Tom Brady won the duel of the NFL legends and ended Drew Brees’ career. The superstar is only missing one win for his tenth Super Bowl participation. And that with a notorious team of losers.
Ahen two of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history hugged, it felt like a farewell on the pitch. “Stay in touch,” Tom Brady said to his competitor Drew Brees, smiling. The myth of the most successful quarterback in the history of the National Football League (NFL) was made a little bigger by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ’30:20 against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday evening (local time) – Brees’ career, on the other hand, may be after a bitter idea past.
Brady is in a conference final for the 14th time in his career and faces Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers around the German-American passport recipient Equanimeous St. Brown on Sunday.
The winner will meet either the Buffalo Bills or defending champion Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl, who beat the Cleveland Browns 22:17 even without the injured quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
The snow in Wisconsin is waiting for Brady
Brees, however, afforded three interceptions and stops after information from US journalists. But he did not want to express himself so explicitly immediately after the defeat. “I’ll give myself the opportunity to think about the season and a lot of things, like last year, and then make a decision,” said the 42-year-old.
According to US media reports, Brees signed a contract as a TV expert with NBC for the time after his career in the spring. In the new role he would have to criticize a performance like the one on Sunday – and as a still active professional he was honest with himself about the meaning of the three bad passes. “You can’t do that because their attack is so good,” said Brees.
The Buccaneers made their own touchdown out of each of the ball wins and thus also returned the favor for the two defeats in the main round when they had made too many mistakes themselves. “The ball losses played a major role. We lost a lot of the ball last time, this time they lost them. It’s usually the story of a football game, ”Brady told Fox TV. When asked about Brees’ possible end of his career, he said: “I think so much of him as a player and as a person, I know him pretty well. He’s an incredible player and opponent. “
Before the possible home game in the Super Bowl – which will be played on February 7 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay – it is now to Wisconsin. “We worked hard for it. Two play-off away wins, that’s pretty good, “said Brady, whose influence is clearly illustrated by one statistic: The last time Tampa Bay had reached the play-offs in 2007 at all.
With freezing temperatures and snowfall in Green Bay, a huge challenge awaits against a team in good shape. In the main round, the Buccaneers won against the Packers 38:10.
Tom Brady – “Obviously I’ve made too many mistakes”
| Reading time: 4 minutes
Tom Brady loses the first game with his new team. Then the most successful quarterback in history goes hard with himself. The NFL opener is accompanied by protests. It gets particularly emotional in Minneapolis.
Tom Brady has got off to a bad start with his new team, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, in the NFL, the North American professional football league. “I’ve already lost a lot of games in my career,” said the 43-year-old quarterback after the 23:34 against the New Orleans Saints.
“Obviously I made too many mistakes today, I’ll focus on what I have to do – and I have to do a better job.” Against New Orleans, he lost two balls, known as interceptions. Brady last made two such mistakes at the beginning of a season in 2003.
“Was his performance a misstep against a strong opponent or the beginning of an ugly season?” Asked the sports portal “The Ringer” and stated about a weak phase of the first appearance: “The“ Brady is cut off ”calls are beginning. Loud. ”But Brady has already been written off several times due to his age, but again and again proved his class. He even completed his first possession of the ball as a Buccaneer with a self-run touchdown. “That’s why I wouldn’t say he was out of rhythm at all – until we started messing it up,” said Bucs coach Bruce Arians.
Brady, who moved to Tampa after 20 seasons and six Super Bowl wins with the New England Patriots, finished the game with 23 successful passes in 36 attempts for 239 yards and two touchdowns thrown. But afterwards the coordination and processes in his new team were no longer right. No test games could be played in the NFL due to the corona pandemic. Saints quarterback Drew Brees, who is also 41 years old, had a solid performance without losing the ball to prevail in the duel of the veterans. The Saints are considered by many experts to be the strongest team in the NFC South.
“Maybe those who overreact are right,” wrote Sports Illustrated. “What if we knew about Brady’s limitations at 43 before this experiment and just didn’t want to believe that they would apply in this situation? What happens then?”
Brady’s successor to the Patriots, Cam Newton, led New England to a 21-11 win over the Miami Dolphins with two self-made touchdowns. Newton, who brought 15 of his 19 passes to teammates and ran for 75 yards himself, efficiently implemented the moves designed for him by his new coach Bill Belichick.
In addition to the Brady debut, the season opener was all about protests against social injustice, racism and police violence: George Floyd’s family was invited to the game of the Minnesota Vikings against the Green Bay Packers (34:43) – the stadium is only about five Kilometers from the place where the African American died in a police operation in late May.
NFL in the sign of protest
The game was started – like every other this season – with the unofficial hymn of the blacks “Lift every voice and sing” – in addition to the national anthem “Star-Spangled Banner” traditionally played before kick-off. The teams stood in a row, silent and hooked, while the song, sung by Grammy winner Alicia Keys, played on the stadium screen.
