Buccaneers defense rises to occasion again in Super Bowl win
Tampa Bay Buccaneers inside linebacker Devin White (45) breaks up a pass intended for Kansas City Chiefs running back Darrel Williams, right, during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl 55 football game, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)TAMPA, Fla. – Tampa Bay’s defense finished its redemption tour with a Super Bowl championship. Brees and the Saints beat Tampa Bay twice during the regular season. By taking down Mahomes in the Super Bowl, the Bucs (15-5) avenged three of their five losses. He also took exception with Tampa Bay having only one Pro Bowl selection on its roster, linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul. “One Pro Bowl player and the team goes on to win the Super Bowl?
Bucs' Arians scoffs at rumors, says he's returning 'for 2'
(AP Photo/Ashley Landis)TAMPA, Fla. – Seconds after linebacker Devin White intercepted a pass in the end zone, Tampa Bay coach Bruce Arians started doling out hugs. Arians unplugged his headset, slipped on a Super Bowl championship hat and braced for the traditional Gatorade shower. Together, Arians and the 43-year-old Brady helped Tampa Bay win its first championship in 18 years and cemented their spot in the franchise history books. He took a year off and worked in television before returning to the NFL with Tampa Bay — joining a young team he saw as full of potential. His biggest coup was landing Brady, who engineered yet another masterpiece and won his seventh Super Bowl after six titles with the Patriots.
Tom Brady brings Patriots' championship pedigree to Tampa
Gronkowski came out of retirement and signed with the Buccaneers after Brady bolted the Patriots last spring for a two-year, $50 million contract in Tampa after dominating the AFC for two decades. Brown caught a 1-yard touchdown pass from Brady that put the Buccaneers ahead 21-6 at halftime after TD grabs of 8 and 17 yards by Gronkowski. In leading Tampa Bay to its first title in 18 seasons, Brady became the first player to win seven NFL championships. AdAt 43, Brady became the oldest player ever to play in a Super Bowl. It wasn't all free agents and trade acquisitions who brought Tampa its second NFL title.
Storylines galore as Brady, Mahomes command Super Bowl stage
(NFL via AP)Someone will make history Sunday in a Super Bowl so filled with storylines it would fill a season of TV programming. Yes, Tampa, Florida, where the Super Bowl is being played this year. Ad“There’s a lot that comes along with the Super Bowl,” says Rob Gronkowski, the three-time champion tight end who came out of retirement to reunite with Brady. Of course, with the week off between the conference title matches and the Super Bowl, each side should be well rested. “You don’t get these opportunities every year in the NFL to be in the Super Bowl and to be in these games,” Mahomes says, thought it sure seems as if Brady has a Super Bowl habit, and Mahomes is developing one.
Brady, productive drafts fuel Tampa Bay's run to Super Bowl
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) runs with a elastic band around his legs during an NFL football workout Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. The Buccaneers play the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV on Feb. 7. 1 overall pick Jameis Winston but dared to dream of signing Brady if the six-time Super Bowl champion decided to leave New England as a free agent. Of course it was Tom Brady, not thinking he would become a free agent,” Arians added. Ad“Naturally, I think you envision every year in the offseason you want to make some moves that hopefully get your team into the Super Bowl.
Chiefs, Bucs ride (mostly) COVID-clear season to Super Bowl
– The Kansas City Chiefs had a pretty good idea what kind of COVID-19 protocols they would have to wade through in defense of their Super Bowl championship the moment they finally gathered for in-person training camp. And it was Burkholder who helped the Chiefs navigate the season with few positive tests and just one postponement — the fault of the other team — as they closed in on a Super Bowl repeat. Those were things we just didn't know, and it was a process to figure out how to do this.”AdUltimately, the Chiefs and Buccaneers are in the Super Bowl in part because they figured it out as well as anybody. It's easy to follow the example of Tom Brady, with six Super Bowl rings behind him and the Hall of Fame in front of him, when he demands the Buccaneers mask up. The same with Patrick Mahomes, the reigning Super Bowl MVP, when he tells the Chiefs to skip the family gatherings around the holidays.
