In a power ranking by NFL Spin Zone, the Buccaneers sit at the bottom of the NFL after their preseason win over the Dolphins.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers haven’t gotten much love during the offseason. Despite a strong showing against the Miami Dolphins in their preseason opener, the Bucs got no love from NFL Spin Zone’s Randy Gurzi.
In his power rankings following the first slate of preseason games, Gurzi slotted Tampa Bay in the 32nd spot. Here is some of his take:
"They got a win in their first preseason game, but that’s nothing to be too thrilled about. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are still in a lot of trouble this season. First off, they have a strong need at the running back position and there wasn’t a whole lot about what Ronald Jones did in his debut to ease those concerns. To his credit, Peyton Barber looked strong, but he’s not someone to lean an entire running game on."
There’s no question the Buccaneers face major question marks as they head into the 2018 regular season. Like Gurzi pointed out, the rushing attack needs help, and the team will be without Jameis Winston to start the year.
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Even with their concerns, is Tampa Bay the worst team in the league right now?
It’s hard to believe the Bucs are heading for the top pick in next year’s NFL Draft. The Bucs do in fact face a daunting schedule to open the season, but that doesn’t mean they are going win just a handful of games.
Look back just a season ago; almost every pundit thought Tampa Bay would contend for the postseason. A year later, the Bucs roster has only gotten better.
From potential breakout team to laughing stock, Tampa Bay has fallen from grace. It’s as if the team has taken a complete 180-degree turn in one calendar year.
While the big stories revolve around Jameis Winston’s suspension and the league’s worst defense, ignored are the positive ones.
General manager Jason Licht has rebuilt the Buccaneers defense and the offense is in the capable hands of Ryan Fitzpatrick. The journeyman also has a plethora of weapons at his disposal, even if the rushing attack is mediocre.
Tampa Bay may not have the season the fan base is hoping for, and the playoff drought could continue. However, a season where the Buccaneers are one of the worst teams in the league feels unrealistic.
Remember, this was a team nearly every expert loved in 2017, it appears nobody wants to fall into a trap again this season.