Rich Eisen: Third-Place Finish For Tampa Bay

August 30th, 2023

Bucs sacks king Shaq Barrett.

Prediction season is in full force and Joe is a little perturbed and uplifted by one in particular.

The face/voice of NFL Network, Rich Eisen formally has named the Bucs to be a third-place finisher in the NFC South this season.

Eisen likes the Bucs defense and thinks Baker Mayfield “is going to have a better season than people think,” so he said on The Rich Eisen Show. But Eisen is convinced the Falcons will win the division behind their monster running game and other weapons, and he thinks the Saints will be signficantly improved.

Joe would like to throw a half-dozen eggs at Eisen’s head for those calls.

However, Eisen thinks the NFC South is somewhat underrated and the Bucs could be in contention for the playoffs in third place. There are three Wild Card spots in the NFC. That soothed Joe a bit. Eisen studies the entire league and thinks the Bucs will hover around a .500 record.

How wild would it be if the Bucs made the playoffs at, say, 8-9, from a third-place position?

27 Responses to “Rich Eisen: Third-Place Finish For Tampa Bay”

  1. Da Bucs Guy Says:

    So Mayfield will be better than many think equates to 3rd place in nfc south.

  2. MerryPlankster777 Says:

    Heck, I know 2022 was forgettable but even then Bucs still made playoffs and went in 8-9, or 8-10 if you include a quick knee scrambling playoff exit.
    Could history repeat itself – Possible, yet unlikely

  3. Beej Says:

    I’ll bet Bowles is REALLY REALLY regretting tanking that last game

  4. FortMyersDave Says:

    Beej, yeah they had a 17-10 lead with the starters before they tanked and 9-8 would have shut some of the critics up as they simply would have had the same record as the Jags and Seahawks. Of course if Bowels just let Brady be Brady in Cleveland, the Bucs would have won that game and that Pitt debacle should have been avoided if the Bucs just attacked the Steeler’s decimated secondary instead of brainlessly try to run into their D’s one strength, yeah thanks for that L Byron! So the team could have went 11-6 with luck but Bowels played not to lose too often and lost games the Bucs should have won and they were what their record was; a loser! This is why Bowels has the hottest seat in the NFL and Vegas thinks the Bucs will go 6 dash 11 or so which could get the Bucs 3rd place in division if someone like Carolina or the Saints implode and go 4-13 or so…..

  5. Hodad Says:

    No way the Bucs make the playoffs with a 3rd place finish. There will be only one playoff team from the NFC south, the division winner. Don’t know why the Falcons are getting so much love. Their QB has four starts to his name, not exactly a first round pick from a power house school. He was Logan Hall’s teammate. Ridder supposed to be better then Baker? Their running game might be good this year, but this is a passing league, not impressed with Ridder. It’s going to come down to us, and the Saints. Winner goes to the playoffs.

  6. Defense Rules Says:

    Beej … I agree. I’m still convinced that the Bucs could’ve won that game if we’d kept our starters in. ‘Saving them’ for the playoffs (the one-and-done playoffs) amounts to tanking IMO. I understand the logic, I just don’t happen to agree with it. You play to win, every single game.

    Of course, by the same token lots of folks have said that the Panthers were ‘tanking’ at the beginning of last season. I don’t agree; they were just a bad team that was poorly coached. Once McCaffrey & Mayfield were traded AND the coaching changed, the Panthers won 5 of their last 8 with Sam Darnold leading them to 4 of those 5 wins to let the ‘tanking (?)’ Panthers finish 7-10.

  7. PSL Bob Says:

    Wouldn’t count on a wild card playoff appearance with an 8-9 record. I’ve said numerous times this team will be interesting to watch this year. So many unknowns. Running game, o-line, QB, offensive play calling. That’s why the talking heads are all over the board on how the Bucs will perform. Could make the playoffs (but not at 8-9) or could suck hippo weenie.

  8. Buc Fan in CO Says:

    Beej, FortMyersDave, and DefenseRules said it all. The ‘22 Bucs were much better than their 8-9 record leads people to believe. I see no reason why this year’s squad can’t improve on that total, based on a) health and b) what we’ve seen from them (in an incredibly small sample) so far.

  9. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Talking heads predicted a 3rd place division finish for Cinci the year they went to SB. Just sayin

  10. pmarcello Says:

    Predfiction.The Bucs will sweep the divison and go on to upset the big three in the NFC. Baker “Mavrick” Mayfield will play a very large role. Like beaucoup TDs and huge yardage.The big three being Philly,Frisco,and not Dallas but Seattle.

  11. Joshua porter Says:

    He’s also a jets fan so can u take anything he says seriously….

  12. PSL Bob Says:

    If we’re putting any stock on predictions, I like pmarcello’s.

  13. All_da_way Says:

    The NFC is wide open but I do not think the NFCS is going to dominate compared to lets say the 49ers/Hawks, Cowboys/Eagles/Giants, or Packers/Vikings/Lions/Bears

    To me I think it is comical how much the national media overrated the Falcons and Saints all because the Bucs lost Brady heading into this off season.

  14. Bojim Says:

    We already did 8-9. Didn’t turn out well

  15. Mike Johnson Says:

    6-11 is my best prediction. Unless Baker balls out of his mind. And I’m just not feeling that. Prove me wrong Mr. Mayfield.

  16. FrontFour Says:

    We have a ton of first year players on the roster and no depth. Maybe one of the weakest Bucs team in the trenches for years. Being realistic if we can win 6-7 games that would be an accomplishment. This is a developmental year as we endure salary cap hell and rebuild the roster. It’s the cost of the SB and I’m fine with it.

  17. Fred McNeil Says:

    Look, the Vikqueens lost Dalvin Cook and I don’t think their defence will be anywhere near as improved as people think.
    We start off 1-0. You can’t possibly start any better than that.

  18. Mike S Says:

    If this is true, then why are the Bucs not starting Trask?

    Why start Mayfield for a 3rd place finish?

  19. J Says:

    Eisen runs like a girl, and gives hot takes like an 18 year old drink girl.

  20. Bobby Says:

    I agree, I think the Falcons run game with Robinson is going to elite. I think Robinson is going to quickly move into top 3 backs in league. Look out for the Falcons. Go Bucs!!

  21. NEFan Says:

    Better than I would have said!

  22. Brandon Says:

    Oh, no. The network joke that doesn’t know anything about football doesn’t think we’ll be good. Who cares? Games are decided on fhe field, not in Eisen’s loafers.

  23. No Mercy Says:

    Falcons over the saints is laughable

  24. mark2001 Says:

    Please tell me why Carolina will be last in the division? As I remember last year, they played pretty tough against us. Yeah, Brady had a down year. But will the QB position be better this year? The running game? The O line? The D? Hope so. But still not drinking the Kool Aid until we get well into the season.

  25. adam from ny Says:

    remember peoples…when the nfc east was the nfc least…

    this is a fast changing league…

    yeah for a year or two a division can hover around average, but then a team burst out the pack and grabs 12 wins and is once again a league powerhouse…

    when looking at our division, no team pops out as a team really ready to level up……….but you never know…

    even mediocrity doesn’t last long in the nfl

  26. adam from ny Says:

    i still have us maxing out with 10 wins…

    even with brady in 2020 we only had 11 wins…with BA and TB12…and with the big winning streak to end the season…

    this is baker’s first year hear, as well as canales……and we rock with bowles…

    so with everything set in place, we max out at 10 this year imho

  27. garro Says:

    So, the once respected Eisen has joined all the rest of the iresponsible “journalists”. Just throwing crap against the wall for some sensationalist BS.

    Go Bucs!