Former Patriots Exec Thinks Tom Brady Had This Realization About Bruce Arians, Bill Belichick

'He's gotta be saying to himself...'


Jan 26, 2022

Tom Brady might have an ax to grind with Bill Belichick, but that doesn’t mean he’s of the belief that Bruce Arians is a superior head coach.

Arians’ situational shortcomings never have been more evident than they were Sunday when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers left safety Antoine Winfield Jr. one-on-one with star receiver Cooper Kupp. After rallying from a 27-3 deficit to tie the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC divisional round, the Bucs allowed Kupp to catch two balls for 64 yards on the Rams’ final drive, setting up a game-winning field goal.

The loss ended Tampa’s bid for a Super Bowl repeat and, potentially, marked the end of Brady’s NFL career. And, according to former Patriots executive Michael Lombardi, the nature of the defeat might’ve further illustrated to Brady the wide coaching gap between Belichick and Arians.

“Every Friday of his career, Brady would go into a meeting and sit on the lower seat of the left side of the room and he would watch Belichick go through the ‘gotta have it’ players,” Lombardi said on his latest “The GM Shuffle” podcast episode. “And Belichick would spend time saying, ‘When they need to make a play, it’s Cooper Kupp. They need a third down, it’s Cooper Kupp. Where’s the ball going? It’s Cooper Kupp.’

“So, for Brady to see that Cooper Kupp had 64 yards on the final drive when they gotta have it, he’s gotta be saying to himself, ‘This probably wouldn’t have been the case in New England.’ “

It’s important to note that Lombardi was speculating, rather than reporting. Regardless, he might’ve been on to something.

Brady’s future perhaps the top storyline during the NFL offseason. The 44-year-old reportedly could take roughly a month to decide whether he intends to play next season.

Thumbnail photo via Nathan Ray Seebeck/USA TODAY Sports Images
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