Much has been said this week about Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians publicly criticizing quarterback Tom Brady for his performance in his first game with the team. A former long-time NFL assistant coach has offered a different potential source of criticism for Bruce Arians: Bruce Arians himself.
“You wanna blame somebody, blame yourself because your team was outcoached,” Rob Ryan said on Sky Sports’ Inside the Huddle.
Ryan, who had no issue with Tampa’s defense, targeted the offense and the special teams, the latter of which he said were “atrocious.”
Ryan focused on the misplayed mortar kick, explaining that the Buccaneers should have seen it coming, and that the player who went backward to try to catch it (colliding with the player who was moving forward to catch it) should have been coached to never do that.
As it relates to the offense, Ryan said that Arians must “meet Brady halfway,” using plays that are more familiar to Brady and not expecting him to do things he doesn’t typically do.
Ryan cited the interception that was returned for a touchdown, an “out” route jumped by Saints cornerback Janoris Jenkins.
“That’s not his throw,” Ryan said of Brady. “He doesn’t make those throws.”
Ryan also said that tight end Rob Gronkowski should have been moved to the slot more often (or, as the case may be, at all), because that’s how he was routinely used in New England. (The easy counter to that one is this: Look at how Gronkowski moved after he caught his first pass. He’s not running like he once did.)
Ryan’s bottom line? Public criticism was “the wrong thing to do to Tom Brady. How about you rip yourself?”
At this point, you may be thinking what I was thinking: Ryan is simply pursuing some sort of grudge that he holds against Arians. If anything, however, Ryan would be more likely to go after the other head coach in the game, given that Saints coach Sean Payton fired Ryan, and that they engaged in a public back and forth regarding whether Ryan truly had control of the defense during his time in New Orleans.