The Buccaneers and Saints will kick off week one as the game of the week. I will give you a quick look into the week one matchup and give you my prediction for the game.
Breaking Down New Orleans
The Saints are an opponent that pose several threats. Last season the Saints offense ranked third overall in offense and 13th in defense. Michael Thomas was the league leader in receptions and yards. Alvin Kamara led the team in rushing with 797 yards, but also had 81 receptions for 533 yards. Taysom Hill added a player that lines up in multiple positions and gives the offense flexibility.
The Saints defense was led by Cameron Jordan and a stout front seven. Jordan led the team with 15.5 sacks, no other player had more than four and a half. Demario Davis was the anchor in the middle of the field and racked up 111 tackles, 12 Passes defended, and one interception. During the offseason the Saints made some changes to their secondary and added some Veteran leadership with Malcolm Jenkins and DJ Swearinger. Both players will help the Saints attempt to slow down the Buccaneers high powered offense.
How The Game Plays Out
This may be the most anticipated game of the season due to all the off-season hype. For the second time in three seasons the Buccaneers will start on the road in New Orleans. Both teams come into this season with only one thing in mind, Winning a Super Bowl. Both teams have Hall of Fame quarterbacks in Drew Brees and Tom Brady and a run game that is used to set up play action passes. The Saints have Alvin Kamara and Hill which gives them a nice duo that can be lined up anywhere on the field. This off season the Buccaneers added LeSean McCoy and Leonard Fournette to the running back room. Between McCoy and Fournette the Buccaneers hope to improve on the 24th ranked rushing attack from 2019.
As much as the offenses have been talked about, I think this game is going to come down to defensive play. The young Buccaneers secondary must find a way to slow down one of the best receivers in the game in Michael Thomas. The new look secondary for the Saints must find a way to slow down the multiple weapons of the Buccaneers. The key to the game will be which front seven can affect the quarterback the most. The Buccaneers have the sack leader in Shaquil Barrett and the number one rush defense from 2019. The Saints have Cameron Jordan and a secondary that has veteran leadership. Which team will be able to impose their will on the other?
After a slow start by both teams, I think the Buccaneers win. The offensive weapons and Brady not turning the ball over will prove to be too much for the Saints. The Buccaneers defense will also take a big step and hold the Saints offense to 14 points.
Final Score Buccaneers 28-Saints 14