Bruce Arians was highly critical of Tom Brady following the Tampa Bay Buccaneers‘ 34-23 Week 1 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. While he had every right to speak his mind after Brady tossed two interceptions, Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre believes it was a mistake for Arians to publicly bash the six-time Super Bowl champion.
Speaking on SiriusXM NFL Radio on Tuesday, Favre discussed Arians’ comments in depth while also explaining that maybe Brady is okay with the criticism … or maybe he isn’t.
“I think the last person you want to call out after the first game of the year is Tom Brady. Now, maybe they had a mutual truce going into the game, going into the season, ‘Hey, I’m going to be hard on you. I want the guys to know we’re going to treat you the same even though technically I’m not, so are you OK with it?’ If they have that truce, great. If not, I think you are barking up the wrong tree.’’
Arians originally bashed Brady for a “miscommunication” with Mike Evans before walking back those comments and blaming the play on the wide receiver instead.
It wasn’t surprising that Arians publicly bashed one of his players — he frequently does so after poor performances — but to shame Brady after his former head coach with the New England Patriots, Bill Belichick, never slammed him in public fashion, was surprising for many.
Despite his poor start, there’s still plenty of time for Brady to get acclimated to his new club in Tampa Bay. The shortened offseason with no preseason games due to the coronavirus pandemic certainly didn’t make it any easier for the six-time Super Bowl champion to get comfortable in his new home.
While there’s speculation that Arians could have a mess on his hands headed into Week 2 against the Carolina Panthers, Favre is expecting to see more improvement from Brady as he begins to get more comfortable with the new system.
“Tom’s performance was not what we’ve come to expect from him, but I’ll say this, it wasn’t far off,” Favre said. “The first drive, I think most people said, ‘Well, he hasn’t missed a beat. That’s typical Tom.’ I was a little bit surprised at how he started. I was not surprised with how the rest of the game unfolded. New team. He’s been in a familiar environment forever and then all of a sudden not only is he with a new team, football itself is totally different right now. No preseason.”
The Buccaneers and Panthers have each won a game against each other in each of the last two seasons, but it’s important to note that each of Brady’s last two meetings against Carolina (2013, 2017) have resulted in losses.
In 2013, Brady tossed an interception and was sacked three times in a 24-20 loss to Cam Newton and the Panthers. In 2017, Brady performed better, throwing two touchdowns, but New England lost by a field goal 33-30.
With Brady being on a new team and the Panthers boasting a lineup that includes Teddy Bridgewater and Christian McCaffrey, things are bound to be a bit different this season.