Tampa Bay Buccaneers and former New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady recently shared his opinions on the current climate of the NFL. The famous quarterback has been with the league for over twenty years and explained that the sport is not what it used to be.
Why might that be? Brady believes it’s because players are not being taught how to play “the right way”.
The 44-year-old sat down for an interview that SportsCenter reported on. Within the contents of this discussion, Brady did not hold back his thoughts on the direction the National Football League is headed in. For Brady, this direction doesn’t look great, as the traditional rules have completely lost meaning.
“It’s not being taught the right way. A quarterback should only throw the ball to certain places because your receiver is in danger of getting hit,” he shared. “For example, when I used to play against Ray Lewis, I wouldn’t throw the ball to the middle of the field because…he would hit [our receivers] and knock them out of the game. And now, every hard hit is a penalty on the defense. So I feel like they penalize defensive players for offensive mistakes.”
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Brady then elaborated on this sentiment and used an example from when he was watching a Chicago Bears game. “The quarterback messes up and doesn’t see the blitzer… the defensive player comes in and hits them hard and they throw a flag on defense. They’ve almost moved the protection of your opponent to you, as opposed to where it should be.”
Tom Brady states it shouldn’t be up to the opponent to protect you.
“If you’re a quarterback, you’ve got to protect yourself and your players. It shouldn’t be the responsibility of your opponent to protect you,” the Tampa Bay player explained. He also went on to note that this means of playing creates bad habits that can create bad consequences. He said, “It creates really bad habits for players because you feel like, ‘I can basically do anything. I can run and not slide. I can throw my receiver into any coverage and not have any repercussion for it.'”
In his closing statement of defending the defensive players of the NFL, Brady commented, “The only thing they’re gonna do is, they’re actually gonna blame the defensive player for making a good, solid hit. And now the defensive player is gonna feel like, ‘Oh, I can’t do that, even though I feel like it was an offensive mistake.'”
Brady then added, “So, in the end, I think it’s really a disservice to the sport because the sport isn’t being played at a high level like I believe that it once was. It actually deteriorates because you’re not teaching the players the reasons and the fundamentals of what the sport should be.”
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