“Is This A Tiebreaker Game?”

September 8th, 2022

Roughly 15 percent of the dozens of experts publicizing their 2022 NFL picks, including many former NFL players and coaches, believe the Bucs will finish second in the NFC South.

Joe can’t call it “smart money” to wager on Jameis Winston and the slimy Saints over the loaded Bucs roster with Tom Brady, but that’s why they call it gambling.

Parked in the Saints’ camp is former Jets linebackers coach and personnel executive Pat Kirwan, the big-dog host on SiriusXM NFL Radio. Kirwan is a film junkie with great connections and he attended two Bucs practices this summer.

Speaking on the NFL Radio airwaves yesterday, Kirwan wondered aloud of Sunday night’s Bucs-Cowboys game, “Is this a tiebreaker game?” referring to the loser potentially missing the playoffs as the final NFC Wild Card.

Joe respects Kirwan, but damn, if the Bucs miss the playoffs in an all-in season with a healthy Tom Brady, then the organization is in serious peril. Joe does not think that’s the case at all.

Of course, Kirwan is laser focused on the Bucs’ inexperience at center and left guard. He believes Sunday night’s performance at those positions will set the tone for the Tampa Bay season.

The Cowboys have Bucs-like issues at left tackle, where they lost their stud starter a couple of weeks ago, and they have other inexperience on their offensive line. Kirwan is confident that Todd Bowles will attack those potential weaknesses in all kinds of ways.

Kirwan also is unsure of the Bucs’ defensive trenches. He called former Bucs defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh “destructive” in the run game over four quarters versus just “disruptive.” And he’s skeptical Suh’s replacement, Akiem Hicks, can match that.

Yes, the Bucs have plenty to prove in the trenches, but they’re also a loaded roster. Joe counts seven — seven! — healthy Pro Bowlers ready to play Sunday wearing a red jersey, plus a bunch of battle-tested players. Dallas can’t match that firepower.

19 Responses to ““Is This A Tiebreaker Game?””

  1. Colonel Angus Says:

    It is – until it ain’t.

  2. MadMax Says:

    Im still worried about these first four….im thinking 1-3 or 2-2….then we turn it around and go all the way, as long as theres no more injuries.

  3. WillieG Says:

    “Of course, Kirwan is laser focused on the Bucs’ inexperience at center and left guard.” Okay, then why not laser focus on the Saints ineptitude at QB? Has JW done anything to show he’s not a turnover machine? BA couldn’t fix him, so I’ll be shocked if he ever stops throwing victory killing picks. I think the Saints get 8-9 wins tops, and JW may very well be benched sometime during the season.

  4. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Cowboys have their share of potential pro bowlers:
    Micah Parsons
    Trevon Diggs
    Demarcus Lawrence
    Cee Dee Lamb
    Dak Prescott
    Zack Martin
    Zeke Elliott
    Kavonte Turpin
    Bryan Anger

    This game will not be a cakewalk

  5. Elita Vita Says:

    I feel that as long as Jameis continues to be primarily a game manager with the occasional burst of airing out the ball he’ll be successful. Bucs need to play all out this season (Brady Ball) to win the NFC south.

  6. George Says:

    Unfortunately Kirwan is correct. Bucs offensive line is a massive liability as is. If Tristan Wirfs is out it gets even worse and more dangerous for Brady

  7. Beeej Says:

    Jameis is ok as long as they don’t ask too much of him, which seemed to be the plan last year. He got hurt before he was in a situation where HE had to win the game

  8. Biff Barker Says:

    When your football IQ is double your jersey number, at least you are in the double digits.
    Glad He’s never going to be a Buc again. JW is the patsy who game our playbook to Sean Payton.
    Go eat a win you loser. One year after you are sent packing your former team wins the Super Bowl.

  9. Biff Barker Says:

    Joe, the Bucs were supposed to blow out the Cowboys last year too, Right?

    Not only did we struggle to win at home, Dallas gave the entire NFL a template to shred the mighty Bucs defense.

    I case you were watching, we saw the ol’ spread and shred all year long!

