MUNICH (AP) — Tom Brady has had his share of memorable football games.
He says Sunday at a raucous Allianz Arena is right up there.
“That was one of the great football experiences that I’ve ever had,” the seven-time Super Bowl champion said. “It says a lot for 23 years in the league.”
Brady stayed undefeated abroad by throwing two touchdown passes to help the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Seattle Seahawks 21-16 in the first regular-season game played in Germany.
German fans packed Allianz Arena for the historic game and the Bucs delivered with a balanced offensive performance on three long scoring drives. Rachaad White started and ran for 105 yards on 22 carries.
“It felt very electric from the time we took the field,” Brady said. “The end of the game with them singing ‘Sweet Caroline’ and ‘Country Roads’ — that was pretty epic.”
Brady completed 22 of 29 passes for 258 yards to add Germany to his list of international wins after victories in London (twice) and Mexico City with the New England Patriots.
Sleeping On Seattle
Trailing 21-3 in the fourth quarter, Seattle’s Geno Smith threw touchdown passes to Tyler Lockett and Marquise Goodwin to make the score 21-16 with 3:58 to play.
Smith found Goodwin in the corner of the end zone for a 19-yard score on fourth-and-1 to complete a drive that started on the Buccaneers 45 after Brady threw his first interception since the season opener. Linebacker Cody Barton picked it off — ending Brady’s streak of consecutive passes without an interception at 399, three attempts short of Aaron Rodgers’ NFL record set in 2018.
Lockett caught a 21-yard touchdown pass from Smith with 8:20 left, but the 2-point conversion try failed, leaving the score 21-9.
Smith was 23 of 33 for 275 yards and the two touchdowns for the Seahawks (6-4), who are still atop the NFC West.
“This feels like a real opportunity missed,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said.
Improved Run Game
The Buccaneers entered the game with the league’s worst rushing attack. Fournette, who got his passport just in time to travel, had 57 yards on 14 carries as both he and White helped Tampa Bay go 10 of 15 on third down.
“They have not been running the ball very consistently, so coming into the game, we were hoping we could just keep it under wraps and be able to deploy for the throwing game,” Carroll said. “They finished running the ball in the fourth quarter, which kills me.”
Brady is the first quarterback to start a regular-season game in three countries outside the U.S.
Brady found Jones open on a short crossing route and the receiver ran it in for a 31-yard scoring play early in the second quarter. Jones put his left shoulder down and got past safety Josh Jones at the goal line.
Fournette then rumbled in from 1 yard to finish a 13-play, 86-yard drive. He scored two plays after a wide-open Scotty Miller caught a 22-yard pass and went down while bobbling the ball at the 5.
Godwin caught a 4-yard touchdown reception to make it 21-3 early in the fourth quarter. Godwin led the Bucs with 71 yards on six receptions. It was his first touchdown since his season-ending knee injury last year.
Down 14-3, Seattle drove to the Bucs 9 before Devin White’s strip-sack of Smith, whose fumble was recovered by Anthony Nelson at the 13.
The Seahawks had 57 net yards in the first half and drove to the Tampa 22 after the second-half kickoff before settling for a 55-yard field goal by Jason Myers to get on the board at 14-3.
The Bucs drove to the Seattle 22 when Fournette took a direct snap, rolled right and threw across the field to Brady — but it was intercepted by cornerback Tariq Woolen, who had the slow-footed, 45-year-old quarterback well covered at the 6.
Brady was then flagged for tripping — which would be a yellow card if he played for Bayern Munich.
“Had he not slipped you would have seen his 42-inch vertical,” coach Todd Bowles joked.
Brady recognized that the defense wasn’t fooled.
“I tried to yell ‘Lenny no,’ but it was too late,” Brady said.
Several players slipped on the grass at Allianz.
Carroll thought the field limited his team’s run game. Rookie Kenneth Walker III had 10 carries for 17 yards.
“I wish the field was firmer,” Carroll said.
White had two of Tampa Bay’s three sacks.
Just inside the two-minute warning of the first half, White burst through the line unblocked and brought down Smith for a 10-yard loss at the Seattle 10.
On Seattle’s first drive, Joe Tryon-Shoyinka beat rookie tackle Abraham Lucas around the edge and dropped Smith for a 17-yard loss on third down.
Devin White’s father died shortly before the team left for Munich.
“He still got on the plane. To lose your dad right before you’re getting ready to go to Germany, and to come out and still play, it says a lot about the guy,” Bowles said.
White said it was “unreal” to get the bad news.
“At the end of the day, I knew I had a job to do,” White said. “I just put my head down and kept going forward.”
The Aftermath Reaction Show
Fournette left in the fourth quarter with a hip injury. Bowles said the running back has a hip pointer and would be evaluated. Buccaneers CB Zyon McCollum was ruled out at halftime with a concussion.
Seahawks practice squad linebacker Aaron Donkor of Germany led the team out of the tunnel carrying the “12” flag. Donkor is not on the 53-man roster.