“I Think It’s Going To Be Hard To Beat Them”

July 8th, 2021

One man gang.

Joe couldn’t help but think of Joe Buck listening to this element of a popular podcast last night.

St. Petersburg-born Buck did a show last year with the one-and-only Chris “Mad Dog” Russo heard exclusively on SiriusXM Radio when the Bucs signed park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring, down-forgetting, handshake-stiffing, jet-ski-losing, biscuit-baking, tequila-shooting, smartphone-phobic, waffle-grilling, trophy-throwing, roller-coaster-scared, numbers-rules-peeved Bucs Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady.

There, the FOX play-by-play man discussed all the Bucs games he and his partner Troy Aikman were scheduled to call in 2020. Buck, as if he was a fantasy football player, rattled off the names of Brady and Rob Gronkowski and Bucs coach Bucco Bruce Arians without once mentioning Mike Evans or Lavonte David or Chris Godwin, likely because he had no clue who they were. But the big names who came to the Bucs, clearly Buck knew.

Well, Joe was reminded of this while listening to the “GM Shuffle” podcast with former NFL suit Michael Lombardi and co-host Adnan Virk. Talking about the Bucs’ win total betting line for this season (over/under 11.5) Virk, much like Buck, seemed to only know one player’s name.

It was as if the Bucs are a one-man team. “Brady.”

Adnan Virk: And [Tom] Brady, at age 44, when the season starts. I’m not going to be foolish enough to pick against him, Mike. Over-and-under at 11.5. I’ll take the over. But that means, I’m thinking with Brady at 44, a 12-5 team. That would be awfully impressive.

Michael Lombardi: Yeah I mean five losses? I think they lose five times. But I can’t see them losing six, right? I don’t think they will lose six. And their depth is pretty good. I mean they brought everybody back. They added the Tryon kid in the first round (Joe Tryon) to help their defensive line. So if they get some injuries, if [Ndamukong] Suh gets hurt or [Jason] Pierre-Paul they’ve got some younger players to place in there. Their tight end situation is as good — I mean, Gronk, I think Gronk could be better this year because at least he spent an offseason getting ready for it. With their skill players — the key for their team last year was their offensive and defensive line. How they played, and they played so effectively, and then [Todd] Bowles coaching on defense did a great job. So, I lean towards the over there, AD. I think they are a good team. I don’t see them having a bump in the road because knowing Brady, if the wall hits at 44 which doesn’t appear the case, I think it’s going to be hard to beat them six times.

Good call by Lombardi on Gronk. Joe remembers hearing the story told by Gronk and mentioned by Arians; at one point in training camp Gronk was really sucking air badly and Arians hollered at an assistant coach to pull him off the field saying, “He’s not in Florida shape; he’s in New England shape!”

In the same interview, Gronk confessed he had found a way to get around offseason workouts — and he paid dearly for that in August.

Gronk’s legs were shot the first few weeks of the season, it seemed. He wasn’t in shape and later played his best ball late in the season, looking like the old Gronk in the playoffs.

So, 11.5 wins? Joe’s betting the over in Las Vegas next week.

18 Responses to ““I Think It’s Going To Be Hard To Beat Them””

  1. ocala Says:

    If the Bucs stay healthy


  2. Mort Says:

    It would be disappointing if they went 12-5. Think about that for a minute.


    That’s what leaders do…they elevate everyone’s performance, their belief level…just Warren said.

  4. Mike Says:

    Only the Bucs can beat the Bucs.

  5. SlyPirate Says:

    I don’t see 5 losses on the schedule. Rams, Buff, Indi … Bucs aren’t going to lose to every good team.

  6. 6throundpick Says:

    TB12 put a lot of NE players on the map. Many cashed in and did not achieve any of the same success. Just sayin…

  7. PSL Bob Says:

    You’re right Joe, the only names thrown out are transplants. White, David, Dean and Winfield, not a word. Evans, Godwin, and Brate, silence. What about Rojo. What about the O-line? It’s just as solid as the D-line. Plus, there were two other transplants not mentioned, AB and Fournette. No chopped liver there! This team is stacked! If they can’t get 12 wins, it will be because the injury bug showed up in a big way.

  8. SB Says:

    I know I am putting a G on the Over!

  9. Bucs Bro Says:

    I’d be shocked if this team loses more than 3 games this season. No way they lose to any good team they play.

  10. alton d green Says:

    you nailed it Mike. They are their toughest challenge. This is where we will need Tom the most. keeping everybody focused. on 2021. 2020 is gone

  11. alton d green Says:

    on to Cincinnati!!

  12. Bucfan81 Says:

    As crazy as this might sound I really think this team can win 14 to 15 games out of the 17 this season. If Rodgers decides not to go back to Greenbay there is no one in the NFC that can really compete with the Bucs except for maybe the Rams and Stafford is learning a new system. I really think we end up with the Number 1 seed this year and the playoffs will go through Tampa.

  13. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    I’ll say it for the 100th time. 14-3. And, I picked the Lightning in 5 over the Canadiens!

  14. alton d green Says:

    well if we go by the writers and a lot of you guys, we should just forfeit the really tough games, KC, LA, Bf etc etc. I said it before and i’ll say it again. If we can stay reasonably healthy, we should go 16-1. 15-2 at worst. That being KC and LA. You know the Chiefs want it bad and I don’t think Stafford would know what to do with a really good team since he’s been in Detroit so long hahahaha

  15. Ralph Palomino Says:

    Bucs will go undefeated and winning the Superbowl in L.A will be icing on the cake.

  16. Buczilla Says:

    The only way that I see us losing five games is if we have a few major injuries. 15-1 with the only loss coming to the Saints and Jameis playing like Dan Marino for one game.

  17. Trey Long Says:

    Who gives a crap what so called experts say? Not one
    of them gave Brady and the Bucs a chance to win Super Bowl.

  18. Bbro Says:

    Blessed to be where we are but as fans we paid our dues.