With the Buccaneers preparing to face off against the Saints for the second time in three weeks, the chess-match between teams will be interesting to say the least.
The Buccaneers are playing to keep any and all postseason hopes alive. However, seeing as how they just played against the Saints two weeks ago, there won’t be a whole lot the Bucs can throw at them that they aren’t already prepared for.
Head coach Dirk Koetter spoke about the issues that may arise due to the division rivals playing again so soon;
"“Well, that’s the whole chess match part of playing somebody this close together is both staffs have to decide what plays are you leaving in, what plays are you taking out and what are you replacing them with. There’s only so many things out there and then how much do you care about practicing at full speed and you never know how much they’re going to change either. You can’t just assume they’re going to go out and play exactly the same.”More from Bucs NewsDevin White posts cryptic message to Lavonte David on TwitterUpdated Buccaneers depth chart after signing two players from rookie minicampTodd Bowles sends clear message about Baker Mayfield’s role with BucsThe Athletic is wrong about Bucs one ‘must-watch’ game in 2023Todd Bowles admits he only looks at three things on Bucs schedule"
Offensive coordinator Todd Monken weighed in as well;
"“Oh yeah, I think it’s always been interesting when you play somebody twice. No matter when you play them, whether it’s a couple weeks removed or you’re in a playoff system and you play another team that you played earlier in the year because common sense says, ‘Okay, what did we do well against them? Let’s do it again.’ You don’t know what their adjustments are going to be, based on what you did the first time around, that’s what makes it so difficult in any sport when you play back-to-back or play an opponent twice, to win both games just because there’s adjustments that take place on both sides. So, that’s the real challenges of it, trying to figure out what they’re going to do to change. I would guess that some of the things that both teams have success, they’re going to stress that as well, from the first meeting. So, that’s the big chess match.”"
One thing is certain; the Buccaneers need to get their offensive line woes under control to allow Jameis Winston time in the pocket as well as to get the run game going with Doug Martin and Charles Sims. Two things the Bucs did not do well – at all – this past Sunday night in Dallas.
Both teams will have everything on the line Christmas Eve as the Saints have not been officially eliminated from playoff contention yet. It’ll be on the Buccaneers to regain their swagger and get back on the winning track. If not, all playoff hopes will be gone.