Newsflash: Tom Brady will have the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ready to play Sunday night.
Brady has plenty of personal motivation to beat the Patriots in his first game back in New England since leaving the franchise in 2020 free agency. But football is a team sport, and Brady apparently took action after Tampa Bay's loss to the Los Angeles Rams last week to make sure his team would be ready to bounce back in Week 4.
During ESPN's "Sunday NFL Countdown," Bucs tight end Cameron Brate shared the motivational quote from boxing icon Muhammad Ali that Brady texted his players shortly following last Sunday's loss.
"Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even - Muhammad Ali," the text read, per Brate.
Translation: Sometimes a little adversity can make a team stronger -- and perhaps propel them to a bounce-back victory over Brady's former club Sunday night.
The Bucs hadn't faced much adversity prior that Week 3 loss, which snapped a 10-game winning streak that included a Super Bowl LV triumph over the Kansas City Chiefs. Brady isn't used to losing either: He owns a .768 regular-season winning percentage (232-70), the third-highest of any QB in NFL history (and the highest among those with at least 100 starts).
But if anyone knows how to bounce back from defeat, it's the GOAT. Brady boasts a 50-14 regular-season record in games following a loss, which also leads all NFL quarterbacks with at least 23 starts.
That's all to say the Patriots will have their hands full with Brady, who not only is still playing at a high level but also knows how to elevate the play of those around him.
Kickoff at Gillette Stadium is set for Sunday at 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC.