The Duel

Buccaneers Still Trying to Address Huge Problem Area

Max Staley
Tom Brady and Bruce Arians might need to address this one key area.
Tom Brady and Bruce Arians might need to address this one key area. / Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have one of the most complete rosters in the NFL. The offensive line was a top-10 pass-blocking unit in 2019, per Pro Football Focus, the skill-position group might be the best in football and Tom Brady is running the show at quarterback. Defensively, the Buccaneers were quietly the league's fifth-best unit in 2019, according to Football Outsiders' DVOA metrics.

But games are often won and lost on the margins, as Brady learned during his 20 years in New England. Tampa Bay won't reach its ceiling unless the team does something about its kicking game, which has been giving the Buccaneers problems since 2015.

The NFL has hit 83.9 percent of their field goal attempts since 2015. The Buccaneers, meanwhile, have not had a single kicker reach the league average during that span. Last season, Matt Gay hit just 77.1 percent of his attempts, while the newly-acquired Ryan Succop hit just 16.7 percent (1-of-6).

Succop had been above that league-average mark in four of his past five seasons prior to last year. But he'll be 34 years old by Week 2 and it's still unclear how he's recovered from the injuries that derailed his 2019 campaign.

A struggling kicking game would be an unfortunate new reality for Brady. Stephen Gostkowski has a career field goal percentage of 87.4 and Adam Vinatieri was arguably the most clutch kicker in league history.

Tampa Bay certainly doesn't want to head into the postseason with kicking issues, so hopefully Succop or Gay can take command of the job before Week 1.


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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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