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Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5) vs. Seattle Seahawks (7-2-1)
Sunday, November 27, 4:05 P.M. ET
Raymond James Stadium (65,618)
Network Television: FOX
Play-By-Play: Kenny Albert Analysts: Daryl Johnson Sideline: Laura Okmin
Bucs Radio: US 103.5, Flagship Station (103.5 FM, 620 AM & 95.3 FM)
Play-By-Play: Gene Deckerhoff Analyst: Dave Moore Sideline: T.J. Rives
Last Game: Tampa Bay Won at Kansas City, 19-17; Seattle Won vs. Philadelphia, 26-15
After going into Kansas City and leaving with an impressive win, the Bucs come back to Raymond James Stadium on a two-game win streak and ready to take on one the NFL’s hottest teams, the Seahawks.
Seattle has ripped off three straight, including wins over the Patriots and Eagles that have positioned the 2013 Super Bowl Champions into home-field contention. Russell Wilson, credited in part for inspiring Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston’s body transformation, is playing like an MVP candidate, throwing for over 600 yards and four touchdowns the past two weeks. He’ll have to lead the offense without running back C.J. Prosise (shoulder), though.
The Seahawks defense may have the NFL’s best collection of 11 players – on either side of the ball – but injuries have taken a toll. The “Legion of Boom” will be without All-Pro safety Earl Thomas (hamstring) while the defensive line, a unit that has led the way for a league-most 31 sacks, will miss former Buc Michael Bennett (knee). Both losses provide an opportunity for red-hot Winston and Mike Evans to capitalize on this Sunday.
Speaking of the passing game, the matchup between Evans and Richard Sherman should be one to watch. Same with Doug Martin and the Bucs offensive line against the NFL’s 11th ranked run-defense, one allowing less than 100 yards a game.
Last week was arguably the Bucs biggest win since 2012. A win this Sunday would top that. Proven and still in their prime, the Seahawks are undoubtedly among the NFL’s elite, if not the best team overall. The young and over-achieving Bucs, looking to become what the Seahawks have been, makes Sunday in Ray Jay one of the marquee games of the week. Read how the Pewter Reporters see it playing out.
PewterReport.com Publisher & Bucs Beat Writer Scott Reynolds
I want to pick the Bucs. I really do. They have proven they can win at home with a convincing, 36-10 win over a lousy Chicago Bears team. And that’s what you do against bad teams – you beat them soundly, as Tampa Bay did. The Bucs are also coming off a hard-fought 19-17 road win at Kansas City against the playoff-caliber Chiefs. Arrowhead is a tough place to steal a win and the Bucs notched their second win over a very good team in K.C. after beating the Falcons in Atlanta in Week 1.
Having said that, the recipe for the Bucs’ success has been getting takeaways as they have gotten six in the past two weeks. The problem with the visiting Seattle Seahawks is that they don’t the ball over. If my stats are correct, the Seahawks have just six turnovers for the entire season. They just don’t beat themselves, and if the Bucs can’t create takeaways – and get points from those takeaways – I just don’t know if Tampa Bay has the experience or the talent at this stage to pull off an upset for a second straight week.
What I do know is that the Bucs cannot allow the Seahawks to get a cheap touchdown on defense or on special teams where Tyler Lockett is a dangerous return specialist. It will be hard for Tampa Bay’s offense to match Seattle’s offense point-for-point. The Seahawks have scored at least 26 points in six of their last eight games, and they are 6-2 over that span. I don’t know if the Bucs can contain run-pass threat Russell Wilson, but without rookie running back C.J. Prosise, who is injured, the Seahawks’ running game is reeling and Seattle might be more one-dimensional than usual. I don’t like the match-up of tight end Jimmy Graham against the Bucs linebackers and safeties, and I think that will prove to be the difference in a close game.
Reynolds’ Score Prediction: Seahawks win 26-20
Reynolds’ Pick-to-click: RB Doug Martin
PewterReport.com Editor and Chief & Bucs Beat Writer Mark Cook
First let me say, the Buccaneers absolutely can win this football game. Especially if a few bounces go their way.
The Bucs are trying to establish themselves as a legitimate playoff team, and a win on Sunday would create a pretty strong announcement to the rest of the league of just that. This Seahawks team isn’t just a good team, they are one of the best, and after beating the Patriots on the road on Sunday night Football a couple weeks ago, they may actually be THE best.
In order for the Bucs to win they will need to play as clean of a football game as they have all year. Limited penalties, no turnovers and solid fundamental blocking and tackling. It helps that Settle is hurting with some key injuries, but they still have Russell Wilson, Jimmy Graham, Doug Baldwin, and others that can create problems for Tampa Bay.
If Doug Martin can get on track, and the Bucs can control the clock and keep their defense off the field, it limits the opportunities for Wilson to do damage.I just see the Bucs ends have trouble containing Wilson on the edge and I think he eventually breaks down the Bucs’s resolve, converting some late third downs with his scrambling and throwing on the run.
