The Tampa Bay Buccaneers pulled off the biggest upset of the week as they stunned the Saints by defeating them 48-40. Here are the biggest takeaways from Sunday’s game.
Biggest Takeaways for the Buccaneers:
The biggest takeaway for the Buccaneers is that they should be just fine while starting quarterback Jameis Winston is suspended. Backup Ryan Fitzpatrick came in and played at an elite level while throwing for a career-high 417 yards and 5 total touchdowns. Fitzpatrick showed that he is more than capable of winning games and playing at a high level. However, he also showed that he might actually be a better option as a starting quarterback for the Buccaneers than Winston. It helped that Fitzpatrick had a terrific supporting cast around him, but if he keeps playing this well then the Buccaneers could be better than expected. Meanwhile, another takeaway is that the Buccaneers once again struggled on defense. The Buccaneers secondary got lit up by Drew Brees and they proved that they are still just as bad as they were last season when they finished last against the pass. Injuries to Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves didn’t help at all, but the Bucs still need to improve in that area. Tampa Bay’s defense made plays when they had to, but they were very lucky that the offense played so well. Overall, the Buccaneers proved that they are a better team than many people expected, although they still have tons of work to do on defense.
Biggest Takeaways for the Saints:
The main concern for the Saints is clearly their defense which got absolutely torched by the Buccaneers. New Orleans allowed 529 total yards to Tampa Bay and the Saints didn’t even have a sack or cause a turnover. New Orleans had an improved defense last season and that was a big reason for their success, but it took a major step back in this game. Their best cornerback Marshon Lattimore struggled all game despite playing very well in his rookie year last season. Also, star defensive end Cameron Jordan didn’t make any impact and the Saints pass rush was absolutely nonexistent. There was no bright spot for the Saints on defense and hopefully they will learn from this miserable performance. Meanwhile, there certainly weren’t too many issues for the Saints on offense and quarterback Drew Brees showed that age is just a number. Brees had an outstanding game as he torched the Bucs defense for 439 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Saints did fumble the ball a couple of times, but that surely isn’t Brees’ fault. Brees showed that his performance won’t be declining anytime soon, although it is a shame that the Saints lost despite Brees’ tremendous play. Overall, the Saints offense showed that they will be just fine despite making a couple of costly mistakes. However, the Saints won’t reach their full potential until the Saints defense at least puts forward an average performance.