JPP, Barrett pace stingy Buccaneers defense against Rodgers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Shaquil Barrett (58) celebrates with teammate Jason Pierre-Paul after sacking Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers during the second half of the NFC championship NFL football game in Green Bay, Wis., Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021. To deliver on that hope, Brady needed some relentless play from Tampa Bay's defense. And Tampa Bay to its first since the 2002 season. The Packers came back, but the defense forced Green Bay to settle for a field goal with just over two minutes remaining and trailing by eight points. And he was confident the Brady-led offense would not give the Packers' offense another chance.
NFC Matchups: Where else to start but Brady and Rodgers?
But Gronk in particular has always been a big-play guy in big games for Brady, and Green Bay doesn't have linebackers who excel in coverage. Green Bay will do some blitzing, though not as much as Buccaneers defensive coordinator Todd Bowles figures to do. Unlike Brady, Rodgers can create outside the pocket, and he's especially dangerous when doing so. Veteran placekicker Mason Crosby is solid, making all 16 field goal attempts, but missed four PATs for Green Bay. Tampa Bay's Ryan Succop, now in his 12th pro season, made 28 of 31 field goal tries but missed five extra points.
ODDS, STATS, MORE: Super Bowl berth at stake as Packers host Buccaneers
(AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)TAMPA BAY (13-5) at GREEN BAY (14-3)Sunday, 3:05 p.m. SPREAD — Buccaneers 11-7; Packers 11-6SERIES RECORD — Packers lead 33-22-1LAST MEETING — Buccaneers beat Packers 38-10 in Tampa, Oct. 18, 2020LAST WEEK — Buccaneers beat Saints 30-20; Packers beat Rams 32-18AP PRO32 RANKING — Buccaneers No. STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES — This is the second playoff meeting between Tampa Bay and Green Bay. The Packers beat the Bucs 21-7 in a divisional playoff game at Green Bay on Jan. 4, 1998. …Brady is making a league-record 14th conference championship game appearance, his first in the NFC.
Packers realize how much Rodgers has at stake this weekend
Rodgers gets a chance to make amends for that performance Sunday when the top-seeded Packers host the Bucs in the NFC championship game. (AP Photo/Jason Behnken, File)Aaron Rodgers’ Green Bay Packers teammates understand what this NFC championship game means to the All-Pro quarterback’s legacy. Rodgers led the Packers to a Super Bowl crown in the 2010 season, but hasn’t brought them back since. Green Bay led Tampa Bay 10-0 early in the second quarter back on Oct. 18 until Jamel Dean scored on a 32-yard interception return. There’s no one who’s been better.”This marks Rodgers’ fourth NFC championship game appearance over the past seven years.
Comfort TV viewing gives ratings boost to football, dramas
That contest, between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New Orleans Saints was the week's No. It helped make Fox the most-watched network with an average 9.1 million viewers, followed by NBC with 6.4 million. CBS had 4.1 million, ABC had 3.5 million, Univision had 1.3 million, Telemundo had 1 million and Ion Television had 940,000. ABC’s “World News Tonight” topped the evening news ratings contest, averaging 10.3 million viewers. “NCIS,” CBS, 5.2 million.
Bills among the NFL's 4 defenses peaking in the postseason
Buffalo Bills' Micah Hyde (23) celebrates with teammates after an NFL divisional round football game against the Baltimore Ravens Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. – Leslie Frazier’s faith in his Bills defense never wavered even at the lowest point of Buffalo’s season. It was mid-November and the Bills were entering their bye week on the heels of a 32-30 defeat at Arizona. In the NFC, the Packers are allowing an average 306 yards offense over their past seven outings. Here comes Patrick Mahomes, should he clear the NFL’s concussion protocol, and the league’s top-ranked offense.
Brady, Bucs, end playoffs for Saints, Brees, 30-20
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) works against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of an NFL divisional round playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021, in New Orleans. Brady and the Bucs' offense turned three of four Saints turnovers into touchdowns and Tampa Bay beat New Orleans 30-20 in the divisional round of the playoffs Sunday night. Brees’ 16-yard pass to Tre-Quan Smith put the Saints ahead 20-13, and New Orleans appeared primed to build on that lead when Brees found Jared Cook across the 50. WINSTON'S MOMENTJameis Winston, forced out of Tampa Bay when Brady became available, threw a 56-yard touchdown pass against his old team on a trick play. Saints: Deonte Harris, who returned the first Tampa Bay punt 54 yards to set up a field goal, left with a neck injury in the first half.
