During his 20-year stint with the New England Patriots, quarterback Tom Brady became an important part of the team’s enormous success. In that span, Brady and head coach Bill Belichick won six Super Bowl trophies and nine conference championships. However, the successful partnership ended when Brady signed a two-year deal worth $50 million with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers while Belichick tried to replace him by signing former Carolina Panthers signal-caller Cam Newton to a one-year deal. Brady and Belichick suffered contrasting fortunes as the Buccaneers made it to the playoff for the first time since 2007 while the Patriots failed to advance to the postseason for the first time since 2008.

While Brady’s departure left the Patriots without a dependable quarterback that they had for two decades, the veteran quarterback left a late parting gift to his former team when he signed in free agency with the Buccaneers.

Patriots regain pick

According to Doug Kyed of the New England Sports Network (NESN), Brady’s move to the Buccaneers as a free agent will give the Patriots a compensatory pick for the 2021 NFL Draft. Kyed said the Patriots are projected to get a third-round pick for losing Brady to the Buccaneers and two fourth-round selections for losing linebackers Kyle Van Noy and Jamie Collins. Through the compensatory pick for Brady, the Patriots will regain the third-round pick that they lost as punishment by the league for the taping controversy stemming from an incident in Cincinnati last December as part of the team’s “Do Your Job” documentary series.

Now, the Patriots have the 15th overall, 46th overall, one pick in the third round, three selections in the fourth round, one pick in the fifth, two in the sixth, and one in the seventh round.

Fournette to start at running back

Buccaneers’ running back Leonard Fournette played his best all-around game in their 31-23 win over the Washington Football Team in the absence of top rusher Ronald Jones.

Fournette, who signed a one-year deal with the Buccaneers in the offseason, ran for 93 yards and a score and tallied 39 receiving yards to help Tampa Bay win. With Jones still a “game-time” decision as of Friday due to a quad injury, Jenna Laine of ESPN reported that Fournette will start in their Divisional Round game against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

Laine said even if Jones is able to play, the Buccaneers will start Fournette as rusher. This season, Fournette had 97 carries for 367 yards and six touchdowns for the Buccaneers. Fournette earlier said he signed with the Buccaneers because he was personally recruited by Brady. The running back also lauded Brady for his poise under pressure and his laser focus during games.

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