Bucs QB Coach Defends Byron Leftwich, Says Injuries Frustrating Tom Brady

November 16th, 2022

This should quiet any remaining chatter about Odell Beckham Jr. coming to the Buccaneers.

An array of injuries to Bucs pass catchers has been frustrating Tom Brady. That the word from Clyde Christensen, Tampa Bay QB coach via the Buccaneers Radio Network.

Yesterday, Christensen painted a picture of Brady being a huge fan of the Bucs’ quick and athletic receivers but banging his head against the wall because he can’t work with them enough at full speed.

“He loves our guys when they’re healthy,” Christensen said. “I think he’s just been frustrated like everybody that, ‘Gosh, I just think we should be rolling now. We just can’t get all our guys on the field at the same time. We got such good guys.’ So I think he’s just had a level of frustration with that. Not that he was dissatisfied with the guys but you just don’t get any continuity. They don’t work together.

“And I think it’s the same for the playcaller. Who’s going to be in there? It’s hard to make up your gameplan when all of a sudden you don’t know. ‘Hey, is Julio playing?’ You know, and it’s Thursday afternoon and he didn’t practice.

“Well, do you make a set of plays for Julio and all of a sudden he doesn’t make it, or he does make it and you don’t have enough set up for him? So the whole thing gets out of whack when you’re not positive of who’s going to be in there and what they’re doing.”

For the record, Christensen wasn’t asked about Byron Leftwich, “the playcaller.” He went there on his own.

Of course it’s been challenging to have Chris Godwin in different stages of knee recovery all season, along with the Julio Jones saga of injuries and Russell Gage battling hamstring issues since July. Throw in Cameron Brate’s neck injury, Cade Otton being a rookie and missing time because his mother died, and Leonard Fournette claiming he was playing on one leg. 

Joe isn’t making excuses for Leftwich’s performance, only lining up the list that sits on two inexperienced interior offensive linemen.

The Bucs now are as healthy among their pass catchers as they’ve been since opening day, and there’s a bye week to improve.

It made a difference Sunday and it should in 11 days against Cleveland.

As for Beckham, after hearing Christensen, it’s hard to believe Brady wants to add another receiver dealing with a significant rehab.

44 Responses to “Bucs QB Coach Defends Byron Leftwich, Says Injuries Frustrating Tom Brady”

  1. Goatfarmer Says:

    None of that explains the horrible and unimaginative run calls, and sticking with oaf Goedeke – it took Harold Goodwin to call Leftwurst out for not calling the run plays that favor the Bucs’ “strengths” and he probably secretly changing out the run plays on ByeMoron’s game day sheet in Munich.

    Like d!ck with ears Adam Schein, I’m not sold.

  2. Craig Says:

    Brady was throwing fissy-fits because the line hadn’t gelled yet and was Jello.

    I doubt better line and QB play could help Leftie, his plays were why the line couldn’t gell.

  3. Ash Says:

    Lol everyone in the league deals with injuries leftwich isnt unique in that way and he couldnt game plan around it like I’ve seen coaches around the league do so this is bs he just isn’t that good. There were rumblings going on that in the building they were dissatisfied in his playcalling they were aware of the injuries just like everyone else.

  4. SufferingSince76 Says:

    I wouldn’t expect Christensen to say anything other than what he said, but I hope he is correct in his assessment.

  5. Lamarcus Says:

    The team build around Brady…So when Brady is not on A game or frustrated with players, missing practices and walk throughs, screaming at players in TV, etc… Does have/had an effect on this team and what players you know who it’s not going to effect.

    Brady wasnt all in and so the players/coaches get the blame because you know it’s Tom and the band of Yes men

  6. D-Rok Says:

    Seems like a lot of people INSIDE the building are stepping up and defending BL. Whether he’s a good OC or not isn’t as important as the people he works with having his back, so I see that as a good sign for the team, overall.

    PS: Joes, off-topic just a tad, but I’d be quite curious to see the Tod Bowles confidence poll now that the Seahawks game produced a win.

  7. JD Says:

    @Lemarcus.. I think I’m starting to realize you are just a troller Brady hater!

  8. bucs4life Says:

    Injuries, hence Byron Leftwich can call two inside runs and a delayed screen or short pass every dang set of downs. Beautiful logic!

  9. Goatfarmer Says:

    Given that Tom had to force a change in practice and game prep, the Bowelswich confidence poll should be what it be.

  10. D-Rok Says:


    You said what I was going to say but felt like being a tad more optimistic after the win, Cuz I do what I do, cuz! LOL.

  11. Buc1987 Says:

    JD…ask him if he loves Jameis though…the answers yes.

    Brady’s been playing at a high level all season.

  12. Lamarcus Says:


    Yea when it’s one of the main issues of the team is the Qb when he’s not all in but somehow everyone else around him needs to be 100. That’s BS!!!

  13. Lamarcus Says:


    I’ll answer that for YOU!!! I still Jameis like I follow a lot of other players

    This team is .500 because of Brady’s antics and his measly 12 tds in 800 passing attempts. It’s unwatchable and boring!!!

