Buccaneers Offense Ranked Ridiculously Low Heading Into 2024 Season

The Buccaneers continue to get disrespected.
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) runs during
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) runs during / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports
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Despite coming off a third consecutive NFC South Division title and a Divisional Round playoff appearance, NFL media outlets continue to overlook the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

That being said, Alex Ballentine's most recent ranking of NFL offenses for Bleacher Report doesn't just overlook the Buccaneers — it's outright disrespectful.

According to Ballentine, the Buccaneers' offense is worse off than a ton of teams that many could say haven't proven nearly enough (as currently constructed) to be ranked ahead of Tampa Bay. This includes the Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears, Jacksonville Jaguars, Arizona Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts and Los Angeles Chargers. Additionally, the article has the Buccaneers ranked 12 spots lower than the Green Bay Packers, who the Buccaneers dismantled last season by a score of 34-20 late in the season.

Here is the explanation of 'Why They're Ranked Here', as it pertains to the Bucs:

"The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were able to stave off a complete free-fall in the first year of Tom Brady's retirement. Baker Mayfield turned out to be a pretty good fit and earned a contract extension. However, the offense was really reliant on the trio of Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and running back Rachaad White. Compared to the offenses ahead of them, they just don't have many weapons that are going to scare defenses."

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Don't have many weapons? The players just mentioned in Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Rachaad White each proved to be some of the best in the league at their respective positions, with Evans and Godwin having consistent and prolific production throughout their entire careers. Combined with the emergence of Rachaad White, who's entering just his second season as the team's number one running back, I'd say that trio of players represents a pretty potent collection of 'weapons' for Pro-Bowl quarterback Baker Mayfield to work with.

Not to mention, those guys are coming off their first season playing together with Mayfield at the helm. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that if anything, the chemistry and continuity that was established between those players last season should only continue to develop and ultimately result in even more success on offense in 2024.

The article also cites the Buccaneers' offseason as a reason to be pessimistic.

"They didn't do much to change that in the offseason. Drafting Graham Barton, who should be a Day 1 starter at center, was the biggest move they made on offense. With Evans getting another year older and Mayfield struggling with consistency throughout his career, the Bucs project to be about the same if not a little worse in 2024."

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Drafting the best center prospect in the draft doesn't help the Buccaneers' offense? Since when did offensive line play get removed from the offensive equation? If you ask me, adding a blue-chip OL prospect to a group that already has two bookend tackles and an emerging second-year player at right guard is an obvious way to help your offense in both the run and the pass game.

Furthermore, the team also used third and fourth-round draft picks on highly productive offensive stars in wide receiver, Jalen McMillan and elusive running back Bucky Irving to add more quality depth in the form of young, talented, and explosive playmakers.

To me, ranking the Tampa Bay Buccaneers like this — coming off a third consecutive NFC South title and a Divisional Round playoff appearance — is nothing short of egregious.

Being counted out and disrespected is nothing new to Baker Mayfield or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That could be a big reason why the marriage between the two sides has been so promising just one season into his tenure. Thanks to opinions like those presented in this Bleacher Report article, it's safe to say that both Baker Mayfield and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will continue to play with a collective chip on their shoulder(s), which is a good thing. Because many believe that chip is what's allowed them to experience so much early success together already... and hopefully plenty more in the seasons that are yet to come.

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Collin Haalboom


Prior to joining BucsGameday and Sports Illustrated, Collin's written content was provided through Bucs Banter, and NFL Draft Lounge. He is also the creator and host of the Bucs Banter Podcast. He is a graduate of the Communication Studies program at McMaster University, where he was also a varsity basketball player, and later an advanced scout. He lives with his wife and two children in Hamilton, ON. You can follow Collin on YouTube and Twitter.