Tom Brady just shed some light on one of his first controversies ― and it won’t make Raiders fans happy.
The quarterback great admitted Thursday that the famous “tuck rule” fumble in his first playoff game with the New England Patriots in 2002 “might have been a fumble” — as it was ruled originally.
But after viewing instant replay the referee declared that Brady was in the forward motion of passing, even if the motion was from trying to tuck the ball away. The ruling made the dropped ball an incomplete pass, which allowed the Patriots to keep possession.
The call may have altered football history. The Raiders would have had the ball on their way to a likely victory with a 13-10 lead and less than two minutes left. But the Patriots’ Adam Vinatieri kicked a field goal to tie the game in regulation, then another one in overtime for the win. The Patriots eventually reached the Super Bowl and won the first of Brady’s seven titles.
Charles Woodson, the Raider who forced Brady to lose possession of the ball that was recovered by the Raiders’ Greg Biekert, couldn’t ignore the near-confession.
“Really,” Woodson wrote for a Twitter clip in which he wore a look of consternation.
Brady attempted a weaselly walk-back.
Here’s the play and commentary by Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe of “Undisputed”: