Is Tom Brady Starting To Slip?

October 26th, 2022

Cracks in the armor?

Beware the internet, where everything that appears on a screen can be dug up or saved for posterity thanks to a simple screenshot.

So unless or until Tom Brady really, really, really does look like he’s done will Joe ever type “Tom Brady is done.” And Brady is not done.

Joe fully remembers in 2019 folks outside New England were singing in glee that Brady looked shot. So, so many were ready to start shoveling dirt in his face.

What has happened since?

So Joe brings you the following with the warning that this is not Joe typing this. It is from Cale Clinton of Football Outsiders who believes a big reason why the Bucs lost against the Stinking Panthers was Mr. Brady.

Clinton added Brady’s skills are slipping and decay is showing.

Brady needs to at least partially take the blame. Father Time hasn’t totally caught up to Brady, but he’s managing to finally land some punches. There are still throws that Brady made in this game that only he could make, passes that don’t look open but are thrown into windows smaller than a shoebox. In games where the ball can’t move down the field, those passes get eschewed for the easy ones that should have connected but failed to.

The place where Brady’s age shows the most is on short to intermediate quick passes, the aspects of the game that Brady’s offenses were so often centered around in New England and Tampa Bay. There’s not the same zip on the ball into those tight-window areas, and when those passes are coming up either short, low, or off-time, the mistakes begin to mount.

Why does Clinton think Brady was the culprit on Sunday? Clinton said All-22 tape and NextGen Stats show Brady had plenty of open receivers.

The Buccaneers’ receivers were given enormous cushions in the passing game. Per Next Gen Stats, Mike Evans and Cade Otton were tied for the fourth-biggest average cushion in Week 7 at 8.1 yards, while Chris Godwin came in not far behind at 7.3. Carolina let them work underneath all day. The Buccaneers passing offense found a ton of success on comeback routes and crossing routes, picking up chunk yardage. On the few shots Tampa Bay actually took downfield, Brady just … missed.

First, Joe will say that the “cushion” stat is a bit misleading because it includes Mike Evans having nobody around him for 30 yards on his dropped touchdown pass.

But not to dig up an old corpse, maybe, just maybe, Clinton unlocked the secret as to why failing Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich didn’t test the decimated Steelers secondary two weeks ago?

Is Brady losing his touch downfield? (Sure didn’t look that way on that dropped bomb to Evans.)

Is Brady hurt and subsequently shaky on deep throws? Remember, it was revealed Brady had a “little rotator cuff” injury early this month.

As for Father Time catching up with Brady, too many folks have made that call for years and Brady is still slinging it. Besides, how many washed starting quarterbacks have you seen that only had one pick through seven games?

Brady ranks sixth in the NFL in passing yards.

Let’s hold off on the obituary, shall we?

40 Responses to “Is Tom Brady Starting To Slip?”

  1. Beej Says:

    They were making this exact observation in 2020

  2. Bob in valrico Says:

    I believe that Brady still throws downfield well. The throw he made to Evans for
    40 yards between two defenders was perfect. IMO, He is rushing to get a short passes off and they aren’t as precise. Backs need to stay in block more
    to give him more time to get passes to receivers in the intermediate range where
    receivers have more room to get YAC yards.

  3. Steven L. Benner Says:

    How can everyone blame Brady- of course he isn’t the same guy he was back in New England- But he’s not far off!!! He needs fast healthy Receivers!!! No Gronk, No Julio Jones, No AB, Godwin is in & out with injuries-seems like Fournet is his Main go to guy!!! He’s playing it safe just handing the ball off to Fournet Now, he’s playing it safe- but he’s not fooling anyone!

  4. PassingThru Says:

    Nope. Brady actually looked worse in 2018 than in 2019. In 2018 his mechanics were poor by Brady standards. If you look at tape of him through much of the season you’d see him placing his left foot wide of of his target receiver. He might have had other issues, but that struck me as obvious. Brady went to a throwing coach mid-season and corrected that problem in time for a Super Bowl run.

  5. PassingThru Says:

    In 2019 Brady had a piss poor collection of WRs and TEs. Edelman’s knees were shot and he lost a bit on his cuts. Gronk retired. First round pick N’Keal Harry was a super bust. What WRs and TEs left were best left abandoned on the Isle of Misfit Toys. Brady was fine, he just kept throwing the ball away in frustration. The receiving options weren’t getting separation.

  6. SB~LV Says:

    Oh yes!

