Through three games with the Buccaneers, receiver Antonio Brown has 18 catches for 157 yards and no touchdowns. Coach Bruce Arians apparently thinks the numbers should be higher.
“Well, he was open,” Arians told reporters on Tuesday when asked why Brown hasn’t made more big plays. “We had one go off his fingertips [and] I’m used to seeing him make that catch. We missed him last week on a ball, so it’s just a matter of hitting him. He’s doing a great job of running after the catch and within his role, I think he’s doing a really good job. It’s just when he’s going deep, we’re not hitting him.”
Quarterback Tom Brady targeted Brown 13 times on Monday night against the Rams, with Brown catching eight passes for 57 yards. Brown led the team in all three categories.
Brown has $750,000 in incentives tied to performance: $250,000 for 45 catches, $250,000 for 650 yards, and $250,000 for six touchdowns.
Over the final five games, Brown needs 27 more catches, 493 yards, and six touchdowns to meet the minimum requirement. The Bucs also must make the playoffs for any of the money to be paid.
Another $750,000 hinges on 35-percent playing time, a threshold he’s easily satisfying. However, the playing-time payment is tied to the Bucs winning the Super Bowl. That’s currently looking like a steep uphill climb for Tampa Bay.