I expect the game to be close, but as much as I would love to be able to pick Tampa Bay, I am going with Seattle pulling away in the fourth quarter. But if they Bucs somehow pull this one out, then there isn’t a game the rest of the season I don’t think they can’t win.
Cook’s Score Prediction: Seahawks win 23-21
Cook’s Pick–to–click: DT Gerald McCoy
PewterReport.com Bucs Beat Writer Eric Horchy
When the public got its first look at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 2016 schedule in April, this one didn’t get too many ‘Ws’ scratched next to it.
After flopping to a 1-3 start, even the most optimistic of fans probably reassessed their late-November upset prediction. But that was then and this is now.
Head coach Dirk Koetter and the Bucs have had their depth tested on both sides of the ball and managed to persevere, salvaging the 2016 season in the process. Tampa Bay picked up the home victory it desperately needed two weeks ago, then got the signature win that helps add legitimacy to an attempted postseason run.
The Bucs are getting a little healthier as Seattle suffers through significant injury issues, but Pete Carroll’s Seahawks still enough firepower to play with anyone in the league – not to mention a young, up-and-comer like Tampa Bay.
This is the most banged-up Seattle’s been all season, though, and the Bucs need to take advantage as best they can. The Seahawks are down to third-stringer Thomas Rawls at running back. Former Buccaneer Michael Bennett has been ruled out again, leaving the defense thinner along the line. Four-time All-Pro safety Earl Thomas is listed as doubtful, meaning the lethal secondary is likely without one of its top components. Adding to potential issues in the defensive backfield, three-time All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman may be dealing with a tender ankle and fellow corner DeShawn Shead is questionable because of a hamstring issue.
That being said, quarterback Russell Wilson, wide receiver Doug Baldwin, tight end Jimmy Graham, linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright, safety Kam Chancellor, defensive end Cliff Avril, and a whole host of Seahawks that have combined to produce a 7-2-1 record will be on the field at Raymond James Stadium.
Tampa Bay managed to keep Kansas City under 100 yards rushing last Sunday for the first time since Week 4 against Denver. Forcing an offense to be one-dimensional is any defense’s goal, but taking away Seattle’s running game still forces them to deal with Wilson. Tampa Bay manages to keep Wilson and the Seahawks offense in check, though, and engages in a second straight low-scoring affair.
This might not seem like an ideal day for Doug Martin to finally get his first big game of the season, but fifth time’s a charm. Over the first five games of the season, Seattle held opponents’ rushing attacks to 74.6 yards per game. In the five games since, that stat’s ballooned to 122.2 yards per game. Running behind a healthy, full-strength offensive line, Martin is able to get going just enough to keep the heat of Seattle’s pass rush off quarterback Jameis Winston.
Horchy’s Score Prediction: Bucs win 22-20
Horchy’s Pick-to-click: RB Doug Martin
PewterReport.com Bucs Beat Writer Zach Shapiro
After a convincing win over Chicago and an upset in Kansas City, the Bucs are playing some of their best ball in November – exactly how you draw it up.
Jameis Winston has been moving the chains at will, while future Pro Bowler Mike Evans and undrafted rookie Alan Cross and everyone in between has been making plays to assist their quarterback. Doug Martin also appears to be returning to form, evidenced by his ability to make guys miss and turn negative runs into positive yards last Sunday. He’ll get guard Kevin Pamphile back this week, too.
The biggest improvement for the Bucs, though, has been on defense. With momentum-shifting takeaways and strong play inside the red zone, the unit has shown rapid growth since giving up over 1,100 yards combined in two games. The defensive line, at its healthiest since Week 1, and the secondary seem to be coming along in Mike Smith’s scheme.
Unfortunately for Tampa Bay, I think the Seahawks are too much to handle. Earl Thomas is out, but their other All-Pro safety, Kam Chancellor, is still there to cover Cameron Brate and assist against the run. And while I think Mike Evans could have a solid game against Richard Sherman, the Bucs may not have enough firepower to get the run going against a dominant front seven. Defensively, I think Russell Wilson will be able to find Doug Baldwin and Jimmy Graham and move in and out of the pocket as needed.
The Bucs keep it close through three quarters, but the Super Bowl contenders put it away late.
Shapiro’s Score Prediction: Seahawks win 31-20
Shapiro’s Pick-to-click: WR Adam Humphries
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
Contact him at: [email protected]
O ye of little faith! ‘Cept for Eric!
If you can’t pick the Bucs to win this game, under these circumstances, with the way the Bucs have been playing of late, at home, against a team traveling near 3,000 miles to get here with two of their best defensive stars on the sideline … and given that you’re all Bucs fans .. then when CAN you pick the Bucs?
I’ll take the Bucs by a score of 28-24. Good, hard fought game, going down to the last series before the gun. Excellent play by both teams, too bad anyone has to take a loss, but I like the Buc’s chances tomorrow.
Good day all.
It’s tough to pick the BUCS to win tomorrow.
But I’ll do it anyways. There is a formula to success here ripe for exploiting.
