Saturday, February 24, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers-San Diego Chargers predictions from the Tampa Bay Times' Bucs coverage team

Greg Auman, @gregauman

Can the Bucs win their fourth straight? You won't confuse this with the defensive win against Seattle, but expect big plays and huge swings on turnovers. Don't underestimate what the 1-2 punch of Doug Martin and Jacquizz Rodgers can do in their first real game together, and can Brent Grimes possibly get an interception off Philip Rivers for the fourth year in a row? Prediction: Tampa Bay 34-27.

Thomas Bassinger, @tometrics

The Bucs have won in San Diego only once, a 25-17 upset in 1996. The Yucks, as ESPN host Chris Berman called Tony Dungy's 2-8 team, had lost 19 of 20 games on the West Coast. A decade later, Tampa Bay is in the midst of a three-game winning streak, a run that we might one day describe as a turning point, a statement much like the 1996 win over the Chargers. These Bucs are getting better, but they will face bumps in the road. Philip Rivers, who is not Stan Humphries, will be one of them. Prediction: San Diego, 28-24.

Martin Fennelly, @mjfennelly

This the letdown game. Bucs fly across-country and run into a San Diego team with a deceiving 5-6 record, with Philip Rivers at quarterback, with a Chargers defense that is gaining steam with rookie pass rusher Joey Bosa, among others. This is going to be a tough test for the Bucs, and they'll come up short. They're due for one of those games. Prediction: San Diego 31-20.

Ernest Hooper, @hoop4you

What's that? Gerald McCoy is banged up? The Bucs must muster a pass rush to force turnovers and stifle Philip Rivers. Without McCoy, the task will grow more difficult. With McCoy, it's still too tall of an order. Prediction: San Diego 28-21

Tom Jones, @tomwjones

Bucs are playing their best ball of the season having won three in a row, but traveling out west against good teams has always been something of a chore for these guys. With QB Philip Rivers, the Chargers have the best offense Tampa Bay has faced in a month. That will be the difference. Prediction: San Diego 24-21.

Rick Stroud, @NFLStroud

The only reason for this pick is momentum. The Bucs have it. They are 4-1 on the road this season. But injuries to Gerald McCoy and the loss of Chris Conte could be big factors against a quarterback like the Chargers Philip Rivers. Prediction: Tampa Bay 24-17.

Comments
Bucs awarded compensatory draft pick in seventh round

Bucs awarded compensatory draft pick in seventh round

The Bucs finally have a compensatory draft pick.For the first time since 2011, Tampa Bay has played the free-agent game well enough to be awarded a comp pick — after the seventh round, 255th overall, the next to last in the draft.Comp picks hav...
Published: 02/23/18
Bucs need a backup plan at quarterback; best bets are Ryan Fitzpatrick or (maybe) Mike Glennon

Bucs need a backup plan at quarterback; best bets are Ryan Fitzpatrick or (maybe) Mike Glennon

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Published: 02/23/18
Despite warnings to stay in school, Chase Litton confident about draft prospects

Despite warnings to stay in school, Chase Litton confident about draft prospects

As he made the tough decision whether to return to Marshall for his senior season, quarterback Chase Litton reached out to the NFL's advisory committee, which gives underclassmen a sense of where they're likely to be drafted should they leave early."...
Published: 02/23/18
Bucs won’t tender injured LB Adarius Glanton, DB Jude Adjei-Barimah

Bucs won’t tender injured LB Adarius Glanton, DB Jude Adjei-Barimah

The Bucs have started the internal decisions that lead up to the start of free agency in three weeks, letting two restricted free agents recovering from injury —  LB Adarius Glanton and DB Jude Adjei-Barimah — know that they won't be...
Published: 02/23/18
Police: DeSean Jackson’s former Eagles teammate drove truck found wrecked with bullets, marijuana inside

Police: DeSean Jackson’s former Eagles teammate drove truck found wrecked with bullets, marijuana inside

TAMPA  — With no witnesses and no video evidence, Tampa Police have stopped investigating a case from Christmas Eve that had a truck belonging to Bucs receiver DeSean Jackson found wrecked and abandoned in a mall parking lot with hollow-po...
Published: 02/22/18
Updated: 02/23/18
Bucs QB Jameis Winston uninjured in car wreck

Bucs QB Jameis Winston uninjured in car wreck

Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston was not hurt in a car wreck last week in which he was cited for careless driving.Winston, 24, was driving on the Veterans Expressway near Waters Avenue in northwest Tampa on Feb. 13 when his Ford F250 truck rear-ended ...
Published: 02/22/18
Updated: 02/23/18
Bucs sign ex-New Hampshire RB Dalton Crossan

Bucs sign ex-New Hampshire RB Dalton Crossan

February signings in the NFL usually face long odds to stick on rosters in the fall, but the Bucs added to their running back depth on Thursday, signing former New Hampshire star Dalton Crossan.Crossan, who turns 24 on Sunday, went to training camp l...
Published: 02/22/18
Brentson Buckner wants more than sacks from Bucs d-line

Brentson Buckner wants more than sacks from Bucs d-line

Much has been made of the Bucs finishing last in the NFL in sacks with just 22 during the 2017 season, but new defensive line coach Brentson Buckner says he measures success in much more than the ultimate goal of a sack."You play 1,300 plays, you hav...
Published: 02/22/18
New D-line coach Brentson Buckner wants to make Bucs pass rush great again

New D-line coach Brentson Buckner wants to make Bucs pass rush great again

This isn't the first time Brentson Buckner has wanted to get closer to the Bucs defensive line.As a defensive tackle for the Panthers, Buckner's team went 7-9 in 2002, the inaugural season for the NFC South.Tampa Bay won the division that year, and w...
Published: 02/21/18
Updated: 02/22/18
New Bucs assistant Brentson Buckner knows challenge of NFC South QBs

New Bucs assistant Brentson Buckner knows challenge of NFC South QBs

New Bucs defensive line coach Brentson Buckner understands full well what a challenge he'll face in trying to bring down three talented quarterbacks in the NFC South this season."Not getting much sleep," Buckner said, asked of his expectations in a d...
Published: 02/21/18