Its a narrow field; the Bucs have 6 games left, yet they could be a playoff team, or they could continue the Bucs futility record of NFC South cellar dwellers. But it’s a wide open division this year with the Panthers back down to Earth yet playing a little stronger of late, Atlanta also coming back down to Earth after their soaring start. And the Saints overall have improved somewhat, they actually play a LITTLE bit of defense now and Drew Brees is immortal, nothing else explains it!
But the bottom line is, after winning 4 of the last 6 games, Tampa Bay is officially in the Playoff Race and not exactly a long shot either. This is the first time the Bucs have beaten a team that has 7 wins in their belt since the last game of 2012.
With 6 games to go, no more bye weeks, here are the standings. Schedules below.
Its way too early and confusing to talk about the wild card, and so many other teams have a better path, the Bucs should only concentrate on the division if they can. There are home AND away games against the Saints, and a home game against the Panthers too. The Bucs have a date at Dallas where they will get to view the Dak & Elliot show. A road game at San Diego and the Seattle game next week at home; so no easy games for the Bucs.
I would like to urge Bucs fans to not get TOO ‘playoff happy’ yet, this is after all when they fall apart. 2012 the Bucs were 6-6, and fell to 7-9. Other than the 2010 “Race to 10” which was achieved, but didn’t produce the goal (playoffs…Green Bay got that spot) thats the best record Tampa Bay has had since Jon Gruden was coach.
A more important end this season could produce, is the Bucs playing games like this, perhaps winning 3 and losing 3 close ones. An 8-8 record after what the Bucs have been through in the last 10 years, would be fantastic. It would be a true sign the times have changed and the Bucs really have made a change. Fans would be excited for next year, unable to wait for the start of a new season with some more defensive talent.
A 9-7 finish where the Bucs lose two games and win 4 would send waves throughout the Bay area that the Bucs are back. Plus there is a good chance a 9 win season could win the NFC South, and get the Bucs a 17th football game, and do you really think the Bucs care if they play on the Road?
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