Tom Brady acknowledges there have been problems with "execution" right throughout the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' offense this season.

The Bucs ranked second in both total touchdowns (63), yards (6,901) and points (511) in 2021, trailing only the Dallas Cowboys in each category.

But after losing 14-12 to the Green Bay Packers in Week 3 this year, Tampa Bay rank joint-27th in total TDs (four), 25th in yards (892) and joint-21st in points (51).

Never has Brady thrown fewer TD passes through his first three starts of a season (three), while only in four seasons has he had fewer passing yards at this stage (673).

"We've just got to do a better job," said Brady, who insisted a finger injury had "zero" impact on the Packers result.

"I wish it was one thing; we're not running as good as we're capable, the passing game hasn't been very good, our screen game. There are a lot of things."

He added: "Our job is to go out there and score points, so we're just not doing it. We're not going to score points if we don't execute well.

"They [the Packers] did a better job than us – good defense, good, physical defense, I give them a lot of credit.

"They forced us to make a lot of good plays, and we just didn't do a great job in execution."

Still, Brady is not panicking, saying: "We're 2-1. There's a lot of football left. We'll keep working at it.

"It doesn't get any easier next week, going up against the Chiefs, but no one feels sorry for us, nor should we. We've just got to go back to work."

Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers emerged 14-12 victors against Tom Brady's Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Sunday's battle between the legendary quarterbacks.

Despite the presence of arguably the two greatest quarterbacks of this generation, it was the defenses who reigned supreme as the Bucs were only able to score three points in the first half, before holding the Packers scoreless in the second half.

Both teams were missing a number of receiving weapons, and taking advantage of his expanded role was Packers wide receiver Romeo Doubs, catching three passes including a touchdown on Green Bay's very first drive.

The Packers' second drive ended in a touchdown as well, with Rodgers finding Allen Lazard for a 12-yard score with eight minutes remaining in the second quarter, and it would be their last points of the night as their next nine drives resulted in seven punts, one fumble and one interception.

Rodgers finished 27 of 35 for 255 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.

Brady struggled to find any connection with his makeshift receiving core, except with Russell Gage, who caught 12 of his 13 targets for 87 yards and the Bucs' only touchdown to cut the margin to 14-12 with 14 seconds remaining.

But Brady was not able to complete the two-point conversion, and the Buccaneers could not recover the onside kick, ending the game. Brady finished 31 of 42 for 271 yards and one touchdown with no interceptions.

Trevor Lawrence announces his arrival with emphatic blowout

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence was called a generational prospect when he was selected first overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, and he began to fulfill that promise as he pounded the Los Angeles Chargers 38-10.

Lawrence completed 28 of 39 passes for 262 yards, three touchdowns and no turnovers – completing touchdown passes to Zay Jones, Christian Kirk and Marvin Jones Jr.

As well as getting arguably Lawrence's best showing as a professional, the Jaguars continued to get production from running back James Robinson, posting 100 rushing yards and a touchdown from 17 carries, while also catching three passes for 16 yards.

Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert came into the game nursing fractured rib cartilage and he struggled throughout, although some late garbage-time action padded his stats to a respectable 25 of 45 for 297 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

The Green Bay Packers' trip to face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday will be a tale of two veteran quarterbacks, though each has different form in previous fixtures heading into the latest encounter.

Tom Brady has thrown 11 touchdowns with zero interceptions in his last five games against the Packers, while Aaron Rodgers has eight touchdown passes and nine interceptions in his five career games against the Buccaneers – the only NFL team he has thrown more interceptions against than touchdowns.

In 2022, both quarterbacks have two touchdown passes from their opening two games of the season with neither team excelling in the air, the Buccaneers having 402 receiving yards, putting them 26th in the rankings, while the Packers are 19th with 494 yards.

The Packers have been far more effective with the ball on the ground, accumulating 314 rushing yards and ranking sixth in the NFL, while the Buccaneers are 14th with 224 yards – 192 of which have come from Leonard Fournette.

Defensively is where Tampa Bay have shone, allowing the fewest points in the NFL this season (13); a tally which stands third in their best-ever starts to the season behind 1992 (10 points) and 2003 (12 points).

The Packers are no pushovers though, allowing their opponents a total of 33 points in the opening two matches and ranking seventh in that regard. Second-half defence has been integral to that, giving up just nine points.