  14. Your Mom Says:

    I’m a bit suspicious that the worst offensive productions were when Bruce Arians was out with heart issues. Is he still carrying Leftwich?

  15. Caleb Says:

    Yawn, what’s with this lame PR campaign for Leftwich? This offensive coaching staff has been awful. It took LG to get injured to be benched for the superior player. The rookies White and Otton should be starting but for some reason Brate is still running more routes than Otton in the Seattle game. The playcalling is still bad and predictable. They ran the ball almost 75 percent of the time on first down and most of the time got 3 yards or less. Losing on first down means they had to again face a ton of third downs. 15 after 21 last week. Even though they converted 10 that 66 percent conversion rate is not sustainable. They need to do better on first down or the winning will not continue.

  16. Statisticly Insignificant Reader Says:

    Jensen status????

  17. NEfan Says:

    Lamarcus, not sure why the chip on your shoulder, I thinks he’s done really good with absolutely NO running game. Did you watch the Seattle game? With a resemblance of a run game to entire offense gel in spite of BL’s moronic calls. Has there ever been a SB won when the winning team couldn’t run the ball? I dount it. The D players for Baltimore told everyone how predictable BL’s play calling is, they knew what plays the Bucs were running. How can any of you readers ignore that??? Apparently BA can.

  18. stpetebucfan Says:

    Never agreeing with LaMarcus, this is the closest I’m probably going to get.

    I think LaMarcus obviously overstates the blame that Brady deserves for the horrible start just as we JW haters would overstate the shirtshow that is the New Orleans offense as JW’s fault. Both QB’s deserve a SHARE of the blame but as this article points out there is plenty of fault to go around.

    Yes Brady missed how many days during the preseason schedule…ELEVEN DAYS in a vain attempt to save his marriage. I absolutely do NOT judge Brady for this.
    He’s a family man and I respect ANY man trying to save a marriage. But it DID have an effect! He took an important Saturday off to attend Robert Kraft’s wedding…that I do not have any sympathy for…Kraft should have planned his wedding date better!

    At any rate…yes HEALTH has been a MAJOR issue! Yes it’s primarily WR’s and TE’s but the OL has not escaped. Donavan’s injury certainly set not just the team but Donavan himself back!

    There are PLENTY of reasons for the dismal start. But imagine if I gave you three plays to use and reverse the result…IE…what if ME13 catches that EASY TD perfectly thrown pass to start the game…think momentum and confidence not to mention the SEVEN points might have enabled the Bucs to win? How about Devin White’s braindead penalty that gave a vanquished foe another chance after being stopped?

    It’s not a stretch to say the team could have two maybe three more wins right now if not for UNUSUAL plays. How many wide open TD’s has ME13 dropped?
    How many braindead personal fouls has Devin White committed out of how many sacks?

    Bottom line is…The Bucs have survived all of that and with the bye week to heal and jell even more the second half of the season is the Buc’s for the taking!!!

  19. Panhandle Buc Says:

    Sooooo injuries was the reason for running Lenny up the middle repeatedly on 1st down into a brick freaking wall? Unimaginable play calling was because of injuries…got it. LOL

  20. Rod Munch Says:

    So not knowing if Julio will play makes you call every 1st down as a run up the middle? LOL!

  21. Cobraboy Says:

    Wagons circled.


  22. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    What is going on with Jensen?……we understand he injured his knee….but to my knowledge….that’s all we know…..it would seem to me that at least one person in the media could have investigated and come up with better info….

    The key to injuries on offense is Julio Jones…..and in addition, if we get a healthy Russell Gage…

    There are those who call Gage a bust……they are (to be kind) uninformed. Gage has been playing with an injured hamstring the entire year….much like what took Scotty Miller out. Under the circumstances, Gage has performed as well as can be expected.

  23. Cobraboy Says:

    What is up with Jensen ?

    Has that question been asked?

  24. Rod Munch Says:

    Why do people keep asking about Jensen? Do they think there is some conspiracy at work to hide information?

    When he got hurt, all the reports were is that best case he might be back for the playoffs. There’s literally been nothing else said about it since then.

  25. Deeez NATZ Says:

    Even though boron sucks out loud Brady was playing like ish..Enough blame to go around but just maybe we have turned the corner with the o line,the recievers,Rashad starting and Brady.

  26. Rod Munch Says:

    BTW, for anyone talking about OBJ, just give it a rest.

    All the reports on him say he’s looking for big money AND a long term deal. Tampa has no money to pay him, and why would he sign a long term deal when he’s looking at the roster and see’s the only QB on the roster next year, under contract, is Trask?

    He’s not coming here unless everyone else rejects him and he decides to play for the vet min, which I think is extremely unlikely.

    While I certainly wouldn’t mind having him, the Bucs already have Julio as the vet who is constantly injured (not to mention Perriman). Adding OBJ, coming off another major injury, would be very risky just based on the rest of the roster and depth. Still, as a pure lottery ticket, I’d take it at a vet min, but that’s not what he’s looking for.

