Buccaneers Need to Make This Game Plan Change to Beat Chiefs

Tom Brady and Bruce Arians need to fix this issue in their game plan.
Tom Brady and Bruce Arians need to fix this issue in their game plan. / Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have made the Super Bowl thanks to a hard-hitting defense and a high-flying offense. But while this team has already reached great heights, it still feels like Tampa Bay hasn't completely fulfilled its offensive potential quite yet.

Facing one of the most explosive offenses the league has seen in quite some time, the Bucs' offense is going to need to be firing on all cylinders to keep pace in the Super Bowl. Making this key change to their game plan would be a good place to start.

Tampa Bay's offense is worryingly predictable. In the NFC Championship Game, the Bucs called a first-down run a whopping 66.7% of the time. On average, the team got just 2.9 yards per carry. That's particularly troubling considering Green Bay was a below-average run defense by DVOA, and let Cam Akers run wild for 90 rushing yards on 18 carries the round prior.

The Bucs won the game because they were brilliant on third downs, with Tom Brady putting the team on his back and converting time and time again. That's unsustainable. Even the slightest bit of regression in that regard would spell certain doom against Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs.

One quick fix would seem to be using more play action, particularly on first down given how run-heavy Tampa Bay has been in that situation. Despite only utilizing play action on 20.1% of their plays (No. 30 in the NFL), the Bucs ranked No. 1 in yards per play (9.4) and No. 2 in Expected Points Added (EPA; 0.402) when using a run fake.

Brady has been one of the league's best play-action passers for a while now, and installing some more PA looks, particularly on first down, feels like a no brainer for this offense.

Tampa Bay is currently a 3-point underdog in the Super Bowl, per FanDuel Sportsbook.

Sign up for FanDuel Sportsbook today and get your first bet risk free for up to $1,000!

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.

Home/Buzz - deleted