The last time the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Washington Football Team squared off was in the NFC Wild Card round. On Sunday, Tom Brady and Taylor Heinicke meet again, albeit in much different circumstances than before.
The Buccaneers are thriving and look to be on a collision course to return to the Super Bowl. On the other hand, Washington is 2-6 and has failed to find any sort of success on either side of the football.
However, Brady and the Bucs received some massive injury news that will force the 44-year-old to focus elsewhere when Sunday rolls around.
Tom Brady vs. Taylor Heinicke again
These two quarterbacks faced off surprisingly in the NFC Wild Card round. Of course, the Bucs won en route to a Super Bowl title, but Heinicke’s play was the talk of the NFL.
With Alex Smith inactive, Washington leaned on Heinicke, who weeks prior was studying for finals and out of the NFL entirely. But, he stepped up on the biggest stage but fell just short of a colossal upset over the mighty Bucs.
This time around, Heinicke’s squad is trending downward quickly while the Bucs are the clear favorites once again. However, the NFL has been bizarre, and anything can happen any given week — ask the Buffalo Bills and the Baltimore Ravens.
The Bucs injury report won’t be doing Brady any favors, either.
Tampa Bay gets bad news on Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski
Bad news for the Bucs. Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski are out once again. Chris Godwin is a game-time decision and could also be out on Sunday.
If Godwin also misses the game, the primary wide receiver will be Mike Evans and prepare for him to have a monster day. Tyler Johnson could be the beneficiary of more targets also if Godwin is out.
That is encouraging for Godwin, especially after missing practice earlier in the week. Could this be a Leonard Fournette game against a struggling Washington defense?
Only time will tell, but as long as Brady is on the field, things should be just fine for Tampa Bay.
Buccaneers injuries continue to mount after the conclusion of the bye week
The injuries continue to pile on for the Super Bowl champions. Brown and Gronkowski could continue to miss time with unspecified timelines, and the latest injury to Godwin is concerning even if he can play. On top of that, Dee Delaney and Jason Pierre-Paul are listed as questionable.
Nonetheless, a 6-2 record on the other side of the bye week is good news for Tampa Bay. It helps that Brady is playing at an MVP level, and Fournette has been a pleasant surprise this season. Moreover, as of now, they play just two games against teams with winning records.
The final three games of the year are the Carolina Panthers (twice) and the New York Jets in between, so things are looking good for Bruce Arians’ team.
Stats Courtesy of Pro Football Reference