Buccaneers: Five biggest games of the 2017 season
Week One: at Miami
It all gets started week number one. Jameis Winston and the rest of the Bucs head south to face the Miami Dolphins. Last year, the Dolphins were better than expected, finishing with a 10-6 record, well behind the perennial winners from New England. Jay Ajayi was the breakout star, rushing for 1,272 yards and eight touchdowns, earning himself a trip to the Pro Bowl. On the defensive side of the ball, Cameron Wake led the way with 11.5 sacks, and Ndamukong Suh added five of his own.
The last time these two teams met, the Bucs won a 22-19 decision at Raymond James. On that 2013 afternoon, a late touchdown by Bobby Rainey proved to be the game winner. Mike Glennon went 11-21 for 139 yards, one touchdown and one interception that day. Neither team went over 300 yards of offense that day, despite the points scored. It’s a different group now, as there was no Jay Ajayi or Winston back then.
This one is a big one because it’s the first one. For one week, all teams are even. Everybody sports a record of 0-0, and Super Bowl dreams are equally alive and well. It’s important to start the season out on the right foot as it often sets the tone for at least the first quarter of the year. It’s not impossible to get out of an 0-1 start, but 1-0 sets you up for an excellent beginning. The Bucs need this one to get rolling.