Bucs had to overcome errors against Cowboys

by Gary Shelton on September 17, 2021

in general

Brady helped overcome mistakes./TIM WIRT

Thursday, 3 a.m.

Sixty-nine times, he has been beaten. Sixty-nine times, in the regular season, things have gone wrong.

You can talk about Bucs' quarterback Tom Brady and his accomplishments for hours. He has won 231 games, and seven Super Bowls. He has thrown for 585 touchdowns. He has won awards, and made Pro Bowls, and earned millions of dollars.

Content beyond this point is for members only.

Already a member? To view the rest of this column, sign in using the handy "Sign In" button located in the upper right corner of the GarySheltonSports.com blog (it's at the far right of the navigation bar under Gary's photo)!

Not a member? It's easy to subscribe so you can view the rest of this column and all other premium content on GarySheltonSports.com.

But even now, Brady knows the taste of losing. And he knows the checklist to avoid it.

A team needs to avoid turnovers -- the Bucs had four last week.

It needs to limit penalties -- the Bucs had 11 for more than 100 yards last week.

They need to convert third downs -- the Bucs didn't on six of their 11 chances.

They need to excel in the red zone -- the Bucs missed on two of five trips.

They need to control the opposing quarterback -- Dak Prescott threw for 403 yards.

In other words, the Bucs got away with one in their 31-29 opening night victory over Dallas. Sunday, the Bucs hope to clean up some of their sloppiness.

“Football is about scoring points, ultimately," Brady said Thursday. "In the games, you [try to] score more points than the other team. And, I think the things that take away from scoring points are going to be the things that are the biggest deterrent from winning. So, turnovers obviously are probably number one because you’re giving them extra possessions to score and we don’t have a chance to score.

Then, penalties would probably be the next thing because you’re just going backward, you’re going the opposite direction. Then, you look at third-down [and] whether you possess the football. Then you look at red-area defense – whether you scored touchdowns for our sake or we kept them from scoring touchdowns on defense. It’s a game about points and I think we have to do a good job with turnovers, with penalties, with third-down production, with red-area offense. Then you look at like situational football, two-minute, situational offense and defense – all of those things are important when you look at a game. It’s never one play. Yeah, you can always point to one play, but it’s usually a bunch of different plays that all kind of add up.”

The Bucs did get a solid performance by Brady and a clutch kick by Ryan Succop to win the game. Now, they will try to be better.

“You’ve got a lot to learn from," Brady said. "Football is not a game that is ever perfect. I think we’ve got to do a much better job than we did last week and there’s a lot of things to clean up. There are a lot of things we talked about coming out of that game. We know what we’re going to be challenged with this week with a lot of the schemes that they present. They’re going to do a good job of cleaning up a lot of things that didn’t go well for them, so we’re expecting a really good football game against a real tough opponent – well-coached, a lot of good players, a very physical defense, a very athletic defense. We have our work cut out for us.”

Brady was asked what advice he would have for young quarterbacks.

“Good luck," he said. "It’s tough, but it’s up to them. Yeah, if you do the right stuff, you have a shot. But I see a lot of people not do the right stuff. I try to influence the people I can. First of all, you have to love it. If you want to do it for a long period of time, you have to really excel at it and that really comes from loving it. It’s a lot of different motivations over long periods of time. Lots of little things at different moments – some is more motivation, some is more inspiration, but there are a lot of different things that play into it.”

And on the day when he doesn't quite like football?

“Well, I always love it," Brady said. "There are probably days I love more than others, but I definitely love it. I love working out. I think the point is you push your body physically, your mind and your spirit mentally and emotionally and all of those things have to kind of stay in the right place over a long period of time. There are a lot of things that can take away from it. It’s a hard thing to do. There haven’t been many people who’ve done it, but I think I, in my part, have been very fortunate to have the right people in my life that have really allowed me to be successful – physically, mentally and emotionally.”

The Falcons were beaten 32-6 by Philadelphia last week, but defensive coordinator Todd Bowles said Atlanta is better than that. Bowles said the Bucs need to be better, too.

"It was just fundamentals and open-field tackling," Bowles said. "We've got to get our angles back together, we've got to get our tackling down. It looked like a preseason game as far as tackling. We know we've got to coach it better and they've got to play it better."

Yes, the Bucs are aware they'll face a lot of screen passes.

"It's been like that [since] last year," Bowles said. "It's just a matter of execution as well as helping out with some of the calls. We understand what's coming at us."

The Falcons and Bucs will play at 4:05 p.m. at Raymond James Stadium.

Previous post:

Next post: