The Bucs were the talk of the offseason. They were the team doing everything right. They had their playoff year in 97, struggled a bit in 98 then returned with one of the best defenses ever seen in 1999. They went out and picked up Keyshawn Johnson, and took Randall McDaniel and Jeff Christie from the fellow NFC Central Minnesota Vikings. By every account, this was a team that was going to make a run for the Superbowl.
Curtis Martin is a great runner. The Bucs managed to control him. They managed to keep him in check. They saw Martin do everything...except, take the glove off! A Gloveless Martin then takes the hand off, drops back and throws a clean TD pass to Wayne Chrebet. Keyshawn threw up on himself Im sure. He mouthed off all week long, but Chrebet was the one who became the hero of the game.
The Goat was not Keyshawn, it went to Mike Alstott, who put the ball on the ground when the Bucs were counting on him to run out the game. All this after Ronde Barber returned a pass from Vinny back for 6 and a seemingly insurmountable lead with only 3:55 left in the 3rd quarter.
Vinny was benched, but returned and led the Jets to a TD at the 2:00 warning.
All the Bucs needed to do was run the clock out. The Good Hands People. We were supposed to be in good hands....
But this was 99-00, when Alstott was having a little problem holding onto the rock. He had a three drop day against the Chiefs in 1999. He had his days. He won many more than he lost, that is for sure. The Bucs lost THREE more games in a row, to start out 3-4, and end early SuperBowl talk going on after the close loss to the Rams.