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Bruce Arians Sends Clear Message On Tom Brady's Play During Bucs' Recent Three-Game Skid

Tom Brady and Bruce Arians, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have won two straight games and now hold a one-game lead over the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC South divisional race. 

Despite recent optimism surrounding the Buccaneers, just weeks ago, the team was in the midst of a three-game losing streak which, at one point, had Tampa Bay sitting at 3-5. 

How did the Buccaneers turn things around?

According to former head coach Bruce Arians, it was a mixture of great coaching and improved quarterback play from Tom Brady. 

"Bruce Arians gets blunt about the Bucs' three-game losing streak: Tom Brady 'was playing bad'," ProFootballTalk tweeted Tuesday.

Per a ProFootballTalk article posted this morning, Arians spoke to Ira Kaufman of and praised the Tampa Bay coaching staff for showing strong resolve during the Bucs' three-game skid in October. 

"I talked to Byron [Leftwich - Tampa's Offensive Coordinator] every day when that was happening,” the former Tampa Bay head coach said. “He doesn’t read the papers and nothing bothers Byron. That’s what I love about him and that’s why he’ll be a damned good head coach one day, because he weathers everything. And Todd [Bowles] does, too."

Arians also pointed out that Tom Brady shouldn't be without blame for Tampa Bay's struggles earlier in the season. 

"Nobody is going to say that [Tom] Brady was playing bad, but he was playing bad," said Arians. 

Brady's poor play combined with an ineffective running attack, according to Arians, put the Tampa Bay coaching staff in a pickle. 

"We also had growing pains on a young offensive front and we weren’t running well. There comes a time as a play caller when you’re losing yards running the ball and you say, ‘Forget this, I’m putting the ball in Tom’s hands'," Arians continued. 

Now that it appears Tampa Bay has turned a corner offensively, Arians said that he's "really optimistic about the rest of the season." 

Arians isn't the only one feeling better about the Buccaneers' outlook, as the former Tampa Bay coach noted, "Tom [Brady] smiled at practice last week for the first time this season." 

If Brady and the Buccaneers can defeat the Cleveland Browns after their bye this weekend, expect more smiles to come out of Tampa Bay.