With the teams looking well-matched on both sides of the field, it may come down to individual mistakes in possession and the Buccaneers have the edge in that aspect, fumbling just once this season compared to the Packers four.

Tom Brady has brushed off concerns about an injury to the ring finger of his throwing hand despite the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback appearing in discomfort at practice on Thursday.

The 45-year-old has had a slow start in the first two games of the season, throwing for fewer than 225 yards in back-to-back games for the first time since Week 14 and 15 of the 2019 season.

Brady has thrown two touchdown passes for 402 yards with a 59 per cent completion rate, but despite that the Bucs have a winning record at 2-0, largely due to their defense.

The seven-time Super Bowl winner revealed earlier this week he had injured his right ring finger in Sunday's 20-10 win over the New Orleans Saints.

Brady appeared in discomfort at practice on Thursday, too, but downplayed any issue ahead of Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers.

"Great. I feel great," Brady told reporters with a hint of sarcasm. "It's football season."

Brady was not named on the Buccaneers' injury report earlier this week.

He had told the 'Let's Go!' Podcast on Monday: "I banged it up pretty good, but it didn't affect me at all in the game. It's just going to be sore throughout the week. But it's one of those bumps and bruises that comes along with playing.

"Different things – you get hit and you get kicked and you get kneed – all these things that come up. It's demolition derby out there.

"It's who can recover fast enough in order to put yourself in position to practice, prepare and then go play the next week, so lots of bumps and bruises to take care of over the season."

What a first week of the NFL season that was.

So much drama, so many late twists, and it's almost time to do it all over again as Week 2 looms on the horizon.

Sunday sees Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looking to follow up their opening win against the Dallas Cowboys when they head to New Orleans, the Los Angeles Rams will aim to get on the board when they host the Atlanta Falcons, while Russell Wilson's first home game for the Denver Broncos sees them welcome the Houston Texans.

With all that and more, Stats Perform has used Opta data to preview the weekend's action in the NFL.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-0) @ New Orleans Saints (1-0)

The Saints have won their last seven regular-season games against the Buccaneers, matching the longest previous winning streak by either team in this rivalry, a run of seven consecutive wins by New Orleans from 2011 to 2014. Tampa Bay did beat the Saints in a Divisional Playoff game following the 2020 season.

Tampa Bay had one interception (by Antoine Winfield Junior) in their season-opening win at Dallas. The Bucs were 11-0 last season in games in which they intercepted at least one pass. The Green Bay Packers (also 11-0) were the only other NFL team to go unbeaten last season in games in which they recorded one or more interceptions.

New Orleans won their season opener in Atlanta, 27-26, after trailing 26-10 in the fourth quarter. It was the first time in franchise history that the Saints won a game in which they trailed by 16 or more points in the fourth quarter, and only the third time they won a game in which they were behind by 16 or more points in the second half.

Tom Brady and the Bucs lost their last game against the Saints, 9-0 (Week 15 last season). That is one of only three times that Brady's team has been shut out in his 317 regular-season and 47 postseason starts in the NFL. The other shutouts were in 2003 (Patriots at Buffalo, 31-0 in Week 1) and 2014 (Patriots at Miami, 21-0 in Week 14).

Atlanta Falcons (0-1) @ Los Angeles Rams (0-1)

Including their original stint in California and time in St. Louis, the Rams are 28-8-2 (.778) at home against their former NFC West rival, Atlanta Falcons. That is the best home record of any franchise against a single opponent (minimum of 30 games) in NFL history.

Cordarrelle Patterson rushed for 120 yards and a touchdown in Atlanta's season opener. At 31 years old, Patterson is the second-oldest player in team history to have 100+ rushing yards and a touchdown run in a game, behind only Warrick Dunn, who had two such games.

The Rams started the season with a 31-10 loss to the Bills, the largest home loss in a season opener ever by a defending Super Bowl champion. The team has not started a season at 0-2 since 2011 when they were in St. Louis and have not lost their first two games as the Los Angeles Rams since 1987.

Cooper Kupp tied a career high with 13 catches in the opener against Buffalo. Including playoffs, Kupp has at least five receptions in each of the Rams' last 22 games. Only Antonio Brown has a longer such streak of team games with five or more catches in the Super Bowl era (37).

Houston Texans (0-0-1) @ Denver Broncos (0-1)

The Texans opened their season with a 20-20 tie against the Indianapolis Colts, despite being outgained by 218 yards in the game. Prior to Houston on Sunday, the last team to tie a game while having 200+ yards less than their opponent was the Packers against the Broncos in 1987.

