With one minute left in the first half of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Week Four game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Tom Brady had a pedestrian 100 passing yards and one touchdown.
Things picked up considerably from there. After a six-yard touchdown pass to Mike Evans to bring on halftime, Brady threw a succession of successful deep passes in the second half to lead the Buccaneers form a 24-7 deficit to a 38-31 victory. By the end of the game, Brady had 369 passing yards, a team record-tying five touchdown passes and a 117.0 passer rating. All of that was enough to earn Brady his first NFC Offensive Player of the Week award.
Brady has obviously earned a litany of NFL awards in his 21-year career, including three league MVP selections and four Super Bowl MVP honors. All of that occurred in the AFC, of course, as Brady played his first 20 seasons for the New England Patriots before signing with the Buccaneers as an unrestricted free agent this past offseason. The Buccaneers are off to a 3-1 start with Brady under center.
Brady won an incredible 30 AFC Defensive Player of the Week awards while with the Patriots. His 31 Player of the Week awards overall are the most by any player in NFL history.
Brady's 31st such award coincides with another amazing accomplishment for the future Hall-of-Famer: The Buccaneers' win was the 222nd victory in which he has played, the most by any player in league history. Brady had previously shared the top spot with one of his former teammates, kicker Adam Vinatieri.
Brady's second-half heroics last Sunday included touchdown passes to O.J. Howard, Scotty Miller and Ke'Shawn Vaughn. Those scoring tosses gave him the seventh game of his NFL career with five touchdown passes and at least 300 passing yards. Only Drew Brees, with nine, has more such outings. Brady also recorded the 93rd 300-yard passing game of his career, tying him with Peyton Manning for the second-most in league annals.
Brady's 369 passing yards in Week Four were the second-most in the NFL, and the most by any quarterback in a winning effort. His five touchdown passes were unmatched.
The Buccaneers have collected a number of individual awards in recent weeks. Outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett was named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in the Bucs' Week Three victory in Denver. Inside linebacker Lavonte David and safety Antoine Winfield Jr. were both Player of the Month recipients in September, David as the top defensive player in the NFC and Winfield as the best defensive rookie in the NFL.
- Threw for 369 yards and five touchdowns for a passer rating of 117.0, all season high marks.
- Won his 222nd regular season game, surpassing Adam Vinatieri for the most wins by a player in NFL history.
o Trailing by 17 points in the second quarter, Brady led a comeback win, his 34th career comeback win after trailing by at least 10 points (regular season & postseason), the most such comeback wins in NFL history.
- His 369 yards are the second-most by any player in the NFL in Week 4 and the most by any player in a win.
o 93rd career game with at least 300 passing yards, tying Peyton Manning for the second-most such regular season games in NFL history.
- His five passing touchdowns are the most by any player in the NFL in Week 4.
o His five passing touchdowns tied the single-game franchise record.
- This game marked the seventh regular season game Brady has thrown for five touchdowns and 300 yards, tying Peyton Manning for the second-most such games in NFL history.
- STRANGE BUT TRUE: Despite being the winningest player in the history of the NFL, has NEVER won an NFC Player of the Week award.