Game Overview ::
By papy324 >>
- The Bucs are all in good spots against an overmatched opponent that has given up.
- Mike Evans has “squeaky wheel” appeal after catching all four of his targets last week in a loss.
- Cade Otton has been an every down player without Cameron Brate.
- DJ Moore is mispriced for his role/talent, but it’s difficult to overcome horrific QB play.
- If you’re brave, the Panthers D is free.
How tampa bay Will Try To Win ::
The 3-3 Bucs limp into Week 7 coming off a bad loss as heavy favorites against the rebuilding Steelers. The Bucs have dropped three of their last four games, and Tom Brady must be thinking, “I gave up Mai Tais and Yahtzee for this?” Fortunately for Brady, the divisions he has played in his entire career are as bad as his marriage, and the Bucs still sit atop the NFC South as an astounding -600 favorite to win the division, despite being technically tied (the Bucs do hold the tiebreaker) with the Falcons at 3-3. Being 3-3 in the NFC South is like getting divorced when you’re the world’s most desirable man, you’re still winning.
What looks more worrisome for Brady’s Bucs is the dysfunction surrounding this team. Todd Bowles said that players have to stop living in the past, Brady was caught on camera screaming at his O-line like they were Giselle asking him to watch the kids, and a frustrated Mike Evans basically said, “throw me the damn ball, Dad!” after the game. This is all set against the backdrop of an aging (possibly finally declining) quarterback who prioritized going to a wedding over practice. The locker room environment impacting the game is typically filed under “things Rex Ryan believes,” but this Bucs team is more distracted than Robert Kraft after hiring a new secretary.
Despite the drama, nothing has changed (except his marital status) since Tom Brady arrived in Tampa. The Bucs want to attack with a pass heavy offense that is designed to let Brady win them games. Brady has thrown 42/52/52/40 times in the past four weeks and it’s likely we see another 40-pass attempt game in an “angry Brady gets right” spot against a weak opponent. The Bucs play fast (1st in overall pace) and barely slow down in any situation, only falling outside of the top five in pace when playing with a touchdown lead (11th in pace when ahead). The Bucs are what they’ve been since Brady arrived, an aggressive throwing team that is going to play fast and try to put up points.
The Panthers have been bad against the run (19th in DVOA) and smoked through the air (25th in DVOA). The Panthers defensive backs have been poor outside of Jaycee Horn (11th-ranked corner per PFF), and Horn missed last week with a rib injury. The Bucs should be able to attack this secondary even if Horn plays, but if he sits, this unit is one of the weakest in the NFL. There is nothing in this matchup that will tilt the Bucs away from their preferred approach, and the backdrop of this game suggests that the Bucs will let Brady air it out to try and put the focus on his play, rather than his personal life.