Sunday night’s game between Mac Jones’ New England Patriots and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was hyped by the return of Tom Brady to Foxborough. In a game that was largely dominated by both defenses, it was Brady’s Bucs that came out with a 19-17 win.
The Patriots had a chance to take the lead in the last minute with a 56-yard field goal. However Patriots kicker Nick Folk missed, giving the Bucs yet another win.
Tom Brady was unusually off his game, and much could have been made about the return to his former employer as the reason. It could also be simply because the Patriots defense know Brady’s game inside and out.
While Brady was slightly off his game, Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones played perhaps his best game at NFL level for Bill Belichick. Jones threw for 275 yards, two touchdowns and one interception and completed 31 of his 40 passes.
On national television, when the former Alabama quarterback went toe-to-toe with Brady, Jones more than held his own. In fact, many have said he outplayed Brady.
Jones gives nothing away from Brady chat
Postgame, Jones was asked about his embrace and talks with Brady and he didn’t offer any details into what was said between the pair. He opted to keep it between the two quarterbacks. Unfortunately for Jones, the NFL has microphones and cameras everywhere once a game has been completed.
On Tuesday, the NFL released a video on its official Twitter account that showed Brady hugging Jones along with other members of the new England Patriots. The incident was mic'd up and happened after the narrow win. The Tampa Bay Bucs organization shared its own video that did not feature the same content as the NFL’s video.
It is clear from the videos that Brady still has a great connection with his former teammates and coaching staff, particularly Josh McDaniels.
After the win, Brady and the Bucs moved to 3-1 on the season as they continue to defend their Super Bowl title win last season. The Dolphins are up next for Brady and his team as they look to build on Sunday night's result.
Mac Jones and the New England Patriots slumped to 1-3 on the year and will want to bounce back after a narrow loss. They take on the struggling Houston Texans next.
One this is for certain: Brady's return to Boston did not disappoint after weeks of build-up and the game definitely delivered.