Most of the greats were there, but the 2004 defense was struggling to recover from the loss of Sapp and Lynch, at least as far as their positions were concerned.
Jon Gruden had enough of Brad Johnson. He just wasnt effective anymore, especially without two receivers like Keyshawn and McCardell in 2003. So he was yanked for a more mobile QB, Chris Simms, who would get his first start at the SuperDome! He added a much needed spark to the offense, getting the team down for a FG on the opening drive! But the next posession, he was tackled late (A flag was thrown) and hurt his shoulder enough to knock him out of the game. In came Brian Griese, the 3rd string QB only a few weeks before.
Griese didnt accomplish much at first, but in the second half, he caught on fire, and was super efficient throwing the ball around; 16 of 19 for 194 yards and a TD. It was the birth of a very exciting passing offense that season, as Griese finished with the highest QB Rating for a Bucs QB ever that season. Still, an 0-4 start is hard to overcome.
In a twist of Irony, the next year, around the same time, Brian Griese would have a knee injury that would lead to the ascension of Chris Simms back to the Starting QB.
All that happened, ON THIS DAY in 2004!