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2021 NFL Team Preview: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers enjoyed a majestic 2020 season that culminated in a Super Bowl win. QB Tom Brady continued to prove that age is nothing but a number to him. The Bucs bring all of their key players back so there’s a solid chance that this team repeats as champions in 2021 (wsn.com).

With Carolina and Atlanta still in rebuilding mode and New Orleans breaking in a new QB, Tampa Bay shouldn’t have any trouble capturing the NFC South Division title this season. Here’s a closer look at the 2021 Bucs.

2021 Offense

Tom Brady showed everyone that he didn’t need his old buddy Bill Belichick to win a Super Bowl. The 44-year old threw for 4,633 yards and 40 touchdowns with only 12 picks last season. Everyone keeps waiting for father time to catch up with Brady, but that isn’t likely to happen anytime soon.

The Bucs have plenty of depth at the running back position, which complements Brady and the passing game. Leonard Fournette found the end zone six times last season and was a major beast during the playoffs. Former USC standout Ronald Jones had his best pro season by rushing for 978 yards and seven scores. Longtime Bengal Giovanni Bernard is also on the depth chart.

After throwing to a bunch of no-names for most of his days in New England, Brady has to be thrilled with the weapons the Bucs have at the receiver position. Mike Evans is a matchup nightmare at 6-5 and 231 pounds. The former Texas A&M star set a career-high in touchdowns receptions last year with 13.

Chris Godwin and Antonio Brown also have plenty of speed and pass-catching ability. Godwin caught seven touchdowns in 2020 and Brown caught four in only half a season. Also, don’t forget about Rob Gronkowski, who came out of retirement to catch seven touchdowns last year.

2021 Defense

While Brady and the offense get most of the hype, the Bucs defense is one of the best in the NFL. This unit has no glaring weaknesses and it could be even better in 2021 because of four new draft picks. First-round pick Joe Tryon should see some playing time this year, especially on third downs.

The Bucs’ rush defense was outstanding in 2020 by only allowing 80.6 yards per game (1st in the NFL). Veterans Ndamukong Suh and William Gholston seem to always be in the backfield. Nose tackle Vita Vea is also a big-time run stopper.

What really makes this Bucs defense tick is their linebackers. Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul are skilled pass rushers who terrorize quarterbacks. Lavonte David and Devin White are both tackling machines.

2021 Special Teams

Ryan Succop did a phenomenal job at kicker for the Bucs in 2020. The former South Carolina star will be back this year after hitting 28 of 31 field goal attempts last year.

The return duties will be split between wideouts Scott Miller and Tyler Johnson. Cornerback Antoine Winfield, Jr. may help out in the return game as well.

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