Thursday, September 9, 2021

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2021 NFL Power Rankings Roundup: Week 1

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 1.4 (1st)
  • Best ranking: 1st (Multiple)
  • Worst ranking: 2nd (Multiple)

Below you will find a Week 1 roundup for the Bucs in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 2

Person on the hot seat: QB Ryan Griffin

The writing was already on the wall when the Bucs selected Kyle Trask in the second round of the 2021 NFL draft, but Griffin had still maintained his spot as the third-best quarterback on the team in terms of rep hierarchy. However, Griffin threw two interceptions in the Bucs' preseason opener against the Bengals. Others who have been in Bruce Arians' doghouse include running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn and wide receiver Tyler Johnson, but both have responded with strong performances since getting called out. -- Jenna Laine -- Rank: 2

We got out of the business of predicting a #GradualDecline for Tom Brady years ago, and since standard logic doesn't hold with the man, the only worthwhile thing to do at this point is sit back and see how far the G.O.A.T. can take this thing. He enters his 22nd season at the age of 44, and from a support standpoint, you might have to go back to the 18-1 Patriots of 2007 to find a similarly impressive support system around him. If you put another NFC team ahead of the defending champs at this moment, you're simply trying too hard.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 1

The champs always open in the top spot in my rankings, which is why the Bucs are here. I don't expect them to move far off this spot at all this season.

USA Today -- Rank: 1.4

They've got their entire starting lineup back. They could get a full season out of WR Antonio Brown, TE O.J. Howard and additions like RB Gio Bernard and first-round OLB Joe Tryon-Shoyinka. The Bucs are even 100% vaccinated. Has a stage ever been better set for a repeat bid?

The Athletic -- Rank: 1

Why they're ranked here: The defending champs bring back all 22 starters and are looking to become the first back-to-back Super Bowl winners since the Patriots in the 2003 and 2004 seasons. Tom Brady's Super Bowl resume is already the best of anyone who's ever played the game, but another set of back-to-back titles would be a heck of a feat to add to the list. Overall, our voters still rank the Bucs behind the Chiefs, but 32 percent picked Tampa Bay No. 1.

One big question: How good can the offense be? Maybe it's crazy to consider, but is there another level to this Bucs offense after a year in the same scheme? Tampa Bay's wide receiver group is insanely deep and healthy, its running backs played well down the stretch, the offensive line is great and Brady still isn't showing his age. So, wild as it may be, the Bucs' offense can be just as good this season — if not better.

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