The Tampa Bay Buccaneers play the Carolina Panthers tomorrow, in what will be both teams’ final game of the 2016 season. The Panthers have been eliminated from the playoffs, and the Bucs are all but done (there’s a tiny, tiny chance they can still sneak in).
So this game is mostly meaningless. It will affect draft position, and might affect the final division standings, but mostly, this will be a game about pride — and about either team’s desire to actually win a meaningless game. Neither team will admit to not caring all that much, of course, but we know how this works.
Still, though, it could be an interesting game. A division game is always a little more important than a non-division game, and Cam Newton and Jameis Winston are both highly entertaining quarterbacks to watch, whether things go right or wrong.
The Bucs and Panthers could also build some good-will with their fans, and a sense that they’re heading in the right direction - though there’s no evidence late-season performances actually carry over.
Here’s everything you need to watch the game.
Panthers vs. Buccaneers
Time: Sunday, January 1 2017, 1:00 p.m. ET
Location: Raymond James Stadium
TV: Fox, televised in large parts of Florida and the Carolinas. Full map here.
Announcers: Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis
Odds: Bucs by 4
Enemy blog: Cat Scratch Reader
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