Antonio Brown caught a touchdown from Tom Brady in his first and only game with the Patriots. It took Brown six games to accomplish the same feat with the Buccaneers, but he picked a big spot to get on the board.
Tampa Bay (9-5) trailed by as many as 17 points to the Falcons (4-10) during Week 15, but Brady hit Brown for a 46-yard score in the fourth quarter to take a 31-27 lead that held on as the final score. Brown finished the Buccaneers’ victory with five catches for a season-high 93 yards, including the score.
“It’s been a long journey for me,” Brown told reporters postgame. “As soon as I scored, I dropped to my knees and [thanked] God . . . I’m just grateful these guys believe in me.”.
Here’s the Brady to Brown connection for six:
“Long time coming for that big play for A.B.,” Buccaneers tight end Cameron Brate told reporters after the game. “Great play, great route. Just a huge play. Hopefully we see more of that.”
Brown joined the Buccaneers in Week 8 and returned to the field in Week 9, following an eight-game suspension handed down by the NFL before the season. His production has been solid but not spectacular, averaging about five catches per game with Tampa Bay but less than 50 yards per game. The touchdown catch for Brown on Sunday could be a sign of moving in the right direction as a likely playoff berth approaches, as Brown saw a drastic decline in snaps played in Week 14 before returning to more activity against the Falcons.
The Buccaneers are closing in on a playoff berth with one of the best receiving corps in football thanks to the presence of Brown, who joined stars Mike Evans and Chris Godwin to catch passes from Brady. The 43-year old Brady has embraced Brown’s presence in both New England and now with the Buccaneers, with Brown spending time living with Brady at both stops.
Brown’s touchdown catch Sunday also completed a Brady comeback against the Falcons, which social media got a big kick out of. Brady, of course, had comeback from 28-3 down in Super Bowl 51 to beat Atlanta, and now he’s got Week 15’s 17-point comeback in his back pocket, too.