Tom Brady leads Buccaneers' last-minute comeback over collapsing Jets after Antonio Brown's exit

Andy Vasquez
NFL writer
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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — For the better part of 60 minutes, the New York Jets outplayed the Buccaneers as rookie quarterback Zach Wilson showed massive progress against the defending Super Bowl champions.

And for the first 59 minutes of the game, they did not trail.

But they gave Tom Brady the ball with a chance to win the game. And every Jets fan knows what happened next.

The Bucs beat the Jets 28-24 as Brady found Cyril Grayson for a 33-yard touchdown pass with 15 seconds left, capping a 93-yard drive with no timeouts in the final two minutes to give the Bucs their first lead of the game when it mattered most.

It was vintage Brady, in perhaps his final possession at MetLife Stadium. And it was a nightmare ending for the Jets, who probably deserved better. With just over two minutes remaining, they went for it on fourth-and-2 deep in Bucs territory, but came up short on a highly-questionable play call: a sneak by Wilson.

But it was probably the ideal result because the Jets saw real, meaningful progress from the No. 2 overall pick, and the loss didn’t hurt their standing in the draft.

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Wilson finished 19-of-33 for 234 yards and a touchdown. Brady finished 34-of-50 for 410, three touchdowns and an interception.

The Jets also lost two key players in the game: rookie running back Michael Carter left the game with a concussion after a 55-yard run in the first quarter and left tackle George Fant left with a knee injury and did not return.

But the Jets near massive upset wasn’t even the strangest development at MetLife on Sunday.

Tom Brady, of the Tampa Bay Bucaneers, is shown from the sideline as the Jets worked offense, during the first quarter, at MetLife Stadium, in East Rutherford, Sunday, January 2, 2022.

Antonio Brown makes things even weirder

Things got even more bizarre in the third quarter when Tampa Bay star receiver Antonio Brown took off his equipment and left the field. It's unclear why Brown left or what prompted it, but FOX cameras showed the mercurial star receiver remove his shirt and throw it into the stands before leaving the field as his teammates looked on in disbelief.   

A video from a fan showed that Brown removing his equipment on the sideline while teammate Mike Evans tried to talk to him. Then, after throwing his shirt into the stands, Brown did jumping jacks in the end zone and waved at fans before jogging into the tunnel.

Brown has had a history of troubles, and was suspended earlier this season for using a fake vaccination card. 

After the game, Bucs coach Bruce Arians said that Brown was no longer a member of the team

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