Other players left the field and went into the dressing room closed, where they stayed during the traditional national anthem. In the Seattle Seahawks game against the Atlanta Falcons, all 22 players knelt after the kick-off and let the ball spin into the end zone, some players like Indianapolis Colts coach Frank Reich knelt.
After months of protests against racism and police violence in the United States that followed Floyd’s death, and intermittent strikes in other sports, the behavior of the professionals in the National Football League had been eagerly awaited. Colin Kaepernick started as the then quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers in 2016 with his kneeling protest during the anthem.
The Washington Football Team, which had dropped its suffix “Redskins” in the course of the racism debate, won the first game under the new coach Ron Rivera 27:17 against the Philadelphia Eagles. Rivera, who was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year, had a planned infusion at halftime according to media reports in order to be able to end the game on the sidelines in any case.
Being a superstar of the NFL, and winner of 6 titles, is not enough to be exempted from the prohibitions in force because of the coronavirus. American football icon Tom Brady who recently left the New England Patriots to sign for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, was kicked out of a Florida city park where he was training alone.
It was noticed by a police patrol, who approached him pointing out that, even in those parts, the practice of sports in public parks is currently prohibited and has ordered him to return home, which Brady has done.
The news was given, during a press conference, by the mayor of Tampa Bay, Jane Castor. Subsequently, on the social accounts of the municipality of Tampa, a message from the same mayor appeared: “Sorry Tom Brady! Our parks are looking forward to welcoming you and yours with the most beautiful of our smiles. Until then but stay home, and do everything you can to help us lower the infection curve. ”
ZWei women swim their laps in the pool. They wear floppy hats to protect their hairstyle. Not before the chlorine water, but before the downpour. The tiled path to the beach is already flooded, there are no gullies anywhere.
The pool attendant has placed himself under the parasol, from which it pours down in streams. He wipes the pools of water with the white bath sheets. A few meters further on, shallow lakes and streams have formed on Clearwater Beach, where seagulls bathe. Joggers run barefoot through the puddles.
25 degree shower
The raindrops are pleasantly lukewarm like a 25-degree shower, here in the subtropical part of Florida. After a few minutes the sun breaks through the clouds and everything steams at 95 percent humidity like in a sauna.
Anyone who travels to Florida needs sunglasses – and an umbrella. Because rain is no exception in “Sunshine State”, as Florida calls and markets itself. It is the rule. At some point it rains every day, so you don’t need a weather forecast, say the locals.
Between June and September, i.e. in summer, daily cloudbursts are quite normal, but it can always shine briefly and vigorously in the rest of the year. “We call it the ‘liquid sunshine’,” says George Cretekos, 58, Mayor of Clearwater. He needs to know, he was born here in the Tampa Bay region of western central Florida. He is currently campaigning for a second term at a rainy charity gala.
Warm rain in the Sunshine State doesn’t bother him, cold does. Frost is only known here if you take ice-cold beer bottles out of the cooler. But many tourists obviously take the sunny nickname too literally and are annoyed when the sun is not shining. There is no guarantee of sun.
Vacationers should rather do the same as the locals, who appreciate the liquid sunshine as a change, advises the Mayor of Clearwater. And it’s not like a Florida vacation falls into the water when it rains. You can be happy here in any weather.
Florida is the warmest state in the United States, according to the National Climatic Data Center. In summer, however, it is also the country with the most rainfalls – and the fifth rainiest in winter.
Meteorologist Morton D. Winsberg of Florida State University states: “Since Florida is widely regarded as a sunshine state, many think that its climate is also particularly suitable for solar energy. Unfortunately, that is not the case. The many cloud periods make this technology commercially unworkable. “
Longest sunshine duration
The cities and resorts on Central Florida’s west coast still advertise with an average of 361 sunny days a year – how is that possible? A sunny day is also counted as such if it rains from time to time. The Guinness Book of Records lists the city of St. Petersburg (called St. Pete) as the longest sunshine location on consecutive days – 768 days from February 1967 to March 17, 1969 when the sun appeared.
The local newspaper “Evening Independent” was even issued free of charge whenever the sun had not shone at all on one day. In 76 years, from 1910 until the newspaper was discontinued in 1986, this was only the case 295 times, i.e. less than four times a year.
T-shirts and flip-flops
On the west coast of the Gulf of Mexico around Tampa Bay with the three cities of Tampa, St. Pete and Clearwater, the average annual temperature is a pleasant 23 degrees Celsius. In summer at 30 to 32 degrees, in winter at 19 to 22 degrees. T-shirts, shorts and flip-flops can be worn all year round.
In summer, early morning is the best time to visit the beaches. The day usually starts with blue sky and sunshine. The first thick cumulus clouds only appear at lunchtime, which are dense water clouds that wave over the Gulf of Mexico like domes or even cauliflower florets.
