The PR Bucs Monday Mailbag is where PewterReport.com’s Mark Cook answers your questions from our Pewter Report Twitter account. You can submit your question each week via Twitter using the hashtag #PRMailbag.

Below are the questions we chose for this week’s edition of the PR Bucs Monday Mailbag.

Question: How do the Bucs defend Travis Kelce? How do we get Rojo back involved?

Answer: Defending and stopping Kelce is a mystery to some degree. He is in my opinion, the best tight end in the game with freakish athletic ability for someone at that position. The Bucs actually did a decent job in their matchup earlier this season, allowing eight catches for 80 yards and no scores. But stats don’t paint the whole picture, however. If the Bucs were to duplicate that in this week’s game they would feel pretty good, unless say six of those catches were on third down and moved the chains. And just because Kelce doesn’t get in the end zone, doesn’t mean his contributions on drives that do end up in scores can be overlooked.

TE Travis Kelce

TE Travis Kelce – Photo by: USA Today

He is a matchup nightmare whether teams try and use a linebacker in coverage or even give safety help. Whatever defenses do, if they give him too much attention, then that is going to leave other weapons one-on-one. It really is going to come down to containing quarterback Patrick Mahomes with pressure and not allowing him to go through all of his progressions. With time to throw and move around, Mahomes will carve up the Bucs defense as he did earlier this year where he threw for a season-high 462 yards, and also three scores.

As far as Jones getting more involved, his health will be the biggest factor. While he played in the last two playoffs games, there was likely still some lingering issues from his quad injury, either physically or perhaps just mentally. Jones didn’t run with the same authority against the Packers as we have seen at times in 2020. Of course the Packers did a really good job against the run whether it was Jones or Leonard Fournette, limiting Tampa Bay’s ground game to just 76 total yards and a 3.2 average.

Question: Besides Tom Brady, are there any other Bucs you could see retire when the Bucs win the Super Bowl?

Answer: I don’t believe there is any chance Brady would retire following Sunday’s Super Bowl, win or lose. There has been no indication that he doesn’t plan on being back next year, and even possibly beyond 2021. Brady plays football for the love of playing. He’s made enough money, has enough accolades and there isn’t a lot left to accomplish as he has already solidified his place in Canton as a first ballot Hall of Famer. Brady has spoken often this year about how much he enjoys the game and I don’t see that changing in the next week.

Bucs QB Tom Brady

Bucs QB Tom Brady – Photo by: USA Today

As far as any other players retiring, I can’t think of any off the top of my head. Not unless they were to suffer a significant injury in the game as lineman A.Q. Shipley did earlier this season. I really see the majority of this team returning to either defend their Super Bowl title, or try and make amends for losing to the Chiefs.

Question: Will Arians feel the urge to get more involved in play-calling if the game gets close late, in his last Super Bowl as head coach? Not to say he will take over, just maybe pick and choose his shots?

Answer: No, Arians isn’t going to play 19 games and then in the last – and biggest one – disrupt things by getting more involved than he has this season. It is hard to argue with the results of what the Bucs have done in 2020 and part of that success has been Arians’ decision to delegate and trust his coaching staff. Like always, Arians is involved somewhat during the week in the game plan – on both sides of the ball – and likely throws a suggestion in from time to time. And the same thing on game day. Arians is always listening in and will suggest things from time to time, telling Leftwich to “pound it,” or Bowles to “bring the heat” occasionally, but ultimately the coordinator is the one making 99.9 percent of the calls. That isn’t going to change on Sunday.

Question: Would the win against the Packers last week make it in your Top 5 of all-time Bucs wins and if so where would it rank?

Answer: Yes, it does make my Top 5 list of best games in Bucs history.

Number one for me personally is the win over the Eagles to get to the team’s first Super Bowl. Yes, the Super Bowl win itself could be No. 1 and for most fans it would be, but to me, beating the Eagles, Tampa Bay’s biggest nemesis during the Dungy years, was the best and most satisfying win in my opinion.

Bucs CB Ronde Barber

Bucs CB Ronde Barber: Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Second would be the Super Bowl win itself, no explanation needed.

