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After a disappointing trip to London, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers enter the bye week at a record of 2-4. On Sunday, the Buccaneers had plenty of chances to defeat the Carolina Panthers. Unfortunately, quarterback Jameis Winston had 6 turnovers (5 interceptions) and the team fell short 37-26 in London.
So with the upcoming bye week and their next game on the road in Nashville, the Buccaneers have their work cut out of them. With a week off, lets take a look at two big positives and one huge negative from the first six weeks of the season.
Positives: Shaquil Barrett
The NFL leader in sacks has provided the pass rushing presence needed since Jason Pierre-Paul could miss the remainder of the season with his fractured vertebra in his neck. In the opening six games of the season, Barrett has provided the team with nine sacks and has hit the quarterback 10 times.
Even though he hasn’t had a sack in the last two games, the sixth-year linebacker is still tied for the league lead with Cleveland’s Myles Garrett.
Positives: Chris Godwin
After having three 100+ yard receiving games in the second half of the season last year, wide receiver Chris Godwin was expected to have a breakout season in 2019. Through six games, Godwin has surpassed and exceeded expectations. The league leader in receiving yards (662) has four games over 100 yards.
His 78.2% catch rate puts him six among wide receivers in the NFL. At the pace he is going, he could have his first 100+ catch season of his career.
Big Negative: The Secondary
The Buccaneers have the best run defense in the entire NFL but they own the worst pass defense in the league. Tampa is the only team that allows teams to throw for over 300 yards per game.
The pass defense has allowed 57% of completed passes to go for first downs. That ranks them as worst in the league. They have allowed six receivers to go over the 100 yard mark so far this season.
Even though the team is at 2-4, the schedule could break pretty favorably in the team’s favor over the next couple of games. Outside of the Titans game, the Buccaneers play:
- At Seattle, who have struggled against defending the pass
- A much needed home game against Arizona Cardinals
- New Orleans who could still be without Drew Brees at home
- A road game against the struggling Atlanta Falcons
So of the next five games, four are winnable. If Barrett and Godwin can continue their outstanding starts and the pass defense can improve, it could be an interesting final month of the season in the Sunshine State.