I don’t think the Seahawks are quaking in their boots right now. Under estimating the BUCS now could be a mistake, but I doubt Pete Carrol will allow that to happen. I can just hear Winston Telling his team that this is the game that will make the season for the BUCS.
If I were king of the BUCS I would not run one offensive play without the tight ends up on the line and blocking. It’s time for Dougernaught to earn his paycheck. If he can grind out 100 yards we have a chance. Great opportunities will arise if they respect our running game. Release the tight ends for tailored tightend screen passes to keep them honest.
We might see why Luke Stocker is on the team Sunday.
On defense Koetter needs to stick Hargraves on Baldwin all day. You can talk about Evans and Sherman if you want, that is the match up I want to see. Lets see if Vernon is any good. I think he is. He can earn his paycheck too.
Big days are needed by the defensive line also. GMC and Ayres need to show up big time. Our defensive wild card could be Noah Spence.
My pick-to-click is the Offensive Line. Having them all back and the Seahawks banged up is a receipt for success.
BUCS win 23 to 20. That’s more points than I’d like to see scored.
I really like your thoughts on Hagreaves. Let’s see how good he is.
I believe our offense is better than their defense. With luck and a break again we win a close one. go Bucs! Make us proud!
I normally pick the better QB. In this game that is clearly Russell Wilson. Having said that Winston has been great in the last two games. The Bucs desperately need to beat either Seahawks or Cowboys. I am going with the Bucs in this one 31-28.
Glad you are on the bus Bucnut.
My predictions have been way off as of late, so I am going to say Seattle wins big, hoping that I am totally wrong. I think our Offense should be able to have some success against a banged up Seahawks Defense, but I am worried about our Defense against that on fire Seattle Offense. If we cannot get a pass rush going on them we are doomed. I am saying 35- 19 Seahawks.
The Buc’s interior line harass Wilson all day. Dougie has his breakout game of the season and the Buc’s Win 17-10….drops mike(not Evans).
Good call BUC 727
Great call 727!!
I just don’t see us winning this game, Seattle to me is a top 3 team in the NFL and if we pull off this upset that would be HUGE. I am just hoping to be competitive and not be blown out and show the NFL we can hang with anybody. Prediction Seahawks: 31 Bucs: 23
I think that Seahawks are not all that great. Busc win by 6 points.
We all acknowledge that the Seahawks are one of the league’s better teams. I just loved Russel Wilson coming out of college. They have developed a great roster comprised of their own Draft picks and key free agents. Their fans are arguably the most supportive. (easy to do when the team wins) You don’t see their stadium invaded by the enemy fans. The team has a lot going for it.
The past decade or so the Bucs have been nearly the opposite. Lots of failed Draft picks and free agents. Fans have been the symbol of apathy. No such thing as a “home” crowd or advantage. In general, little respect around the league. But doesn’t this season seem a bit different? To use a modern term, how are the Bucs “trending”?
In spite of the Bucs injuries and learning a new defensive scheme, the team could easily be 7 dash 3. Point being, are the Seahawks “On any given Sunday” an unbeatable foe? Of course a Bucs win would be an upset. Probably some would consider it a fluke.
I always say games in the NFL are as much mental approach as physical talent. What I have seen this season is the team refusing to cower to the opponent when their “spit” goes bad. To me that was a big step. Perhaps the next step will be a bit of swagger when the thinking on Defense becomes reacting. After soundly defeating the Bears (at home no less) and dominating the Chiefs, I see our favorite team believing in itself.
I see the Seahawks traveling 3000 + miles, dealing with nagging injuries, giving the Bucs little respect in spite of Pete Carrol’s pleas and hopefully, as the Chiefs did, expect an easy victory. I see the Bucs crossing a threshold as they did in San Diego 20 years ago when Sapp and Brooks echoed Popeye’s words when they “Took all they could stand and can’t stand no more”. I doubt many of the 12th Man have traveled here from the northwest on Thanksgiving weekend and only the front-runner fans from here will be donning the glowing green Seahawk logo making this a bit more of a “home” crowd.
They key to victory will be to make them earn every point. They’re too good to give them freebies. Don’t let Jimmy Graham run free. Protect Jameis and allow him to use every weapon in his arsenal when they bracket #13. The Seahawks like to pass rush and defend the pass so use our power running O-line and committee of running backs to frustrate and wear them out like a few years ago with Mike James. Don’t take your foot off the gas. Score, score score.
SCREW your “predictions!” I care about this team and “predicting” failure as if ANYONE can see the future is flat out STUPID!
I think the Bucs will win today. I believe that or I wouldn’t bother to go to the damn game.
This team is ready to make a statement and believes in itself a lot more than the media….. obviously.
This is a HUGE game for the young Buccaneers, a chance to gain national attention and ut themselves in the running for the South title or the Wild Card race in December. THEY believe and so do I.
And if you’re going today? Be in your seats early, be loud and act like you give a damn. This is really as close to a playoff game this team has had in a long time. Act like it!
Right on Garv.
My prediction: Bucs win 24-21 on an Aguayo last second field goal ~ , ‘ H ` . “Yeah!”
See my prediction above
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