In three games with the Buccaneers, Brown has 18 receptions for 157 yards.
This is a step down from his career production.
Since 2010, Brown has been one of the league’s best receivers.
Over this time, he ranks second in the NFL in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns.
Brown has also become known as a source for big plays throughout his career, with the second most 20-plus yard receptions since 2010.
However, he only has one such catch this season.
Where has this playmaker been for the Buccaneers this year?
Is This Brown’s Problem?
Upon first glance, it may seem as though something is amiss in Brown’s game.
While this may be the case, members of the team don’t view it as such.
Head coach Bruce Arians has been adamant about this not being an issue with Brown’s speed or skillset.
“He’s doing a great job of running after the catch and within his role, I think he’s doing a really good job,” Arians said.
This is reassurance from Arians that Brown has not lost anything from his game after missing much of 2019 due to off-field actions.
Brown has had a unique skillset throughout his time in the league.
His speed and route running ability allowed him to rise to the top of the league, making him one of the most intimidating matchups on the field.
A return to form would give the Buccaneers a major weapon on offense.
.@AB84 with the footwork 👀
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@Buccaneers) November 24, 2020
With joining the Buccaneers during the season, Brown also wasn’t able to have the typical preseason preparation.
More time with the team may lead to more success.
However, signs may point to their QB.
Brady’s Deep Pass Struggles
The source of the team’s struggles on the deep ball appears to be QB Tom Brady.
The 43-year-old QB seems to defy time itself throughout his career, performing at a high level even into his 40s.
However, his touch on deep passes during the game may be exposing his age.
So far this season, Brady has been 14-58 on deep passes, with a TD-INT ratio of 2-3.
These are bad numbers for Brady.
This gets especially worse when looking at his recent performance from Weeks 8-11.
Over this four-game span, Brady is 0-19 on deep passes, with three INTs.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 24, 2020
Brady’s overall performance has seen some inconsistency this season.
In many games, the veteran QB has shown that he is still a threat in the pocket, with his Week 4 performance serving as an example.
However, he’s also had his share of duds.
In Week 9, Brady threw for only 209 yards with three INTs, as the Buccaneers lost to the Panthers 38-3.
When Brady gets it going, success for the Buccaneers follows.
Arians isn’t worried about the skill of his QB, though.
“We’re not missing the deep ball at all in practice – that’s for sure,” Arians said. “It’s just a matter on Sundays of hitting them.”
Issues with the Buccaneers’ System
With Brady’s struggles, many fans began questioning who’s really at fault.
A spotlight has been put on Arians, with a portion of fans not believing he is a fit for Brady’s skillset.
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) November 24, 2020
Arians is known to like deep passes, something that isn’t usually a huge part of Brady’s game.
However, much of this has been an overreaction on the part of fans.
After all, the Buccaneers are still 7-4 and in second place in the NFC South.
Brady has also shown that he can play well in this system, and his play has stood out at different points this year.
Of course, it is difficult for anyone to watch Brady in a scheme that isn’t Bill Belichick’s.
If there is anything that the league has learned over the past decade, it is to never count Brady and company out.