The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a team that’s been up-and-down over the last decade. In that time, they’ve posted a winning record on four occasions, most recently in 2010 when they surprised everyone across the league. Since then, the team has hired a new coach in Greg Schiano, and moved in different direction.
One piece has remained in place though, and that would be Josh Freeman. It looks like the Bucs have themselves a very solid quarterback, who could end up being the franchise for the rest of the decade.
The Bucs also appear to have hit gold with their late first round pick from 2012, Doug Martin. The somewhat unknown running back out of Boise State destroyed defenses in his rookie year, and it looks like he’s got potential to become one of the best dual-threat backs in the game, and maybe even the best. No one saw Martin’s 2012 season coming, but you can bet that expectations will be there going forward.
In addition to acquiring Martin, the Bucs also landed themselves a No. 1 wide receiver in Vincent Jackson last offseason. Many thought Tampa paid too much for him, but he proved the doubters wrong with a career-season in 2012.
So with these three pieces, the Buccaneers have themselves a very solid base to build around. There are still lingering issues and uncertainties at tight end and wide out, but fans can’t really complain about who the team has on the field. The hard part is getting those foundation players in place, and the Bucs have already done that.
For the franchise to take the next step and get back into playoff contention on a regular basis, they must add talent around Freeman, Martin, and Jackson. Doing that, coped with the fact that Freeman and Martin should continue to steadily improve, should equal a recipe for success in Tampa Bay going forward.
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