There are many differences between New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians. One of them is that Arians has no problem calling out Tom Brady in public after a subpar performance.
Brady played poorly in his Buccaneers debut -- a 34-23 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. The veteran quarterback threw for 239 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions, one of which was returned for a Saints score.
Belichick rarely criticized Tom Brady in public during the 20 seasons that him and the future Hall of Fame quarterback worked together in New England. The legendary coach often would just say some version of "everyone needs to be better." Singling out one player, even if deserved, just isn't Belichick's style.
Arians is different in that regard. He offered a harsh assessment of Brady's performance in the Buccaneers' Week 1 defeat. Arians, in his postgame press conference, put the blame on Brady for both of his interceptions thrown against the Saints, but on Monday he retracted blame on Brady for the first interception and placed it on wide receiver Mike Evans instead.
Arians didn't retract any more of his criticism of Brady, though. In fact, he made even more critical comments of Brady when talking to reporters Monday.
Here's what Arians said, per Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times:
Criticizing Brady in public twice in less than 24 hours is an interesting tactic, to say the least. Perhaps Arians is just trying to light a fire under Brady, and in the Bucs coach's defense, we know that the future Hall of Fame quarterback typically thrives when he's being doubted in some fashion.
How many times has Brady's play been criticized over the last 10 years -- looking at you, Max Kellerman -- only for him to respond and continue playing at a high level? Too many to count.
This situation could be different, though. Brady has a brand new coaching staff, he's learning a new offense, he doesn't have a ton of chemistry with his teammates on offense and he's playing in an NFC loaded with quality teams.
It's hard to bet against Brady given his extraordinary career, but he absolutely has to play much better if the Bucs are going to be a legit Super Bowl contender this season.