Are we third or fifth best in the NFC?
OK, so where do the Bucs sit in the NFC pecking order? Forget the other conference for a minute, you know, the one with the Patriots in. Let's just look at the NFC.
The Packers and Cowboys both went to 10-1 yesterday by feasting on their Thanksgiving Turkeys, Detroit and the New York J-E-T-S Jets Jets Jets. I'd say that the Lions' bubble has well and truly burst, signs that we had seen in their somewhat fortuitous victory over our Buckos.
So if Green Bay and Dallas are No.1 and No.1a, who comes next? Right now, Seattle lead the NFC West and in spite of their indifferent form, they did kick our butts in Week 1 so would have to rank ahead of the Bucs right now.
And the Exit 16W off the Jersey Turnpike Giants? They have been on such a roll that even Tom Coughlin almost smiled in London (I said almost). Would you really fancy playing them right now?
So I have the Bucs pretty even with the Redskins and perhaps the Cardinals on their day in spite of our recent win over them. And naturally this Sunday, we play host to Washington.
In spite of my esteemed colleague Roy Cummings telling us devoted Buc fans not to get too far ahead of ourselves, a win this week does seem to indicate post-season football for Tampa Bay this season. Lose and the doubters and nay-sayers will be back in their masses.
Oh, so it's another "must-win" game then?
Paul Stewart, The Tampa Tribune, 23 November 2007