Season Losers Are Often Playoff Winners

January 5th, 2023

Here’s a stat that let’s you know records don’t matter too much in the playoffs.

Since 1970, six NFL teams have made the playoffs without a winning record, per FOX Sports. Those teams were 4-2 in the first round of the postseason.

Of course, none won the Super Bowl, but it’s still rather telling that two-thirds of those clubs walked away from their first playoff game with a “W.”

The Bucs are 8-8 and could become the seventh team since 1970 to enter the playoffs without a winning record if they lose on the road Sunday in Atlanta.

If the Bucs really play all their starters on Sunday, Joe will be fascinated to see what happens on the field. Tampa Bay has done little this season unless their backs are against the wall. Mike Evans even went there after Sunday’s thrilling comeback win. But the Bucs can’t really have a backs-against-the-wall moment in Atlanta because they’ve already clinched the NFC South title.

If the Bucs somehow come out swinging in dominating, Joe will know something has really changed with this team.

25 Responses to “Season Losers Are Often Playoff Winners”

  1. sasquatch Says:

    Put up 35 in the first half, then sit the guys who are struggling with injuries in the 2nd half.

  2. Casual Observer Says:

    There has been no dominant team in the NFL this year. Just look at last weeks’ Eagles and Vikings games. So, I think the Bucs have as good a chance as any team to win it all. Especially now that most are healthy. And (just) maybe the play calling and O strategies are on the upswing. Go Bucs!

  3. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Wow. What a reach or reach around. 6 teams since 1970 ?

  4. Aceofaerospace Says:

    When we’re in the playoffs, you back is always against the wall. You don’t get a do over. I like our chances

  5. Trask To The Future Says:


    He’s doing light practices with the OL.

    This is great news.

  6. Crickett Baker Says:

    LOL. Often? 6 teams in 53 years? I call that 6 flukes.

  7. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Sasquatch, the person who has been saying how terrible the Bucs are, is now saying for the Bucs to drop 35 points on an NFL team in the first half. Wow.

  8. A Says:

    I’m one of the fans that didn’t want to go to the playoffs…the thought of 40k Dallas fans celebrating in our house makes me want to vomit. BUT! Prescott and McCarthy in a playoff game??? Hmmm, as bad as this team is, I almost like our chances.

    Go Bucs! (Let’s be smart in ATL)

  9. Redeemer Says:

    Here’s my question. Has a 4 seed hosting a team with a better record ever won multiple playoff games? I don’t think so. I think they can beat Dallas, the likely opponent. I can’t see them winning another. Hope to hell I’m wrong. We have the goat. We have a chance. If by some miracle we make it to the title game, that would be a tremendous accomplishment.

  10. Goatfarmer Says:

    Losers are often losers in the playoffs, also.

    The offense has been a train wreck all year. Blowes says he wants ball control and power running and then does nothing to motivate, inspire or stimulate his players during the game.

    The epitome of a smart coordinator who is a loser at the next level.

  11. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Every 13 years is now considered often. 4 winners in 53 years. Puff puff pass Joe. Put the bong down.

  12. NEfan Says:

    Treat this week like a bye week.

  13. Redeemer Says:

    Kentucky, where’s my rip off the binger? I like me some.

  14. Hodad Says:

    Treat it like the last preseason game!

  15. Captain Oblivious Says:


    Come on, do you really want Brady to experience his first losing season? The Bucs aren’t going anywhere in the playoffs so at least keep Brady’s legacy intact.

  16. Kentucky Buc Says:

    Redeemer. Sorry bub. Joe bogarted it all before he wrote this.

  17. Randall Says:

    IF Bucs unleash Brady and use a no huddle pass attack offense every game from now on, they could do well in the playoffs. IF they use their wretch Leftwich offense with constant gut runs with no gains, they’re screwed.

  18. Defense Rules Says:

    Goatfarmer … ‘The offense has been a train wreck all year. Blowes says he wants ball control and power running and then does nothing to motivate, inspire or stimulate his players during the game.’

    How exactly does a head coach motivate a 2nd-string rookie OLineman (like say Luke Goedeke?) to block better? How does he stimulate an OLineman playing hurt (like say Tristan Wirfs with his bad wheel?) to perform at an All-Pro level when his body is letting him down? How exactly would you inspire Donovan Smith not to get so many holding calls? What would you do Goatfarmer, threaten to bench him? And plug in who in his place? In case you haven’t noticed, the Bucs lack any serious depth in virtually all position groups.

    Reality to me is that head coaches don’t have nearly as much power & influence as most fans think they do. Presidents are kinda in a similar pickle. We hold presidents accountable for the economy when things go bad, but they don’t have nearly as much power & influence when it comes to the economy as many seem to think. Business does what’s best for business. Congress does what’s best for Congress. Allies do what’s in their best interests, just like we do. And our opponents obviously have their own agendas.

    As Zig Ziglar used to say ‘Everyone listens to station WIIFM … ‘What’s In It For Me?’

  19. HC Grover Says:

    I do not think it is a good idea to play the regulars. One might get hurt and out of the playoff. Agree the Bucs can win playoff games.

  20. SufferingSince76 Says:

    I liked it a lot better when you didn’t have to write articles like this, Joe. The Bucs need to keep the momentum going, just like they did in the Super Bowl season.

  21. Infomeplease Says:

    This team can, on any given day, beat any other team!! With the talent on both sides of the ball, if the offense isn’t handcuffed by the coaches, if proper preparation and game planning are put in place, and if the players really really want it!!! That’s a lot of ifs!!! We’ll see how this all turns out!!

  22. Goatfarmer Says:

    Well DR, since you asked a question —

    I would have him start simply by talking to his players on the sidelines, at least to let them know he’s interested in their success. You know, show a little interest, act like a head coach, which he is. When someone on offense blows an assignment or has a penalty, I would expect a head coach to let that player know he noticed. Not that it’s the end of the world but that he expects them to not do it again.

    Normal stuff for most head coaches, but apparently Blowes would rather just not communicate anything to the offense. Which leaves it up to Leftwurst, who no one can even understand and I’m not sure it would be good if they could.

    We all know that Blowes is not Arians, but Blowes is the head coach of the whole team and is just as responsible for results on offense, ultimately, as every other phase of the game. The “Buc” stops with him. What he has been doing has led us to the most underachieving season since…..your pick. There are quite a few in Buc history to choose from.

    So…..maybe, you know, just for the sake of variety……try doing something different.

  23. Brandon Says:

    Of all the criticism of Bowles, him not motivating or inspiring is by far the dumbest one ever. He’s not a good game manager. His offensive philosophy is awful and dated. He doesn’t adapt well nor does he adjust his tendencies for teams that have him figured out. He’s a below average head coach for sure… but doesn’t inspire or motivate? That’s a child’s perspective. The NFL isn’t a Disney movie.

  24. Goatfarmer Says:

    Anyone see what Dan Campbell has done with the woeful Detroit Lions?

    Nah. Inspiration isn’t necessary. (Rolling eyes.)

  25. steele Says:

    There have been some bad teams that wheeze and stumble into the playoffs, and surprise. That managed to peak at the last minute, while more dominant top ranked ones peak too soon, or blink.

    That is where this team is. Spoilers. Unpredictable zombies. “Heartbreak Bucs” with a flailer’s chance.

    Any team this poorly coached lacks the kind of focus and cohesion it takes to march through to the top with “that look”. Bucs certainly haven’t shown it. All they’ve got is Brady, and hope for lucky breaks.