Happy Monday newsletter readers, it's Shanna McCarriston. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick faced each other last night and I am more than thrilled to have that game behind us. Ultimately, I wanted the Patriots to come away with the win, but they played well and it was nice to see Brady talking about how much his time in New England meant to him.

We will discuss that game -- and take a look at action from the rest of the league as well -- BUT FIRST we need to go over what was a wild final day of MLB's regular season and what it all means for the playoffs.

Let's get to it.

📰 What you need to know

1. MLB postseason field is set, headlined by Yankees vs. Red Sox in Wild Card Game ⚾

First off, a congratulations to the MLB teams (and their fans) who are headed to the postseason. And for the rest, you know what they say ... there's always next year.

Yesterday every team played their 162nd game of the season and it was needed to determine who was going to extend their season. Things went down to the wire -- specifically in the AL Wild Card race -- which made it all a bit more interesting.

The playoffs formally begin with that Yankees vs. Red Sox Wild Card Game on Tuesday night. We will have much more on that matchup in tomorrow's newsletter, but for now I'll leave you with this.

Here is a look at the postseason teams, by seeding:

American League

  • No. 1: Rays, East
  • No. 2: Astros, West
  • No. 3: White Sox, Central
  • No. 4 (Wild Card): Red Sox, East
  • No. 5 (Wild Card): Yankees, East

National League

Here is how the postseason will work:

  • Wild Card Game: winner advances
  • Division Series (two per league): best-of-five series
  • Championship Series: best-of-seven series
  • World Series: best-of-seven series

Not everyone had a day worth celebrating, but sometimes even the worst of the worst get something in return. The Orioles didn't have the best season, in fact they had the worst record in the league, but I suppose at least next season they do get the No. 1 pick.

2. Tom Brady wins first game against Patriots, Bill Belichick 🏈

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New England Patriots
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The game that caused New Englanders to go on an emotional rollercoaster has come and gone, and it was Tom Brady and the Buccaneers who came out victorious -- but not by much. The Bucs won 19-17, with the game ending in a long field goal doink from the Patriots that was inches from going in.

Had the Patriots made that field goal, they likely would've ended the night with a W.

With the win, Brady has now defeated all 32 NFL teams. As if it was scripted, he also passed Drew Brees for most passing yards all-time to add to his already insane resume and Brees was on the sideline when it happened. 

Here's a deeper look at what happened in the game:

  • The Pats missed opportunities. Tampa totaled just six points on five first-half drives, but New England could manage only a 7-6 lead at the break
  • Brady finished with more rushing yards than the Patriots
  • Multiple Patriots trick plays and double-passes kept the Bucs defense on their toes
  • With a minute remaining in the game, Nick Folk's 56-yard field goal attempt for New England was no good
  • Turnovers and penalties hurt the Patriots in the end

Despite the loss, Patriots QB Mac Jones looked solid. He went 31 of 40 passing for 275 yards with two touchdowns and an interception -- and at one point completed 19 straight passes. I don't love giving out "moral victories," but if there ever was one for the Pats, this was it. 

3. NFL Week 4 recap: Jets and Giants finally win; previewing Chargers vs. Raiders 🏈

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There were games on Sunday that did not involve Tom Brady and we had some surprises, like the Jets actually winning! I was most impressed by the Cardinals, who handed the Rams their first loss of the season and continue to prove themselves as serious contenders.

The Bills beating the Texans was not surprising, but Josh Allen and company blowing out Houston 40-0 proves just how dangerous that offense can be.

Here are some other top stories from around the league:

The Raiders, who play the Chargers tonight, are now the only undefeated team left.

The spread is currently at Chargers -3 and the over-under is at 51.5 points. CBS Sports' Pete Prisco, who gives us his weekly picks, predicts the Chargers will win 36-30. I'm going to go the other way and give this one to the Raiders.

4. College football winners and losers: Michigan aces big test 🏈


You know what time it is: it's college football winners and losers time! This is becoming a lovely newsletter tradition and, just like always, there is a lot to discuss.

We saw three top-10 teams lose, including No. 3 Oregon and No. 10 Florida fall to unranked opponents. Here is a look at the winners and losers from Week 5:


  • Michigan: The Wolverines aced their biggest test of the season, defeating Wisconsin 38-17
  • Kentucky: The streak of not beating Florida in Lexington since 1986 is over, with a 20-13 victory
  • Pitt QB Kenny Pickett: He completed 23 of 36 passes for 389 yards and four touchdowns in the team's 52-21 win against Georgia Tech


  • Oregon: The Ducks gave away too many points against Stanford and didn't exactly look like a playoff team
  • Texas A&M: The team was out-played by Mississippi State and lost the game on a safety

For full commentary on winners and losers, plus overreactions, click here.

📝 Odds & Ends

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📺 What to watch tonight


🏈 Raiders vs. Chargers, 8:15 p.m. | LAC -3 | TV: ESPN

🏅 Best thing I saw on the internet

Auburn's Bo Nix put together one of the most incredible plays I've seen this season. To say the quarterback was pressured by the LSU defense on this play would be the understatement of the year. He should've been sacked about 20 times, but somehow dodged the Tigers rushing at him and made a miracle happen, completing a touchdown pass.

2021 Tom Brady jerseys now available

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