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Tom Brady shouted an angry message at the New Orleans Saints sideline on Sunday night, near the end of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 9-0 loss, but the QB insists the incident was "nothing" — even though it looked like the polar opposite of nothing.
Brady, who got shut out for just the third time in his career, did not have a good game against the Saints. His passes weren't hitting their targets, he lost his three best pass catchers, and he kept getting knocked around. The Saints' defense was masterful, keeping the pressure on Brady all night.
In the fourth quarter, right after he threw an interception to C.J. Gardner-Johnson, his anger bubbled over. Running past the Saints sideline, Brady appeared to yell "go f*** yourself" right in the face of defensive line coach Ryan Nielsen. The analysis from amateur lip readers is far from an official transcript, but it's hard to imagine what else he could be saying with his mouth moving in that particular way.
Sure does look like Tom Brady sprints over to the Saints sideline and yells “go f— yourself, pal” pic.twitter.com/7UNYlewQt4
— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) December 20, 2021
Not long after that, Brady went over to his own sideline and destroyed a Microsoft Surface tablet.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 20, 2021
Brady won't comment on what he yelled
At his postgame media conference, Brady was asked about that interaction with the Saints. Unfortunately, he gave the boilerplate football answer.
"Nothing," he said via ProFootballTalk. "Just football."
That's just no fun at all. Brady is so controlled when he's on the field and in news conferences, so he's never more relatable than when he's showing emotion — any kind of emotion. Spontaneous laughter, angry outbursts, that's how we recognize that Brady is human and not an ageless, unstoppable football Terminator.
We didn't need an angry outburst to see that Brady is human on Sunday night, though. It started becoming clear early in the game that the Saints defense was causing him major problems. He got sacked four times, and was trying to escape another takedown when he threw that fourth-quarter interception. Brady hadn't been shut out since Week 15 of 2006, a streak of 255 consecutive regular season and playoff games.