Blog Entry

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Posted on: February 9, 2012 11:08 am
 
Hard to blame Brady for throwing it away. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

Much ado's been made about the safety on the first Patriots offensive play of the game in the Super Bowl last Sunday -- Tom Brady threw the ball to no one while standing in his own end zone. But was intentional grounding the right call? And did some receiver mess up a route that caused Brady to throw the ball where he did?

Turns out, no. Brady actually was throwing it away. On the Sound FX portion of NFL Replay, NFL Films caught Brady telling (former) offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien that he did in fact throw it away after first trying to find Rob Gronkowski, then Wes Welker and finally feeling heat from Justin Tuck.

"I looked to Gronk, I looked to Wes, he dropped and then I felt [Tuck]," Brady said. "I had no place to throw it away. I threw it over his head. I didn't want to throw an interception."

So it's a pretty clear case of intentional grounding, provided Brady was in the pocket (he was) and therefore a clear safety provided Brady was in the end zone (he was). That didn't stop Bill Belichick from arguing the call with referee John Parry through.

Sound FX picked up Belichick calling Parry over and saying "The intentional grounding call ..."

"What's the problem with it?" Parry replied.

"He had a guy coming in there -- he didn't throw it to him. But he had a guy that was coming in there," Belichick said. "I mean, damn."

There are four parts up on NFL.com (if you don't have NFL Network) and all are worth watching. As we noted earlier on Thursday, one clip shows Belichick telling his defense to stifle Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks and "make" the Giants find Mario Manningham on their final drive.

Unfortunately for Belichick, that worked out about as well as his attempt to argue that Brady didn't throw the ball away.

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Comments

Since: Dec 1, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2012 5:38 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

steven, in which professional sports do you imagine that such "cheating" does not routinely go on? Other than golf, I can't think of a single one. Tennis: Screams and grunts designed to unnerve their opponents. Motor racing: Constant skirting of the equipment rules, not to mention blocking moves that invite the deliberate wrecking moves that follow. Occassionally killing someone, even, rarely, a fan. Water polo: Surreptitious groping of their opponents' nards, plus the occassional assault and battery when the refs' eyes are elsewhere. (Amateur) Wrestling: Once again, the nards. If you did it to a girl, it'd be called sexual assault. If she does it to you, on the mat, deal. Baseball: Before the steroids era, corked bats, spitters, sign stealing with technology, emery boards and sandpaper and files, amphetamines in the 1950s and 1960s and 1970s and so on. (That's right, probably by some of those sainted Yankees with whom Yogi played.) Football: It's amazing how many people don't want that Suh was likely responding to the dirty little things that offensive linemen do, especially while in a pile, for which those Packers linemen are particularly notorious. I'll stop here, but I could go on for several thousand more words, citing COMMON chapter and verse.

Whereever do people get off just calling out the occassional sacrificial goat upon which they can heap their manufactured outrage? Are they trolls or just virgin innocents who never saw the arena themselves?




Since: May 17, 2008
Posted on: February 9, 2012 2:21 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Have to agree it was a weak call.  The pass was not thrown directly into the ground or buried 20 yards out of bounds.  A throw like that shouldn't be grounding
So you think the rule should be that you do not have to throw the ball anywhere near anybody, as long as you don't throw it "directly into the ground" or out of bounds?  Why should that make a difference?  If you intentionally throw the ball away to avoid a sack why should it matter if the ball lands in the middle of the field 30 yards from any player, or out of bounds an equal distance from any player or into the ground at the QB's feet?  The intent and result is the same, to avoid a sack by throwing the ball away.  Was not a weak call at all, it was exactly the right call and should be called that way more often (I think sometimes QB's get away with similar plays and shouldn't).



Since: Feb 16, 2007
Posted on: February 9, 2012 1:54 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

There is/was no other way to call it than intentional grounding.  There was no receiver within 15-20 yards of the ball, they should call it the same every time.



Since: Feb 6, 2008
Posted on: February 9, 2012 1:24 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Moron - pretty easy to check what teams I like, you'll see it's not the Pats.   I agree it was maybe the right call, my assertion was that it's a bad rule.  In a game where holding can be called on every play, to hold fast to all the rules "as written" falls a little short of the mark in all cases. 



Since: Oct 18, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:21 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Steve, I disagree a little. The NFL/Media love Belichick and he gets the benefit of the doubt more so than say Raheem Moris or Norv Turner (judging by the way SD gets screwed)

Belichick is a great coach who helped make Brady and vice versa. 

He will never escape Spygate and shouldn't get a pass if all of those other guys don't get a pass.  When HOF comes around, he shouldn't go in if those other guys don't get in.  Personally I say let the Rose, Bonds, Mcgwire, hell even Canseco get in, its ridiculous not to. 



Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:13 pm
 

Belichick's rep will forever haunt him

Like Bonds.  Like Rose.  Like Shoeless Joe (okay, the jury may still be out there, but still...).  Like Lance (well, if you ask any Frenchie). Like all the others.  What do they have in common?  Champions?  Yep.  Cheaters?  Yep.  And that's the problem.  Not one of those names will ever be "clean" in the eyes of the people, and that's why folks don't get inducted to the baseball HOF.  That's why a sport such seemingly as simple and elegant as cycling can get the rep as a dirty, cheater-oriented sport.  

Guys like this don't get breaks after a certain point, and I think that's the case with Belichick.  Whether it's deserved or not, due to Spygate, he's got a reputation for being a jerk and for having cheated on the grandest stage his sport offers - the Super Bowl.  I don't see how he ever will escape it, and I think that while there is no "agenda" to "get" Belichick, I just think that he probably gets far fewer benefits of the doubt when it comes to close calls.  It's not a conspiracy theory, but rather an observation that when you do bad things, it catches up to you.

Hey, the guy IS a great coach.  It's a shame that his name and his legacy will probably forever be tarnished. 

 



Since: Oct 18, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:13 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Mutiny, it couldn't be anything other than Intentional Grounding.  He was getting sacked and decided to throw the ball away to avoid the sack.  He was in the pocket, threw the ball away to avoid it without a WR in the vacinity.  Doesn't matter that the ball wasn't thrown into the ground or out of bounds.  You must be a Pats fan who is very bitter.  Sorry Charlie.



Since: Aug 6, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:10 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Of course, Belichick is going to argue the call. No matter, if a man was going to the spot or not, a coach is going (or should) argue that call.  Brady blew that play, he didn't roll out of the pocket and got caught.  I hate the Giants, but come on.... a QB like Brady should know better.  As for stifling Hicks and Cruz, and force Manning to throw to Manningham, that's the right call, too.  Manningham is known league/media wide to have average-at-best hands.  It only makes sense to steer the throws his way.  Manningham made a great catch. Period. 

Why not report something significant. like......   I don't know, why the hell Manning was named MVP, when Tuck and the Giants defensive line was the factor to the game.



Since: Dec 13, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:09 pm
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

It was a brave call for the refs to make, especially in the Superbowl and against Brady/Belichick - but Bradyt was inside the pocket and wasn't throwing it to a receiver (by his own admission). Not sure how it can be argued? Case closed - good call refs!





Since: Feb 6, 2008
Posted on: February 9, 2012 11:51 am
 

Brady told O'Brien he threw ball away on safety

Have to agree it was a weak call.  The pass was not thrown directly into the ground or buried 20 yards out of bounds.  A throw like that shouldn't be grounding, if it is the rule, the rule should be changed.


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