  10. Bucs&Bolts Says:

    It’s okay let people believe in the Aints it’s fire for us. They’ll see real quick once Christmas comes early with Winston gifting defenses 🏈

  11. Defense Rules Says:

    Biff … ‘the Bucs were supposed to blow out the Cowboys last year too, Right?’

    Don’t know about ‘blowing them out’ Biff, but we were lucky to win that game. Bucs were ahead 28-19 midway through the 3rd qtr, then we let them back in the game. How? Simple: Bucs’ offense turned the ball over FOUR times, and the Cowboys scored on THREE of those (the other 1 was at the very end of the 1st half). We only won the game because we drove 57 yards in last last 1 min 24 secs to get a Succop 36-yard FG with 2 secs left in the game. Historically, our odds of winning that game with a MINUS THREE Turnover Differential were miniscule.

    And oh ya, we also committed 11 penalties for 106 yards, only sacked Dak Prescott ONCE, and allowed him to throw for over 400 yards (on 58 attempts) for 3 TDs.

    Other than that, it was a lovely game. Everything went splendidly … thanks to Lady Luck. If we play like that again, Dallas will have us for lunch. If we play like we should, no reason that we won’t win this game.

  12. Infomeplease Says:

    Should be a close game, not unlike last season!! Won’t be long now!!! LFG!!!

  13. geno711 Says:

    It is the NFL, if you end up with a win after being an 8-point favorite, or a 1.5-point favorite, it is all good in the end.

    If our offense looks pedestrian and we win. All good.
    If we get a couple of lucky turnovers and we win. All good.
    If an offensive tackle gets hurt and we win. Not good.

  14. SOEbuc be Says:

    Let me get it straight for all the experts…

    2019: Jameis 33 turnovers
    2020: Was third string
    2021: Major Injury
    2022: Doesn’t have Sean Payton calling plays (one of the experts saying the Saints win lol).

    Their schedule is far from a cake walk as well and they say the Saints will win the division against Brady’s most loaded roster ever??? Its the Brady hate (jealousy), written for media money. What would be Undisputed if Skip and Shannon quietly agreed with each other on Brady for 15 minutes. Or straight up 🤡

  15. BigMacAttack Says:

    When you gamble there is always a risk of financial loss. The NFL Clown show media have nothing to lose when they spout nonsense because they’re all attention whooores. They all want to be the guy that stuck his neck out (still without any skin in the game) and say “I told you so”. They’re worse than politicians. At least the time shut up the media clown circus is almost here. The wise man listens, takes notes and observes, while the fool runs his mouth.

  16. Capt.Tim Says:

    Its not just first time starters Hainsey and Goedeke.
    Its not new guard Shaq Mason
    Its continuity. That is what makes an Oline effective.
    Do you know why they have a timed rush at the Pro Bowl?
    Because the greatest linemen in the league cant stop a pass rush.
    Because they arent a cohesive unit

    Neither is our line.
    Add a questionable pass rush . . .

    Hope Im wrong. I really do.
    But I bet Brady is gonna regret playing this year

  17. Goatfarmer Says:

    Man, pessimism is supposed to be the job of the goatfarmers . Some of you guys make me feel like Silly Sally the Optimist. Out of fear and also respect for other fans, I refrain from stating my prediction in public.

    It’s better for the Bucs.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    If Suh was still destructive, or disruptive, he would be employed…

  19. Bucsfan13 Says:

    Look, I’m not a Winston Stan, but people who are just outright dismissing him are suffering from Post Traumatic Winston Syndrome. Winston has improved his decision making since leaving us. I think it really helped having a mentor in Drew Brees. He sat behind a professional guy who was a film junkie. Winston had a good training camp. It was reported that he threw about 3 picks all training camp. Don’t forget that he faces a top 5 defense in practice. Yes, Payton is gone, but the OC is basically a clone of Payton.

    It’s ok to admit that Winston has improved since his days with us. It was a bad fit from the start. Winston was a YOLO guy with a YOLO guy in BA as a coach. The Saints D is so dominant that Winston only needs to be a game manager and not turn the ball over, and he was doing a great job until his injury. We, on the other hand, need our 45 yr old QB to play lights out every game. There’s infinitely more pressure on Brady than Winston.

    I’m picking the Saints to win the division because I’m a sensible Bucs fan.