There was an excellent and true article the other day showing how the Bucs could be just like last year's Kansas City Chiefs, who were 2-14 with pretty much the same cast and crew that has them 8-0 this year.
The biggest change is the Head Coach, and a serviceable QB.
But if you really want to see a stark contrast, look no further than the team the Bucs face this weekend in the Pacific Northwest.
Tampa Bay is completely mismatched by the Seahawks this Sunday, in most circles they have little to no hope of pulling out a win, yet it was only a couple years ago the Bucs not only upset Seattle, but humiliated them the next year. That 2010 team that was reduced to rubble by the Bucs managed to go on to the playoffs with their 7-9 record while the Bucs stayed home with a 10-6 record because they lost out on tiebreakers to eventual Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers.
The Bucs were a mess in 2009, the first year under Raheem Morris, the coach everyone wanted out of Tampa Bay because he didnt provide discipline. The Bucs were 1-12 and playing better offensively now that Josh Freeman was the starter, but it wasn’t enough. Then the team started to buy in, and Tampa Bay upset Seattle on the road. It's a rare day in Tampa Bay history that the Bucs beat a west coast team, especially with the Bucs headed to seemingly a 1-15 season. But upset they did, and Tampa Bay left Seatte with a 24-7 win, leaving a dejected Seahawk head coach Jim Mora. Morris on the other hand was on the upswing.
Raheem hit his coaching stride in 2010, leading a not much older than college football team to a 10-6 record when he was laughed at for suggesting his team could win 10 games with his "count down to ten" slogan in training camp. No one was laughing in the final week when the team had a shot to accomplishment.
The week before, with the Bucs at 8-6, Tampa Bay hosted Seattle with a season on the line and Seattle was finishing off their first year with a college coach at the helm, Pete Carroll, who had tried the pros out before. But Carroll was fresh off his success with USC having accomplished winning national championships, not just resurrecting a program, which he also did. The final score wasn’t even close, the Bucs won 38-15 but the 'hawks were 6-9 and alive in the playoff race with a winner take all game against the rams in week 17.
Seattle won, and upset New Orleans in the Playoffs at home because even though they were 7-9, they were the division winner and the home team. The Seahawks grew as a team under Carroll’s leadership, while the Bucs gave up on Morris after a 10 game losing streak, and over compensated for his coaching deficiencies with Greg Schiano.