Eagles fans won’t let him forget when he’s not. They don’t win many championships in Philadelphia, so they have to settle for small wins.
City’s prickly attitude has rubbed off on Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts this week. The normally pleasant Hurts, who will make his first playoff start over Brady’s 46th, was in no mood to talk about his counterpart.
Asked about his earliest memory of watching Brady, 44, play in the NFL, Hurts, 23, replied, “I don’t remember.”
Hurts was 6 years old when Brady led the Patriots to a 24-21 victory over Donovan McNabb, Terrell Owens and the Eagles to win his third Super Bowl title after the 2004 season. No team has been champion since that victory. Brady and the Bucs are aiming to end that streak. First they have to cross the Eagles.
This will be Brady’s third time facing Philadelphia in the playoffs. While the first two were Super Bowls, this is also a do-or-die game.
The Buccaneers and Eagles are no playoff strangers either. They shared four meetings.
The precedent evokes bitter memories for Eagles fans. The Buccaneers closed the old Veterans Stadium with a 27-10 victory in the NFC Championship Game January 19, 2003. It was the first time in franchise history that Tampa had won a game in temperatures below 30 degrees. Ronde Barber sealed the victory with a 92-yard pick-6 over McNabb with 3:12 left in the game.