Before the Bucs final pass completion of their Week 1 victory over the Cowboys, quarterback Tom Brady appeared to disagree with offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich. Looking to the sidelines with 24 seconds left, Brady said, “No, no, no,” while shaking his head. The 22-year veteran then hit Chris Godwin for 24 yards on a back shoulder pass to put the Bucs in field goal range.
Bucs QB coach Clyde Christensen was asked about this moment on the Pat McAfee Show on Monday, but his reply may have just added more confusion. Christensen clearly did not know what the question was referring to, as he addressed a scenario after the Godwin catch, not before it.
Bucs QB Tom Brady and OC Byron Leftwich – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
“Our situation was that we were trying to figure out how to run some time off the clock,” Christensen said. “So it was more of a misunderstanding of what we were trying to get done with running the time off the clock. We called ‘Double Outs’, where two guys are working the sideline. We just really wanted to throw that ball out of bounds. Take some time off, don’t leave them time after the field goal attempt.
“So it was more that than it was shaking off a play in this case. It’s talked through, but [Brady] has a lot of things he can go to at any time. But I think he was thinking, ‘hey I don’t want to throw it over there by the sideline where something bad could happen’. I think our intention, offensively, was ‘hey we just want to throw this thing out of bounds and run four or five seconds off the clock three times’. Take this thing down to where there wasn’t going to be any more plays.”
While it would have been awesome to get a real answer, especially from a coach as transparent as Christensen, this is a cool behind the scenes look at Tampa Bay’s late-game thought process. It’s obvious they had zero qualms about Ryan Succop from 36 yards out for the win. Once they reached the 18, they were comfortable leaving the game in his hands.
As for Brady and Leftwich, the non-issue caught on the broadcast (imagine a quarterback and coach discussing a play call – the horror!) will remain a non-issue. Christensen clearly didn’t know what the question was even referring to, so we can probably let this one go.
Jon Ledyard is PewterReport.com's newest Bucs beat writer and has experience covering the Pittsburgh Steelers as a beat writer and analyzing the NFL Draft for several draft websites, including The Draft Network. Follow Ledyard on Twitter at @LedyardNFLDraft
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