The Buccaneers had a defining moment in 2020, most didn’t see it, maybe still haven’t. You know the end results. The team finished the season as Super Bowl LV champions. That part is clear. But what was the defining moment? The event that catapulted the Buccaneers from upstart competitors to world champions. And what does it have to do with today’s game against Buffalo?
Peas and Carrots
After last December’s loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, the Buccaneers record stood at 7-5. Hope still sprang eternal in the salty brine of the Gulf of Mexico breeze. But the team had not defined itself. Stamped the season as their own. That would start a week later. When they hosted the Minnesota Vikings. How strong would the fabric of this team of veteran vagabonds and young upstarts finish the season. With the NFC South crown fading off in the distance, what would the reaction of these Buccaneers be? You remember how that went. Victories against the Vikings, Falcons, Lions, and Falcons would send the team toward the postseason, on a roll. And roll they did. To football history.
In 2021 the plot changes slightly. With an earlier bi-week, and 9-3 record. The NFC South title, not just on the burner. But ready to come to a full boil as early as today. The Buffalo Bills now desperate to prove they’re still relevant. The Buccaneers stand as the defending world champions. Still experimenting with what the 2021 teams identity will be. Truth is, this Buccaneers squad is so full of talent. There will be different identities each week. Unstoppable passing attack? Running game that combines with play action making linebackers and secondaries look lazy. A defense that owns the line of scrimmage with a passion of hate. Now an opportunistic secondary that suddenly is finding itself healthy for the first time in 2021. Give Buccaneers fans one or two phases and the victory is in the can. Let every championship phase come together at once for sixty-minutes. Then somebody call the coroner. There’s going to be a murder.
There are hundreds of defining moments for every football team, every season. It’s part of the fabric that goes into a team each season. The Buccaneers 2021 season is in no way defined by the outcome of this one game against the Bills later today. Unless that full championship team does show up. And that includes coaches. To remind the world what the full makeup of this team is capable of. If that is what happens later today. Then this will become THE defining moment of the 2021 Buccaneers. And that should make the NFL shudder.