The most complete NFL teams heading into the 2021 season? Browns, Buccaneers lead the pack
Tampa Bay has had a remarkable offseason – perhaps the best offseason we’ve seen from a reigning Super Bowl champion, at least in the era of the salary cap. The fact that the Buccaneers were able to retain all of their title-winning starting XI is unheard of, especially considering that three players in particular (Shaq Barrett, Chris Godwin and Lavonte David) were slated for massive salaries in free agency. Hats off to Jason Licht for keeping this group together, and to Bruce Arians for convincing everyone.
This list starts with Tom Brady. Although he’s no longer in his prime at 43 (he’ll be 44 in August), his attention to detail and the way he demands perfection from his supporting roles is second to none. Of course, he Is have one of the best receiving corps in the league with Godwin, Mike Evans and Antonio Brown, as well as a host of talented winger in Rob Gronkowski, OJ Howard and Cameron Brate. That loaded passing offense – behind an offensive line that includes second-year tackle Tristan Wirfs, who is on his way to becoming the NFL’s top lineman – makes up for a running game that finished tied for 28th in the league. league last season, averaging just 94.9 rushing yards per game. I would expect ground play to improve in 2021, given Tampa’s depth at the RB position. If guys want rock, they’re gonna have to win it.
Defensively, Todd Bowles has stars across the board with Barrett, Jason Pierre-Paul and Vita Vea having a big impact on the game up front. Adding Joe Tryon with the final pick in April’s first round just keeps this rush unit more formidable. Then there are David and Devin White, perhaps the best linebacking duo in the league, occupying the middle in front of a young high school full of promise.
There are no weaknesses on this list, as Tampa has a respectable special teams unit. Ryan Succop had his best performance last season since 2016, converting over 90% of his field goal attempts and extra points, earning him a new three-year contract.