Tom Brady says one NFL rule change is going to "make for a lot of bad football."
Brady took the new number rule to task on Instagram on Thursday, saying the regulation would cause problems for offensive linemen.
Brady's specific gripe is that players won't know who to block now that linebackers can wear any number between 1 and 59 and defensive backs can wear any number between 1 and 49.
The rule also impacts defensive linemen, who can wear any number between 50 and 79 and 90 and 99. Brady isn't a big fan of that either, saying why not let linemen wear any number if you are going to change the rule.
Brady kept at it on Twitter a few hours later, too, but seemed to have a bit more fun with it.
I would like to speak to the manager please... https://t.co/482q4ysoia
— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) April 22, 2021
Is the new number rule change really a big deal?
While Brady is upset about the rule, it's unclear whether his criticism will be a big deal. Offensive linemen will presumably block any player who comes at their quarterback. The defender's number really shouldn't matter. And if offensive linemen are confused about the new numbers, they can always look at the color of the player's jersey. If it's a different color than their team's uniforms, they should probably block that guy.
Ultimately, the issue can be easily solved by film study. Brady and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive linemen will be breaking down enough tape to know which linebackers are suddenly wearing No. 4. Will it be weird? Sure. But we're going to guess Brady won't have an issue calling out "No. 4 is the blitzing linebacker."
Or, who knows, maybe this is the thing that finally makes Brady look mortal on a football field. Maybe defenders being able to change numbers will make Brady a shell of himself. Perhaps he'll be so confused he won't be able to make the proper calls at the line again and his Hall of Fame career will be exposed.
Sound ridiculous? Yeah, because it is. As long as Brady is still performing like Brady, he and the Bucs' offense won't have issues with the new number rule.
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