  7. PassingThru Says:

    Time present, we have a separate problem: piss poor interior O Line. They (Goedeke and Hainsey) are poor at both run blocking and pass protection, and of course the options replacing AB and Gronk have underwhelmed. That has led to a litany of serious problems, ranging from passes thrown away, timing routes disrupted (receivers not looking for the ball as it isn’t released when they expect it), a lack of late developing routes, and of course having defenses drop LBs in coverage and having lighter personnel packages as they have no respect for yhr Buc run game.

  8. PassingThru Says:

    The “time present” point is why the short and intermediate level passing game is poor. It’s an eyesore. Just bad, bad football. The Bucs have had months to fix it. What the hell were they thinking?

  9. Oneilbuc Says:

    In 2020 Brady had a all star team on offense that made up for his decline. Remember Fournette had 76 catches that’s a lot of catches for a running back that’s over 220 ponds. Brady still didn’t throw much down field even with 5000 yards passing. He threw the ball more than any other quarterback that year. Brady threw a lot of bubble screens that went for good yards a lot of catch and runs Gronk made 8 yard catches to 15 or 20 yards. That’s why I think Evans was the only receiver that had a 1,000 yards that year. Brady needs a all star team around him now days and that’s just a fact.

  10. LVMYBUCS Says:


  11. SB~LV Says:

    What a low life ungrateful cretin Antonio Brown is publicly trolling Tom Brady who saved his career twice and took him into his home.
    On a human level AB empty, a street animal from Overtown that had a gift in life and took it for granted.
    Toe tag with his name on it waiting a Jackson Memorial

  12. WillieG Says:

    It will not surprise me if we find out that Brady had an injury this season, just like during the Super Bowl year. A shoulder injury could explain a lot.

  13. Hodad Says:

    If you’re a pocket passer like Brady, sometimes you have to stand in taking a hit to deliver the ball. Brady doesn’t want to be touched let alone hit, that’s a problem. It’s hard to deliver the ball accurately, or down the field if you would rather chuck, and duck then to take one in the mouth to deliver a pass the way you need to. In a perfect pocket Brady can still sling it, but that’s not happening anymore do to our O line play. So you see Brady rushing to get rid of the ball because he can’t move, and won’t take any hits even if it means making a play.

  14. SB~LV Says:

    Anyone else notice the white stuff on Toms right forearm, it’s always there

  15. SufferingSince76 Says:

    Oneilbuc is in heaven right now.

    The only thing wrong with Brady is the woeful offensive line (emphasis on offensive).

  16. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    When you go 4-43 on medium to long 3rd downs, how can you not question the QB play.
    Of course, Brady is off on some passes.

    It appears to me that he hurries some of his passes even when he has some time…..not looking for secondary receivers.

    I don’t think he trusts his Oline.

  17. PassingThru Says:

    And yes, thus isn’t college. Outside runs aren’t the answer but they might help a bit.

  18. Reddington Neck Shores Says:

    you see his finger in week 3 after he hurt it in week two? full blown polish heritage kielbasa. you can’t tell me that, along with that big guy he took to the throwing arm aren’t behind all of this. and both of those were o line fails. joes favorite moniker peter the blah blah blah king called it and by golly he was right

  19. Bucsfan13 Says:

    Brady will still stand in the pocket. He takes “selective hits” now. It’s for the best of the team. If a guy on the OL is consistently getting beat, it’s better to just dirt the ball and live to fight another play. This is what aging QBs do. This isn’t the problem with this offense. Brady arrives in the stadium with his finger wrapped. It’s obviously affecting him in some throws.

    Nothing is ever easy in this offense for the QB. I look at Reid making Mahomes’ life easy by scheming people open and letting Pat throw short and the the backs and receivers get YAC. Josh Allen’s life is also made easier with great scheming. I look at our offenses and some of the other bad ones, and there’s a common theme: The QB has to be damn near perfect for the offense to succeed. Brady’s totally dependent on his receiver beating their man. His throws have little margin for error.

  20. Letsbucinggo Says:

    When you have 28 targets to Evans and Godwin means you don’t have anyone else to throw to.

  21. Anonymous Says:

    Wrong again OhNoneil. Led the league in downfield throws in 2020. You forget that other people watched the games too when spewing your lies.

  22. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Oneilsuckyall, in 2020 he had a torn MCL and still won a SB. Joe failed to write in his article he leads the NFC in passing. Not sure where these stats come from but during the game they panned the view of the receivers, what I saw was 7″ not 7 yards. One play Evan’s, Godwin and Gage were all in the same area. Brady knows when it’s on him of when WR stop, turn the wrong way or fall down, this is what I saw Sunday. Sure he threw some bad balls as every QB does but 7 yds NO way. I guess this article deflects the incompetent coaching staff, BL has know idea what to call or when to call it.