In the late afternoon, dramatic storm clouds pile up on the western horizon, moving east over Tampa Bay. After a few minutes of downpour, the sun often flashes again.
White powder sand
Because the region on the coastal strip and on the upstream dune islands has some of the best, award-winning sandy beaches in Florida, it is worth getting to know a new one every day. They all have white powder sand. The water temperature is pleasantly lukewarm, all year round by 24 degrees. Because the beaches drop gently, they are well suited for families with children. Even a short rain shower hardly disturbs the bathing day.
And with wet sand it is better to build sand castles anyway. One of the most popular party and family beaches is Clearwater Beach. There are plenty of bars and restaurants as well as the legendary Pier 60. Free sunset parties with live music, fire-eaters and handicrafts also take place here every evening, provided the weather is good.
Fifth best beach in the world
For coastal tours, the bus line called Jolley Trolley (five-day ticket) is worthwhile. The yellow and red bus starts in Clearwater Beach and also stops on the beaches of Indian Rocks Beach, Madeira Beach, Treasure Island – and on the popular St. Pete Beach. It was voted the fifth best beach in the world by the TripAdvisor rating platform.
Because it is located on one of the narrowest parts of the peninsula, the sun rises here in the morning and sets in the evening again, in the east in Tampa Bay, in the west in the Gulf of Mexico.
If you are looking for lonely beaches, go north to Honeymoon Island. From there, continue by ferry for $ 14 to Caladesi Island. It has been under nature protection since 1967 and the stay is limited to four hours. For this you have the island overgrown with mangroves with white sandy beaches and a five kilometer hiking trail almost to yourself.
It is particularly interesting for shellfish seekers, and with a bit of luck you will even find washed-up round sand dollars – especially if it has been storming a day before. These are white, palm-sized sea urchin shells with five geometric patterns that are arranged like petals.
“Dalí Wish Tree”
The museums in the region are prepared to ensure that visitors like to come when it rains. There are therefore “umbrella bags” for the dripping wet umbrellas at the entrances. The Dalí Museum in St. Pete is particularly recommended. With 2140 works, the futuristic building houses the largest exhibition of Salvador Dalí’s works outside of Europe.
It’s worth asking about the art connoisseur Sigrid, 63, an emigrant from Berlin. It gives visitors the opportunity to put on their sunglasses again, and of course in the museum. Only then does the surrealist Dalí painting “Gala Look at the Sea” turn out from a distance of 20 meters when you look through your glasses as a portrait of Abraham Lincoln. The “Dalí Wish Tree” grows down in the garden, where visitors can hang small, colorful pieces of paper on the branches and make a wish – maybe a little more sun (thedali.org).
In the “Busch Gardens” north of Tampa, the weather doesn’t matter for visitors anyway. It is a mixture of a huge amusement park and an ambitious game reserve. The big advantage in rainy weather is that the waiting times for the most adventurous roller coaster rides are significantly shorter. The latest attraction is Falcon’s Fury, a drop tower. Here visitors fall vertically downwards from a height of 102 meters at a speed of 90 kilometers per hour.
Alternatively, visitors can watch rhinos on an off-road vehicle safari and feed giraffes with lettuce, accompanied by the shrill screams from the drop tower (seaworldparks.com). Afterwards, a visit to “Plaza International”, the largest shopping center in the area, with 200 shops and 15 restaurants, is of course covered and air-conditioned.
And if the traditional sundowner at Clearwater Beach’s Pier 60 falls into the water due to the rain, there are countless bars as a great alternative. We recommend the beers from smaller breweries – such as “Barking Squirrel Lager” or “Big Storm Wavemaker Amber Ale”. The “Mahuffer’s” in Indian Shores between St. Pete Beach and Clearwater Beach is open until two in the morning.
The almost 40-year-old bar is decorated with bikes, boat parts and junk. Thousands of bras and signed business cards hang from the ceilings. While it’s raining outside, the jukebox plays “It’s raining again” from Supertramp.
Tips and information
Getting there: Lufthansa (www.lufthansa.com) flies several times a week from Frankfurt to Tampa, the only non-stop connection from Germany. British Airways flies to Tampa with a change in London (www.britishairways.com).
Accommodation: “Sheraton Sand Key Resort”, on the beach in Clearwater Beach, double from 169 euros, starwoodhotels.com; “The Vinoy Renaissance”, St. Pete, double from 196 euros, marriott.de; “Le Méridien Boutique Hotel”, Tampa, double room from 121 euros, lemeridientampa.com
Information desk: Tampa, www.visittampabay.com; St. Pete, www.visitstpeteclearwater.com
Participation in the trip was supported by Lufthansa, Visit Tampa Bay and St. Petersburg / Clearwater. You can find our standards of transparency and journalistic independence at www.axelspringer.de/unabhaengigkeit