More Than Just 2020 On The Line

July 26th, 2020

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Mark Davis can be a bit of a buffoon at times, but he is one of only 32 NFL owners and his words have consequences.

Although the son of Hall of Famer Al Davis can’t wait to roll out that shiny $1.8 billion stadium in the Las Vegas desert, Davis sounded a cautious note in a recent interview with ESPN.

“I don’t know if it’s safe to play,” he said on the brink of training camp. “Uncertainty is the word.”

Buc fans don’t like that word. In fact, they hate it. Since Tom Brady came aboard in March, this franchise has been the object of national focus. Now, the season is looking a little blurry.

The NFL says it plans to open the 2020 regular season on time in Kansas City and end it as scheduled with a Super Bowl game in Tampa. Those plans, however, are subject to change because COVID-19 isn’t following the game plan.

“Everything is up in the air with the virus and how it will affect our league and our season,” Davis said.

A canceled season would be a bummer beyond belief for Buc fans. From Temple Terrace to Tierra Verde, the level of excitement about this team is off the charts.

Buc Nation would surely be in mourning if the coronavirus shuts down the sport, but there are other potential casualties to consider.

Deeper Consequences

Start with Brady, who turns 43 on Aug. 3. At this point in his unparalleled career, every year is precious. If the 2020 season is scrubbed, it’s conceivable that the Brady family decides to move out of the Derek Jeter mansion and get on with retirement.

We know Brady’s competitive nature would make it a difficult call, but is he really willing to wait until the fall of 2021 to throw the next pass that counts? Nobody should blame Brady if he turns in his playbook at that point, but man, what a giant letdown that would be.

Rob Gronkowski, who turns 32 in May, would also have to rethink his return to the game he loves. His future is likely linked to Brady’s decision. If Brady stays, Gronk probably stays.

What about Lavonte David?

If the Bucs end a 12-year playoff drought this fall, David’s national profile would be enhanced. All those prime-time games have to help his chances of adding a second Pro Bowl berth to his resume. If that happens, the Bucs would probably give David another contract extension.

But if there’s no season, Tampa Bay might let David hit free agency in 2022 at the age of 32. figuring his best years are behind him.

Bruce Arians is understandably apprehensive about his daily regimen with the team. His age and underlying health issues will force him to change his routines at One Buc Place to minimize his risk to infection.

If the league doesn’t resume play until September, 2021, Arians would be a month away from turning 69. What if Brady decides to retire in the interim?

Starting over at that age with a new quarterback can hardly be considered an enticing prospect for a 2-time Coach of the Year.


That brings us to the Glazer family, all in with Brady, Gronk and Arians. The cannons are ready to fire and Buc ownership can’t wait to unwrap this package Sept. 13 in the Superdome — with an opportunity to show the 3-time defending NFC South champs what they’re up against in 2020.

“Don’t worry. We could always just declare ourselves champs like UCF did.”

At best, the Bucs will play their home games before reduced-capacity crowds at Raymond James Stadium. But the TV revenues will continue to pour in and merchandise sales will soar if the team plays up to expectations.

A scrubbed season would be concerning to the Glazers on several fronts. There’s the financial hit, of course, but they have the wherewithal to absorb a blow. What would hurt the most is the letdown from all this anticipation, triggered by Brady’s presence.

Let’s hope all this conjecture is moot and the 2020 season plays out as scheduled.

But if the league decides to pull the plug, all these good vibes will go gurgling down the drain.

Enjoy Mike Alstott’s June interview on the Ira Kaufman Podcast.

Bill Currie Ford
5815 N. Dale Mabry Hwy.
Tampa, FL 33614

Ira Kaufman’s column is presented by Bill Currie Ford. Click on Ira to visit Huge buyback offer this weekend!

18 Responses to “More Than Just 2020 On The Line”

  1. Stanglassman Says:

    We’ll still will have Blaine Gabbert.

