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Bucs' Mike Evans 'Grew Up Not Liking' Tom Brady Due to Peyton Manning Fandom

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 1, 2021

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans, right, celebrates with quarterback Tom Brady, left, after scoring a touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Mike Evans and Tom Brady have surely put the past behind them as Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammates, but there was a time when the wide receiver was not the biggest fan of the quarterback.

"When I was a kid, I grew up not liking Tom Brady cuz I was a Peyton Manning fan," he told reporters Monday. "And now I'm the biggest Tom Brady fan."

FOX Sports: NFL @NFLonFOX

.@MikeEvans13_ says he did not like @TomBrady growing up because he was a Peyton Manning fan 🤣 https://t.co/97IyOW98o2

Evans has surpassed 1,000 receiving yards in each of his seven seasons in the NFL, but this year is the first time he made the playoffs. Having Brady as your quarterback will pave the path for teamwide success, as this is the all-time great's 10th Super Bowl appearance.

The rivalry between Manning and Brady largely defined the AFC for more than a decade, as the former's Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos seemingly always had to face the latter's New England Patriots if they were going to succeed.

The pair played each other 17 times, with Brady enjoying an 11-6 edge, although Manning won three of the five postseason matchups.

Brady has the ultimate bragging rights with six Lombardi Trophies to Manning's two, and Evans will try to help No. 12 further that gap Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium—even if he didn't used to like it when Brady won.        

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