Best Bet

January 8th, 2021

Hidden key.

So, who are you gambling on this weekend?

Over at USA Today, a gaggle of NFL writers have chosen their best bets for this weekend’s half-dozen playoff games.

(To paraphrase Uncle Junior of “The Sopranos” fame, all Joe is going to do this weekend is pass gas into the same couch pillow for two straight days.)

Nate Davis believes the best bet is a no-brainer. It’s the team with a middle-aged quarterback leading what has been a near-unstoppable offense the past three weeks.

That would be the Bucs.

But I have to go with the Buccaneers on this one. Unlike Lamar Jackson, Tom Brady is playoff proven and his new mates in Tampa Bay seem to be jelling at just the right time. And this team can do far more than throw the ball – Ronald Jones has emerged as an effective runner, and this defense can stonewall ground games and hunt quarterbacks. Throw in what appears to be a favorable wild-card matchup with Washington, and it sure appears as if TB12 and Co. are poised to get out of the blocks quickly.

Yes, Ronald Jones is an excellent Y-factor. He’s somewhat rested after two games off late in the season due to a combination of being on the Reserved/COVID list and having a broken finger. RoJo should have had 1,000-yards rushing except for park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring, down-forgetting, handshake-stiffing, jet-ski-losing, biscuit-baking Bucs quarterback Tom Brady wanted to get his bro’ paid.

The last time the Bucs played a ferocious defensive line, the Bears, RoJo had a strong game. In the fourth quarter, RoJo got stopped on a pair of runs and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich quickly got cold feet and got pass-happy.

Joe still maintains that if Leftwich would have stuck with RoJo, the Bucs would have beaten the Bears.

Don’t make the same mistake twice, Mr. Leftwich.

Tampa Bay legend Derrick Brooks and iconic Hall of Fame voter and columnist Ira Kaufman get after it in Episode II of TAMPA TWO this week. All the fun and wisdom is presented by The Identity Tampa Bay and Joe.

14 Responses to “Best Bet”

  1. Steven Says:

    100% agree. Row Joe needs to run the ball at least 20 to 25 times.

  2. Cobraboy Says:

    I wanna see heavy doses of Jones slashing elbows and knees…

    Play action is even more effective if the play run is actually a serious threat, so defenders totally buy into the fake…including safeties for a nanosecond…

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Cannot abandon the run. We lose as soon as we do. Run the ball, set up the play action and win the game

  4. 407Buc Says:

    If we abandon the run we will lose… just like every other time. Run, set up the play action, and get the W

  5. BucEmUp Says:

    20 plus carries for rojo please, keep running play action and short screen, play man coverage and this game will be over. Get predictable on offense and play zone and they WILL lose

  6. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    I agree. I think we stomp these guys, but I don’t gamble, and there’s a reason for that besides my addictive personality.

  7. Clw JB Says:

    ROJO looked great in his cameo last week, his speed and power combo are lethal

    POUND THE ROCK and open up the pass game

    Bucs 31-17, starts close, then like a college contest the disparity in talent just takes over in the late 3rd qtr and 4th

    for the first time in my 52 years, will be a Bears fan this week-end

  8. Mitch Says:

    I would love to see Rojo get 150-200 yards and two TD’s

  9. SB : Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    “Joe still maintains that if Leftwich would have stuck with RoJo, the Bucs would have beaten the Bears.”

    The Bucs would have beaten the Bears if BL had gone for it on fourth and one from the Bears 20 late in the game instead of TRYING a FG.

    Made ZERO sense. We went for it on fourth and one from OUR OWN 20 early in the game!!!

  10. unbelievable Says:

    “Row Joe needs to run the ball at least 20 to 25 times.”


  11. David Says:

    I see about 7-9 carries first half and then pounding them in to submission with 12-14 in the second half.
    ROJO goes over 100

    Bucs win 34-16

  12. Drunkinybor Says:

    I’m thinking the final score will be Bucs-41- and football team 16. I think Bucs will DOMINATE this crappy Washington team

  13. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    Nothing hurts more than losing a game bc of bad coaching. That was clear in the Bears game. 12-4 would be nice. BUT, we are here now in the playoffs. How sweet it is!!!!

  14. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Bucs are pass first team due to top notch receivers. I agree Rojo should run but I would also like to see Vaughn catching passes out of backfield. Brady threw one to Fournett last week. Sit him, he is too slow. Do not change a thing unless you have to oline will shine. GO BUCS.