Buccaneers Vs. Cowboys Preview Due to the Buccaneers’ game later tonight, Week One of the NFL season has officially begun.
For our Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the off-season has been particularly turbulent. With Tom Brady’s retirement, his unretirement, Ali Marpet’s retirement, the departure of key veteran free agents, the hiring of Todd Bowles to take Bruce Arians’ place as he transitions into an advisor role, Gronk’s retirement, and more drama surrounding Tom Brady (leaks of his plans to join the dolphins and then his absence from the team which now appears to be caused by personal issues at home)… For our crew, there has been a lot to unpack.
However, football has returned, and here we are.
In tonight’s primetime matchup, the Buccaneers will open their campaign against the Dallas Cowboys.
The opening game of last season, which we played against the same opposition, was a close one in which we narrowly defeated the Cowboys 31-29. Dak Prescott threw for more over 400 yards in the game from the previous year, so Tampa Bay will need to concentrate on stopping their passing attack this time around.
The departure of Amari Cooper, who was the Cowboys’ second-leading receiver overall and their club’s leading receiver versus us last season, is one significant change for the team this year. Cooper’s trade to the Browns was debatable because it removes a tremendous playmaker from their squad, but they are confident that CeeDee Lamb, who was their top receiver last season, will continue to handle the weight alongside Michael Gallup and youngster Jalen Tolbert.
They will benefit from Dak Prescott’s effectiveness, who had the fourth-highest completion % in the league last season, which should improve the way his receivers are perceived.
To allow our line more time to apply pressure to Dak, which should result in less accurate passes, our corners will need to be aggressive at the line and knock their receivers off their routes. With this Dallas offense’s penchant for passing the ball a lot, Carlton Davis, Jamel Dean, and Sean Murphy-Bunting will all have their hands full.
Despite losing Ndamakong Suh, our run defence should still be very strong this season since Vita Vea still dominates in the middle and we have one of the top linebacker units in the league.
In terms of our attack, we must be aware of Micah Parsons’ position on each and every play. Parsons can easily pursue the passer, drop back into coverage, and detect ball carriers before they reach the line of scrimmage. He is a game-changer. This player is aggressive and has a significant impact on the game, so we must surely account for him.
Taking care of the ball will be crucial this time around because the Cowboys defence forced more turnovers than any other team in the league last season, including forcing four (two fumbles and two interceptions) the previous time we played them. A lot of that starts with Trevon Diggs, The Dallas cornerback who led the league in interceptions last year. Diggs forced a lot of turnovers, but he also gave up a tonne of yards, giving up more than a thousand by alone last year, making him a very high risk, very high reward player. Brady was able to intercept Diggs last season, so it will be up to Tom and his receivers to reduce Diggs’ danger and maximise his reward this time around.
Coming at the Cowboys with a balanced assault will be another essential component to victory on Sunday night. Tampa ranked seventh in the league in terms of rushing yards last season. If we can get Dallas to appreciate the threat of the run, that should lessen their deadly pass rush and relieve some of the burden on our offensive line to maintain their blocks for as long as possible. Leonard Fournette will need to take advantage of the Cowboys’ weak rush defense—which is tied for eighth-worst in the league in terms of opposing yards per carry—if he wants to have a significant influence on the game this season.
Overall, I predict that this season’s first week will feature another close game, and I can’t wait to analyse the victory with you guys.