  2. Buczilla Says:

    Great article Ira. I’m excited as all hell for football, but with the current state of our Country, it might be better for the long term health of the NFL to tap out this year. Players are rightfully scared of the sickness and all of the uncertainties associated with it. Some fans are rightfully pi$$ed with the direction the NFL is leaning in regards to player protests and I’ve read here and elsewhere that these fans will give up on the NFL for good if players continue to kneel. (I’m not there yet since there are legit concerns on both sides of the aisle, but even my nigh infinite patience has it’s limits.)

    I’ll be sad and disappointed if there is no season, but if it prevents even one player’s death, then I’m good with it.

  3. Onebucdaddy Says:

    In the Sage we trust! Thank you for keeping us informed and hopefully optimistic for this season 💯

  4. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Are you also ok with Houses of Worship being shuttered, small businesses being shuttered, schools being shuttered, kids’ organized activities being shuttered?
    Are you ok with “protests” being allowed unabated?
    Are you ok with defunding police departments?
    Is this consistent with your “prevent one player’s death” reasoning?

  5. Buczilla Says:


    As I stated, there are legit concerns on both sides of the political spectrum, i.e., liberals and conservatives. The majority of my friends are liberals and they swear up and down that I am too, but I don’t feel that that is the case.

    I like hearing both sides of an argument before I rush to judgement on something. A huge issue today is that some people (usually the extremists on either side) just paint each other in with broad strokes and only see things in black and white. There are many shades of grey and that is where I feel most people reside, including me.

    I don’t agree with players kneeling but I believe they have a right to do so. I believe that some minorities are unfairly targeted by law enforcement, but I also believe that BLM at it’s core is a marxist organization and has stated in it’s charter that one of it’s goals is to disrupt the “nuclear family”. That is something that I will never get on board with.

    I am all for protests so long as they stay peaceful. Once folks start acting the fool and start destroying things or injuring people, then they need to be arrested and charged accordingly. Some cities are freeing protesters after they have committed crimes and this will only embolden them to continue what they are doing.

    Defunding or channeling police funds elsewhere is beyond dumb and no, I am not on board with that.

    As far as places of worship, schools, and small businesses being shuttered, that should be up to the individuals (i.e. rabbis, priests, imams, business owners, parents etc.) and not the government. I feel the government has too much say in our daily lives as it is and the less decisions it makes for me the better.

    If enough players decide that they don’t want to risk the sickness then there will be no football season and I am ok with that. No one needs to risk their lives for my entertainment. We are not Rome yet dude. 🙂

    Anyways, I hope that I answered your questions sufficiently and I don’t think that we are that far apart on most things. Peace man.

  6. Hodad Says:

    Not having a season does not mean no NFL players will get the virus, and die because of it. Does playing football increase the odds? The guess would be yes, but we really don’t have the data to back that up until they play. The NBA so far has had a smooth start to their season. Being under the supervision of trained pro’s in training camp might be safer then what these young men might be doing without a season. Think at their age single young players would be safer in the outside world to their own vices? Think again.

  7. Alanbucsfan Says:


    Thanks for your thoughtful post

    There is no 2 sides to freedom.
    Once freedom is gone, there’s no more debate.
    Risk and Choice are part of life.
    If 1 pct of players choose to opt out, should the other 99 pct lose their opportunity to play?

  8. Destinjohnny Says:

    There is all this as well as, I think a lot of people are over pro sports..
    It should be interesting

  9. Piratic Says:

    @Buczilla: Please post more often. Your ability to cogently explain your position is commendable. And rare.

    Well done.

  10. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    Buczilla…no true football fan is giving up on football over a minute of kneeling for a righteous cause. That frankly sounds about the wimpiest thing from an ironically macho posture (not saying you’re macho, but that general conceit of people doing that just makes no sense to me). And actually keeping with that general theme, if the other leagues are successfully playing during COVID (including the UFC), then no way should the NFL give up before they even start.

