ESPN: Bucs Will Lose Three NFC South Games

May 17th, 2024

Disaster looming?

Joe firmly, confidently believes the Bucs have a path to 10 wins, which, per NFL history, is what it may take to pull off a four-peat as division champs.

But if the Bucs stumble too much against NFC South foes, all bets are off.

Sadly, that’s what Jenna Laine of ESPN envisions. She thinks too many division games bunched together spells doom — as in in three losses.

The Bucs will suffer three divisional losses in 2024, largely because they’ll have three divisional matchups in a span of four weeks sandwiched between games against the Eagles, Ravens, Chiefs and 49ers. Those early divisional games feature two contests in four weeks against the Falcons, whom many have pegged as the NFC South favorite this year, with quarterback Kirk Cousins and former Bucs head coach Raheem Morris at the helm. Morris also worked with Bucs offensive coordinator Liam Coen on the Rams’ staff.

That’s true, the Bucs do play three NFC South division foes in a span of four weeks, during Weeks 5-8. Joe thinks this is a good thing, not a bad thing.

First, the slimy Saints are not a good team. So there’s that. And the Bucs then play the Dixie Chicks twice. This will be early in the first half of the season.

Joe has no idea what’s going on in Atlanta but Joe surely isn’t ruling out in mid-May that the Dixie Chicks will start rookie quarterback Michael Penix, the No. 8 overall pick.

If you are going to face a rookie quarterback, you want to see him early while his head is still spinning.

But Joe, what if Kirk Cousins starts? Good! Joe isn’t positive Cousins, 36, will be 100 percent recovered from his blown Achilles.

Still, it’s hard to believe the new Dixie Chicks offense under Zac Robinson will be running smoothly that early with a new quarterback whether it is Penix or Cousins.

Shoot, it took Tom Brady three months to get the 2020 Bucs offense running smoothly and get on the same page as his new teammates. And Brady had much better weapons. Cousins ain’t no Brady.

So yeah, Joe wants the slimy Saints and Dixie Chicks early.

But if Laine is right and the Bucs go 3-3 in the division, uh, oh.

41 Responses to “ESPN: Bucs Will Lose Three NFC South Games”

  1. Beeej Says:

    My greatest fear is Cousins gets benched, they bring the kid out and he puts 400 on us

  2. Joe in Michigan Says:

    I don’t see any of the other NFC South being better than the Bucs. How many games did they have the Bucs winning last year? Between 2 and 5? If you’re that far off in that short of period of time, you probably should have your prognostication card taken away. That goes for the Doom & Gloom Bucs “fans” from last year, you know who you are.

  3. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Beeej Says:
    May 17th, 2024 at 7:20 am
    My greatest fear is Cousins gets benched, they bring the kid out and he puts 400 on us
    Think about it…If Cousins gets benched, Atlanta is off to a bad start.

  4. Beeej Says:

    I still have nightmares of the 1974 Thanksgiving game when Clint Longley came in for Staubach and won the game with a flea flicker

  5. D Cone Says:

    Zac Robinson won’t have Cousins ready? Yet Coen will? Is that because he had a few games with Mayfield at the Rams with production there that took him from the NFL to NCAA?

    Cousins stats at the Vikings his first season were 70.1% Comp. 4298 Passing Yards. 30 TD’s 10INT Passer Rating of 99.7.

    Might want to look for a different angle to boost confidence in beating the Falcons because it won’t be Cousins. Especially with as much urgency to produce as Mayfield had pulling his career from the dumpster last season.

  6. heyjude Says:

    Cousins is still a wild card. They had him working with Gruden recently. So there is that too. I think Penix will be their number 1 QB and that does worry me too. We also have to worry about the new rules and ref calls. In the end, I think we will be much better, just like last season.

  7. BakerFan Says:

    If you go in thinking 3 loses in the division then you have no chance of being division champs. The Bucs should be able to sweep the division. There is nothing special in any of those teams. They basically are the weakest teams that the Bucs will play no matter when and where you play them.

  8. Wayne perez Says:

    I’m going to ask her for this weeks loto#s I don’t know how they can predict so early

  9. ocala Says:

    I am confident in the Bucs assuming they stay relatively healthy. Offense and defense should both be better.

  10. Mort Says:

    That take from Jenna is about as bad as her idiotic questions at the press conferences.

