grip on what is going on NOW at 1 Buc Place and bury this garbage. GO BUCS

  37. GOB Says:

    @Red-sparrow, don’t bother trying to explain it to these people brother. Brady could release a manifesto tomorrow denouncing BA, and it wouldn’t move the needle for these folks.

  38. westernbuc Says:

    I don’t buy the red pen thing. Arians has been pretty open about how little he does. Maybe the way AB went down. I just don’t think Brady was saying “me or him.”

  39. Goatfarmer Says:

    Doosh — once again thanks for adding some light garnish to an otherwise dark thread including idiots like GOB and Proudgirl.

  40. GOB Says:

    Goatfarmer, I didn’t create the thread, just responding. If you have a problem with the fact that Joe is the one constantly bringing this stuff up, then speak to him. Rational people are just interested in the TRUTH

  41. LongSeason Says:

    This whole story about BA / Brady rift sounded like horsesh*t to me. Sounds like Shipley denied it with his comment. He dismissed it because he knows it is false and doesn’t want to give assh*** reporters any credibility in confirming or denying. The worst part are the fans that believe this sh*t.
    You can call me an assh***, but I am not Pavlov’s Doggo that believes every single story coming from fake news people like Florio Borio.

  42. mustachechuck Says:

    Interesting story I believe Joe’s way of delivering it to
    Us gave us the players and what happened. The bottom
    Line is A head coach is in place. Same offensive and defensive people are in place if all our pieces of team stay healthy. We have still have
    Number 12 Tom Brady at the helm I am looking for a magical season
    Televised country wide . We know Tom here in New England he will
    Now play with a chip on his shoulder Look for a great season BUCS fans This is going to be very entertaining at the least He wants another RING now !!!!! Let’s Go Bucks **You have Tom Brady any Idea how many Tampa Bay Bucks Flags fly here in NEW ENGLAND TB12 !

  43. Drunkinybor Says:

    O xan never ever ever get a comment on to PFT where Floriis ego is immeasurable. I tried to get this through today.

    Seriously dude. You need to grow up. Take the L like we all have to do sometimes in life and move the F on. Your disgusting speculation masquerading as fact is losing uour credibility. Let it go dude,Just let it go. You probably won’t allow me to post this like the many many many others that I have had the audacity to question you and your motives l. So I’ll just screen shot it and add it to my PFT is the new Nation enquirer NO FACTS just all speculation and personal vendettas written as if you and ONLY you can see the forest through the trees. Man you got a massive ego

  44. Listnfrmafar Says:

    I don’t understand why so many of you find this so hard to believe. Brady’s contingency where ever he went was to be move involved in the offense. If BA was beat up from his achilles and it forced him to be more part-time than he was so be it but to come in at the 11th hour and make changes after a week of planning and practicing the plan is for sure going to go up Brady’s arse sideways. Brady would meet with Belichick and McDaniels every Tuesday morning, the weeks plan was finalized then. BA is old and style obsolete, he was pushed out period. Geez he still doesn’t know what his new role is. I’ll write it for the 100th time Brady isn’t playing anywhere if he doesn’t know who the head coach is! He knew Bowles would be HC probably before Bowles did. BA is powerless in this whole situation. PUT OUT TO PASTURE. Great article Joe, the haters are just in denial.

  45. Its a Bucs Life Says:

    Not a players job to address or refute rumors

  46. lambeau Says:

    BA was bought out–a real consultant dosn’t go on a golf holiday for the month leading up to the draft. And Brady knows silence is deafening.

  47. Vadertime Says:

    Well, this sounds to me like egos were involved. When that happens, it is never a good situation in the locker room. Whether it’s true or not regarding the friction between BA and TB, it’s water under the bridge now. Let’s move forward and be done with it. Go Bucs. Go Canes.