The Bucs once had great rivalries with the Green Bay Packers, St. Louis Rams, and Philadelphia Eagles. The faces have changed and we no longer play these teams ever year. These days I ask, who do you feel is the Bucs biggest rival. The Atlanta Falcons, our closest NFC foe have been a problem recently with the development of Matt Ryan and Mike Smith's defense. The New Orleans Saints, defending Super Bowl Champions have always given us trouble, especially in 2002. The Carolina Panthers started a mini-rivalry in the early 2000's, and have re intensified it in recent years including Dante Wesley's hit on Clifton Smith last season.
Back when Brett Favre was a Packer we would always have fierce battles in the old NFC Central. We all remember Sapp, and his hit on Chad Clifton. The past two seasons we have beaten Green Bay in Tampa, but is this enough to still consider them a main rival?
Philadelphia used to own us in the playoffs. Well at least until Ronde Barber picked Donovan McNabb and tore down th Vet sending the Bucs to Super Bowl XXXVII. Recent games included Matt Bryant's 62 yd FG to beat the Eagles in 2006. This season the Eagles destroyed us 33-14 at the Linc.
However, to this day my most hated team, and the rivalry I loved the most was the old Rams-Bucs rivalry in the late 90's-early 2000's. The 1999 NFC Championship game crushed me. I thought we had it, and out of nowhere comes Ricky Proehl with a TD catch to take the lead, and eventual 11-6 win. The ensuing drive with the Bert Emmaunuel (no)catch killed me. I was 11 years old and my life was Bucs football. After that game it seemed as though we had the Rams number. The 2000 MNF game, which may still rank as the most exciting game in Bucs history with Warrick Dunn and Shaun King willing us to a 38-35 victory. in 2001 another MNF game, this time in St. Louis, but the Bucs prevailed 24-17. In 2002, the last of the Monday night battles with the Rams, the Bucs once again won 26-14, and would go on to win the Super Bowl that had eluded them for so many years.
So Buc fans I ask you, who do you feel as the Bucs biggest rival?