In his first game with the Texans, O.J. Howard scored touchdowns on each of his two receptions. Howard joins Jaelen Strong as the only players to ever have two TD catches in their team debut for Houston.

Denver committed 12 penalties in their 17-16 loss to the Seahawks on Monday. It was the most penalties the Broncos have ever committed in a season opener, surpassing the 11 penalties they had to kick off the 1970 season against the Bills.

Russell Wilson threw for 340 yards against the Seahawks in his Denver debut. It was the most passing yards by a Broncos QB on their debut with the team and Wilson's 12th career game with 340+ passing yards (his teams are 5-7 in those games).

Elsewhere...

The New England Patriots travel to the Pittsburgh Steelers after suffering a 20-7 loss to the Miami Dolphins in Week 1, and have not started a season with consecutive double-digit losses since losing three straight games by such a margin to begin the 1969 campaign.

Baltimore's Lamar Jackson threw for three touchdowns against the New York Jets after throwing three or more TDs just twice all of last season. Before they host the Dolphins, it is notable that, in his career, the Ravens are 13-1 when Jackson has three or more pass TDs, the second-best team record among active players behind Josh Allen at 14-1 (minimum 10 such games).

Starting with their 2013 NFC Championship game success over the 49ers, the Seattle Seahawks are 15-2 in their last 17 games against San Francisco, which includes season sweeps in 2020 and 2021. The 15 wins since January 2014 are tied with the Patriots (vs. Jets) for the most by an NFL team against a single opponent in that span (including playoffs).

The Arizona Cardinals will need to watch Davante Adams, who had 10 catches for 141 yards on 17 targets in his Las Vegas Raiders debut. That is the most targets for any player in their first career game with the Raiders in the past 30 seasons. The only other with player with 15+ targets in their Raiders debut over that span is Randy Moss in 2005 (15).

The greatest quarterback in NFL history took the opportunity on Thursday to pay his respect to fellow sporting icon Roger Federer after arguably the best player of his generation announced his retirement.

It is hard to imagine anyone will ever eclipse Brady's record seven Super Bowl wins, while Federer's mark of 20 grand slams will also likely stand the test of time as the new generation coming through share them around.

Brady, 45, is four years older than Federer, and gave retirement a go earlier this year before announcing his return 40 days later, so he knows exactly what kind of emotions Switzerland's greatest ever sportsman is going through.

When asked about his thoughts on Federer during Thursday's press conference, Brady shared his admiration.

"Phenomenal," he said. "Just a great player. He is just a great competitor and I think all those guys… we all work so hard. 

"We're all just working hard trying to be the best we can be at it, and he had a great run.

"He was great, always respectful of everybody and it meant a lot. He cared a lot. He maximised his opportunities. That's all we can all ask of ourselves."

Roger Federer ranks among sporting greats such as Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods and Tom Brady.

That was the message from 2013 Wimbledon champion Marion Bartoli, who hailed Federer after he announced his appearance at September's Laver Cup would be his last in professional sport.

The 41-year-old won 20 grand slam titles across a legendary 24-year career, only Novak Djokovic (21) and Rafael Nadal (22) can boast more major crowns in men's tennis.

Federer has also won more men's singles main draw matches in grand slam tournaments than any other player in the Open Era (369), leaving behind a magnificent legacy as he prepares to step away from the court.

Bartoli has experienced retirement herself, having called quits on her career after a failed comeback from injury in 2018, and asked by Stats Perform whether Federer was a GOAT – greatest of all-time – Bartoli said: "Yes, he is very much in there – absolutely.

"Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Tiger Woods, Tom Brady, they are people that transcend their sports – they are icons.

"You go in the streets, you say Roger Federer. I'm in Dubai right now [and if] you say 'Roger Federer' everyone would know who he is. And the same for LeBron and Michael Jordan.

"When you transcend your sport and you become an icon and everyone knows who you are, that's when you know you have been one of the greatest of all time across every sport.

"Same for Serena [Williams], you can put Novak and Rafa in there as well. But it's just that amount of fame and that amount of inspiring [the next] generation."

Having spent 237 consecutive weeks ranked as number one, Federer holds the record for the longest such streak in men's singles history after a four-and-a-half-year spell at the summit.

