With a much-needed breather in Week 13 after two straight losses, Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians and quarterback Tom Brady had a plan to take advantage of the bye week -- golf.
Despite all the public discussion about their relationship, the wondering about whether or not they get along, how the quarterback handles being called out by the coach, Arians and Brady clearly like each other enough to anticipate two or three days of bonding over golf at Tampa's Old Memorial Golf Club, one of the state's best. That was the thought, with the two of them scheduling 36 or 54 holes.
The only problem was that the league stepped in and nixed the idea, a source said. Gathering outside the facility is not allowed in the COVID-19 protocols. And so, golf was out, but self-scout was in.
Brady spent the bye week examining his film, poring over the successes but also the 11 interceptions, and getting a better feel for Arians' offense. With all the discussion of Arians and Brady melding their schemes, defensive coaches who have played them say this is Arians' offense, as always. And Brady is still learning.
The coach believes Brady is in as good a spot scheme-wise as he has been all season.
Sure, there have been miscommunications. One of his two picks against the Chiefs was caused by a receiver getting fooled by coverage. But with four games to go, Arians and the coaching staff hope the learning curve is behind him.
One of the many topics they planned to discuss over golf… until the pandemic stepped in.