Can The Injury Luck Continue?

May 30th, 2021

One key element usually in a team winning a Super Bowl is not losing key players to injury, at least not for a great length of time.

Sure, the Bucs lost Vita Vea for 13 games including the first two playoff games, and then got him back in the nick of time for the NFC title game.

The way the Bucs’ defensive front dominated the strong Packers offensive line, you could argue Vea was the difference in the Bucs winning the NFC title game.

The Bucs offensive line has been relatively healthy for years. Gregg Rosenthal of believes an injury or two to the line this fall and the Tampa Bay “Go for Two” train could be derailed.

Injury luck was a factor in Tampa’s success, especially on the offensive line. The Bucs finished first in adjusted games lost per Football Outsiders — the metric measures how many games were missed by starting players. (That is, the Bucs were least impacted by injuries.) A few injuries up front offensively would probably be the most threatening obstacle in terms of slowing this team.

Ali Marpet missed three starts with a concussion, Donovan Smith had a rare missed start and Alex Cappa got hurt in the season finale and was lost for the playoffs.

In 2019 the Bucs had a total five missed starts on the offensive line and in 2018 just one starter on the offensive line (Demar Dotson) missed a game.

That is an incredible string of good fortune. Can it continue?

27 Responses to “Can The Injury Luck Continue?”

  1. Alexander Nascimento Says:

    LFG Bucs!!!!

  2. SOEbuc Says:

    Champions have depth and we’re the deepest team in the NFL. And surrounding a team with talent gives players the opportunity to stay fresh and spread the ball around. Future injuries before OTA when we’re healthy now is not floating my boat.

  3. Iamabuc Says:

    Fingers crossed.

  4. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Well let’s remember The line was a major concern when Marpet went out.
    Anyone remember the “Sunday Night Massacre” against the Saints?

    No luck here – Ali Marpet was not in there and it was a horrible game for the O Line.

    Which led to the loss AJ Shipley at a crucial time of need, when AJ looked like an answer, that we found out Joe Haeg was not.
    Not a fun time for Bucs fans.

    Also lets not forget about Chris Godwin and his injury bug, Chris could not stay on the field for the beginning of the season. He missed about 3 games and parts of other games because various injuries, which contributed to Arians agreeing with Brady about bringing in AB.

    What about Stinnie coming in for Cappa, that could have been devastating but Stinnie was a stud and was a huge part of the Bucs winning the Super Bowl.

    Just look at the Chiefs and their line. Next man up, NOT!!!!!!!!! lol

    Here is a thought maybe the Chiefs would have had better back up O lineman if J Licht was the Chiefs GM?

    The Bucs showed they were the better team in the Super Bowl.

    You are only AS good as your Weakest Link, and the Bucs were a deeper team than KC.

    There is plenty of other injuries that I did not mention, so however you want to look at it, the Bucs had the roster to overcome injuries better than the others.

    TAKE A BOW J LICHT for building the best roster in the NFL.

    GO WORLD CHAMPION BUCS!!!!! 20-0 BABY!!!!!!

  5. Defense Rules Says:

    Excellent post August Buc 1976. You’re spot on IMO that depth is a critical factor in how our Bucs overcame what could’ve been some devastating injuries. As you said … ‘You are only AS good as your Weakest Link’.

    Another element that many Bucs’ fans overlook is how so many of our guys played through injury last season. And played very effectively. You mentioned Chris Godwin being dinged up for just about the whole season, but there were many others who fought through some pretty rough injuries. Mike Evans played hurt a bunch last year, especially early in the season, and yet he still got 16 games under his belt, plus the playoffs. Carlton Davis was banged up a bunch, yet he still got 14 games. Whitehead amazed me that he was still playing through some of his injuries; got in all 16 games. Vea coming back from his injury for the last 2 playoff games was truly amazing. And the list goes on & on. These are some tough guys.

    Anthony Piroli and his strength & conditioning staff don’t get enough credit IMO, but they seem to be working miracles with these guys.

  6. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Wow DR was not thinking about Whitehead, that was a huge loss at that moment in GB against A Rodgers in the NFC freakin Championship game.
    The Defense really stepped up without Whitehead, and didn’t Winfield also leave the game.
    That was a major hit to deal with, losing 2 starters in the biggest game of the season at that moment against A Rogers.


  7. SB~LV Says:

    Yep.. but not likely

  8. Beeej Says:

    Outside of the GOAT, I can’t think of a single position where we don’t have a passable backup. Clearly, the Chiefs couldn’t make that same claim

  9. Kentucky Buc Says:

    @Beej. Chiefs , like a lot of teams are top heavy with their salaries. They sacrifice depth to do so.

