Thursday Night Football, Week 1. The NFL is back! Tonight the Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the Dallas Cowboys to kick off the 2021 NFL season.
The defending champion Buccaneers come into this game favorites to embark on a campaign that will culminate in yet another Super Bowl for quarterback Tom Brady. The Buccaneers managed to bring every starter back from their championship team of a year ago, a remarkable feat of salary cap engineering. Whether that’s a good thing or not remains to be determined. While we know Brady is always driven to win, many of the other players on the Tampa Bay squad are new to winning championships, and there is always a risk of complacency after winning your first. Shaking things up with a little new blood might have been a good idea, but instead the Buccaneers chose to run it back with exactly the same starting crew, just a year older. Color me a bit skeptical about the chances of a Tampa Bay repeat.
The Cowboys come into this season off a disappointing 6-10 2020 campaign marked by a season ending injury to quarterback Dak Prescott after just five games. The upgrade from Andy Dalton to Dak Prescott at quarterback should have the Cowboys ready to challenge for a playoff spot and a division crown this year. However, the level of competition in this game, on the road, does not bode well for the Cowboys in their season opener. Few expect the Cowboys to win tonight, but stranger things have happened.
It’s the Buccaneers and the Cowboys on Thursday Night Football. Enjoy the game everybody.