Federer was also present in the top 10 of the men's singles rankings for 750 weeks, an unmatched number for a male player since the rankings were first published in 1973.

Regardless of Federer trailing Djokovic and Nadal for grand slam titles, Bartoli believes the Swiss remains the best of the trio due to his elegant playing style.

"It's very much depending on your own taste in a way. If you like beautiful, elegant, smooth tennis you have to go for Roger Federer," she added.

"Now obviously with Novak having 21 and Rafa having 22 grand slams, if we speak numbers only then you have two players on top of him.

"But I think it's very much a debate because it depends on the style of play you like and, that said, I absolutely love to see Novak play and win.

"I absolutely loved to see Rafa winning again at Roland Garros this year, I think it was one of the most incredible sports achievements that you can possibly witness.

"But in terms of game style, and the way he has revolutionised tennis, I think Roger was the first one. And then they pushed each other to new heights and I think that was really special to see."

While many youngsters look to emulate Federer, Djokovic and Nadal, Bartoli highlighted the importance of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi, too.

"You can tell how much impact a player [has] when you see a new generation trying to copy your style. I think Pete Sampras had that impact as well as Andre Agassi on the generation of Roger, Rafa and Novak," she continued.

"Roger has had that impact on the new generation with Carlos Alcaraz. So that's why I say that he was really the first one to elevate the game to another level because he brought that dimension of his forehand when he was really almost able to play the ball wherever he wanted.

"I always remember that sentence from Andre Agassi, when he started to play against Roger saying, 'well, I never felt against anybody that I had to play on a 20-centimetre square because that's the only safe spot I can play, which is deep to Roger's back. If I play anywhere, he will take the game away from me'. [Federer] was the first one to [do that] and then obviously Rafa and Novak arrived and sought to change that and they pushed each other to new heights.

"When you have the pinnacle of the 2008 Wimbledon final and all those matches in between them that was just beyond epic for me."

Serena Williams joked NFL superstar Brady "started an amazing trend" as she hinted at a possible return to tennis in the future.

Williams, a 23-time grand slam champion, revealed before the US Open she was soon to retire from the sport, with her Flushing Meadows run widely expected to mark the end of her career.

The 40-year-old exited her home major at the hands of Ajla Tomljanovic in the third round but was unwilling to categorically state if she was retiring.

Speaking at a news conference after that loss to Tomljanovic two weeks ago, Williams said: "I've come a long way since last year at Wimbledon. I'm just not sure if that was my last moment or not."

Some of the biggest names from around the sporting world have since paid tribute to Williams, but she has offered a further indication she is not done just yet.

"Tom Brady started an amazing trend. That's what I want to say," Williams said during an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

Brady announced his retirement in February after 22 seasons in the NFL, only to reverse that decision 40 days later by agreeing to return to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

"I think retirement is something that is super earned and that people work really hard for," Williams added.

"I feel like I'm at an age where I definitely have a lot more to give and there's a lot more that I want to do, so I'm not going to be relaxing, there's so much more for me.

"I feel it's more of an evolution of Serena. There's many things I've been wanting to do for so many years, and I've had such a passion for tennis for so long I've never done them.

"Now it's time for me to start to enjoy those things."

The Dallas Cowboys had no answer for the swarming Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense in the first Sunday night football matchup of the season, going down 19-3.

In a low-scoring contest, the only scores in the first half came from field goals, with Tampa Bay's Ryan Succop hitting four-of-five tries while the Cowboys only made it into field goal range once, with their first drive.

After their initial field goal to open the game, the Cowboys had nine more offensive drives in the game. They resulted in five punts, three turnovers-on-downs and one interception.

The only touchdown in the game came on a spectacular one-hand snag from Mike Evans on a five-yard goal-line fade in the endzone late in the third quarter, which would be the last score of any kind in the game.

It was far from Tom Brady's best performance, but the 45-year-old was more than serviceable, completing 18-of-27 passes for 212 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

Evans was his top receiver, catching five of his seven targets for 71 yards and a touchdown, while Julio Jones had an impressive debut with his new team, catching three of his five targets – including a 48-yard bomb down the sideline – for 69 yards.

In his return from a torn ACL, Tampa Bay's other elite receiver Chris Godwin left the game after suffering a hamstring injury in the second quarter.

Leonard Fournette was excellent running the ball for the Bucs, tallying 127 yards from his 21 carries while also adding two catches for 10 yards.

