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TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 17: Running back Jacquizz Rodgers #32 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers celebrates with teammates in the end zone after a 1-yard rush for a touchdown during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears on September 17, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

By Leo Haggerty
It’s Sports Magazine


Ok, Bucs fans, after what this team, and for that matter the community, has been through for the past two weeks, let’s take a moment and reflect on how lucky we are. Yes, some people in the Tampa Bay area had some wind and water damage along with power outages for extended periods of time. But, in looking at what Irma did to the south of us, we dodged a huge bullet especially if the hurricane had gone on its projected path right over downtown Tampa. I am extremely thankful that Irma drifted to the east just enough to spare us from the brunt of the onslaught.

Turning to the Pewter Pirates, I still think the jury is out on whether Tampa Bay is a playoff contender or pretender. Trust me, it’s not because of the performance of the Bucs on Sunday. You NEVER discount a win in the NFL no matter who you’re playing. That, though, is the problem.

If the Buccaneers could play Chicago 16 times I would say the Dolphins record of being the only undefeated team in National Football League history would be in jeopardy. The Monsters of the Midway may be the worst team in the NFL or, at least, they looked like it on Sunday at the RayJay.

The Bears had absolutely no threat of a running game and that led to all their other problems being magnified. The Bucs defenders, not having to fear any type of Chicago rushing attack, pressured former Tampa Bay QB Mike Glennon relentlessly forcing some big turnovers including a Pick 6.

For all intents and purposes, the game was over at halftime. The Buccaneers put it on cruise control and just let the Bears self-destruct in all three phases of the game. Dropped passes and penalties along with missed tackles was the order of the day for Da’Bears. Not a good day for the Windy City squad.

The only down side for Tampa Bay was the injury to LB Kwon Alexander. Hopefully, it’s just a hamstring strain as opposed to a tear so the former LSU product is only out for a couple of weeks.

So, as you can see, we don’t know yet if the Bucs are that good or the Bears are that bad. In my opinion, the competition will be of a higher caliber when the Pewter Pirates travel to Minnesota to take on the Vikings next Sunday. After that tilt, we should have a better idea as to how good or how bad Tampa Bay can be.