Predicting the Bucs’ record is tough any year, but this year in particular they’re hard to figure out. On one hand they’re massively improved from last season in which they showed signs of a team on the rise. Winston has a year of experience, the defense has added Mike Smith, Robert Ayers, Noah Spence, Vernon Hargreaves and Daryl Smith. But on the other hand, the schedule is significantly more daunting, with matchups versus some of the NFL’s elite teams like Arizona, Denver and Seattle. The offensive line is something of a question mark as well, and they’re going to need to perform against the best of the best.
I think that the Bucs are overall a pretty good team that can contend for a wild card if all goes according to plan. If they remain healthy at the key positions then I think that ten wins is within reach. They have proven they can play with Atlanta and New Orleans, but must prove they can at least split with Carolina to reach ten wins. They also must manage to escape their opening five games before the bye with at least a 3-2 record.
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