Tom Brady could match NFL record with win over Falcons in Week 18

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The Falcons could be on the receiving end of a record-breaking season finale contest against the Buccaneers in Week 18. Tom Brady improved to 11-0 all-time against the Falcons following Tampa Bay’s Week 5 victory over Atlanta, which puts him second all-time in wins without a loss against a single team in NFL history. Otto Graham‘s 12-0 record against the Cardinals is the current leader, and with news that Bucs starters will suit up this week, it could potentially be the Falcons’ last chance to beat a Tom Brady-led team.

I’m not implying Brady will retire following the season, but I do believe there’s a legit possibility that he doesn’t return to Tampa Bay in 2023. And if the final two contests against the GOAT are one with a phantom roughing the passer call and a record-setting victory, the Falcons fan base might combust.

Let me give you a refresher if you don’t remember the situation in the first matchup this season. Atlanta had just scored a touchdown and converted a two-point conversion to pull within one score. Tampa Bay had struggled to move the ball offensively in the fourth quarter. Down six points with just over three minutes left to play, the Falcons appeared to have stopped the Bucs near midfield via Grady Jarrett sacking Tom Brady on third down. What unfolded next was absolutely unbelievable.

The entire NFL community displayed their outrage. Every former player, coach, media personality, talk show host, and Twitter fan voiced their displeasure about the egregious call from Jerome Boger, who defended his judgment by saying Grady Jarrett “unnecessarily” threw Tom Brady to the ground.

“What I had was the defender grabbed the quarterback while he was still in the pocket and unnecessarily throwing him to the ground,” Boger said. “That is what I was making my decision based on.”

The Falcons still would’ve had to go the length of the field for a touchdown. With Marcus Mariota at quarterback, that seems unlikely. But they deserved the chance to win the game.

Now, the Falcons will strap it up in a generally meaningless game for both teams. The Buccaneers cannot improve their playoff seeding, and the Falcons are already eliminated. Atlanta’s draft position could be affected, but it’s marginal. Both teams want to win this game, and it might be one of the franchise’s last chances to beat a Tom Brady-led team.

Photographer: Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire

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