For the Cowboys, Noah Brown (five catches for 68 yards) and Dalton Schultz (seven catches for 62 yards) were the only players to have more than Ceedee Lamb's 29 receiving yards, while Ezekiel Elliot led the way on the ground with 52 rushing yards from 10 carries.

Things went from bad-to-worse late in the fourth quarter when Cowboys franchise quarterback Dak Prescott was hit awkwardly on the hand as he released a throw, leaving the game with three minutes to play and not returning.

Speaking after the game, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones confirmed Prescott will need surgery on his hand and will miss multiple weeks.

It is widely expected Tom Brady will play the first game of his final NFL season on Sunday, but the legendary quarterback explained in a social media video why he has returned for another year.

Brady briefly retired in the offseason and then missed part of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' training camp ahead of his 23rd NFL season.

However, the 45-year-old is set to line up under center against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 1 as he continues his remarkable career.

Sunday brought a report from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport that suggested "the end is coming" for Brady, and "this is the final year".

Brady did not dispute that as he posted on Twitter ahead of the Cowboys game, but he clearly still feels he has plenty to offer in 2022.

The seven-time Super Bowl champion said: "It's been a unique offseason, and lately I've been seeing the same question on social media: 'Why d'you come back?'

"I can give you a long speech, but the answer is actually pretty simple. We've got a hell of a team, I'm still feeling pretty good, and an arm is a terrible thing to waste.

"I've been reminded for almost a decade now: 'You're headed for extinction.' And maybe so, but not today. I'll see you in Dallas."

The Bucs are not expecting to get another year out of Rob Gronkowski, however, according to ESPN.

Brady's long-term team-mate with both the New England Patriots and the Bucs retired in June. The tight end has already retired once previously and will reportedly not return a second time.

The first week of the 2022 NFL season is here, with all the possibilities a new campaign brings.

Things kicked off on Thursday with the Buffalo Bills beating the Los Angeles Rams 31-10 thanks to a starring role from quarterback Josh Allen, who threw three touchdowns against the defending champions.

There are even more enticing games to look forward to over the weekend, with last season's Super Bowl runners up the Cincinnati Bengals hosting the Pittsburgh Steelers, Patrick Mahomes and the much-fancied Kansas City Chiefs facing Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals, and it will be Aaron Rodgers v Kirk Cousins as the Green Bay Packers go to the Minnesota Vikings.

Stats Perform dives head first into Opta data to preview those games and more of the opening weekend of NFL action.

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals have won their last three games against the Steelers (27-17 in December 2020, 24-10 and 41-10 last season). It is the Bengals' longest winning streak versus the Steelers since they won six consecutive games from 1988 through 1990.

Mitch Trubisky will be the first quarterback other than Ben Roethlisberger to start a season opener for the Steelers since Dennis Dixon in 2010 (Roethlisberger was suspended). Trubisky is 1-2 in season openers, losing to the Packers twice and beating the Detroit Lions (all when he was with the Chicago Bears).

The Bengals played a league-high seven games decided by exactly three points during the 2021 regular season (won three, lost four), the highest single-season total by an NFL team since the 2012 Steelers (seven). Three of Cincinnati's four postseason games were also decided by exactly three points, including the 23-20 Super Bowl loss to the Rams.

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow completed 67 of 85 passes for 971 yards, eight touchdowns and no interceptions over his final two games in the 2021 regular season (Week 16 against the Ravens, Week 17 against the Chiefs). Burrow's passing yardage is the second-highest two-game total by one player in NFL history, trailing only Dak Prescott's 974 passing yards over a two-game span in 2020.

Kansas City Chiefs @ Arizona Cardinals

The Chiefs have won their division in six consecutive seasons, which is three more than the next longest active streak (Green Bay). Only two teams in NFL history have had longer streaks (New England - 11, 2009-2019 and LA Rams - seven, 1973-1979).

Patrick Mahomes has won 50 of his 63 career starts as Kansas City's quarterback. The only QB in the Super Bowl era to reach 50 wins in fewer career starts than Mahomes was Kenny Stabler, who earned his 50th win in his 62nd start.

Arizona scored 30 or more points in nine different games in 2022, tied for the most in a single season in team history. Since a 56-14 win over the Vikings in Week 4 of 1963, the Cardinals have gone 903 games without scoring 50 points, which is the longest streak in NFL history (Broncos, 761 straight games from 1963-2013).

