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The Hype Starts Dying Away Tomorrow

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After an off-season of talking, the Bucs put foot to leather and begin the act of playing football.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Its been long summer hasn't it Buc Fans? From will they or won't they with Jameis Winston, to free agency through OTAs and on to training camp, we've heard a lot of talking.

We waited with baited breath for a report on every Jameis throw. How Marpet and Smith are doing on the offensive line? How the defense is coming together?

Listen to the Bucs and they'll tell you that Jameis is the love child of Joe Montana and Brett Favre. Marpet is already an All-Pro and the defense will get seven sacks and ten turnovers every game.

Listen to the "experts" and Jameis with throw gazillion interceptions and the Bucs will have a negative number of wins this year. Can a team go -1 and 17?

The stat nerds wet themselves on Jameis' college interception total and how he's still throwing picks in training camp practice. Cue the classic Allen Iverson line.

We've made our predictions, debated what we think will happen and wondered what this football team will really bring us?

Is this the same team that has given us 30-70 over their last 100 games? Or is this a team to be excited about? On the rise and ready to stun the NFL?

The talking ends tomorrow night. We won't need to predict outcomes. It will be right there in front of our eyes. No, pre-season won't show you everything but what it will show you is some of the glaring weaknesses and depth concerns this team will have.

It certainly didn't take us long  during the Bucs' pre-season opener last year in Jacksonville to figure out that yes, Virginia we're in deep crap on the offensive line.

Saturday will enable us to scale up B.S. mountain and see how much of the hype is true and how much is training camp euphoria.

Now, if Jameis throws three picks in the pre-season opener, its not a cause to hide the women and children (or have the women subject themselves to the Bucs' RED initiative). It's also not time to make Super Bowl plans if he throws 3 touchdown passes, either. Ryan Leaf had a great pre-season.

But we'll be able to see if the Bucs offensive line can stop Urkel, none-the-less NFL competition. We'll be able to see if the defense can generate any kind of pass rush from the front four. We'll be able to see if Doug Martin has indeed returned to his Dougernaut form.

We'll see the camp superstars Rannell Hall and Kenny Bell try to perform when the lights come on. If Kwon Alexander is ready to be a Mike linebacker in the league.

If someone - anyone - can take Michael Koenen's job as the most overpaid punter in the NFL.

It'll be fun for about a half, then we'll want to see the real bullets start to fly. Alas, we're still a month away from those answers.

But come join me on this trek up B.S. mountain and let's see what we've got.