Brady and Favre have miserable openers

Tom Brady's four interceptions tied a career high, and his passer rating of 20.4 was by far the worst of his career.

Updated: September 8, 2003, 2:28 PM ET
By By Ryan Early | NFL Insider
It was a horrible day for Super Bowl winning quarterbacks ... Kurt Warner, MVP of Super Bowl XXXIV, was sacked six times, fumbled the ball six times (losing three of them), gave up a touchdown by losing the ball in the end zone, threw an interception, and suffered a concussion that left him in a New York area hospital overnight for observation. At least he could blame his performance on his dizzy condition. Brett Favre, winner of Super Bowl XXXI, threw three first-half interceptions to spot the Vikings a 20-3 halftime lead. He led the Packers back to make the contest close in the fourth quarter, but a pass into the end zone intended for Javon Walker became Favre's fourth interception of the game and left the Packers with too little time to pull out the win. Then there's Tom Brady, MVP of Super Bowl XXXVI, who couldn't even get a point on the scoreboard for the Patriots. His four interceptions tied a career high, and his passer rating of 20.4 was by far the worst of his career. He completed less than 50 percent of his passes, and when he did complete a pass it was usually a little dump off to a running back. He was eventually benched for third stringer Rohan Davey. So if the three active Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks all played horribly yesterday, will the trend continue tonight for Brad Johnson of the Bucs?

The best hot seat performance ... had to be that of Jaguars quarterback Mark Brunell. He was the subject of trade rumors less than two weeks ago. He had a less than ideal surrounding cast to work with thanks to a salary cap roster purge as well as a four-game suspension of his favorite target, wide receiver Jimmy Smith. He was playing a defense ranked second in the league last season. Even though his team ended up losing, Brunell was amazing. He completed 21 of his 25 passes for 247 yards and two touchdowns throwing to the likes of J.J. Stokes, Matthew Hatchette and Jermaine Lewis. His quarterback rating for the game was 133.3.

The first 2003 touchdown scored by a rookie ... was by Cardinals wide receiver Anquan Boldin. The second-round draft pick, the 54th player taken in April's draft, broke a 46-year-old record for the most receiving yards gained by a rookie in his debut with 217 on 10 catches. Two of those passes became touchdowns, including a juking 71-yard catch-and-run early in the third quarter. Boldin fell to the second round because he supposedly wasn't fast enough and was still learning the wide receiver position after being a high school quarterback. But his experience under center gave him a natural connection with Cardinals quarterback Jeff Blake as the young rookie entered the NFL already knowing how to read defenses. He makes adjustments to his patterns already knowing what Blake is seeing from the backfield. The two quickly developed chemistry in training camp and will continue to hook up often through the rest of the season. But Boldin is not satisfied with his inaugural game. Not only did his team not win, but he muffed a punt in the third quarter that led to a Lions touchdown.

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