Buccaneers edge starting first game of 2021 on Sunday

Anthony Nelson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
Anthony Nelson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images) /

The Buccaneers are set to be without both of their starting pass rushers on Sunday, and this should push a depth pass rusher into a new role.

The Buccaneers pride themselves on their depth, and while this has not lived up to billing for the wide receivers, the pass rushers have a chance this Sunday against the Jets to prove that Tampa’s depth is more than good enough for the circumstances.

Shaquil Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul have revolutionized the pass rushing for the Buccaneers over the past few seasons, but the Bucs won’t be able to count on them during their important game.

The Jets haven’t been much to worry about this season, but not facing the usual pass rush could make life easier for their rookie quarterback, and Tampa needs Anthony Nelson and Joe Tryon-Shoyinka to step up where it counts.

JTS has played a bit more than Nelson this season and he already looks like a bonafide starter. In fact, Tryon-Shoyinka looks like he should replace JPP during the playoffs, and the game this weekend would do a lot to prove that.

On the other side, Anthony Nelson has received far fewer chances, but that won’t stop him from playing a key role this week. Nelson only has one start each season he has been in the league, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been developing at an acceptable rate.

Nelson has three sacks on the season and has looked great against the run, and his production has been even better when you consider where he has been buried on the depth chart.

One way or another, Nelson has more than earned this opportunity, and the game should do a lot to show that he has earned his role going into the 2022 season, a time where he could move up in the depth chart.

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