The Tampa Bay Buccaneers(2-3) play the San Francisco 49ers(1-5) this weekend, as the Bucs try to catch up in the NFC South race, and the 49ers try to salvage whatever is left of their season.
The Bucs expected to have most of their injured players back after the bye week but alas, they still have some key problems. Doug Martin will not be playing, and neither will defensive linemen Clinton McDonald and Robert Ayers. Gerald McCoy will return, but his snaps will be monitored and it seems unlikely that he’ll be at full strength.
The 49ers aren’t entirely at full strength either, but the only starter they’ll be missing is running back Carlos Hyde. Of course that’s a pretty hefty blow to an offense that has struggled to produce much of anything this year, and just switched quarterbacks — apparently, Colin Kaepernick is preferable to Blaine Gabbert after all. Surprise!
If the Bucs win this game, they’ll be 3-3 and just one game behind the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC South race — not the worst position to be in given the team’s tough early schedule. With injured players set to return at some point this season, a win could kickstart the team’s division run.
As for the 49ers, they mostly need to find a way to salvage some respectability after a disastrous start to the season. A loss against a Tampa Bay team that hasn’t looked great won’t help.
Here’s everything you need to know to watch the game.
Buccaneers vs. 49ers
Game Time: 4:05 p.m. ET, Sunday, October 23
Location: Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, California
TV: FOX, on TV in most of Florida and Northern California (see the full map here)
Odds: It’s basically a push
Matchup history: 49ers have a 17-5 record against the Bucs
Facebook: Please like us!