The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are one of just two teams to have a bye week in Week 13 of the season, the latest possible week a team can have a bye on the 2020 schedule. The Week 13 bye is actually the latest a team has had a bye week since 2001, which was when the league had an odd number of teams and at least one team had to be on the bye every week.
Tampa Bay is playing 12 games in a row to start the season, which is starting to take a toll on a team that's vying for the Super Bowl. The Buccaneers are worn down at this point in the year -- not ideal given their next two games are against the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs.
"I gave the guys off until Thursday; we're a really tired team," Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians told Bucs Total Access earlier this week, via JoeBucsFan.com. "We haven't had a bye yet. So this is kind of a little bit of a mini-bye for us. And then Friday and Saturday night, we'll practice at night, the same time as the game. Do a couple of different things on Monday morning to try and shake it up and see if we can start the game better."
Arians has already altered the Buccaneers schedule in order to get the team to start better in primetime games, moving the team's practices to night practices. Tampa Bay is just 1-2 in primetime games this season, averaging just 15.6 points per game while being outscored 81-47 on those three contests. The Buccaneers play their final primetime game this Monday against the Rams before kicking off with the Chiefs at 4:25 p.m. the following Sunday -- their last scheduled non-1 p.m. game in the regular season.
"I think the teams that are in primetime year in and year out [are successful]," Arians said. "We haven't been one of those teams, so we're learning about that. We have a couple players who were – A.B. (Antonio Brown), Tom [Brady] and a few other guys have been in a ton of primetime games. The rest of the ball club – you have to learn how to play then because it does ratchet up a little bit.
"The speed of the game – it's a playoff atmosphere, really. I think that's part of it. But, I don't see anybody doing [anything] differently [on] offense, defense [or] special teams than they would in a normal ballgame."