Patriots QB Tom Brady has faced the Bucs only twice in his majestic career, carving up Tampa Bay’s pass defense both times during New England victories. Brady has completed 43 of 63 passes against the Bucs for 566 yards, throwing six touchdowns and two interceptions. His 114.9 passer rating and average of 8.98 yards per pass attempt against Tampa Bay are tops for Brady against any NFL opponent.
Stat of the day
With two completions Sunday at New England, Josh Freeman will pass Vinny Testaverde’s franchise record (1,126) for career completions.
Quote of the day
“The coaches. It’s their game plan … we’re just executing.’’
Bucs DT Gerald McCoy, on who should get the credit for Tampa Bay’s improved pass rush
By the numbers
A year ago, the Bucs offense set a franchise record for points and yards, finishing ninth in the NFL by averaging 363.8 yards per game while Tampa Bay’s defense struggled in a 7-9 season. The roles have reversed through the first two weeks of the 2013 season. Tampa Bay’s offensive average of 261.5 yards per game ranks 29th in the league and the Bucs are last in the NFL in average number of first downs (13). Defensively, opponents are averaging only 4.7 yards per snap, second in the NFC to Seattle (4.6).
Sunday: at New England, 1 p.m.
Sept. 29: Arizona, 1 p.m.
Oct. 6: Bye
Oct. 13: Philadelphia, 1 p.m.