The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will enter the 2017-18 season with plenty of promise and high expectations. This is what happens when you make the kind of moves the Bucs did this offseason. What’s surprising is that the media is still somewhat fixated on the Dallas Cowboys and that suits the Bucs just fine. The NFC South has been a constant cake-walk of sorts for the Carolina Panthers until last season when the Atlanta Falcons were able to knock the Panthers off their 3-year run as Conference champs.
But this year– the Tampa Bay Buccaneers look to be the team to stake claim to the throne.
Here are 3 reasons why the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be heading to the Super Bowl.
The Growth of Jameis Winston
For all the talk of Cam Newton, Dak Prescott, Matt Ryan and others– take a minute to ponder what Winston has down very quietly. In his 2nd full season in the league– Winston has thrown for 4000 yards and 22+ touchdowns in back-to-back seasons. He could curve his interceptions just a bit but that’s expected from a young signal caller. Winston has a cannon for an arm and now has reliable weapons to make that 3rd-year leap so many of the greats have made in their careers.
DeSean Jackson and O.J. Howard
This Bucs offense got scary good this offseason with the addition of Jackson and Howard. Jackson is a vet and has the tools to be a Pro Bowl caliber player again. His years with the Washington Redskins were not bad but Jackson has more to offer. With the Bucs having a steady balance in their offensive attack in terms of running and passing, Jackson could easily hit the 90-catch 1200 yard level. Howard is the sleeper here. Many wanted the Bucs to take Florida State player– Dalvin Cook but Howard may have been the better choice. Howard will open lanes for the running game while giving Winston another weapon through the air.
Too many question marks for other NFC Teams
In 2017, the Bucs will play a schedule fit for a Super Bowl run. Sometimes all it takes is a few breaks to go your way and the Bucs may have found one with their schedule. Out of their 16 games, the Bucs will face 6 teams who went to the playoffs last season but neither of them is a solid bet to make the same noise. The Green Bay Packers are an injury away from being at the bottom of the league and still have no reliable running game. The Dallas Cowboys are run heavy and if that breaks down– just watch the Packers game. The Seattle Seahawks are always a threat but their once dominant defense is no longer the same. As far as the Falcons go– they could very well turn into the 2016 Carolina Panthers after their epic collapse in SB51.
By no means will this be easy as anything can happen. But to think that the Bucs don’t stand a chance with the additions they have made coupled with the present decline of other teams in the NFC then it’s a safe bet to say the Bucs could easily turn into the Panthers or Falcons of the last 2 years. Think about it– the last two teams to represent the NFC came from the NFC South. It that trend continues then why not bet house money on the Bucs?