“The Mountain Right Now Is Extremely Steep”

December 31st, 2021

One of Tom Brady’s old buddies is very skeptical.

Joe has a found a Tom Brady lover, a longtime Brady teammate, that doesn’t believe in the 2021 Bucs.

That’s hard to do.

Former Patriots running back Shane Vereen won a Super Bowl with Brady in 2014, and he was a New England hero during that postseason with 18 catches out of the backfield on the Patriots’ three-game run to Super Bowl glory against Seattle.

Vereen was a co-host this week on SiriusXM NFL Radio with the great Alex Marvez. And it was there that Vereen expressed extreme skepticism in the Bucs’ chances to repeat. He believes the Bucs needed the No. 1 overall seed and the bye week it would have delivered them.

Yes, the Bucs are mathematically alive for the top seed, but they would need the Packers to lose to the Vikings and Lions to close the season in order to have a chance at the top seed.

The Bucs are far too banged up to survive a Super Bowl run, Vereen believes.

He says Bucs backups will receive extremely valuable confidence and chemistry before the playoffs, but he’s not thinking that will be enough.

“I just think the mountain right now is extremely steep. I know it’s Tom Brady and I know he’s overcome more than this, but this situation just feels different,” Vereen said. “I just feels different. It doesn’t feel like the momentum is in Tampa Bay.”

Joe agrees with Vereen when it comes to the feel of where the Bucs are with their injuries with two games remaining, but Joe believes the Bucs have enough to mow down any team in the playoffs. And the Bucs are getting healthier.

36 Responses to ““The Mountain Right Now Is Extremely Steep””

  1. Casual Observer Says:

    The Bucs did pretty well on the road in last year’s playoffs.

  2. Razor Ramone Says:

    Isn’t this exactly when TB12 is at his scary best?

  3. Jp09 Says:

    The two seed would be awesome right now. If the Bucs get the two, GB could get knocked off in the second round by Dallas or the Rams which would give us the third home game (obviously the Bucs would have to win both playoff games too). This is why you can’t rest players until the seeding is locked or we are up by a lot

  4. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Godwin’s loss is a big void. Hoping the rest are coming back. To all those AB haters, if you want to find out why AB does what he does off field, Goggle Antonio Brown Vandase Burfict and watch the video.

  5. Freadity Says:

    Bye week and no1 seed are exteremly precious and insanely advantageous, and i believe we are a great trsm and we can win games, we are going to face great teams and we need men to heal up and those who are on the field to get the chemistry going

  6. Cobraboy Says:

    The Bucs seem physically fragile right now. Not that they are not physical, because they are.

    It’s just every play you sorta kinda expect some player to stay on the turg, and head to the locker room.

    180 from a year ago.

    In a way, the Bucs are “limping” into the playoffs.

  7. Beeej Says:

    ME13 is back, might get Lenny back, secondary is all back, we’re not looking all that bad

  8. Jay Jay Says:


    Edelman was asked to share his opinion on the Buccaneers’ Super Bowl chances. And Edelman said: “Nah, I don’t think they’re gonna repeat this year,” Edelman said. “I mean, I think the team is getting depleted right now.”

  9. Mike Johnson Says:

    Sy what you want, the Godwin loss stings bigtime. Injuries don’t heal. Players play with them in the playoffs. We might have too many to overcome. Many teams are healthier than us. Don’t be pissed if we don’t make it to the final dance.

  10. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Veteran isn’t wrong.. Bucs don’t have that same magic working as last year. Of course we had about 0 injuries last year.

    In our favor, we got swept by the Slimy Saints, so SB title is in our future !

  11. SOEbuc Says:

    Whatever. I think Tom and the Bucs were underdogs through the entire playoffs up to the Super Bowl win last year. Haven’t you idiots heard? Don’t bet against the GOAT.

  12. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Vereeniging of all people should know better. Revisionist history. It doesn’t feel like last year. Wrong!! Bucs were not considered a real contender heading into the playoffs last year. The narrative was they couldn’t beat winning teams. Many screamers picked WTF to beat them in the first round. Feels exactly like last year. Yes, I get the injury angle. I love Godwin but he had a mediocre at best playoffs and Super Bowl. Had the dropsies. So many people trying to rewrite last year. Just the facts here peeps.

  13. Smashsquatch Says:

    We need more doubters. Now more than ever, Brady & the Bucs will feed off the naysayers. Back to back losses at home to the Rams and Chiefs before the bye was the turning point last year. Losing Godwin & others in a home loss beatdown to the Saints on national TV is our spring board this year. The defense is going to shine while the the run game finds it’s rhythm. Control the clock, protect the Goat, and take your shots with play action. That’s the winning formula in January.

  14. PassingThru Says:

    Vereen is right, I feel the same way. That’s why if the Bucs pull it off, it will be an exceptionally sweet Super Bowl run.

    The loss of Godwin, the loss or extended absence of Shaq, the deterioration of JPP, the hobbling and questionable status of Fournette, and that ongoing disaster in the defensive secondary has really impacted the quality of play. Above all, building and sustaining momentum is absolutely key to postseason success. Vereen is right, the Bucs are very banged up, and that extremely steep mountain is a metaphor for the lack of momentum.

    But still the Bucs have some advantages:

    1. They know the terrain: Super Bowl champions rarely win back to back, but that’s more of a product of injuries and luck. Post season success and experience are positives.

    2. The injuries forced them to develop their depth. The depth chart players may not be world class in terms of talent, but they now have chemistry with each other and the other players.

    3. Tom Freakin’ Brady at QB. He’s led less-talented teams to the Super Bowl.

  15. DoooshLaRue Says:


    Yeah, last year on the road for the playoffs was no problem for us obviously, but there were no fans and the weather was pretty good too.
    I still believe we have a decent chance to go to the SB but TB needs to start playing angry.
    He’s been looking off the last couple of games. Something about his demeanor is worrying me.

