NEW ORLEANS >> Drew Brees and Tom Brady, the two leading passers in NFL history, couldn’t muster vintage performances in the first NFL game featuring two starting quarterbacks in their 40s.
But while Brees avoided game-turning mishaps with an offense he’s led since 2006, Brady suffered some costly cross-ups with his new team.
Brady threw two interceptions in his Tampa Bay debut, Alvin Kamara scored touchdowns running and receiving, and the New Orleans Saints beat the Buccaneers 34-23 on Sunday.
“I made some just bad, terrible turnovers,” Brady said. “I obviously have got to do a lot better job.”
The first of Brady’s interceptions led to Kamara’s 6-yard touchdown run. The second pick thrown by the new, 43-year-old Bucs QB — who left the New England Patriots in free agency after 20 years and six Super Bowl triumphs — was returned 36 yards for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins.
“Win the turnover battle like we did, have a turnover for a touchdown, you’re a 90-something percent winner in those games,” Saints coach Sean Payton said. “Just a lot of things happened in that game that despite how you play, those things can help you win games. The energy and effort I was pleased with.”
The 41-year-old Brees passed for 160 yards and two TDs. He did not turn the ball over and took only one sack. His first TD pass was a dump-off to Kamara from 12 yards out. In the fourth quarter he hit Emmanuel Sanders for a 5-yard score.
“I’d probably say I played awful,” Brees said. “Certainly, we are used to playing at a much higher level offensively and especially in the passing game. So, we’ll get that back on track.”