Thanks, Drew

Drew Brees’ parting gift to the Bucs was three interceptions and a trip to Lambeau for the NFC Championship.

click to enlarge Rakeem Nunez-Roches pressures Drew Brees at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana on Jan. 17, 2021. - Buccaneers
Buccaneers
Rakeem Nunez-Roches pressures Drew Brees at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana on Jan. 17, 2021.


Death, taxes, and the Saints imploding in the playoffs in spectacular fashion.

Man, what a game, huh?

The Bucs’ defense played absolutely out of its mind on the way to a 30-20 victory over the Saints in the Superdome. I mean, given, the D got some help from Old Man Drew and his noodle arm, as he threw a trio of interceptions, each more confusing and inexcusable than the last, but the unit still did a great job of keeping the Saints’ nuclear weapon Alvin Kamara out of the end zone. The usually incredibly mouthy Michael Thomas looked very guardable, despite his Twitter handle, as he was held to zero catches. Devin White channeled his inner Derrick Brooks and submitted his best game as a Buc, flying around the field and wreaking havoc while coming up with a fumble recovery and one of those three Drew Brees interceptions. As a side note, Ryan Succop, the unsung hero of the Bucs this year, continued his stellar play, going 3-for-3 on field goals and 3-for-3 on extra points. 

The defense was the story of the game. Every turnover the defense forced led to the Bucs’ three touchdowns (except for the last one, which led to the end of the game), and thank goodness for that, because offensively the Bucs looked lost.

Tom Brady did just enough for the Bucs to win, in that he didn’t turn the ball over and commit any stupid mistakes. He ended up with two passing TDs and a rushing TD, so he was responsible for all of the Bucs’ scoring opportunities, but he certainly did not play his most efficient game, going 18-for-33 and racking up 199 yards.

Not great. But hey. Jameis Winston (who actually threw a touchdown for the Saints on one of those gimmicky Sean Payton plays that only seem to work when they play the Bucs) would have thrown at least a couple picks and the Bucs would have lost this game. Sometimes you play not to screw up.

Honestly, who cares? The Bucs are headed to the NFC Championship for the first time since 2002. They just beat the Saints for the first time this year. And they get to participate in that yearly tradition of benefiting from karma getting back to the classless organization that is the New Orleans Saints.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I was actually raised a Saints fan. But my goodness, watching their players talk a bunch of shit on Twitter every year only to get bounced in the playoffs, reading about the pedophile thing, Brees showing his feelings about people kneeling during the anthem then walking back his statements after realizing he probably should have kept his ignorant mouth shut, and now that guy CJ Gardner-Johnson trying to pulverize one of Ryan Jensen’s kidney’s? Really makes you rethink things.

But, as the wise sage Justin Timberlake once said, what goes around comes around. The Bucs have a date with the Green Bay Packers at probably snowy Lambeau Field thanks to the Saints’ continued poor performance on the big stage, and while it is certainly going to be tough sledding (sorry) against a red-hot Aaron Rodgers, anything can happen. 

For now, let’s just enjoy this. 

@CTBrantley12

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