Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles is ready for the post-Tom Brady era and believes his team is too.
Bowles told NFL.com that Tampa Bay is losing an “aura” by having Brady retire for a second time this past off-season, but the Buccaneers will try their best to continue their winning ways without one of the greatest players ever.
“When you replace a player of that magnitude, first of all, you don’t replace him,” Bowles said. “You lose aura You lose the expectation of being great. That doesn’t mean you can’t be great. You just have to do it more as a team.
“We did it as a team when he was there, but he was such a great player and a great person that you focus all on that. And now that that is gone, the perception is that everything else is gone when really it isn’t.”
Following a Super Bowl win with Brady just three seasons ago, the Buccaneers couldn’t reach the same level for the past couple of seasons. They want 8-9 last year before losing in the first round of the playoffs to the Cowboys.
Todd Bowles said the Buccaneers will still compete, even with Brady’s departure.Mike Carlson/Getty Images
With Brady officially hanging it up after another early playoff exit, the Buccaneers signed Baker Mayfield as a potential bridge quarterback.
Kyle Trask, who Tampa Bay drafted in the second round of the 2021 NFL Draft, will also have a shot at getting the starting quarterback spot – since no official QB1 has been announced for the Buccanneers.
Bowles had high praise of Mayfield and their relationship.
Brady retired for the second time this past off-season.Cooper Neill/Getty Images
“[Mayfield] has great understanding of the football game. He knows where to go with the football. And he has moxie. He’s a guy’s guy. The players love to be around him, and they will fight for him because he’s a winner,” Bowles said. “He’s won on a lot of different levels, so you like that about him coming in.
“I thought the way we were trying to run our offense this year, the style of offense we were trying to run, I thought he was a perfect fit for it. So, between him and Trask, I have no doubt that one of them will come out and be successful.”