“Playoff Mode”

December 25th, 2023


So why are the Bucs balling out the way they have been in December? Antoine Winfield has a hunch.

Winfield, the Bucs’ gamewrecker on defense, had another sick afternoon. A sack, a pick, a fumble recovery, a tackle for loss, a quarterback hit, a pass defended. Winfield does it all and he’s having one of the best seasons Joe has seen from a safety since Ed Reed and Troy Polamalu roamed center fields in the AFC North.

Winfield isn’t as physical as those two, but damn if he isn’t just as impactful.

“It’s all about clicking at the right time,” Winfield said. “I feel like those few weeks right there when we had some losses, you really find out a lot about the team.

“Right now, our goal is just to continue and get better every week. Like I said, it’s playoff mode. It’s a playoff game every week for us. It’s win or go home, and that’s our mentality.”

Maybe that sense of urgency is what the Bucs needed. When they were in the throes of their 1-6 tailspin, this team sure seemed lethargic and just going through the motions at times.

In the Bucs’ four game winning streak, they seem to get better by the week. They beat the Stinking Panthers by three; beat the Dixie Chicks by four; beat the Packers by 14 and then yesterday clobbered the Jags by 18.

By the way, for those who were worried about Winfield’s injury yesterday, he was taken off the field and entered into the dreaded concussion protocol (not to be confused with the mysterious transfer portal). Shortly after the game, Winfield passed the tests and was cleared. Todd Bowles confirmed it at his postgame news conference.

Whatever chemistry the team has developed since the loss to the Colts, they will need all of it next week for the well-rested slimy Saints.

18 Responses to ““Playoff Mode””

  1. Hunter Says:

    This feels similar to our Super Bowl run except we don’t have Brady and Arians. So probably not gonna do much, but hope I’m wrong!

  2. NJbucs23 Says:


  3. Walter Says:

    Gonna be traveling from Texas to go to the game against the Saints. Hoping for a better showing than the Lions game. The feeling of walking out of Raymond James with thousands of lions fans screaming “Let’s go Lions!” left one hell of a bad taste in my mouth.

  4. adam from ny Says:

    i can see us marching thru the nfc on a hellacious win streak, to the superbowl, in a fairytale type season, and getting thumped in the superbowl by the ravens 20-10…


  5. Bucnjim Says:

    Merry Christmas to all Bucs players, coaches and fans! Going to be a great week thanks to you.

  6. richbucsfan Says:


  7. SB~LV Says:

    The Bucs destination for 2024 FA’s is the cherry on top of the recent turnaround!
    Oh my !
    I was in the depths of despair a month ago

  8. Barbosa Says:

    Merry Christmas Joes, Ira, And all Bucs fans out there.

  9. Winny Testaverde Says:

    Winfield was a major reason The Bucs won SB 55. Seemed to take a step back with injuries and playing in the slot for some silly reason ( glad that experiment is over! ). He’s now at an All Pro level as Joe has mentioned multiple times. I’d argue he’s become a damn hard hitter as well…just ask Ridley.

  10. Capn Fear Says:

    Is Ryan Neal hurt? Only seen Winfield playing next to Izian mostly.

  11. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Playoffs. I like the sound of that. Im too cheap to buy NFL package so i get by with All 22 and the occasional broadcast game. Hope they get in and maybe a couple more primetime games next year

  12. 1#bucsfan Says:

    Even tho the aints aren’t playing as well it’s a hated div rival and it should be a good game but one I expect us to win. LG Bucs time to put them aints in the ground

  13. Destinjohnny Says:

    This was a great draft pick by Jason licht
    I am always on him. But he nailed this one

  14. orlbucfan Says:

    You can get Bucs Radio free on the team site. Plus, it’s legal.👍 The Aints play Tampa on New Year’s Eve at RJS. Talk about hoodoo. Speaking of NOLA, Broncos fire Sean Payton yet?

  15. Rick Says:

    What a difference it makes when players are held accountable. Bench JTS and Devin White and the team takes notice.

  16. ModHairKen Says:

    No. Not as physical as Reed or Polamalu, and that’s great because those traits are not rewarded in this era.

    Winfield. Wirfs. Evans. Mayfield. Big bank.

  17. Proudbucsfan Says:

    Would love to see us make it to the Super Bowl against the Fins and see Winfield throw up the deuces at Tyreek Hill again 🤣

  18. vadertime Says:

    Give Winfield a big contract. Extend Baker Mayfield. Sit down with Evans and negotiate something reasonable. Same goes for Godwin. Work on keeping Rachaad White around for a long time. Bowles still needs to go. Go Bucs.