With Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski now members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, fans are thinking about how they measure up against some of the other best teams in the NFL. Missing the postseason in 2020 would most definitely be a failure for the Buccaneers, and some believe this loaded offense has a chance to win the Super Bowl. Are we giving the Buccaneers too much credit before they have even taken the field with their new quarterback? Is it possible that they aren't even the best team in their division and will have to make the postseason via a wildcard spot?
During a recent appearance on NFL Network's "Good Morning Football," New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan said the Bucs hype is premature and that they are fighting among the other NFC South teams for "second place" behind the Saints.
"I do know we have to step up our game, we've got to elevate," Jordan said, via NFL.com. "They've got the second-greatest quarterback of all-time, right behind Drew Brees, and now we've got a head-to-head two times a year. We've got our work cut out for us and then they have an addition, you bring in Rob Gronkowski and LeSean McCoy, you already had two 1,000-yard receivers in (Chris) Godwin and Mike Evans. This is a team that's fighting for second place."
Jordan may have a point, as the Saints have recorded three straight double-digit win seasons and have finished first place in the division in each of the last three seasons. The Buccaneers haven't finished first in the division since 2007 -- a down year in which a 9-7 record was good enough for an automatic playoff bid. This points to New Orleans' consistency, which is directly correlated to their team chemistry. The Saints' best players have been part of the same unit for multiple years now while the Buccaneers are entering a bit of a new era.
The Buccaneers haven't been to the playoffs since that 2007 season and haven't recorded a playoff victory since they won the Super Bowl with Jon Gruden to cap the 2002 season. Everyone can agree that Brady and Tampa's new offensive weapons should make this team better, but how much better is the question. We may have our answer rather quickly, as the Saints and Buccaneers face off in the season opener on Sept. 13.