    Also the Bucs are 5-5, and he’s supposedly looking for a legit SB contender. The Bucs got a ways to go to get back to being part of that conversation.

  27. Buc king Says:

    Lamar your a idiot….
    Winston is trash and Brady is the goat…
    Do the math if you can.

  28. Tap-Out Says:

    It’s beyond me how much so called Bucs Fans keep Whining While Winning!

  29. Jaybuc Says:

    The injury excuse I’m tired of hearing. Yes, key players out can make a difference but we have a deep receiving core.

    Why do so many teams with back up QBs put up good game plans and have a coach that can call plays without being predictable (especially when playing Tampa).

    Why did it take 10 games before Leftwich calls a fake wide receiver screen that left both Evans And and Godwin wide open???

  30. Jaybuc Says:

    Tired of the injury excuse! All teams have them and yes, missing a couple KEY players can make a huge difference. But teams find ways to win with backup QBs all the time (especially against Tampa).

    Play calling has been predictable and we all know that. Plus we have a deep receiving core that we could have run fake wr screens to prior to this last game!

  31. Dubcity Says:

    People are dying to blame the coach.. this goes against their bias so of course the fans are mad in the comments. The coaches are all correct. Players, WR, QB. And especially the IOL was playing poorly. Nothing to do w coaching

  32. THOMAS PFALZ Says:

    Clyde you need to stop letting your alligator mouth overload your tadpole ass.

  33. Rod Munch Says:

    Jaybuc Says:
    Why did it take 10 games before Leftwich calls a fake wide receiver screen that left both Evans And and Godwin wide open???


    What are you talking about? The reason it worked is because Leftwich used the entire season to set up that fake! It’s brilliant!

  34. ReggieJax Says:

    Whoever believes Brady’s not in is out to lunch. Just because he has other stuff going on, doesn’t mean he’s not all in on playing. For God,s sake he lost his marriage to play football. Gisele thought he was in too much and some of you think not enough. LMAO

  35. captivajim Says:

    So Brady has to tell the junior HC , Bowles, that practices need to be more competitive ..
    & BA has to tell OC leftworst what to do with the red pen he left in the drawer on a daily basis ..

    and yet BA blames Brady’s play ??!!

  36. Rod Munch Says:

    ReggieJax Says:
    November 16th, 2022 at 1:31 pm
    Whoever believes Brady’s not in is out to lunch.


    I was and never have been on the ‘it’s Brady’ bandwagon, or that he’s a problem. However, I do believe that since he got rid of the dead weight (his wife, not Leftwich), he’s been a lot more involved. Could be as simple as he just has more time not having to deal with that drama.

    Regardless, I want Brady as involved as possible, because he’s the one that is going to eventually get tired of Leftwich’s very limited abilities and start bypassing him altogether, or maybe Brady is a miracle worker and finally gets through to Leftwich that no one is tricked by calling the same trick play twice in the span of 5 plays, and no is surprised by his 17th straight run up the middle on 1st down.

  37. rsjcheapseats Says:

    Gee – if only there was something called, I don’t know, a training camp where the QB could get on the same page.

    The GOAT missed 11 days – and it hurt the team.

    Of course the real problem has been the OL – but Brady has been skittish in a few games as well.

  38. David Says:

    Having LEverett at OG and Smith healthy is big. Throw in Hicks at DT and the receivers…. Things are looking up. It was awesome to see Julio contribute and leave the game looking healthy. Of course watching White patiently wait for the hole and then explode through it and run so smoothly was fantastic. I just hope they can keep Lenny happy because he is still needed.
    They seem to be getting some momentum heading in the right direction with their play and getting healthy. I think the bye week is perfect.
    The biggest issue to me is not having Shaq on the outside. JTS and Nelson need to keep progressing.

  39. NEfan Says:

    rsj, 4 days get your facts straight.

  40. Hodad Says:

    When you don’t have your guys that’s when real good coaches earn their money. They get more creative, not less. They play to the strenghts of the players they have, not the ones they wish they had. Excuses are like A holes, everyone has one.

  41. The Beer Whisperer Says:

    If there are any better OC’s here in the peanut-gallery, you should bring your resume’ to Bucs HQ and apply for the job.

  42. The Beer Whisperer Says:

    I’m sure many here have years of NFL experience, other than just watching tv on Sundays, lol

  43. Pelsbuc61 Says:

    BA should be kissing Brady’s ring(s) everyday. How’d that season work out with Winston? Brady brought the free agents to Tampa, not BA and not Licht. This year, the Oline is sh#t, his receivers drop passes and can’t get separation, Lenny has been dreadful and Leftwich can’t devise a competent game plan but BA decides to blame Brady. BA needs to be quiet and enjoy the ring Brady got him.Let’s enjoy Brady while we have him. Us real Bucs fans certainly know about the dark ages.

  44. Greg Says:

    @Joe… do you think Jensen will be back for the Browns game?
    Of course not. –Joe