Tom Brady might have not liked the call, but in the end, the New England Patriots quarterback blamed himself for not making a “better throw” on the final play of the team’s controversial 24-20 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Monday night.
Brady’s attempt at a game-winning touchdown pass to tight end Rob Gronkowski was intercepted in the end zone as time expired, but a flag was thrown on the play in what appeared to be a pass-interference call. The referees then decided a foul was not committed by the Panthers, ending the game.
Brady, who shouted at referee Clete Blakeman as he jogged off the field after the game, later pointed the finger at himself.
“It wasn’t a great throw. No excuses,” Brady said, according to the Boston Herald. “It should have been a better throw.”
Until the last-play interception, Brady had been having a standout night for the Patriots, completing 25 of his first 29 pass attempts. He finished the game connecting on 29 of 40 passes for 296 yards and a touchdown.
However, mistakes on both sides of the ball by the Patriots coupled with a strong effort by Carolina quarterback Cam Newton put New England in a tough position -- a place that Brady said set them up for a loss.
“I wish it wouldn’t have come down to that,” Brady said about the final play. “I think there are plenty of plays we could have made. But it did, and they are going to make a call or they are not going to make a call. We can play better than that.”