And here is where I would rank the Packers win. To go on the road, in a crazy COVID year, with a new quarterback and do it at Lambeau Field as the underdog to the probable league MVP in Aaron Rodgers, has to be number three.

After that I would say the New Orleans win in the playoffs this year, or a good argument could be made the first playoff win in franchise history against Philadelphia in 1979 deserves to be No.4. And then I would round it out with the team’s very first win over the Saints in 1977 to end their record-setting 26-game losing streak.

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About the Author: Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, the beach and family time.Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at mark@pewterreport.com
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Rob
Rob
4 months ago

I think I agree with the Eagles game, then SB (as crazy as that sounds). But I’ve gotta put the Saints game #3 and Packers #4. I think the significance of knocking out a division rival who has owned us for so long, in the SuperDome AND retiring Brees, as a huge underdog….just ranks up there. That was the one that got us believing we really can beat the Packers and win the SB. It’s tomatoe tomato…but man that Saints win just felt so so sweet. Also on retirement….while I don’t see it, I think Suh could be on that… Read more »

TropicOfCapricorn
Reply to  Rob
4 months ago

I have to agree that in terms of raw emotional impact the Saints win is number three. I would have been sad if we lost to GB, and I’ll be sad if we lose the SB; but I would have been swimming is a sea of despair if we’d lost to the Saints. As far as rivals go, they’re the only team in the Bucs’ team history I’ve hated as much (probably more, in fact) than that early 2000’s Eagles team.

Captain Sly
Reply to  TropicOfCapricorn
4 months ago

Agree. Can’t put my finger on it but I have always hated the Saints. So for me that Saints Win felt like a Championship. It’s right Up There!

Naplesfan
4 months ago

I love the fact that virtually everybody in media world is predicting a Chiefs victory, if not total blowout of the Bucs on Sunday. That means ALL of the pressure is on the Chiefs, and the Bucs can play this game like every other game that all the experts predicted they would lose, including the game against the Packers last week and the game against the Saints the week before that. That means, no risk it, no biscuit. And by the way, Bruce Arians most certainly DID make the call to go for it instead of punting at the end… Read more »

Buc76
4 months ago

Philadelphia was 1979. Mark you know that. 24-17 was the score. We started out 5-0, went to 9-3. Then lost 3 in a row then were 9-6. Beat the Chiefs 3-0 in the rain to go 10-6. NFC Central Champs. Beat the Eagles then lost 9-0 to the Rams in the NFC Championship game our lone one at home. I was at all 3 of those games. I just hope we win because if we don’t its going sting every time we play at home for years to come. If we win it will be the site of Glory for… Read more »

Captain Sly
Reply to  Buc76
4 months ago

Ring of Honor after one season? Way over your ski’s there Buc76

scubog
Reply to  Buc76
4 months ago

I too was at each of those games Buc76. That 3-0 Chiefs game in the monsoon when the players rolled around in the mud after the win was fantastic. My wife and I were soaked. The Rams game was the most disappointing. The Rams had some extra inspiration with Jack Youngblood playing on a broken leg. Bucs scored a TD that would have made it 7-6 but OG Greg Roberts flinched and negated the play. Who knows what might have been. The first home win against the St. Louis Cardinals was pretty special. I have a piece of the goalposts… Read more »

Buc76
4 months ago

With a Superbowl victory? They both are in for sure

Spitfire
4 months ago

A Super Bowl Win could trigger a retirement from someone like Suh, but honestly, I think this team has proven this year that while learning on the fly they can make it all the way, i think everyone that is capable of continuing to play will stay if at all possible because this team is only gonna get better over the next year or two and we honestly have a better chance in 2021 and even 2022 to make it back. So if all signs point up for our future the next couple years, I think everyone signs up and… Read more »

fl0nase
4 months ago

My personal most hated team was the Panthers right after we won the superbowl. Stephen Davis just pummeled us every 4th quarter. Delhomme & Steve Smith, Peppers, Buckner, & Rucker. It just felt like they built a roster to grind our smaller, quicker defense down every time we played.

Still love beating the Eagles as no. 1. Then SB, then this years Saints game.