Buccaneers and Saints battle with first place in the division at stake
This is the most important game the Bucs have played in quite some time.
Two of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game Tom Brady and Drew Brees will be matched up against one another with first place on the line in the NFC South.
The Saints won the first matchup between these two teams in New Orleans week one of the NFL season beating the Buccaneers 34-23.
This will be a different Bucs team than the one the Saints saw in week one.
Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes along with two interceptions in the opening day loss. Since then, Brady has guided the Bucs to a 5-1 record, throwing 18 touchdown passes with two interceptions.
The Bucs come in with a 6-2 record leading the Saints by a half-game in the NFC South.
Bucs fans and NFL fans across the country will get to see the debut of wide receiver Antonio Brown as he makes his Buccaneer debut.
Brown is coming off an eight-game suspension and very thankful to be given yet another opportunity to play in the NFL.
Brown’s last game was with the Patriots on the opening day of the 2019 season.
The Bucs may also have wide receiver Chris Godwin back in the lineup. Godwin is recovering from a thumb injury that he suffered in the game against the Raiders. He was expected to miss six to eight weeks.
The offensive line has been healthy all season up to this point, but the O-line could be without guard Ali Marpet on Sunday. Marpet is in concussion protocol and if he cannot play Sunday, Joe Haeg will start in his place.
Defensive linemen William Gholston who was on the injury Covid list all week has been taken off That list and will play against the Saints was in close contact with someone that has Covid.
The Saints come to Tampa with a 5-2 record and are coming off an overtime win in Chicago with a 26-23.
Wide receiver Michael Thomas could be back in the line-up this week for the Saints. Thomas was limited in practice all week and is listed as questionable for the prime time game on Sunday.
Defensive linemen Sheldon Rankins and defensive back Justin Hardee were placed on injured reserve and will miss the game against the Bucs.
Brady and Brees are the all-time leaders in a career touchdown pass with Brady at 561, and Brees at 560 career touchdown passes.
This is a statement for the Bucs. A game that the Bucs need to win. The Saints have been winning but have not been impressive.
The opening day win against the Bucs was the most impressive win for the Saints. The Saints got behind early against the Lions before coming back to win 35-29.
The game against the Chargers went back and forth before the Saints won in overtime 30-27.
The Saints beat the Panthers in a close game 27-24, and then came from behind in Chicago to beat the Bears in overtime last week.
If the Buccaneers win this game, they will have a 1.5-game lead in the division. If the Saints win, they will have a half-game lead in the division but will own the head-to-head tiebreaker.
Bruce Arians will have this team focused and ready to play. This is the biggest game of Arian’s coaching tenure in Tampa.
The Bucs are four-point favorites.
The offense is clicking. The defense is a top 10 defense in the NFL.
The Bucs win this game 34-17 and go up by a game and a half in the NFC South.