A new season for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and fans are chomping at the bit to see their team once again be in contention for the NFL’s ultimate prize - a Lombardi Trophy. After last year’s injury-laden, off-field distraction filled, striptease departure punchlined disappointment, the Bucs are in prime position to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl and win their second Lombardi in three years.
Ahead of the year, it’s always fun to put your personal stamp on a prediction for a player or the team just to see if it comes true. That’s exactly what we’re doing here as the Bucs Nation staff puts together their list of bold predictions for the upcoming season.
Headlining the group of in-house replacements for the recently re-retired Rob Gronkowski is Harvard man, Cameron Brate. In his tenure with Tampa, Cam Brate has averaged a 65 percent catch rate while Gronk averaged just over a 60 percent catch rate during his time with the team. It stands to reason that with a bump in targets, Cameron Brate will see a significant bump in production and may net more efficient results than Gronk was able to in the last two seasons. Therefore, Brate will not only match what Gronk did in 2021 - he will surpass it. - William Walsh
Tampa Bay 3k
This is possibly the most stacked WR the Bucs have ever had and I think they will produce. The Bucs also signed RB Leonard Fournette to a large contract this off-season and are poised to use him more as well. Because of this I feel the Bucs offense will explode with three one thousand yard and a one thousand yard rusher making it one of the best offenses in NFL history. - James Hill
Defense Flashes Back To Super Bowl LV
Top 3 defense in scoring & yards….This is the fourth year for Coach Bowles running the Bucs defense. The continuity between the core group of defenders, & the overall depth of the defense, leads me to believe they will have an outstanding year! The statement “defense wins championships” will prove prophetic for the Bucs. - Chris Weingarten
Juli-Oh My Goodness...
Julio Jones will finish with eight or more touchdowns. The last time Jones got eight touchdowns was 2018 in Atlanta. With the depth at receiver stacked, Tom Brady spreading the ball, and Jones being healthy while not being the number one target, eight or more touchdowns for the veteran is a possibility. - Gil Arcia
It’s Not How You Start, It’s How You Finish
After slow start & going 2-2 in first 4, Brady & the offense picks up, returning from London 7-3 entering the bye week, finishing the season winning 5 of the last 7 to end up 12-5 & winning the NFC South. - Len Martez
Leonard Fournette sets career highs in yards, TDs. When Fournette came to Tampa two years ago, the expectations weren’t exactly sky high. Well, then the Super Bowl run came, RoJo battled injury, and Playoff Lenny was born. Now we’re here today as Fournette comes into his 3rd Bucs season with a fresh new contract and a stranglehold on the starting job.
He’s noticeably improved in all areas since his Jacksonville days, and he’s poised for his best year yet if he stays healthy. I’m predicting he becomes the first Buccaneer to rush for 1,000 yards since Doug Martin in 2015. He finishes with around 1,300 rushing yards, 500 receiving yards, and 12 total TDs. - Mike Kiwak
Don’t Test Dean
Jamel Dean leads the Bucs in interceptions with six. Heading into a contract year, Dean finally puts it all together and becomes a ball hawk for the Buccaneers defense. He has all of the physical tools to be a really good corner in the NFL, but hasn’t found that consistency just yet. As it stands, he has five career interceptions. Count on him leading the team in picks and getting six in 2022, including another one that he takes to the house. Oh, by the way, the last Buccaneers corner to have six interceptions in a season? Aqib Talib in 2010. - Evan Wanish
Only three times in his NFL career has Tom Brady hit the 40+ touchdown mark - when he threw for 50 in that undefeated 2007 regular season, and both season as a Tampa Bay Buccaneer. Brady threw for 40 in 2020 and 43 in 2021. This time around, he’s going to hit the mark to match his age. Tom Brady will throw for 45 touchdowns at 45 years old and finally get awarded the MVP of the league that he should have gotten in either - if not, both - of the last two seasons. - James Yarcho
What bold predictions do you have for the upcoming season? Let us know in the comments below!