Rodgers leads Pack to top of NFC after draft disappointment
(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)The NFC playoff field features the usual cast of quarterbacks in Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and Russell Wilson. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 45, 31-25 over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Feb. 6, 2011, at Arlington, Texas. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 48, 43-8 over the Denver Broncos on Feb. 2, 2014, at East Rutherford, N.J. Last year: No. The Bears’ leading tackler left in the first quarter of the Green Bay game with an elbow injury. DBs Buster Skrine, rookie Jaylon Johnson and Deon Bush missed the loss to Green Bay.
The Latest: Duke coach Krzyzewski to miss FSU game
(AP Photo/Robert Franklin)The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___Mike Krzyzewski won't coach No. Tight end Hunter Henry remains on the COVID-19 list and will miss his second straight game Sunday at Kansas City. Four of them, including Jarvis Landry, missed last week’s game in New York as COVID-19 close contacts. The Browns did not have any new positive COVID-19 tests on Friday, and after getting league approval, practiced indoors. Every player on the active roster practiced Thursday and Friday, an indication none was identified as a high-risk close contact with Fitzpatrick.
Buccaneers vs. Lions: How to watch, stream, listen
NFL Sunday TicketOPENING LINE - Buccaneers by 7 1/2RECORD VS. SPREAD - Buccaneers 7-7, Lions 5-8-1SERIES RECORD - Lions lead 31-28LAST MEETING - Buccaneers beat Lions 38-17 Dec. 15, 2019, at DetroitLAST WEEK - Buccaneers beat Falcons 31-27; Lions lost to Titans 46-25AP PRO32 RANKING - Buccaneers No. BUCCANEERS DEFENSE - OVERALL (6), RUSH (1), PASS (25). LIONS OFFENSE - OVERALL (19), RUSH (30), PASS (7). LIONS DEFENSE - OVERALL (30), RUSH (29), PASS (27).
Comeback, Part II: Brady breaks Falcons’ hearts again, 31-27
Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers throws a pass against the Atlanta Falcons during the fourth quarter. ATLANTA – Tom Brady took a knee, then headed toward the Atlanta Falcons sideline to exchange a few words with Matt Ryan. Yep, Brady did it again to Ryan and the Falcons. It never does against Brady, who improved to 7-0 against the Falcons in his long career. The Falcons took another demoralizing loss in a season filled with them.
Brady throws for 5 TDs, Bucs rally to beat Chargers 38-31
Howard, Cameron Brate and rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn — caught scoring passes from Brady, who threw four of them after the Bucs fell behind 24-7 in the second quarter. I can honestly say that if this had been last year, we would have gotten beat by 20,” Arians said. “We’ve got to keep building on the confidence in one another because there’s nothing we’re doing out there that’s perfect," Brady said. Ndamukong Suh forced a fumble inside the Los Angeles 10 with the Chargers attempting to run out at the clock. ... Howard was carted off late in the fourth quarter with what the Bucs described as an Achilles tendon injury.
Panthers' McCaffrey out multiple weeks with ankle sprain
The All-Pro running back is expected to miss “multiple weeks” with a high right ankle sprain he sustained in Carolina’s 31-17 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. “As soon as the third quarter ended I went and got taped and tried to play it off,” McCaffrey said. In two games this season McCaffrey has run for 156 yards and four touchdowns and caught seven passes for 67 yards. The loss of McCaffrey is a devastating blow for the Panthers' offense. The Panthers rewarded the fourth-year running back with a four-year, $64 million contract making him the highest-paid running back in the league.
Stars line up for a chance to play with Brady-led Buccaneers
Leonard Fournette is the latest high-profile addition to an already potent offense bolstered by Brady luring his favorite target, Rob Gronkowski, out of retirement. A talented collection of playmakers, including Pro Bowl receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin and highly regarded tight ends O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate, are part of what made Tampa Bay an attractive landing spot for Brady in free agency. Now, all coach Bruce Arians has to figure out is how all the components fit. ... Its just fantastic, the commitment theyve shown, Arians, entering his second season in Tampa Bay, said Thursday.