Cardinals QB Kyler Murray will not want to be upstaged by Mahomes, and is the only player in NFL history to have at least 70 passing touchdowns and 20 rushing touchdowns in the first three seasons of his NFL career.

Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings

In their 22 road games against the Vikings this century, Green Bay has scored 30 or more points in 10 of them. That is tied for most 30-point games by an NFL team at a single opponent in that time with the Patriots at the Bills.

No NFL head coach has won more games over his first three NFL seasons than Matt LaFleur (39; George Seifert had 38). A win Sunday would make LaFleur the third coach in NFL history with 40 wins through 50 career games as head coach, joining Paul Brown (41) and Chuck Knox (40).

Kirk Cousins has thrown for at least 3500 yards and 25 TDs in seven consecutive seasons, the longest active streak in the NFL. He is the fifth QB in NFL history to have more than five straight, joining Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Philip Rivers and Tom Brady.

Since becoming Green Bay's starter in 2008, Aaron Rodgers has thrown 169 TDs against division opponents, compared to 25 interceptions. The Vikings have a total of 121 passing touchdowns and 73 interceptions against the NFC North in that span.

Elsewhere...

When Carolina host Cleveland, with Baker Mayfield starting for the Panthers and Myles Garrett starting for the Browns, they will become the second pair of number one overall draft picks for the same team to go on to play against one another. The others were Jeff George and Steve Emtman in 1995.

The Eagles head to the Lions, with no team targeting their receivers less frequently than Philadelphia last season (239 targets), which led to the acquisition of A.J. Brown. The fourth-year WR has scored a TD on 13.0 percent of his career catches, third-highest rate among active players (min. 150 receptions).

The New Orleans Saints will need to beware of Foye Oluokun, who led the NFL last season with 192 total tackles, becoming the first Atlanta Falcon to lead the league in that category since Jessie Tuggle in 1995 (152). Oluokun's 192 total tackles were the most in a season by an NFL player since Chris Spielman had 195 in 1994 for the Lions.

Tom Brady is back for Tampa Bay Buccaneers after a very brief retirement as they travel to the Dallas Cowboys. The 45-year-old's last two seasons mark the first time in NFL history a QB has had 40 or more TD passes and a passer rating of 100.0 or better in back-to-back seasons.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles has declared star quarterback Tom Brady is "all in" following his recent absence ahead of Week 1 of the new NFL season.

Brady returned to practice last month after an 11-day absence from the Bucs' training camp for "personal matters", with the Buccaneers due to take on the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday to open their season.

There has been speculation about Brady's absence impacting his focus on football but Bowles brushed that off.

"He's been all in since we got him," Bowles said. "He's all in now.

"I don't follow the off-the-field stuff. I listen to XM The Groove and Soul Town. My off-the-field activities are honestly not even football-related."

The questions emerged after an unusual off-season for Brady, who retired in February before reversing that decision 40 days later in March.

Brady last week declined to go into any depth on the personal matters behind his recent absence but said: "I'm 45 years old, man. There's a lot of s*** going on. Just gotta try to figure out life the best you can. It's a continuous process."

The seven-time Super Bowl champion said last week that he was "ready to go" and on Monday was named on of their offensive captains.

Tom Brady is "ready to go" for the new NFL season following an 11-day absence from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers training camp.

Brady had time away unusually close to the regular season to deal with what have been labelled as "personal matters".

He ended his absence, for which he received prior approval from the team, this week and played one series for the Bucs against the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday.

Brady completed six of eight passes for 44 yards, including a 20-yard connection to new Bucs receiver Julio Jones.

Asked to explain his absence in a post-game media conference, Brady - who announced his retirement this offseason only to return after 40 days - said: "It's all personal.

"Everyone's got different situations they're dealing with. We all have really unique challenges to our life.

"I'm 45 years old, man. There's a lot of s*** going on. Just gotta try to figure out life the best you can. It's a continuous process."

Pressed on whether the issues he referred to had been resolved, Brady replied: "I'm ready to go."

UFC president Dana White recently said Brady was poised to sign for the Las Vegas Raiders back in 2020 before he made the move to Tampa Bay. White claimed then Raiders coach Jon Gruden put a stop to the deal.

Brady was the also the subject of what the NFL deemed "impermissible contact" from the Miami Dolphins in 2019 and 2021. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross was fined $1.5million for reaching out to Brady and his agent Don Yee.

