‘Tompa Bay’ is Titletown – Tom Brady, who led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Tremendous Bowl 2021 victory with fierce protection

TAMPA, Florida – Eleven months ago, it was inconceivable that quarterback Tom Brady would choose the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of all people to continue his football journey.

Equally implausible was that this partnership – forged in a coronavirus pandemic-ridden off-season, with little time to connect with new teammates or master a new game book – Brady’s 10th Super Bowl appearance and the seventh Vince Lombardi Trophy would produce.

At the age of 43. On his home turf at Raymond James Stadium.

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But on Sunday evening Brady and the Bucs defeated Patrick Mahomes and the defending champions Kansas City Chiefs 31-9 and gave the Bucs their second Lombardi trophy. They played in front of the first audience in Super Bowl history and in front of 7,500 health care workers. Brady was 21 of 29, overtaking 201 yards and three touchdowns, including two against Rob Gronkowski.

“To get here in Tampa, to come to an organization that was ready to win, to come here with the players – they’re all fantastic players, great guys, just everyone overall – the story is amazing and it definitely has a rank up there with one of my greatest accomplishments of all time, “said Gronkowski.

It was a brilliant defensive performance and a brilliant game plan from Defensive Coordinator Todd Bowles. The Bucs’ D, which made a quantum leap this postseason after being lit by Tyreek Hill for 269 yards and three touchdowns in Week 12 of the regular season, threw Mahomes out of rhythm and put him under heavy pressure as the Chiefs didn’t have any Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz tackled the offensive.

Mahomes was constantly thrown off balance and the Bucs defenders were on the ball, and Antoine Winfield Jr. scored an intercept in the third quarter.

“I can’t do him enough credit,” said Buc coach Bruce Arians of Bowles. “You know, I think he was a little tired of hearing how unstoppable they were. I thought he had a fantastic plan just to keep them in front of us and do really good. Patrick wouldn’t beat us if we did run.” … “

Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady threw three touchdowns when he received his seventh Super Bowl ring. Mark LoMoglio / AP Photo

Mahomes was released three times, intercepted twice, and kept out of the end zone.

You couldn’t think of anything if you tried.

The same goes for Brady, who goes into the wrong house and gets kicked out of a public park when ordering at home. This resulted in a semi-awkward encounter with the mayor and a promise she must fulfill: renaming “Tampa Bay” to “Tampa Brady”.

“Tompa Bay” has a nice sound too. Hey, a deal is a deal.

Three players Brady personally recruited for Tampa – Gronkowski, wide receiver Antonio Brown and Leonard Fournette – scored all touchdowns in the Super Bowl, with Gronkowski scoring two goals in the first half.

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Tom Brady tosses Rob Gronkowski two of his three touchdown passes when the Buccaneers defeated the Chiefs to win Super Bowl LV.

“It’s great to see great players make great games,” said Brady. “Just love what you did, what you added to the team. Gronk is an amazing player, teammate, talent, work ethic, commitment. And AB [Brown] It’s just that since he’s been here he’s done everything right. So impressed with him. “

On Fournette, Brady said, “He was great and just did everything. Blocked, ran, just had an amazing season. We got him pretty late and he just showed up big. It was amazing how he performed in the greatest moments. “”

Brady called his shot early. When he first signed with the Bucs, indicating that he wasn’t interested in receiving Chris Godwin’s # 12 (he got the number, eventually), he asked General Manager Jason Licht if # 7 was available. “Why 7?” Asked light.

Brady replied, “After the seventh Super Bowl.”

Bold? Maybe. But he deserves it.

Bucs 31, Chiefs 9
• Brady, defense leads Bucs to victory »
• Chiefs dynasty delayed by loss »
• Mahome’s quest put on hold »

Brady was in rare company before Sunday, his six championship rings tied him to Michael Jordan, one of his idols. But on Sunday night he outperformed Jordan and Alabama’s trainer Paul “Bear” Bryant. Now he’s linked with Nick Saban, Mickey Mantle, and Babe Ruth, to name a few.

The athletes who won more? Bill Russell won 11 NBA titles and Sam Jones 10. In baseball, Yogi Berra won 10 World Series rings, Joe DiMaggio nine and Phil Rizzuto, Frankie Crosetti, Bill Dickey and Lou Gehrig each won eight – the same number of titles as Tom Heinsohn, KC Jones, Tom “Satch” Sanders and John Havlicek won the NBA. And don’t forget Brady’s former trainer Bill Belichick, who has eight Super Bowl rings – two with the New York Giants and six with the New England Patriots.

Almost all of these players and coaches have made it with the same team year after year and built the greatest dynasties in professional sport. Brady started over at a time when Father Time was supposed to catch up with him.

Arians pointed out “the belief he gave to everyone in the organization that this is possible” after the NFC championship game. “It only took one man.”

Many argued that Brady took the greatest risk of his career, leaving the only team he ever knew with the Patriots, the only head coach he ever knew in Belichick, and the only path he ever knew : winning. He traded those things for a Bucs team that hadn’t been in the postseason for 13 years, hadn’t won a playoff game in nearly two decades, and still has the worst profit share in the league (.393).

Brady wasn’t sacrosanct in Tampa. Sometimes he fought. The lack of an off-season hurt him when he got on the same side as Arians and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich. Brady admitted “we weren’t great” after losing to the Chiefs in Week 12 when the Bucs missed a touchdown and fell to 7-5.

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The Bucs ended the regular season with a four-game winning streak and didn’t look back. They won three postseason games on the road – including trips to New Orleans and Green Bay to face Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers respectively. Dethrone the Chiefs on Sunday night and become the fourth team in NFL history to win a Super Bowl as Road Wild card team. Now comes a new test for a team that is still used to life in the spotlight: replaying as champions, something Brady did only once with the Patriots in 2003 and 2004, and something the Chiefs did in the 2020 season have not achieved. Brady is set to be in the second year of a two-year contract for $ 50 million and this week he said he would “definitely consider” playing past the age of 45, which could open the Bucs’ window to assert themselves.

Gronkowski has already confirmed his return. But the Bucs have to re-sign Godwin, who becomes an unrestricted free agent. So did pass rusher Shaq Barrett, with whom they couldn’t make a deal in the last off-season and who forced him to play under the franchise label, and linebacker Lavonte David. The Bucs will have a salary cap of around $ 30 million.

The trainers and the front office loved Brown. Can you re-sign it? And can he still avoid problems outside of the field without the structure of a season? His civil suit was postponed to December 2021 because of the pandemic.

There is also Leonard Fournette, whose 313 meters before the start of Sunday were the most players in the playoffs. Will Tampa Bay be able to bring him back?

“We were obviously all-in for this season, but the way we’re set up right now – there are a lot of questions and a lot of unknowns about the size of the salary cap right now, but I think we’re beautifully set up”, said light. “A young defense, a young secondary, young receivers [and] a fairly young offensive line. I wouldn’t say it changed on March 20th [when Brady signed]. We’re still looking for the long term and we still have a long term plan [with] the way we set things up. “

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