Bruce Arians likes to stretch the field with his offense. The Buccaneers have a couple of big-time deep ball threats in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Jameis Winston certainly tried to take advantage of that as much as possible in 2019.
Will Tom Brady be able to do that in 2020? Some are questioning that, considering the Bucs’ new quarterback will be 43 when the season begins.
Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians weighed in on that idea this week. Arians believes the idea that Brady can’t throw the deep ball well is wrong.
“I think the perception is just wrong,” Arians told ESPN on Wednesday. “I thought his deep ball was outstanding last year. Through their play-action game, they hit a lot of deep balls. And our quarterback — I thought he put it as good as anybody — throw it to the guy who’s open.”
Brady and Winston were actually two of the best quarterbacks in the NFL when going deep in 2019. Their stats were similar.
Tom Brady and Jameis Winston had the exact same number of completions and attempts on deep passes thrown into tight windows last year. They were tied for the best completion rate in the entire league, per NFL Next Gen Stats. pic.twitter.com/3JfCkX0P1X
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) March 19, 2020
Arians added that his offense isn’t just about the deep ball. He said that Brady will have the opportunity to throw the ball all across the field.
“We do have reads that start deep and come in short, but I’ve had a couple quarterbacks that just keep looking deep — they won’t throw the checkdown,” Arians added to ESPN. “[Offensive consultant] Tom Moore has the best saying in the world: ‘You don’t go broke putting money in the bank. Take the damn checkdown.’
“We don’t have to teach Tom that. But I think the freedom of looking downfield on certain routes and in certain situations, when the matchup’s perfect — take it, don’t be afraid to take it — some quarterbacks are afraid to take it. I’m not looking for a ‘checkdown Charlie’ quarterback.”
It remains to be seen what the Buccaneers’ Tom Brady-led offense will look like. We can’t wait to find out, though.