It was the game that everyone had circled on the calendar after the NFL announced their schedule in the middle of May. Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers took on Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints in the first Sunday of the NFL Season and it was a must-see match-up!
It was the first NFL game that featured both starting Quarterbacks that are over the age of 40, however, now of these 40+ aged quarterbacks has sights on playing another couple of seasons, while the other one is at a road block in his career. We won't look too far into this as both players are still playing at an extremely high level.
The game was destined to be good and it did not disappoint early on. Tom Brady got the scoring started has he did the old fashioned QB Sneak, his first rushing touchdown as a Tampa Bay Buccaneer, put them up 7-0 early on. Two processions later, the Saints answered with a 12-yard touchdown pass from Brees to Alvin Kamara to even the game at seven all.
On the ensuing Tampa Bay drive, Brady gets picked off by Marcus Williams and the ensuing Saints drive turned into a touchdown and very quickly, Brady and his crew found themselves down 14-7.
Fast forwarding to the third quarter, Brady's day didn't get any better as he got intercepted for the second time by Janoris Jenkins and got returned to the end zone for a Saints Touchdown to put New Orleans up 24-7. On the very next drive, Brady finally found the end zone, by connecting with Tight End O.J. Howard, his first passing touchdown with the Buccaneers and got his team back within 10 points. After driving his team down the field again and getting a field goal, the Buccaneers were suddenly down by a single touchdown.
However, the Saints added yet another touchdown and another field goal in the fourth quarter to make the score 34-17. Brady threw another touchdown pass to Mike Evan late in the game but it was futile as the Bucs missed a two-point conversion attempt and the Saints walked away with a 34-23 victory in Week 1.
The Jenkins pick-six marked the third consecutive game in which Brady has thrown a pick six. Week 17 against the Miami Dolphins, Eric Rowe too it to the house. The Wild Card playoff game against the Tennessee Titans, Logan Ryan took it back. The Ryan pick turned out to be his last pass in a Patriots uniform. And now Jenkins in Week 1 as a member of the Buccaneers. Brady joins the likes of Matt Schuab and Beanie Gabbert as the only three NFL QB's to throw a pick-6 in three consecutive starts. Ironically enough, Gabbert is currently Brady's back-up in Tampa. Schaub and Gabbert accomplished this feat in 2013.
It wasn't a better day for Tight End Rob Gronkowski as Gronk only caught two passes for 11 yards. Gronkowski was targeted just three times.
Fair to say its a rough start for Brady and Gronk in their new home, but again it was only their first game of the season so both players can only improve going forward, but not the type of start either guy had in mind.
The Buccaneers host the Carolina Panthers next week.