  16. Jerry Says:

    You also need to consider the health of other teams. The Packers, Rams, and Cowboys are all relatively healthy (certainly more healthy than us). And we are very likely going to face two of those teams on the road.

    The road games aren’t the same this year. Full stadiums make a difference. And the Bucs have struggled on the road this year.

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    I can think of any number of reasons why the Bucs won’t repeat this year; just about all of them have already been documented. But I’m also convinced that the playoffs are a whole different animal … anything can happen once you get in.

    Being favored or being an underdog is irrelevant IMO. Seven teams make it in each conference, and any one of them can knock off any of the others. How well the Bucs will do (or won’t do) is anyone’s guess right now. All any of us can do is hope for the best & enjoy the ride as long as it lasts.

  18. Jmarkbuc Says:

    “All any of us can do is hope for the best & enjoy the ride as long as it lasts.“

    Truer words have never been spoken. We’ve been through a lost decade. Can’t imagine what the next one will be like, unless TB decides to play to 55.

  19. Tackleblockwin Says:

    As a longtime Bucs fan just making the playoffs again was goal #1. Anything can happen now. This team has overcome a lot this year. I for one would not bet against them.

  20. Eric Says:

    AB and Gronk can beat any team, along with a good defense and average run game. Plus no one mentioned coaching. BIG part of why we won last year.

  21. Beeej Says:

    As long as Brady is upright you cannot count this team out

  22. #1bucsfan Says:

    We didn’t have the #1 seed last year and just fine on the road. We are a little bit banged up than last year but remember we didn’t vea back till super bowl whitehead was playing hurt and D.W missed a playoff game with the sickness. JOE let ‘em all sleep on the Bucs and watch us March right to another super bowl

  23. crazyBucs_CL Says:

    @:.. “I just feels different. It doesn’t feel like the momentum is in Tampa Bay.”
    feeling that all season. W or L, the “Great Team” feeling is NOT there.
    100% agreed with his opinion.
    …and always in this case, I hope we wrong…

  24. PassingThru Says:

    One more factor: The unpredictability of the Omicron spread among the playoff teams.

    In particular, if any starting QBs get on the list prior to a playoff game, forget about the seeding and home field advantage.

  25. adam from ny Says:

    even if ben vereen is jelly, he is kinda right about the momentum vibe not being quite right…

    at least not yet…

    we still’ve got a couple weeks to get more on track tho – so ben watch out!

  26. Cobraboy Says:

    For me, the BEST bonus of this season is almost ZERO draft talk.

  27. stpetebucsfan Says:

    The major reason the Bucs won’t repeat is the law of averages. How many teams have repeated?

    Only 7 franchises in close to 60 Super Bowls have managed to repeat. And it’s getting harder since the salary cap and the way the draft is now researched.

    IE…The Steelers did it twice but those teams would have surely been broken up by a salary cap in today’s game.

    As far as on the field. I think it’s the SteelBucs to the rescue. AB has already exploded…with two more games to tune up I believe L Bell one of the very best pass catching RB’s in the league will fill another void created by Playoff Lennie and Godwin’s absences.

    Playoff Lennie runs with more authority that Bell…but Leveon is the far better pass catcher…great natural hands…and he’s shiftier after the catch.

    By the time we get into the playoffs…AB in top form…ME returns..Gronk gets healthy..and Fournette returns to form a killer RB combo with Bell.

    If our defensive secondary holds up physically I like our chances.

  28. Beeej Says:

    Cousins is out w Covid, no chance Packers losing this game

  29. crazyBucs_CL Says:

    Packers are very good team. Seed # is NOT reachable.
    For seed #2 or #3, it start with Bucs winning first, then Rams and/or Cowboys loosing.
    IMO makes no different in SB aspirations, are we seed #2 or seed #4. Same probability.
    Main variable is BUCS themselves. At the moment this variable is NOT strong.
    Shall see!

  30. Listnfrmafar Says:

    GB isn’t that good, should of lost to the Browns and Baltimore, in both cases the play calling killed them and Balt had a back up QB.

  31. DavidBigBucFan99 Says:

    This year of all years is solid proof that the Bucs have just as much chance to repeat as Champs as they do not to. Every team going into the playoffs this year has laid duds on the field , losing games to teams they should’ve crushed. The thing the Bucs have in their corner is that they’ve dealt with more adversity than most and still are 11-4 hopefully ending the season 13-4. Winning while being decimated by injuries to our top players is no small order. We get most of these players back for the playoffs and this defense plays how it played the last two games and one last thing WE HAVE TOM FREAKIN BRADY and a lot of people who write us off will be losing alot of money at the “track”

  32. unbelievable Says:

    Sadly I agree.

    We can prob overcome the offensive injuries, but LVD, Shaq and JPP just aren’t replaceable with our current depth.

  33. Biff Barker Says:

    The Bucs bared their soul when we got waxed by the Saints again.

    It was a truly pitiful home loss.

  34. David Says:

    I can’t argue with it. We keep hearing how “they’re getting healthier”…
    Yay!! they got their DBs back and then they lose Shaq Barrett and JPP and Covid hits the DBs and the receiving corps goes down… LVD’s out……..

    It has been never ending.
    A lot of them might be back for the playoffs, most of them will not be 100% and there sure as hell can’t be any chemistry going on.
    I am very skeptical this year. Right now I think they win their home game in the playoffs and that’s probably it unfortunately.

  35. Swampbuc Says:

    Zero points against the Saints at home.

  36. Eddie Marz Says:

    Can’t believe this guy. Doesn’t feel like last year. Because it’s not. Brady said that before the season began. I like our team and I like our chances. GOBUCS!