Tampa Bay Buccaneers: It hasn’t been easy to be a fan

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Octavio Jones/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Octavio Jones/Getty Images) /

The Buccaneers haven’t made it easy on us.

It’s natural and ‘easy’ to root for a team when they’ve been successful a majority of its tenure. But ‘easy’ is for weaklings and there’s far less satisfaction for ‘easy.’ After 20 years In New England, the challenge for Tom Brady was no longer there, so he set out to accomplish success elsewhere. Enter the Tampa Bay Buccaneers!

Talk about a challenge. Why Tampa? Was he just going to sit back and ‘pillage and plunder’ the Glazers, like so many other big name free agents did, and retire on the beach? Many thought that, because history was on your side. The Bucs hoped Brady was one of the final few pieces needed. But could he do it? Would it happen? Or would it be another disappointing year? Time would tell.

Now let’s step back in time for a minute. The Buccaneers have been one of the toughest teams to be a fan of since the NFL expansion in 1976. An 0-14 inaugural season. Then 12 more grueling losses before that first victory! It took until 1979 to get their first winning season. The next in ’81. But the fans never left, never lost hope, even as winning seemed to be painfully hard to come by.

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Rebranding the Creamsicles and Bucco Bruce to Red and Pewter and the pirate flag in 1997 seemed to truly transform the Bucs as they won their first and only Super Bowl, to this point, a mere six seasons later. These last 13 years or so have been unfortunately uninspiring, even as talent was slowly being accumulated. With only a handful of winning seasons since their last playoff game in 2007, it seemed we were heading in the right direction, once again.

But looks can be deceiving, and 2017 took an unfortunate turn as our ‘ship’ started to list once again. Many fans continued criticizing everything the organization was doing up to and including some less-than-stellar free agent signings. They just wanted the team to WIN! It seemed many of these free agents were only interested in doing some pillaging of their own as the Glazers got plundered time and time again. Here are a couple of those scalawags we all want to forget:

Michael Johnson – promising and talented DE from the Cincinnati Bengals. While we thought we found gold ironically it was Johnson who found gold for himself.

Then there’s……Chris Baker, a mistake that was detected way too late. Swaggy left any talent he did have back in D.C.

Since that Super Bowl victory 18 years ago, Bucs fans have pulled out more hair than a plumber snaking a clogged shower in a sorority house! “There’s always next year.” We ALL said that! We seemed to say that every year. As disappointing as it was though, we stayed the course.

For some of us, 18 years is a lifetime, for others, it just seems like a lifetime! We’ve already made history this year, in more ways than one. Win or lose. But dang it, OUR time has finally come. Teams that have stumbled over the last few years, will be back, but for now, we can relish in the current success we all hope continues for years to come.

Next. Have the 2020 Buccaneers changed the course of the franchise?. dark

Tampa fans are some of the toughest in the NFL, we’ve had to be, and no matter what, we’re never jumping ship. Now LET’S GO WIN THIS SUPER BOWL!!!