Buccaneers run it back in Pirate Bowl with Super Bowl prediction

Derrick Brooks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Derrick Brooks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

Many are picking the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to get back to the Super Bowl, and we’re no different. The Buccaneers’ predicted opponent might seem familiar.

Greetings, fellow Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans! We’re in the mood to have some fun and make a Super Bowl matchup prediction after viewing one preseason NFL game for the 2022 season. Let’s hope the prediction right holds true so some serious credit is received for the early prediction. Last season, this writer predicted that the Buccaneers and Buffalo Bills would play in the Super Bowl. Super Bowl LVI ended up featuring the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals. However, this will not deter another prediction.

Perhaps bias and nostalgia are factors. That said, there are still a lot of parallels between the Bucs’ first championship season in 2002 and the upcoming 2022 season. With this being the case, the Super Bowl prediction is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs the Las Vegas Raiders in Super Bowl LVII.

This is the same matchup that occurred 20 seasons ago, pitting the Buccaneers’ number one ranked defense against the Raider’s number one ranked offense. The Bucs won Super Bowl XXXVII by a score of 48-21 and brought home the Bucs’ first world championship. Fun fact, Super Bowl XXXVII was the last Super Bowl where neither team took a snap from the shotgun. Every snap was taken under center by both teams. Don’t expect that to happen again.

Fast forward to today, and the Buccaneers have a new head coach in Todd Bowles. Coach Bowles has been the defensive coordinator in Tampa since 2019 and was the architect for the Bucs’ Super Bowl LV defensive game plan, which was one of the most dominant defensive performances in Super Bowl history. Granted, it’s different from 2002 when the Buccaneers decided to trade for Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, but the Bucs have a new head coach nonetheless. The Raiders meanwhile promoted offensive coordinator Bill Callahan to the head coaching position in 2002. Now, while the Raiders went outside the organization this offseason, they have a new head coach as well for 2022, bringing in New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. As a result, both teams have new head coaches heading into the season, just like both teams did in 2002.

So both teams have new head coaches, just like both teams did twenty years ago, so what? Players win the games by playing the game. Both the Buccaneers and Raiders enter 2022 with talented rosters. Both teams played well enough last season to make the playoffs. Also, both teams made the playoffs prior to the start of the 2002 season as well. This could be a storyline or a similarity, and it is certainly interesting.

The Buccaneers and Raiders should also have top ten offenses heading into this season. In today’s NFL, you must have an offense that can control the clock, move the chains, keep the ball out of the other team’s hands, and ultimately put up more points than the opponent. Defense helps win championships, but a team has to have an offense. The Buccaneers should have a top-ten defense as well if the players can stay healthy.  The Raiders on the other hand would have to pull a trade for a defensive player in the secondary to crack the top ten defenses. 20 years ago, these rosters were not playing in the NFL. Well, except for Tom Brady of course, who just turned 45 and is still playing at an elite level.

Pirate Bowl Two is this writer’s preseason Super Bowl prediction. Buccaneers-Raiders. Some call it bold, but both teams are contenders and should make the playoffs. All we know for sure is it’s going to be a great season.

Next. It isn't 2002 anymore, but the Bucs run game should still thrive. dark