Scenario 4: Losing out
The tanking situation.
Tampa Bay faces a brutal schedule to end the year, and there is a world where they don’t find the win column again this season. Tanking may sound enticing in theory, but it comes with problems.
Losing the last five games of the season is a tall task. So much has to go wrong for this scenario to come to fruition. The offense will need to lose all momentum. Plus, the defense will have to return to their record-setting pace.
While the defense may revert to allowing touchdowns at will, Winston won’t fall apart that badly. Even if he did, that would leave Tampa Bay without a quarterback next season.
Finishing the season with a 4-12 record would be a bitter pill for the fan base to swallow. In a year where the Bucs appeared to be in win-now mode, they would finish with a top-five draft pick.