Tom Brady or not, the Buccaneers are still underdogs against the Cowboys. They need to forget their first matchup of the year if they want to change this.
Looking back, the first win of the season for the Buccaneers over the Cowboys always did more harm than good from a team identity standpoint.
Any team that comes out and runs the ball as much as the Bucs did that day deserves to lose when it essentially neglects one of the best parts of its offense, but a terrible game from Dak Prescott made it seem like Tampa found a way to be relevant in the modern NFL without using modern strategies.
This wild success was then hard for the Bucs to recover from for the rest of the season.
The Bucs then chose to run the ball in the worst situations from then on out. The team got far too conservative. The pass felt like an afterthought in an offense that it should be the shining star (and by a healthy margin).
Success defeated the Buccaneers more than the injuries or anything else, and they need to remember that as they go into the game tonight.
That same strategy won’t lead to the same results. It might help if Dak has another one of the worst games of his career, but it is silly to think that a conservative approach will win the game based on what we saw from the rest of the season and what we saw in these playoffs.
Offense is king. Throwing the football and establishing the pass is how you open up the run. The recipe is simple, and it is the opposite of what the Bucs did in their Week 1 win.
Tampa has to forget this win if it wants any chance of pulling out an upset tonight.
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