The Tampa Bay Buccaneers belong to the best division in all of professional football. And it isn’t just a homer’s opinion either.
Make no mistake about it, I pride myself on my ability to be impartial, but in this case my assertion the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the remaining members of the NFC South form the NFL’s most contentious division has been vindicated by outside sources.
Specifically this time by NFL.com’s Greg Rosenthal.
In a recent post on the league’s own website, Rosenthal came out with some power rankings of all the divisions in the NFL.
The writer concluded the Bucs, New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers make up the best foursome in all the land.
Despite the Super Bowl champs residing in the NFC East and the AFC champs residing in the AFC East, it simply doesn’t put those divisions ahead of the NFC South – or NFL SEC as I like to call it.
Don’t get me wrong, pro football isn’t like college football in a lot of ways. But, being part of the best division gives a little insight into why teams like the Bucs along with others tend to catapult to the top of the NFC and sink to the bottom of the division year after year.
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Since 2000, all four teams have been to the Super Bowl. No other division in the NFL can claim this accomplishment.
The NFC South has two big-game winners in the 21st century as well. Three divisions have this bragging right.
As Rosenthal pointed out in his column, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished off the 2017 regular season with a win over the New Orleans Saints. The same Saints who won the division last year and were one fundamental tackle from the Championship Round of the playoffs.
Yes, on the last play New Orleans didn’t try to complete a miracle play. But to say the team didn’t want to win that final game would be a gross miscalculation of their efforts in Week 17.
The two will face off again to open the 2018 season and the Bucs will be looking to make it two in a row. Perhaps we’ll even see another Chris Godwin touchdown in the effort.
This isn’t college. I get it. At the end of the year there aren’t going to be many fans rooting for an NFC South rival to win it all if and when their team is eliminated from title contention.
Still, in this season of hype and expectation, it’s better to be in the best division than being in the worst.
Sorry, AFC East. You might be the only group Tom Brady can’t carry to the top.