The Buccaneers rocked the NFL world by signing Tom Brady to a two-year contract. After twenty seasons in New England, the six-time Super Bowl champion is taking his talents to Tampa Bay. Will the Buccaneers make the playoffs for the first time since 2007 now that Brady is at the helm? Can they win a Super Bowl?
After being devoid of offensive weapons this past season in New England, Tom Brady will be throwing to Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and OJ Howard, arguably the best group of weapons in the NFL. The Buccaneers were 3rd in the entire NFL in yards per game and 4th in points per game despite Jameis Winston throwing 30 interceptions. Now the Buccaneers are going from the worst decision-maker in all of football to perhaps the smartest quarterback in the league.
Many believed that Antonio Brown would end up joining the team whichever team Tom Brady signed with. The two have a close relationship and Brady was not happy after the Patriots parted ways with Brown after just one game. Given their relationship, you may think that Antonio Brown will end up as a Buccaneer. However, I wouldn’t count on that happening given Bruce Arians comments about the star WR last offseason. Additionally, the Buccaneers already have an excellent group of weapons for Brady so there’s no need for them to risk signing Brown, who has been nothing but trouble for more than a year now.
The Buccaneers are expected to have a dynamic offense, but many people are questioning their defense given that they allowed the 4th most points per game last season. However, the Buccaneers also allowed just the 15th most yards per game, which is above league average. You can’t fully blame the Buccaneers defense for all the points they gave up because Winston consistently gave the other team good field position with all his turnovers and set the single-season record for interceptions returned for a touchdown with seven. As long as the Buccaneers defense isn’t awful, which they shouldn’t be as indicated by the yards per game they allowed, they should be a Super Bowl contender.
The Buccaneers may not be done adding players. After acquiring Brady, many players have expressed interest in joining him in Tampa Bay. Additionally, the NFL draft is still to come and the Buccaneers hold the 14th overall pick. Will they use their first-round pick on a defensive player? Will they solidify their offensive line? Or, will they try to find Brady’s successor? Jordan Love has drawn comparisons to Patrick Mahomes and the former Utah State Aggie could be available at #14. Love could be a special player after sitting behind and learning from Brady for two seasons.
How will the Buccaneers fare with Tom Brady this season? Will they win the NFC South? Dethroning the Saints, who have won the division the past three seasons will be no easy task. With all-time great aging quarterbacks, offenses filled with dynamic playmakers, and defenses that weren’t ranked too far apart in yards per game (New Orleans 11th, Tampa Bay 15th) the Buccaneers and Saints are very similar and watching them compete for the division crown will be entertaining. If they can live up to the hype, we shouldn’t be shocked if the Buccaneers become the first team that is both hosting and playing in the Super Bowl.