How the Buccaneers Can Win the Super Bowl


We know that you are looking at that headline and thinking that we have gotten incredibly carried away with an opening day win. It is true, the Buccaneers are not expected to do well this year after the departure of Tom Brady. But many pre-season predictions already seem to have been woefully off the mark and we want to dream a little bit more too.

If you bet on NFL games online you will have been ushered away from backing the Bucs if you had read just about any report before the new season started. But we like to be optimists here and have decided to take that win over the Vikings as a sign that Super Bowl LVIII is on the cards.

We admit it would still be one of the upsets of recent football history for the Buccaneers to even be part of the show in Las Vegas next February. But we are going to give you a few good reasons why immediately counting out Tampa is a bad idea.

No Brady, No Problem

It does seem as though the main reason why so many NFL pundits came down against any chance of a good season for the Bucs was that a certain Tom Brady would not be playing this year. After three years in Tampa – with one of those seasons bringing another Super Bowl triumph – Brady finally called it a day and lengthened the odds of the Bucs doing anything.

But if you look more carefully at the roster that Todd Bowles has to work with, you will see that the Buccaneers are well-stocked in all departments. With better luck on the injury front, there are enough weapons to attack most defenses and keep out a lot of opponents too.

The Return of Baker

Exit Brady, enter Baker. A lot has happened since Mayfield was taken as the first overall pick by the Cleveland Browns in the 2018 NFL Draft. A lot was expected of him as soon as he came in the league – which is to be expected from a number one pick QB – but he has so far largely failed to deliver.

But think back to 2018 and think about just how bad those Cleveland Browns were. Think about how bad the Cleveland Browns always are! Injuries have hampered his progress and that season in Carolina really messed with his game. But in a supportive team, given the targets to aim for, Mayfield could still prove a lot of people wrong.

The Rush is Back Too

It is fair to say that the Bucs were terrible with the ball in their hands last season. They finished last in the league for rushing yards per game and yards per carry. The only way is up, right? Well, it could be. The news that Ryan Jensen won’t be returning at center any time soon was a blow, but there is reason to be hopeful.

If Mayfield starts firing on all cylinders, it is probable that Tampa will be a passing team. But with Rachaad White looking to lead the backfield in his second year, running the ball could be a valuable alternate option. Opposing rush defenses look weaker this year as well.

Easy Schedule

That last point about weaker opposing rush defenses brings us nicely to our next point. The Bucs won the NFC South last year with an 8-9 record, but the list of opponents looks far more dangerous than what the team will have to face this season.

An AFC South in which only the Jacksonville Jaguars look any threat, along with an NFC North that is playing mostly on tradition – admittedly apart from a resurgent Detroit Lions – makes for half a season of potential wins. Add that to our own divisional opponents who can all be very beatable, and the Bucs should be able to walk it into the playoffs.

NFC South Three-Peat

Between our two Super Bowl victories, we only finished top of the NFC South on two occasions – the only times we made it to the postseason in that 17-year period. But for the last three years, we have begun to treat the division as more of our own personal plaything.

In 2020 we might have finished second, but we did win Super Bowl LV, so we’ll count that as a positive. Then we won back-to-back divisional titles, making the playoffs with a losing record in the process. There is absolutely no reason why the Bucs cannot win a third consecutive NFC South title – and once that happens you make your own luck in the postseason.

Low Expectations

You may have noticed that no one seems to be giving the Bucs a chance this year. Although we all like to think that pro football players don’t read into those kinds of things, there is a lot of ego in the major leagues, and opponents – as well as fans – will expect an easy ride.

Once we have already posted some decent wins in the early months of the season it will already be too late for some teams in our division to catch us. Others will be forced into changing their original preparation to face a Brady-less Bucs and that will play into our hands too.


OK, we admit, we may not have wholly convinced you that the Bucs are going to go all the way. But we did make some good points, right? We don’t want to get too carried away with an upset opening day win but if the record stays positive after the bye week, that will be a good first sign.

The final six or seven games of the regular season include some that look very winnable at this stage and the first priority will be winning the division. If that happens it should mean that Baker Mayfield has enjoyed a good season and can improve from there. We’re not saying the Buccaneers are definitely going to win the Super Bowl, we are just saying not to rule them out so early.

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