Buccaneers vs Patriots: Five game-changing players for Week 5
By Bailey Adams
The Buccaneers (2-1) are fresh off a last-second 25-23 win over the Giants, but face a quick turnaround this week. The defending Super Bowl champion Patriots are coming to town for a primetime Thursday Night Football matchup. Here, we break down five players who can change the outcome of Thursday’s game.
Through three games, we’ve seen a lot from the Buccaneers. We saw a blowout win, a blowout loss and a thrilling, last-second victory. That Tampa Bay was able to grind out a win on Sunday against New York was huge, especially considering New England is waiting right around the corner. When the 2017 schedule came out, it was clear that a four-game stretch with the Vikings, Giants, Patriots and Cardinals in a span of 22 days was going to be challenging. Well, the Bucs are halfway through it.
Any time you’re hosting the defending champions, it’s going to be a tough task. It’s even tougher when those champions include the ageless Tom Brady and football mastermind Bill Belichick. New England is just 2-2 through the first quarter of the season, having just lost 33-30 to the Panthers on Sunday. The Patriots will be angry, and it doesn’t surprise anyone that two straight losses is a rare occurrence for this team. Since 2001, New England is 38-11 in games that have come after a loss. The Bucs are looking to make that 38-12 this Thursday.
Obviously, the Patriots are a great team. The Bucs look to be on their way. There will be loads of talent on the field this week. Which five players will most impact the game’s outcome?