Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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For Tom Brady, Postseason Means New Round of Records

Data Crunch: Tom Brady added a Buccaneers chapter to his incredible postseason history in Saturday's Wild Card win at Washington, and Mike Evans broke a long-standing record for Tampa Bay receivers

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Tom Brady spent the 2020 season rewriting the passing section of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' record book. Now it's time to put his mark on the franchise's playoff records.

In his first season with the Buccaneers after two decades in New England, Brady shattered the team's single-season standards for touchdown passes with 40, seven more than the previous mark. He also finished the season with a 102.2 passer rating, the highest ever by a Tampa Bay passer. His streak of seven straight games with at least two touchdown passes to end the regular season was another Buccaneer first, and so on.

As such, it was hardly surprising that Brady's first playoff game as a Buccaneer was the best one by a quarterback in franchise history. For starters, Brady's 381 gross passing yards was 47% better than the previous record.

Most Passing Yards, Single Postseason Game, Buccaneers History

Table inside Article
Quarterback Opponent Date Yards
Tom Brady at Washington 1/9/21 381
Brad Johnson at Philadelphia 1/19/03 259
Brad Johnson Oakland 1/26/03 215
Jeff Garcia N.Y. Giants 1/6/08 207
Brad Johnson at Philadelphia 1/12/02 202

Brady got to his 381 yards on 22 completions in 40 attempts, including seven completions of 20 or more yards. That led to an average of 17.3 yards per completion, easily the best single-game mark in team history and one of the five best by any quarterback in the last five postseasons.

Most Yards Per Completion, NFL Postseason, 2016-20

Table inside Article
Quarterback Team Opponent Date
Patrick Mahomes Chiefs Patriots 1/20/19
Russell Wilson Seahawks Eagles 1/5/20
Tom Brady Patriots Eagles 2/4/18
Tom Brady Buccaneers at Washington 1/9/21
Matt Ryan Falcons Patriots 2/5/17

Brady threw touchdown passes to Antonio Brown and Chris Godwin in the Bucs' 31-23 win. That matches the team's single-game record in that category, as Brad Johnson had two touchdown passes each in the 2002 Divisional Round win over San Francisco and the ensuing victory over Oakland in Super Bowl XXXVII.

Brady came into his first Bucs' postseason game with a number of all-time NFL playoff records well in hand, including most games played (41), most games started (41), most career touchdown passes (73), most career passing yards (11,388) and most games won (30). He padded all of those stats and perhaps most notably is 30 ahead of the rest of the pack with his now 75 touchdown passes.

Most Touchdown Passes, NFL Postseason History

Table inside Article
Quarterback Team(s) Seasons TD Passes
Tom Brady Patriots/Buccaneers 2000-20 75
Joe Montana 49ers/Chiefs 1979-94 45
Brett Favre 4 teams* 1991-2010 44
Peyton Manning Colts/Broncos 1998-2015 40
Aaron Rodgers Packers 2005-20 40

(* Favre played for the Falcons, Packers, Jets and Vikings.)

Six of Brady's 22 completions on Saturday ended up in the hands of wide receiver Mike Evans, who not only overcame a scary Week 17 knee injury but also made his long-awaited playoff debut with his own record-setting performance. Evans recorded just the second 100-yard receiving game in the Bucs' postseason history and broke Keyshawn Johnson's record for most yards in a single game.

Most Receiving Yards, Single Game, Buccaneers Postseason History

Table inside Article
Player Opponent Date Yards
Mike Evans at Washington 1/9/21 119
Keyshawn Johnson at Philadelphia 12/31/00 106
Jimmie Giles at Dallas 1/2/82 98
Keyshawn Johnson San Francisco 1/12/03 85
Cameron Brate at Washington 1/9/21 80

There are two new names on the above list. Tight end Cam Brate celebrated his first postseason opportunity with the third-highest single-game yardage total of his career. Brate caught four passes for 80 yards, which also happens to be the second-most any Buccaneer tight end has ever had in a playoff contest.

Most Receiving Yards by a Tight End, Single Game, Buccaneers Postseason History

Table inside Article
Player Opponent Date Yards
Jimmie Giles at Dallas 1/2/82 98
Cameron Brate at Washington 1/9/21 80
Dave Moore at Green Bay 1/4/98 54
Jimmie Giles Philadelphia 12/29/1979 43
Ken Dilger San Francisco 1/12/03 41

While Brady and his cohorts were setting a number of franchise playoff passing records, the ground game pitched in with its third-highest yardage total of the year. With Leonard Fournette leading the way, the Bucs ran for 142 yards and 4.9 yards per carry. Fournette, who took over the lead role in the backfield after Ronald Jones suffered a quad injury during warmups, racked up 93 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. He also caught four passes for 39 yards, giving him a total of 132 yards from scrimmage that ranks as the second-most by any player in a single game in Bucs' playoff annals.

Most Yards from Scrimmage, Single Game, Buccaneers Postseason History

Table inside Article
Player Opponent Date Rush Pass Total
Ricky Bell Philadelphia 12/29/79 142 0 142
Leonard Fournette at Washington 1/9/21 93 39 132
Michael Pittman Oakland 1/26/03 124 0 124
Mike Evans at Washington 1/9/21 0 119 119
Keyshawn Johnson at Philadelphia 12/31/00 0 106 106

It all added up to what was easily the most prolific postseason game in franchise history in terms of yardage. The Buccaneers, who cracked 400 yards in seven of their 16 regular-season games, including two contests with 500-plus yards, got a third 500-yard outing to start the playoffs. It was the first time Tampa Bay had ever hit 400 yards in a postseason game.

Most Net Yards, Single Game, Buccaneers Postseason History

Table inside Article
Opponent Date Yards
at Washington 1/9/21 507
Oakland 1/26/03 365
San Francisco 1/12/03 329
vs. Philadelphia 12/29/79 318
vs. Detroit 12/28/97 316

The Buccaneers scored on seven of their 12 drives, so those 500 yards were not empty. However, Tampa Bay was forced to settle for field goals on four of their five incursions into the red zone. Fortunately, kicker Ryan Succop took care of things with a perfect four-for-four night on field goals, hitting from 29, 23, 38 and 37 yards. Succop is the first Buccaneer kicker ever to make four field goals in one postseason game.

Most Successful Field Goals, Single Game, Buccaneers Postseason History

Table inside Article
1. Ryan Succop: 4, at Washington, 1/9/21
2. Martin Gramatica: 3, at Philadelphia, '1/12/02
3t. Martin Gramatica: 2, vs. Oakland, 1/26/03
3t. Martin Gramatica: 2, at Philadelphia, 1/19/03
3t. Martin Gramatica: 2, at St. Louis, 1/23/00
3t. Michael Husted: 2, vs. Detroit, 12/28/97

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