Tom Brady is reportedly headed to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as arguably the greatest quarterback of all-time is changing teams for the first time in his career. As soon he walks in the door, Brady will have a lot to work with on the offensive side of the ball.
Perhaps most importantly, the Buccaneers boast a solid offensive line. Pro Football Focus ranked the Bucs' line seventh for 2019, which is three spots better than the Patriots. Led by center Ryan Jensen and guard Ali Marpet, the Bucs have one of the best pass-protecting lines in the NFL. That had to be important to Brady when making his decision.
It's worth noting that the Buccaneers also own the 14th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft if they want to add an offensive tackle to their line, especially considering starting right tackle Demar Dotson will be 35 by the end of next season. This is a deep class at OT and an upgrade wouldn't be the worst thing in the world.
The Bucs boast one of the best receiving duos in the NFL, as both Chris Godwin and Mike Evans topped 1,000 receiving yards in 2019. Godwin exploded in his third NFL season, grabbing 86 passes for 1,333 yards and nine touchdowns. Across from him, Evans made his third Pro Bowl as he racked up 67 receptions for 1,157 yards and eight touchdowns. And that all came during a crazy, uneven season from Jameis Winston.
Brady will also have two capable tight ends at his disposal. Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard can both catch the ball, though Howard may need someone like Brady to help unlock his true potential. Both guys should get a lift from their new quarterback.
At running back, Brady will have two main ball-carriers at his disposal, unless Tampa adds another. Ronald Jones II showed flashes in 2019, convincing some that the USC product with track-star speed could be a No. 1 back. He rushed for 724 yards and six touchdowns on 172 carries (4.2 yards per carry). He also caught 31 passes for 309 yards. Meanwhile, Peyton Barber rushed for 470 yards and six scores on 154 carries (3.1 yards per carry), while also catching 24 passes for 115 yards and a score.
Jones has all the tools to be a go-to back, and Barber can be solid. There are also free agent options like Melvin Gordon still out there.
While the offense in Tampa Bay looks set up to win in 2020, the defense is another story. The Bucs ranked 15th in total defense in 2019, allowing 343.9 yards per game and ranked 29th in points allowed (28.1 per game). The pass defense was straight awful, as it ranked 30th in the NFL and surrendered 270.1 yards per. That said, the run defense was solid, allowing just 3.3 yards per carry and it led the NFL allowing just 73.8 yards per game. They also franchise-tagged 2019's sack leader in Shaq Barrett (19.5 sacks) and re-signed Jason Pierre-Paul to a two-year deal. A quality pass rush can help mask some deficiencies on the back end, even if it can't mask all of them.
Shootouts might be the order of the day in 2020, unless Tampa completely changes what it does on the defensive side of the ball.
Still, all-in-all, Brady could have picked a worse destination. With Bruce Arians at the helm, Brady under center, and those weapons on the outside, the Bucs could put up some monster offensive numbers in 2020.