But the veteran moved to reject any talk of him wanting to play anywhere else other than Tampa upon leaving the New England Patriots.

He added: "I think since I came to this organisation, it's been amazing. It's just been an amazing experience for me to come to this place and be as supported as I have for a long period of time.

"I read all these stories about all these different places I was supposed to go or could have gone. And I was like, 'I only was gonna go to one place, which was here.' I think this whole organisation knows that.

"All the conversations we've had over a period of time, I chose the right place for me. And I'm very proud of the effort that everyone's put in to make the relationship work. [Owner/co-chairman] Joel [Glazer] has been amazing.

"[General manager] Jason [Licht's] a great friend of mine. Bruce [Arians],Todd [Bowles], all the coaches. It's been an amazing relationship and I'm very grateful to everybody for allowing me to come down here and experience this part of my football life which, [if] I looked back, it would probably be incomplete had I not had it. I'm happy I've had it."

Tom Brady could have ended up joining the Las Vegas Raiders, but their quarterback Derek Carr is not focusing on what might have been.

UFC president Dana White claimed last weekend he had previously set up a deal for Brady and Rob Gronkowski to join the Raiders, who made the move from Oakland to Las Vegas in 2020.

White claimed he had worked on a deal for Brady to head to the Raiders, rather than join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, after the veteran left the New England Patriots.

In an appearance on the UFC With the Gronks broadcast on ESPN, White said: "I worked to put that deal together for Brady and Gronk to come to the Raiders. It was almost a done deal. And at the last minute, [Jon] Gruden blew the deal up and said that he didn't want him and all hell broke loose, man. It was crazy.

"And Brady was already looking at houses. It wasn't said yet that Gronk was going to be coming. So Las Vegas would have had Brady and Gronk the year that the Bucs won the Super Bowl except Gruden blew the deal up."

A move for Brady might have signalled the end of the road with the team for Carr, who was drafted by the Raiders in 2014 and has been their starting quarterback since.

Carr, though, is paying little attention to what could have happened, and is instead focused on the here and now.

"It was a moment to put things in perspective," the 31-year-old told reporters. "It really doesn't matter.

"At the end of the day, anything I say will just be blasted out there so I'm just going to completely remove myself and just keep trying to play football. It's been nice just answering football questions.

"Hopefully, no more drama in the city."

Carr signed a three-year contract extension with the Raiders in April, a deal that includes a no-trade clause.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Todd Bowles explained Tom Brady's return to training camp after a planned absence has been a seamless one.

Brady left training camp on August 11 for an absence Bowles said was planned in advance so he could "deal with some personal things".

The seven-time Super Bowl champion returned to practice on Monday, as the Bucs step up their preseason preparations ahead of the new NFL campaign.

"Anytime you have all your guys back you feel good, you know, especially after the injury bug has hit lately. We're happy to have him back," Bowles told reporters.

Asked if Brady's attitude was a problem, or if his absence had in any way proved a distraction for the team, Bowles said: "He's been great. He's been great, same as when he left. He's been fine.

"We pretty much keep distractions out of our locker room. It wasn't a big deal to us because everybody knew what was going on."

As for what Brady has missed over the course of his break, Bowles added: "Probably just conditioning for the most part. He's a film junkie – I'm sure he's watched tape of everything.

"So [it's] him coming back in, picking up where he left off, just getting used to the mechanics again.

"He's very familiar with the offense, so him coming back in and us getting back to work is kind of normal. Just getting used to the heat and getting used to the guys, but he ran the offense well." 

Bowles might not believe Brady's team-mates were in any way distracted, but tight end Cameron Brate conceded it was "weird" not to have the 45-year-old around.

"It was definitely weird," Brate said. "Tom is such an omnipresent being, he's like the unquestioned leader of the team. For him to not be there for 11 days it was kind of a good opportunity for other guys to step up and fill that void.

"It was different, Tom is usually kind of cussing guys up and down the field when we're messing up, but we didn't really have that. It was different, but I thought some of the other veterans stepped up. I thought Blaine [Gabbert] did a good job commanding the first team offense while Tom was out.

!I'm sure wherever Tom was, he was working out still and getting his reps in. If anyone can get away with an 11-day break during training camp, it's Tom. He came back firing on all cylinders. We are all excited he's back, and we are ready to move on with that."

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