Just over one year ago the Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a move sending shockwaves across the NFL landscape. They signed quarterback, Tom Brady. A little over a month later, they traded for his favorite tight end, Rob Gronkowski.
The two moves will go down as perhaps two of the best ever made in the franchise’s history, and the off-season additions of Brady, Gronkowski, and rookies Tristan Wirfs and Antoine Winfield Jr. are going to rank the 2020 off-season at or near the top when Bucs fans look back at the construction of their latest Super Bowl-winning roster.
It’s been 18 years since fans of the Buccaneers could celebrate a championship run. Back when the unit led by a trio of Hall of Famers named Derrick Brooks, Warren Sapp, and John Lynch. Ronde Barber shut down ‘The Vet’, and should be enshrined with his teammates sooner rather than later.
Jon Gruden was the head coach worth two firsts, two seconds, and $8 million.
It was a good year, a good run. And nobody back then knew it would be the only run for close to two decades.
In an interview with James Yarcho and myself, Brooks recently spoke about his own team’s experiences in following up a Super Bowl run, leaning on it as the model for advice to this 2021 Buccaneers roster as it continues to take shape.
We’ve got plenty of time to worry about 2021. For now, let’s continue celebrating 2020. With all the memorabilia and merchandise out there for fans to buy when their team wins the big game, there’s one piece guaranteed to sell. The movie.
This year is no different, and NFL Films has once again prepared to launch a title celebration movie for fans and historians of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the game, to enjoy.
I recently got a sneak-peek at the film, the opening of which, immediately connects the success of this year’s team with the struggles of the teams before it.
The story opens in San Diego, California. Gene Deckerhoff and Jon Gruden’s voices are the first you hear. It’s a great quick-hitting homage to the undisputed best version of Buccaneers football until this past year.
After the dramatic opening, the film takes you to the signing of Tom Brady, the addition of Gronkowski, and straight to New Orleans where Tampa Bay suffered their first loss to Drew Brees and the Saints.
Game-by-game, the film serves as a collective of all the up-and-down moments the 2020 Buccaneers experienced as they took form as Super Bowl contenders.
Packed full of Deckerhoff calls, press conference moments, and mic’d up clips, you get the feel of the struggle, the elation, and the personalities of this year’s NFL Champions.
Of course, in most movies, you don’t want to know the ending. Spoilers, the call them. But this film has the ending you already know you’ll love. With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hoisting the Lombardi Trophy after beating Patrick Mahomes II, Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and the Kansas City Chiefs by a final score of 31-9.
Personally, my favorite moment in the film comes at the end. Not because of the win. Because of the nervous excitement you see on Mike Evans’ face as the win is within reach but not yet secured, the emotion in Bruce Arians as he realizes his squad just closed out the defending champs, the relief in veterans like Lavonte David and Ndamukong Suh, and the family celebration both in and out of pads as the 2020 Tampa Bay Buccaneers finish their story as Super Bowl LV Champions.
The feeling now is the franchise is building towards a second run to the post-season and potential chance to win another Super Bowl. Bucs fans know to appreciate championship seasons more than most. NFL Films has long been the gold standard for chronicling football stories.
Officially, the film releases on March 23rd and can be found online at many of your traditional stomping grounds for finding such Tampa Bay Buccaneers memorabilia.