Bruce Arians and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were always the favorites, heading into their Wild Card Playoff tie against Washington Football Team.
With veteran Alex Smith ruled out, the visitors knew the game was theirs to lose. But the home team looked determined to fight right up until the final quarter.
It took another special Tom Brady playoff performance to ensure the Bucs make the Divisional Playoffs. The veteran quarterback threw for 381 passing yards with 2 passing touchdowns as the Bucs won by a 23-31 scoreline yesterday.
But Head Coach Bruce Arians is expecting his players to up their level as they dive headfirst into next week’s knockout clash in Wisconsin.
Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians was a tad critical about his defense at Saturday’s post-game press meet. When questioned if his team can beat the Packers with the same defensive display, here’s what Arians said.
“Well, we Don’t. We’ll see when we play next week. No, this performance defensively wouldn’t be, offensively it would be, but we’ll show up and then see.
“I think some of our guys, I don’t think veterans did, but some of our young guys kind of got relaxed when Alex Smith wasn’t playing.”
The 68-year-old coach further added that some of his defensive players got complacent after finding out that Washington QB Alex Smith was ruled out for yesterday’s game. But 4th-string QB Taylor Heinicke gave the visitors a run for their money with some promising plays.
“I kind of kept preaching that this kid (Taylor Heinicke) can run he can do a lot of things and you know, he almost beat us with his legs. But I’m never gonna apologize for winning,” Arians added.
Green Bay ended their regular season on a strong note by beating NFC North rivals, Chicago Bears. They’ve been defeated by the Buccs once already this season.
Matt LaFleur’s boys will be hungry for revenge, especially given the fact that they’re playing at the feared Lambeau Field. You can’t afford an Aaron Rodgers-Tom Brady showdown.