The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are one game removed from the end of the season, and their playoff hopes are dead, buried, and waiting for a miracle resurrection. So we can pretty much start talking about next year’s schedule.
As usual, we know almost all of the Bucs’ opponents and games. The six games against divisional opponents are a constant every year: home and away games against the New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers.
In 2017, the Bucs will also face the NFC North, consisting of the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings. In addition, they’ll play the AFC East: the New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins, Buffalo Bills and New York Jets.
Finally, there will be two games against the NFC East and NFC West team that finishes in the same spot as the Bucs. Tampa Bay will finish second, unless they lose to the Panthers and the Saints beat the Falcons, in which case they’ll finish third.
If the Bucs finish in second place, they’ll face the New York Giants and Arizona Cardinals. If they finish third, they’ll play Washington and the Los Angeles Rams.
Here’s the full list of opponents.
Home: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, New England Patriots, New York Jets, NFC East (New York Giants or Washington)
Away: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, NFC West (Arizona Cardinals or Los Angeles Rams)