  23. Destinjohnny Says:

    Offensive line
    Bad drafting has cussed this

  24. Show Me the TDs Says:

    One pick through 7 games strongly indicates that this offense is risk adverse. “No Risk It, No Biscuit” won us a Superbowl. The current situation will only move us up the draft board.

  25. Bobby M. Says:

    We routinely fail at short yardage and rank near the bottom in rushing, our biggest issue is blocking not Brady. No QB can be under constant pressure and perform consistently well. We proved that in our SB run against Rodgers, Brees and Mahomes. Brady is less mobile than those guys so he’s had to get the ball out even faster than he typically does.

  26. TDavis Says:

    Watching the All-22, on the 8 meaningful drives the Bucs had, there were not guys running scott free that Brady had time to throw to but didn’t pull the trigger, except for maybe one play in the 3rd quarter.

  27. JimmyfromNY Says:

    Again several of you really have no clue , no risk it no biscuit during 2020 was finally changed to a more Brady type of offense midway through the season. More intermediate routes more seam routes. And people talking about him not throwing down the ball down the field is absolutely wrong he was tops or near in the league in downfield throws and tight window throws in both 2020 and 21. He was also top three in turnover worthy plays. Every quarterback every game misses throws. He still throwing the ball at an elite level. The difference is Mike Evans has been absolutely garbage. Doesn’t get open, doesn’t look for xtra yards either right down or out of bounds, Godwin is not 100%, the rest of the receiving core is either not good enough or rookies, worst running game in the NFL, just as bad O line and clueless play caller . This team is a 3-4 win team at best without the GOAT.


    I think he does have a shoulder issue, whether it is a rotator cuff or something else. But he is never going to tell us that, which I admire.

    There are alot of great days to still come this season, and #12 will drive those great days.

  29. Mike Johnson Says:

    if you were about to lose millions of your hard-earned money to an ex-wife who is probably going to take that money and be up under a fresh handsome young freddie free loading stud, You would be slipping too. Couple that worry with an offensive line which is helter skelter and this is what you have. yet, many here say its the coaches fault to to try and cover Brady. The man has to have an almost perfect o line. he xan’t run 3 yrds. Watch him sit in the pocket. The field is wide open. The defenses know he ain’t running nowhere.Not our year folks.

  30. Buc1987 Says:

    Mike Johnson….Brady’s wife currently has 10 times more money than him….so it’s not that.

  31. Tbbucs3 Says:

    How dare people question whether or not a 45 year old QB who just put up 3 points against the Panthers is starting to slip!


  32. captivajim Says:

    for years its been known that the best and throw off his game- was to pressure brady up the middle. . The O-Line has 3 new players,, 2 of whom are rookies !! Thats brady’s problem—thanx to LICHT..

  33. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Tbbucs, I guess Evan’s is slipping to dropping a TOUCH DOWN pass a pop Warner player could catch. White, Tyron, Darden, R. White, Lenny, Vea etc. ALL getting old and slipping.

  34. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Look around the league, other than Philly, Giants, KC & Bill’s the rest are in parody. Roger’s, Wilson, Ryan, Brady, Hebert, Carr ALL falling off the cliff at the same time.


  35. Jeebs the Honey Bear Says:

    Cushion is not the same as separation. On the big Mike Evans drop you refer to, that is separation. Cushion is how far the defender is from the player they are covering pre-snap. What this speaks to is an even bigger failure by Byron than is being pointed out. Byron should have been calling quick slants and other short to medium routes that would result in quick, easy throws and chunks of yards. Instead he was calling long developing route concepts with receivers running INTO coverage, while Brady is getting pressured. Also he continues to predicably slam our running backs into traffic. The man has no concept of scheme. He should have been fired 2 years ago.

  36. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Nice analogy Jeebs. I second the motion!

  37. orlbucfan Says:

    Fossilized Brady needs to retire like now. If the Ravens break his stupid, egomaniacal neck–good. I don’t care for Gabbert but he at least is upright and can scramble.

  38. JimmyfromNY Says:

    Orbucsfan-Dude you’re just a troll you could care less about the Bucs!! Bradys tortured your team for the past 22 years and it’s so bad that you have to come on this site to make a stupid comment like that. Losing tears are the most delicious!! 7x Bowl champ GOAT!!

  39. stpetebucfan Says:

    Here is a wild crazy thought. Perhaps TB12 actually loves his family more than football.

    Nah that is sacrilege right? Does he not appear more disinterested this year than ever before? What could possibly be on his mind since it’s not his boys or wife.

  40. Ranger Walker Says:

    I honestly wish the majority of the NE transplant fans that are all “experts” on Brady would just go back to being fans of NE already…