With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers playing in the Super Bowl for just the second time in their history, they look to repeat history. Defense wins championships… usually. This weekend, Tampa will need their defense to make plays. The defensive pressure will have to get to the quarterback. If Tom Brady and the Buccaneers offense do their job this game can be won by the defense.
The defensive line has a nice mix of veteran star players and young stud players. Let us take a look at what to expect from this stout front.
Last week against the Green Bay Packers, defensive tackle Vita Vea came back from injury. He missed the first meeting against the Chiefs in Week 12 because of his broken leg. Thanks to the deep playoff run he had time to recover and now he is needed more than ever. If he can do his job and occupies more than one offensive lineman he can free up the pass rushers around him. Last week he didn’t register one stat but his work did make a difference. He will most likely still have a snap count but I expect him to be in during the key moments of the game.
– Vita Vea: 4 tackles, 1 TFL
– Steve McLendon: 2 tackles
On the left and right side of the defensive tackle will be Ndamukong Suh and William Gholston. Gholston, the long time Buccaneer, has had a very good season and will look to have his best game yet against a depleted Chiefs O-Line. His job will be to occupy the guard and put pressure on the outside to hold up or else a very fast teammate will have a lane to get in the backfield. Suh on the left side will look to earn his first Super Bowl victory and solidify his Hall of Fame case with a great performance. If there is any game wrecker left inside of Suh I expect him to do it Sunday. With the pass rushers outside playing well this postseason, anything from the defensive line will be the cherry on top.
– William Gholston: 2 Tackles, 1 TFL
– Ndamukong Suh: 4 Tackles, 1 sack, 2 TFL
This is the best Super Bowl matchup in quite some time. Both teams have paths to a victory and it would not be shocking either way. Further, the way the Buccaneers win is by playing a great game on defense. Stars are littered on this defense at all three levels, they will need every bit of star power to try and limit the Chiefs. Expect the defensive line to have a huge impact on the game.