Tedy Bruschi sees Tom Brady taking these Patriots elements to Bucs' offense

Darren Hartwell
NBC Sports Boston

Tom Brady wanted a challenge in leaving the Patriots, and he'll get one: The new Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback must adapt to a completely new offense after 20 years in New England's system.

Or does he?

While Brady will have to learn new terminology in Tampa Bay, head coach Bruce Arians has been known to collaborate with his quarterbacks to incorporate plays and concepts that fit their strengths.

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So, how might the Bucs' offense look different in 2020 with Brady under center after last year's all-out attack, which led to Jameis Winston throwing an NFL-high 30 interceptions?

Former Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi believes Tampa Bay should highlight one area where Brady found success in New England.

"If there's any blending of the systems, it'll be the screen game," Bruschi told ESPN's Jenna Laine. "I think Tom might push the screen game in terms of something he can use to confuse a rush."

Brady made a killing in the screen game during his two decades in New England, utilizing shifty, pass-catching running backs like Kevin Faulk, Danny Woodhead, Dion Lewis and most recently James White to keep defenses off-balance.

Brady had a particularly strong connection with White, who ranked third among NFL running backs in receptions in 2018 and sixth in 2019.

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Bruschi believes the screen game could be "wide open" for Tampa Bay, which boasts talented downfield threats like wide receivers Chris Godwin and Mike Evans and tight ends O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate.

"I'm so excited to see that offense and that team play next year because of what it opened up," Bruschi told Laine.

"... The screen's a great weapon if you know how to use it. The play-action screens where you see in New England, where they're faking one side and then screening back to the other side -- all of those things, they're designed to confuse the eyes of the linebackers and the defensive backs. The misdirection, the hesitations, the play-actions -- all they're doing is forcing these guys to check several things before they get into their drop rather than letting these guys playing flat out, full speed."

The Bucs' starting running back, Ronald Jones II, caught 31 passes for 309 yards from Winston last season. But it's possible those numbers increase this season, with Brady getting the ball out quickly to Jones and other wideouts on short passes.

Bruschi also sees Tampa Bay relying more on play-action and the running game to augment a 43-year-old quarterback who's much slower than Winston.

So, while Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich isn't Josh McDaniels, don't be surprised if you see some familiar elements in Tampa Bay's offense this season.

Tedy Bruschi sees Tom Brady taking these Patriots elements to Bucs' offense originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

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