For a bit, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looked like one of the NFL’s best teams. At least a contender in the unpredictable NFC.
The past few weeks haven’t been so kind. Tom Brady has struggled, as should be expected from any 43-year-old quarterback. Tampa’s defense, which looked like a top-10 unit earlier in the season, was torched by Tyreek Hill and the Kansas City Chiefs offense as a whole. The Chiefs beat the Buccaneers 27-24.
The Buccaneers did a good job keeping it a game and were close at the end, but it was just another loss for the Bucs, who don’t look like a big factor in the championship race anymore.
Chiefs get out to huge lead on Bucs
The Buccaneers started slow, just like they did in a memorable blowout loss to the New Orleans Saints on a Sunday night earlier this season.
Hill had 203 yards and two touchdowns in the first quarter alone. The Chiefs have a great offense but it’s inexcusable to give up 200 yards to a receiver in a single quarter. The Buccaneers trailed 17-0 after the first quarter.
Brady threw three touchdowns to keep his team in the game. That was offset by a pair of interceptions. Brady had a very nice start to the season but is losing steam, which is especially concerning considering the offensive talent he has around him.
The Buccaneers cut Kansas City’s lead to 27-24 with about four minutes left before Mahomes picked up some first downs and Brady never got the ball back.
Buccaneers lose another one
The Buccaneers’ issues in prime time are well known by now. It’s fair to point out they’ve had issues against good teams in general.
The Bucs went 6-2 in the first half of the season. Their sixth win was closer than expected against the New York Giants, but that happens. It might have been a sign. The Buccaneers have lost three of four since then. They lost to the Saints in an absolute demolition. The Bucs were outplayed by the Los Angeles Rams last week. And the Chiefs jumped on them early and even though Tampa Bay rallied, Kansas City never trailed.
The Buccaneers are still somewhat safe in the playoff race at 7-5. But they’re looking up at the 9-2 Saints in the division and New Orleans has the tiebreaker. They probably have the talent to win enough games to hold off any NFC team that wants to make a late charge at a wild-card spot.
Even if the Bucs make it in, they don’t look like the type of club that can make a postseason run with the way they’re playing.
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