By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston

BOSTON (CBS) — On Sunday evening, Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians publicly criticized the GOAT. On Monday, the coach tried to put some toothpaste back in the tube.

Speaking to reporters, Arians said that his initial assessment was wrong, and that Tom Brady was not to blame for his first interception. Instead, Arians shifted blame to receiver Mike Evans for running the wrong route against the coverage which the Saints ran.

Here’s a look at the interception in question:

After the Bucs lost that game, Arians pinned the blame for both of Brady’s interceptions on the QB.

“[Brady] thought Mike was going down the middle. It’s a different coverage. Mike read it right,” Arians said Sunday. “He should’ve bent across his face, but Tom just overthrew it.”

While the blame for the second remains on Brady’s shoulders, Arians did adjust his assessment to put that one on Evans instead of the 43-year-old QB.

While Arians did take back that particular blame on Monday, he didn’t sound overly enthused about Brady’s overall performance.

(A sharp football mind might note that Arians’ team didn’t look at all prepared to play on Sunday, committing several critical and sloppy errors. Notably, the team mishandled a short kickoff that led to a turnover, and his defense also got drawn offside on a hard count on a fourth-and-2. His team overall committed nine penalties for over 100 yards. They also had a field goal blocked. Tom Brady could have said that Arians didn’t coach very well and needs to coach better next week … but he probably won’t.)

Brady finished the game completing 23 of his 36 passes for 239 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions, the latter of which was returned for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins. That one was certainly Brady’s fault.

Having played for Bill Belichick for 20 years, Brady is of course accustomed to getting criticized — harshly — by his head coach. Most of Belichick’s critiques, though, have been done in meeting rooms, during film sessions, and in rooms far, far away from the eager eyes of the media.

Clearly, things are going to be a little different down in Tompa Bay. And just as clearly, Brady may have informed his new head coach that if he’s going to go public with X’s and O’s criticisms like that … he better be correct.

Realistically, the best route for Arians — now that people are paying attention to his team and care about his quarterback — would likely be to not rush to play the blame game in his postgame press conferences. Doing it is one thing, and being wrong while doing it is another. So perhaps he’ll adapt a strategy of saying, “We’ll have to look at the film.”

Or, perhaps, he won’t. That would certainly add to the popcorn-entertainment factor for the rest of us.

Comments
  1. Truth-Hurts says:

    one of the most overrated coach is Bruce —just talks as if he has won anything! another woke coach –he should kneel before Brady —the team was totally unprepared –how can special teams player do a dumb flag football mistake?? Lack of discipline is the reason! Brady should let it rip –say in a polished way — there is plenty of blame to go around from top to bottom –so we all need to improve!! That will teach big mouth Bruce to keep his trap shut!!

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