A Retirement Celebration

May 12th, 2021

Sage of Tampa Bay Sports Ira Kaufman drives a 2020 Ford Escape with all the options, cherry red. Bill Currie Ford GM Sean Sullivan will assist your personally with whatever you need. Do not hesitate to ask!!! Shop now at BillCurrieFord.com. And remember their nationwide lifetime warranty on new and used vehicles.


There was a time when Buc killers roamed the land.

Before the 2002 realignment, Barry Sanders routinely tortured Tampa Bay’s defense twice a season. Sanders averaged 5.0 yards per carry during his Hall of Fame career, but he was even more productive when facing the Bucs. In 19 games vs. Tampa Bay, Sanders ran for 2,195 yards and 14 touchdowns, averaging 5.6 yards per rush attempt.

Julio Jones, who may soon be departing the Falcons, has also feasted against Tampa Bay. In 16 career games, which used to be the equivalent of a regular season, Jones has burned the Bucs for 114 catches, 1,841 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Julius Peppers 

Another annual Tampa Bay nemesis was future Hall of Famer Julius Peppers, who had 19 1/2 sacks in 21 games against the Bucs before retiring two years ago.

But of all the opposing players who couldn’t wait to face Tampa Bay, none generated more torment for Buc fans than Drew Brees. And it’s the retirement of Brees that could very well change the dynamics of the NFC South.

The Saints have reeled off four consecutive division crowns but they are about to experience life without No. 9 under center for the first time since 2005.

It’s not going to be pleasant.

Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill will duke it out for the starting job as Brees heads for the NBC Sports booth. He leaves a cavernous hole, one big enough to swallow up an entire franchise.

The Bucs made Brees look very mortal in the NFC divisional round, but it was obvious he was far from 100 percent. Todd Bowles designed a smart game plan to play tight on New Orleans receivers and dare an impaired Brees to beat Tampa Bay deep. He couldn’t do it and the Bucs picked him off three times.

When Sean Payton used a gadget play to surprise the Bucs with a long pass, it was Winston, not Brees, who heaved the ball downfield.

Score one for Tampa Bay, but for 15 years, Brees made a habit of punking the Bucs. And don’t forget that even in that fateful playoff matchup, Brees had New Orleans poised for victory until Antoine Winfield forced a key fumble late in the third quarter.

Profound Impact

Including his 5-year stint with the Chargers, Brees was 20-10 as a starter vs. Tampa Bay, completing 69 percent of his pass attempts. He threw 61 touchdowns and only 27 picks while the Bucs sacked him just 37 times.

Like Tom Brady, Brees was the kind of quarterback who could elevate the play of his targets — all of ’em.

Marques Colston, a seventh-round pick, joined the Saints along with Brees in 2006. Colston’s average production during his decade in New Orleans was impressive: 71 catches, 976 yards and 7 TDs. Lance Moore, just a guy, turned in a 1,000-yard season with Brees in 2012.

Tight end Jimmy Graham averaged 77 receptions, 950 yards and 10 TDs in five years with Brees. In the six seasons since Graham departed, he has averaged 52 catches, 598 yards and 5 scores.

You get the picture.

Sea change is here, explains Ira Kaufman.

Brees is gone — and the Bucs are back. That sigh of relief you just heard came courtesy of Lavonte David, Ndamukong Suh and Carlton Davis. In his 30 starts against the Bucs, Brees helped the Saints score at least 30 points 14 times. They scored less than 20 points only six times.

“Twice a year for 13 years, I knew I was going against one of the best to ever do it,” said Matt Ryan, who isn’t too shabby himself with a 16-10 record against the Bucs.

Every year, Tampa Bay’s defensive coordinator would stand at a podium and declare, “We have to pressure Brees up the middle.” And every year, Brees would sit comfortably in the pocket and pick the Bucs apart.

That’s how you end your career No. 1 all-time in completions and passing yards. Six times, Brees led the NFL in accuracy and he ranks second to Peyton Manning in career game-winning drives.

“Happy retirement, legend,” said Adrian Peterson. “The game will miss you.”

The Bucs won’t.

What a spokesmodel! Bill Currie Ford is 1 mile north of Raymond James Stadium. Shop today at BillCurrieFord.com. Ask GM Sean Sullivan for The Ira Kaufman discount.

12 Responses to “A Retirement Celebration”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Classy guy….great QB……$hitty Saints….$hitty Sean

  2. #1bucsfan Says:

    Steve smith deff had our number too. I know most will be happy that Brees retires especially Bucs fans except me. It was always fun watching Brees. It wasn’t fun watching him rip apart the Bucs but he was great and to get to witness it was amazing. Wish we got Brady a little sooner so we could watch 2 greats go at it for a few years. What a career Brees had. The best part is he gave Nola hope when they were hit the hardest by Katrina.

  3. AtlBuc Says:

    Ira if Payton coaches the interceptions out of Jameis he will be a formidable foe. Don’t forget he passed for over 5000 yards even though he did a great Santa Claus impression in the process.

  4. Buczilla Says:

    Good riddance and it’s only fitting that he lost to us in his last game. I will not miss him one iota.

  5. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    Bress is a very classy, good guy. Hate loud-mouth Sean Payton. Good coach – big mouth.

  6. Medicated Pete Says:

    Enjoy your retirement Ira

  7. Iamabuc Says:

    I’m just here wondering about Ira’s “sexy hand-on-your-hip, provocative harlot, strike-a-pose stand”…….idk…. 😂

  8. Asdf Says:

    The 5000 yards is such a bad argument. We had to throw so much in part because of all Jamies’s turnovers that put us behind in games. Throwing for 5000 has to be in context of the 30 picks. You can’t pluck that stat out without the full picture. Had he taken less risk he would have had fewer yards and frankly we’d likely have won more games

  9. Doctor Stroud Says:

    And don’t forget those other Buc killers Case Keenum, Jake Delhomme, and Paxton Lynch. Good riddance!

  10. HeyItsAdam Says:

    Nothing polishes up an halo like an obit.

    Am I the only one who remembers his role in Bountygate?

  11. Pewter Power Says:

    Bucs got the last laugh, no one wasted more playoff births than the Saints. Bounty gate got them their lone super bowl. Drew Brees was a beast. Killing us with zero arm strength

  12. BA4President Says:

    @Tampabaybucfan I agree on all points