By: Robert Craft
TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have addressed their starting quarterback situation in the boldest way possible; by signing one of the greatest of all time, Tom Brady.
Does Brady’s arrival make them a Super Bowl contender? Which is asking a lot, considering the Buccaneers finished in the bottom half of the NFC South in 10 of the past 12 seasons (eight last place finishes). The Buccaneers haven’t made the playoffs since 2007.
Is Tom Brady immune to father time? While he has yet to fall off performance wise, he is starting to show signs of slowing down. Brady will be 43 years old when the next NFL season begins.
Brady replaces Jameis Winston as the Buccaneers starting quarterback. Winston led the league with 30 interceptions and 5 fumbles. Brady has thrown nine or fewer in seven of the past 10 seasons. Never throwing for 14.
Brady joins the Buccaneers roster that may arguably have the best starting receiver duo in the NFL. Both Chris Godwin (1,333) and Mike Evans (1,157) topped the 1000 receiving yards last season and combined for 17 touchdowns.
Add on a couple talented tight ends in O.J. Howard and Cam Brate, with Brady’s history of maximizing the tight end position, does Brady’s arrival make them a Super Bowl Contender?
The Buccaneers must upgrade the running back position either draft or free agency. Bruce Arians and Tom Brady have a history of running backs that contribute heavily in the passing game.
One free agent to watch is Dion Lewis. Tampa Bay hasn’t had a running back with 60 or more receptions since Warrick Dunn.
The same day Brady signed with the Buccaneers; the team announced the signing of offensive tackle Joe Haeg. Haeg spent the last four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts. He has played both tackle positions as well as right guard.
The addition of Haeg addresses a position where the Buccaneers were in need of depth. The Buccaneers offensive line gave up 47 sacks last season and provided little in the run game. I know PFF.com ranked the Buccaneers offensive line 7th, but stat boy doesn’t watch film.
In 2019, the Buccaneers defense gave up the fourth most points per game (28.1), tied for the 12th most TD’s allowed and ranked 18th in total yards allowed (343.9). Opponents last season averaged 67 plays per game against the Buccaneers, which was tied for third most in the NFL.
Basically, Brady is better than Winston in taking care of the football last season and that’s very important. I’m not sure spending $50 million for two seasons for a 43-year-old quarterback you’re hoping will be a better game manager is the right move.
I’m not optimistic this move will prove to be a good one for the Buccaneers on the field. Season tickets sales are through the roof and ESPN & NBC are working on the schedule right now to get Brady in prime time.
Tom Brady might be the G.O.A.T. but he’s not a top 10 quarterback right now. Tampa Bay is just paying him like he is.