One of the most influential moments of Tom Brady’s career came in the now infamous “Tuck Rule Game.” Now, Brady is dishing out the truth on what happened by following a prompt by Justin Bieber.
Everyone keep this on the down low please. pic.twitter.com/xPtrg1kXjr— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) May 5, 2022
“The Tuck Rule Game against the Raiders ... it might have been a fumble.”
The Tuck Rule remains one of the most fiercely contested changes of the last two decades, going so far that it’s often referred to as “The Brady Rule.” During the 2001 AFC divisional playoff game between the Patriots and Raiders, Brady dropped back to pass and began to throw when he tucked the ball, before being hit by Charles Woodson on a blitz. Initially ruled as a fumble on the field, review went up to the stands where the call was overturned and the fumble was ruled an incomplete pass.
At the time New England was down by three points. The end result was Adam Vinatieri tying the game on a field goal, before the Patriots went on to win in overtime.
The game has been a long open wound for Raiders fans, and had colossal consequences on the NFL. If the play was ruled a fumble the Raiders would have likely won, and had a strong argument to make it to the Super Bowl. Had that happened, it would have been unthinkable the team would trade head coach Jon Gruden to the Buccaneers. Meanwhile, had Brady not begun to cement his legacy that season with his first Super Bowl win there’s a very real chance the team would have gone back to Drew Bledsoe as starting quarterback in 2002 as he returned from injury. Had that happened we might never have seen Brady ascend to becoming the greatest QB in NFL history.
So while this was just one play, and a questionable call, it really set in motion so much of how the NFL has operated for the last 20 years. Now we at least have confirmation from the man himself that he might have gotten away with one.