NFC South: Will Brees Destroy Brady’s Bucc Dreams?

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Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints stand in the way of a revitalized Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Drew Brees throwing a ball in practice for the New Orleans Saints

Tom Brady’s move to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was the biggest story of the NFL off-season and the question now is whether he can rally the franchise to NFC South glory?

Brady decided to end his 20-year stay with the New England Patriots after guiding his former team to nine Super Bowls, collecting six winners’ rings.

At this stage of his career, the 42-year-old isn’t looking for a new project and will be looking to bring immediate success to Tampa this season.

The Bucs have been a downbeat franchise for over a decade, not toping the NFC South since 2007, but Brady’s arrival in Florida has given the team a new lease of life.

Questions have been asked as to whether there has been a drop off in Brady’s performances, but it would take a very brave individual to back against the four-time Super Bowl MVP winner.

He will also be joined in Tampa by close friend and former Patriot Rob Gronkowski, with the tight end coming out of retirement to team up with Brady.

Mike Evans, Tyler Johnson and Chris Godwin are three of the most prolific wide receivers in the NFL, and it looks like it will be fun to watch the Bucs in 2020, if nothing else.

Bruce Arians’ men are 6/4* to win the NFC South, while they are 15/1 to get their hands on the Vince Lombardi trophy.

New Orleans set their sights on four in a row

While Tampa look to have made giant strides forward, the New Orleans Saints won’t be easy to knock off their perch as kings of the NFC South having won the last three divisional titles.

Lile Brady, Drew Brees is coming towards the end of his career but he is still the main man for coach Sean Payton as the duo look to combine for what would be a second Super Bowl title.

It has been nothing but play-off heartache for Brees and co the last three years though, losing in Wild Card round to the Minnesota Vikings last term but they return a very strong squad, bolstered by the addition of Emmanuel Sanders at wide reciever.

They might also have picked up a bit of inside knowledge on their rivals by signing ex-Tampa Bay quarterback Jamies Winston to a one-year deal.

The Saints remain 10/11 favourites to reclaim their NFC South crown, which is hardly surprising considering their recent dominance.

Time to Rebuild in Carolina

The Carolina Panthers are as big as 20/1 to win the division, and that does not come as a shock.

Ron Rivera was sacked last season as head coach, while interim boss Perry Fewell lost all four of his games in charge.

Matt Rhule is now in the big chair, but he needs to rebuild after Cam Newton’s departure. Newton’s foot injury caused chaos for the Panthers; although Kyle Allen did his best in his absence, he has since been shipped off to the Washington Redskins.

Linebacker Luke Kuechly also decided to hang up his boots at 29, and the Panthers could be one of the teams in the mix for the No.1 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

A lot of their hopes rest on the powerful shoulders of explosive running back Christian McCaffrey, who signed a new four-year deal this off-season and is set to be the linchpin in the offense for years to come.

Teddy Bridgewater will lead the team at quarterback this season but his injury woes over the years do not bode well, and it could be a difficult few months for Carolina.

Falcons Ready for a Postseason Push

The Atlanta Falcons will fancy their chances of finishing in the playoffs for the first time in two years.

Matt Ryan still has what it takes to lead their offence and any team with WR Julio Jones in is dangerous.

Todd Gurley’s arrival has given them some incredible depth at running back, while the Falcons made a number of big moves on defence in the draft.

Cornerback A.J. Terrell, defensive end Marlon Davidson, inside linebacker Mykal Walker and safety Jaylinn Hawkins all agreed deals with the Falcons in the spring.

For the last two years, Atlanta have finished with a record of 7-9, but they should improve on that in 2020 and punters can back them to win the NFC South at 9/1.

Check out our NFL expert’s views on the tough NFC North division.

*All odds correct at time of writing.

Tom offers a strong insight into football and rugby league, whilst also having a good knowledge of several other sports including boxing, horse racing and American Football.
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