  11. Don'tBmad Says:

    Bucs are going 4-2 in the division….not losing 3

  12. Permanently Moderated Says:

    Jenna Laine is nuts. She’s got nothing on which to base her prediction.

  13. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Stop with the Penix nonsense……Cousins will start…..Penix will sit….at least a year.

  14. ocala Says:

    It seems like most questions Jenna Laine has are so cringy.
    She is not good at her job at all.

  15. Dom Says:

    I don’t understand this arrogant confidence when it comes to playing the Falcons. They split with us last year with awful QB play

  16. Buc4evr Says:

    I guess Jenna doesn’t remember what happened last year when everyone in the media said the Bucs would be lucky to win two games. She has no idea what she is talking about.

  17. D-Rome Says:

    One thing’s for sure is that the loser fans will start calling for Kyle Trask if it appears the Bucs are headed for an 8-9 season.

    “wE nEeD tO sEe WhAtwE haVe iN TrAsk!!1!”

    The Bucs already know.

  18. Cobraboy Says:

    Speaking of Achilles’ recovery, I took my first non-booted steps this weekend.

    Baby steps, but I’ll take it!

  19. JimBobBuc Says:

    As always, it’s about the division wins. I have us at 4-2, the same as last year. I think there is more upside than downside, with a decent chance we can sweep the division. We beat Cousins and the Vikings last year, I think we’ll beat Cousins and the Falcons this year. The Bucs need to focus on themselves, what they control, and get better.

  20. LongSeason Says:

    Jenna ‘Lame’ more like it.
    I prefer the Bucs be Underdog. Yeah. Fly under the radar. That’s the way we like it.

  21. Dave Pear Says:

    We can firmly expect the Bucs will win somewhere between 0 and 10 games. It all depends on the offense, as offensive coordinators have figured out how to shred Todd’s “zone defense.”

  22. Brian in St Pete Says:

    Stop it. Odds are we go 6-0 or 5-1 against the south. I believe our basement is 4 wins. We won the division last season and not one of these “experts” can demonstrate how we got worse while anyone else in the division got demonstrably better. If anything we improved more than any other team. The constant lack of respect for us is staggering.

  23. Booger Says:

    That is ridiculous, “Brian in St. Pete.” The “odds” are 💯 definitely, NOT 6-0/5-1. Period. So, I don’t know where you get YOUR information. And, let’s see… Desmond Ridder (who couldn’t even THROW at all, and was a ‘turnover’ just waiting to happen) VERSUS Kirk Cousins!? They didn’t get ANY better!? PLEASE. There could not ever be a more BIASED ‘take’ possible.

  24. Stanglassman Says:

    4-2 last year. I think we will do it again. It sounds crazy but 3-3 in this division is a big hole. They’d have to go 7-4 outside non-division games to get 10 wins.

  25. Capt.Tim Says:

    Yeah, when I think prognosticator- I Think Jenna Laine.
    After all, thats why they hired her, Right?

  26. unbelievable Says:

    I think we go 4-2 in the NFC South. Split with ATL and NO, but beat CAR both times.

  27. PowerOfPewter Says:

    ATL is likely on par with Bucs, so going 1-1 against them is probable. NO and CAR are pretty bad, Bucs should go 4-0…although it’s certainly possible they don’t show up a game and go 3-1. It’s the remainder of the schedule that’s pretty brutal, esp the 10 games before the Bye. Bucs will be happy to be 5-5 at that point. For the season, Bucs are likely 10-7… possibly 11-6. IDK if 10 wins earns the Division Title, it will be close with ATL. 10 wins probably doesn’t get a Wild Card spot.

  28. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Jenna Laine is answering an unanswerable question.

    Win predictions are pure guess work, often driven by bias.

    Jenna is laying the safe bet, 50-50. She doesn’t actually expect to be right.

    Even if I were to want to guess at wins, it is far too early. All we have are namrs. We’ve seen none of these young fellas perform in the NFL.

    The potential is there, for sure, to be great. With development. And development takes time.

  29. SlyPirate Says:

    3 Losses Would Assume … Swept by ATL or NO?

    That’s dumb. ATL is way too overhyped again. Cousins? The team doesn’t even believe in him. He’s not TB12. NO is the only team that has had our number over the years. Sean is gone and they are too old. That’s not going to happen.

