No one except raving fans of Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers would have expected a barn burner on Sunday.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense has been decimated by injuries — especially the offensive line — and the Green Bay Packers are still figuring out how to function as a top-notch team. With Rodgers fast approaching 40 and Brady having long left that milestone in his rearview mirror, there was a good chance their wet Week 3 matchup in Florida would go down as heavy as the humidity.
The Brady Buccaneers lost 14-12 to the Rodgers Packers. Brady is the gold standard of longevity and victory in the NFL, and Rodgers helped Wisconsin quickly move on from its previous legendary quarterback – Brett Favre who is currently caught up in a scandal involving embezzled government funds from Mississippi.
These two quarters are featured faces of the NFL in the new millennium. They’re both an underdog storys, with Rodgers having to be that guy from the 2005 NFL Draft who had to wait longer than expected for his name to be called, and of course no one expected Brady to have a great career in the NFL when he was drafted in the sixth round in 2000.
It took the Buccaneers most of the game to finally score six points on one play Sunday. They scored their only touchdown of the game with 18 seconds left. And the Packers, they didn’t score a touchdown with just under nine minutes left in the second quarter.
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This game was the featured late afternoon game. Brady and Rodgers. They don’t often play against each other, so of course these two names are a great fit for FOX. must-have as the network’s featured match for the week.
Brady leading the Buccaneers into the field for this final practice was the highlight of Sunday’s final games, but that game failed to produce a touchdown for hours. Geno Smith vs. Marcus Mariota was the most entertaining quarterback duel.
The Buccaneers and Packers are 2-1, but their seasons seem to be going in opposite directions. Even though the Buccaneers defeated the Saints last week on the road, Brady looked like he was having little to no fun. He was slamming tablets and started an altercation that suspended one of his best offensive weapons for this week’s game.
A love of the game is believed to be what brought Brady back to the field after one of the briefest retirements in professional sports history. Less than a month into this season, Brady looked miserable on the pitch. The Buccaneers will likely win the NFC South as one team literally has to win the division and the others are quarterbacked by Mariota, Jameis Winston and Baker Mayfield, but we could finally see Brady hanging on a year too long.
Rodgers and the Packers are in a much better position. With David Bakhtiari finally returning to his left tackle spot after two seasons out with injury, the Packers are complete. This offensive line will open up huge holes for the Packers’ rushing offense, which might be the best in the NFL that doesn’t include Lamar Jackson. They also have a defense that has yet to let an opponent break 25 points this season.
Although the Packers and Buccaneers have the same record, they appear to be teams headed in different directions. The Packers are embracing a new reality, while the Buccaneers seem to be struggling through their own. It all came together on Sunday for an ugly game with a dramatic ending.
Brady vs Rodgers, a disappointment. The NFL is truly entering a new era.