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Tom Brady assumes blame for loss to Browns, warns against sleeping on 5-6 Bucs

“The future is not written by any stretch,” the quarterback said on his podcast Monday.
Bucs quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws during the second half of his team's 23-17 overtime loss Sunday to the Browns. The Bucs offense was stymied by penalties, injuries and some missed throws in the extra session.
Bucs quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws during the second half of his team's 23-17 overtime loss Sunday to the Browns. The Bucs offense was stymied by penalties, injuries and some missed throws in the extra session. [ RON SCHWANE | AP ]
Published Nov. 29, 2022|Updated Nov. 29, 2022

Tom Brady barely slept Sunday night, which stands to reason when considering his own prerequisites for leadership.

Among them: taking responsibility for defeat. While fans and pundits pointed to myriad culprits (clock management, critical penalties, play selection) for the Bucs’ 23-17 overtime loss Sunday in Cleveland, Brady put the brunt of blame on his 45-year-old shoulders.

“I always look at what I can do better,” the seven-time Super Bowl champ said Monday on his “Let’s Go!” podcast.

“I had a chance to hit Mike (Evans) down the sideline in overtime to win the game, and I didn’t get it done. You can give in to the outside noise and everyone telling you, ‘Oh, it’s not your fault, it’s someone else’s fault.’ I think that’s BS. It is your fault when you lose, and you take it personally when you lose. And you shouldn’t sleep at night when you lose.”

He said he slept very little upon returning from Cleveland, where he posted solid numbers (29-for-43, 246 yards, two TDs), but — like his offense — periodically sputtered with execution and communication. The Bucs’ two overtime possessions fizzled in part due to penalties (an illegal-use-of-hands call on Donovan Smith), a Brady misfire to Evans and a third-down sack.

“So many positive plays, and then (they’re) undone by kind of untimely mistakes by our team,” he said. “And it’s not one player, it’s not one position.”

Yet if the other assorted sound bites from Monday’s podcast are any sign, Brady’s fire seemingly hasn’t dwindled during this lukewarm season — his 23rd in the NFL. At various points, he told co-host Jim Gray that “it feels like the soul gets ripped out of you” when you lose, and that despite the excruciation of a defeat like Sunday’s loss, “I’d rather lose and play than not play at all.”

He also warned against counting out the Bucs (5-6), who remain a half-game ahead of the Falcons (5-7) in the NFC South, where no one has a winning record.

“We still have six games to go, there’s a lot of things that can happen,” Brady said.

“The future is not written by any stretch. There’s a lot that’s going to happen in the next six weeks of football, and hopefully we can find better rhythm and find a way to get a win this Monday night against New Orleans, which will be a huge game for us.”

Contact Joey Knight at jknight@tampabay.com. Follow @TBTimes_Bulls

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