  11. Buczilla Says:

    @Christopher Schiefen

    As I stated above, I have read comments on this website and on others that some people strongly disagree with the player protests and they have said that they will stop watching it. Who are you to judge what a “true” football fan is? That’s your opinion and they are entitled to theirs. I don’t think that that makes them wimps for making their own decisions any more than it makes you a wimp for disagreeing with them. Why are they conceited if they don’t share your views? What specifically makes you the arbiter and of how people feel about things? As I also stated above, painting folks in broad strokes is a terrible thing to do and is a huge part of the problems that we face in society today. Everyone’s voice deserves to be heard.

    I personally will not stop watching football over the player protests even though I think that they are going about it the wrong way. It is a righteous cause (as I alluded to in the gosh darn book I posted earlier if you bothered to read the whole thing), but because I don’t agree with the methods my opinion is worthless, means that I’m not macho, or makes me a wimp? That’s rich dude!

    Finally, I never once said (you did read it all right?) that the NFL should not start playing games or quit before the season starts. I only said that if enough players opt out, there will be no season and I’m cool with the player’s decisions if that is what comes to pass.

    Geez, I figured that I might get it from both sides when I posted what I did earlier. 🙂 No worries, I have a lot of extra “indoor time” nowadays, so I welcome the debate (as long as the Joes don’t threaten to ban me for talking to much sh!t) as it eases the boredom. Good talking to you @Christopher Schiefen.

  12. Buczilla Says:

    @ Piratic

    Thanks man.

  13. Buczilla Says:

    @ Alanbucsfan Says

    No worries, I just feel like people should listen to one another. If it’s only 1% and there is no football, then I will be pi$$ed! If it’s 30% though? What if half a team’s players decide that they want to sit out the season? Peer pressure may come into play since some of these guys are just barely adults.

    If enough current players decide that they want to play and are supplemented by dudes on the street, then I am cool with that. No one should lose their opportunity to play if the league can find replacements for those that sit out.

  14. Mike Johnson Says:

    Biggest guffaw by our Bucs I think was not securing a reliable backup at QB. I just think at some point during the season our 43 yr young vet will go down. Blaine Gabbert does not even excite the college level. Have mercy on us when he steps in.

  15. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    Alanbucsfan Says:
    “There is no 2 sides to freedom.
    Once freedom is gone, there’s no more debate.
    Risk and Choice are part of life.
    If 1 pct of players choose to opt out, should the other 99 pct lose their opportunity to play?”

    I also wholeheartedly agree with this, which is why I suggested the other day, that there is no reason that a season will not be played. If a player does not want to play, for any reason, then there will be someone else willing to take his place. There are many free agent pros, as well as college players who would give up their amateur eligibility for the opportunity. Freedom includes the freedom to accept risks, as you stated.

  16. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    Christopher Schiefen Says:
    “… no true football fan is giving up on football over a minute of kneeling for a righteous cause.”

    I have a problem with the characterization of “righteous cause.”

    Statistics kept by the FBI prove that more whites, both armed and unarmed, are killed by police–in raw numbers, and also in deaths per arrest. The press chooses to hide this fact from us. It is also misleading to call someone unarmed, who tries to run over police with a car, or is wrestling for control of an officer’s weapon. But this is what the press does.

    Insofar as police brutality exists, and there ARE cases, all objective information points not to racism, but to poor candidate screening and poor training. Yet the press deflect from these facts to “racism,” because the forces of evil who control the press also seek to control the rest of us, and the way to do this is to divide us.

    We could all easily unite together for a common cause, that being improved candidate screening and training for police, but this first requires us to realize that we are being manipulated. It requires that we love each other and work together. Only then can we realize that we have a larger enemy than each other, and defeat the forces who use the press manipulation and deceit to leverage us against each other.

  17. Go Bucs 72 Says:

    How does Mark Davis have so much money and get such terrible haircuts?

  18. unbelievable Says:

    Cheap shot at UCF…