    The disrespect continues to mount. I’m in disbelief. Another NFCS Championship will hopefully change things.

  30. HC Grover Says:

    Sounds about right to me.

  31. Rod Munch Says:

    I have them losing 4, getting swept by the Saints, and splitting with Atlanta and Carolina.

    Here’s the issue, everyone else in the NFC South I think will be much improved.

    Vs the Saints last year, the Bucs were 1-1. In the win, remember that Carr couldn’t throw more than about 8-yards down the field. Literally, like 8 yards or something, he just kept dumping off the ball and clearly wasn’t healthy. In that 2nd game, the Saints destroyed the Bucs and gave them the Bucs their worst beating of the year. The Saints, with a healthy Carr, I think will sweep the Bucs, but that 2nd game isn’t until game 17, so it might be a garbage, meaningless game, so it could be 1-1 if the Bucs trying to be spoilers or the Saints are in the playoffs and playing backups, or the other way around, but I have it 2-0 for the Saints on the season.

    Carolina is going to be much improved this year, and the Bucs barely beat them last year. People who write off Young completely didn’t watch his tape, he kid literally had no one to throw the ball to. Watching the ALL22, you feel bad for him, play after play, zero separation. They improved their WR room this offseason, and I think Young will make a big jump (keeping in mind a big jump would still be a very low end starter). Anywho, a split is probably the best the Bucs can hope for, and I think they’ll get it.

    For the Falcons, doesn’t matter what you think, facts are facts, and the Bucs ALWAYS lose, normally in embarrassing fashion, those early season Thursday night games, in particular on the road. So that’s an automatic win for the Falcons. That 2nd game is in the middle of a tough stretch on the schedule, and I think the Bucs will be very lucky to go 1-1.

  32. Day 1-76 Says:

    The Bucs always tend to get lit up by rookie/2nd string QBs…ask the coaches why

    Has there ever been a player who has come back from an Achilles injury and been the same? If so were they a 36 yr. old QB who has always been just good enough to not lose his job?

    I know the Jets HOPE rests on that possibility.

  33. Marky Mark Says:

    If everyone stays healthy the team should continue its playoff level of play. It took them all season to get used to each other. The schedule is tougher so Joe is on the money with 10 or 11 wins.

  34. Fred McNeil Says:

    If I want a football opinion I won’t be asking BSPN. Laine should be dancing at Mons Venus. Seen, but not heard.

  35. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Rod Munch: How close were you at picking the games last year?

  36. Joe in Michigan Says:

    I had the Bucs going 10-7 last year, so I was wrong too, but I wasn’t 4 games off.

  37. Rod Munch Says:

    Joe in Michigan Says:
    May 17th, 2024 at 5:51 pm
    Rod Munch: How close were you at picking the games last year?


    I had them 4-7, and they were 4-7.

    Year before that, one game off.

    Then before that, 2015-2021, getting it perfect, even predicting in 2020, in the preseason, they’d play the Saints on the road in the playoffs, and win.

    So I’d say my history is pretty fantastic.

    Anywho it’s just a first take prediction in May, nothing to get triggered about sweetheart.

  38. FortMyersDave Says:

    Jenna is just trolling for clicks. She is reporting for a national audience, not a Tampa one. Jenna is just throwing out content to get a reaction. I guess she thinks the ATL will sweep Tampa…. Not likely.

  39. BillyBucco Says:

    Jenna Laine at Mons Venus.
    What are you 80, BLIND and on viagra?
    That taco is as dry as a 100 year old nun on life support.

  40. FearTheFlag Says:

    JOE—Might I ask you take a page from Jason Licht’s playbook of “Keeping Receipts” and keep a runny tally of all these talking head’s predictions so we can hopefully call them out (AGAIN) at the end of the season!

  41. Jake been there since the beginning Says:

    Man guys, we have a team to go wherever, doubt is a terrible thing. The way I see this picture is we have two edge guys that are gonna be there in Diaby and Braswell. The rest of the defensive guys are okay, the offensive line is greatly improved as well. Hopefully they can gel some in training camp, and I think Barton is going to be key. Then Baker will have more than one second to do something as well as the backs. We gonna show all the doubters who we are… Let’s Go Bucs!!!! Let’s Run It Back…