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Why the Bucs could miss the playoffs in 2024

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are currently riding a four-year streak of playoff appearances, the longest run of any team in the NFC, and trailing only the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills across the rest of the league.

But it’s no guarantee that this success will continue for the Bucs, even though they’re bringing back all of their most important players from last year’s team, which won the NFC South for the third year in a row.

Pro Football Focus recently picked out one reason why each of the league’s 32 teams could miss the postseason this year, and for Tampa Bay, they noted that the pass rush has to step up in 2024:

The Buccaneers had just one player record 40 or more total pressures in the regular season in 2023, and that was Shaquil Barrett, whom the team released this offseason.

The Bucs’ starting edge defenders are currently slated to be Yaya Diaby and Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, who wouldn’t have ranked among the top 30 edge defenders in regular-season QB pressures even if you combined their output.

Especially with Barrett gone, if the Bucs aren’t able to get consistent pressure from their defensive front, that could easily be the Achilles’ heel that keeps them from extending their postseason streak to five years in a row.

QB Baker Mayfield

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QB Kyle Trask

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QB John Wolford

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RB Rachaad White

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RB Bucky Irving

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RB Chase Edmonds

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RB Sean Tucker

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WR Mike Evans

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WR Chris Godwin

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WR Trey Palmer

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WR Jalen McMillan

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WR Deven Thompkins

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WR Rakim Jarrett

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TE Cade Otton

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TE Payne Durham

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TE Ko Kieft

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TE Devin Culp

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 04: Devin Culp #83 of the Washington Huskies looks on before the…

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 04: Devin Culp #83 of the Washington Huskies looks on before the game against the Montana Grizzlies at Husky Stadium on September 04, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

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OT Tristan Wirfs

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G Sua Opeta

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OL Graham Barton

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G Cody Mauch

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OT Luke Goedeke

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OL Robert Hainsey

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OL Ben Bredeson

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OT Brandon Walton

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OT Justin Skule

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G Elijah Klein

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OLB Yaya Diaby

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OLB Joe Tryon-Shoyinka

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OLB Chris Braswell

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OLB Randy Gregory

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OLB Anthony Nelson

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DL Vita Vea

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DL Calijah Kancey

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DL Logan Hall

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DL Will Gholston

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DL Greg Gaines

Nov 5, 2023Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports; Houston, Texas, USA;Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) passes as…

Nov 5, 2023Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports; Houston, Texas, USA;Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) passes as he is pressured from Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Greg Gaines (96) in the fourth quarter at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

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LB Lavonte David

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LB SirVocea Dennis

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LB K.J. Britt

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LB J.J. Russell

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CB Jamel Dean

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CB Zyon McCollum

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CB Christian Izien

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CB Bryce Hall

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CB Tavierre Thomas

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S Antoine Winfield Jr.

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S Jordan Whitehead

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DB Tykee Smith

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DB Josh Hayes

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K Chase McLaughlin

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P Jake Camarda

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LS Zach Triner

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Story originally appeared on Buccaneers Wire