  10. cover deuce Says:

    This is why I’ve been itching for them to find better depth at OT. They can’t bank on all those big guys staying healthy all the time, and you don’t want a KC situation where your offense gets derailed by JAGs.

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The emergence of Aaron Stinnie & the drafting of Robert Hainsey has improved our depth…….We retained Wells also….(not sure about how good he is)….hopefully, we won’t have to find out.

  12. Allbuccedup Says:

    If you stay in shape most injuries can be avoided but not all of course. I am sure Howard and or Brate will miss a few games it happens every year.

  13. Hope springs eternal Says:

    Every team is likely to suffer injuries to some key players. Lucky teams have guys miss only a few games. Next guy up is crucial for SB contenders. Other than QB the Bucs appear to have pretty solid back ups. If Brady goes down the Bucs will struggle to match last season win totals. But the same is true for all the top teams. We happen to have some key relatively older guys especially on defense plus Brady. Among the top tier teams, injuries will be a factor in who makes the SB.

  14. sasquatch Says:

    Is it luck, or are they using better science to inform training methods?

  15. Ne+ bucs fan Says:


  16. An Erection for Sacks Says:


    There’s nothing quite like a Bushmill’s breakfast, eh Joe?😆

  17. Ne+ bucs fan Says:

    Pliability Brady has everyone on the TB 12 method

  18. Ne+ bucs fan Says:

    Also Brady was dealing with a knee problem

  19. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Coincidence ? Brady plays all those years without major injury(besides 08) and then comes to Tampa and brings his TB12 guys with him, suddenly injuries are less and those with injuries recover quicker.

  20. Stanglassman Says:

    Cappa (& AQ Shipley) wants to know what is this injury luck in which you speak?

    The Bucs were relatively healthy alone the line though it seems especially important at Center and Tackle positions. Drafting Hainesey and getting Brad Seaton back should help with depth this year. Keep an eye on G Sadarius Hutcherson in camp. I got a feeling they found a diamond in the rough with this one.

  21. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    Defense Rules Says:
    “Anthony Piroli and his strength & conditioning staff don’t get enough credit IMO, but they seem to be working miracles with these guys.”

    I will give Piroli’s staff credit when we stop having wide receivers limping around all season with preventable hamstring injuries. That spit is getting pretty old.

  22. Joe Says:

    with preventable hamstring injuries.

    Preventable? Do tell. You do know if you have the secret sauce to prevent hamstrings, you can make a fortune working in the NFL?

  23. Bush's Coke Spoon Says:

    We’ve debated this point a lot here, and I come down firmly on the side which attributes most hamstring injuries to lack of proper hydration.

    In my limited amateur sports experience, I’ve observed that people who are less disciplined with hydration tend to be the guys with hamstring injuries.

    The Tampa Bay Rays had an inordinate number of hamstring injuries over the last few years, yet don’t seem to have that problem this season. I would be willing to bet that if I had the opportunity to pose that question to their staff, they would tell me that they re-committed to ensuring proper hydration on their team.

  24. James Briggs Says:

    There’s one other name you left out of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense and that’s a O.J. Howard and he was a starter and they still won the Super Bowl.

  25. Oneilbuc Says:

    Ne + bucsfan I be happy when Brady leaves so you can go back with your team. If Mac Jones becomes a good quarterback and Trask don’t you will be the main guy laughing at the bucs fans. I can’t stand bandwagon fans. Our defense and our running game was played a major part of us winning this year. Just like when Brady played for your Patriots . Yall defense was always ranked at the top so Brady never knew he never had to worry about winning on his own or he never had to worry about doing to much. And that’s what you call great coaching .

  26. sgrd0q Says:

    Injuries are avoided in a number of ways. First, through roster depth. Injuries result from cumulative wear and tear in the season. By spreading the load you limit the injuries. Second, good offenses limit injuries – most injuries are on the defensive side when players are overworked – keep the defense off the field as much as possible and you limit injuries. Third, the QB affects the injuries more than any other individual player – release the ball fast and not only you make the OL look good, but you minimize injuries to the line as they have to block for only a couple of second and avoid the really hard hits generated from a run up to the line. The opposite happens with scrabbling QBs – not only they put themselves at risk but also the entire OL. Also, smart QBs know when to throw the ball away, vs throwing high risk 50/50 balls that can result in violent collisions.

  27. unbelievable Says:

    Dang don’t jinx things for us Joe!!!