The Buccaneers are 8-7 right now and need a lot to happen for them to make the playoffs. It would all obviously start with a win against the Carolina Panthers which would leave the team at 9-7 at the end of the season. For Jameis Winston and the Buccaneers to make the playoffs, a lot more needs to go their way. Let’s take a look at what needs to happen in the last week of the season.
Green Bay Packers.
In the last week of the season, the Buccaneers would need the Detroit Lions to defeat the Green Bay Packers on Sunday Night Football. The Packers would then finish 9-7, the Lions would win the NFC North at 10-6, and the Buccaneers would hold the tiebreaker over Green Bay provided everything else necessary happens.
The Redskins control their own playoff destiny at 8-6-1 and would make it into a wildcard spot with a win and any result that is not a tie between the Packers and Lions. The Buccaneers would need the Redskins to lose to the Giants in week 17 to have a shot at the playoffs. The Redskins would then finish 8-7-1 and the Buccaneers would have a better record at 9-7. The Buccaneers would also make the playoffs if the Giants Redskins game ended in a tie.
Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts.
It sounds strange, but the Buccaneers actually need two AFC teams to lose for tiebreaker procedures against the Packers. The Texans play the Titans in a game that doesn’t matter and the Colts play against the Jaguars. The Buccaneers need both teams to lose to have a shot.
Philadelphia Eagles and Seattle Seahawks.
Here’s where things get even more ridiculous. The 49ers would need to defeat the Seahawks at home as 9.5 point underdogs for the Buccaneers to have a chance. The Dallas Cowboys, who have already clinched the top seed in the NFC, would also need to beat the Eagles in week 17 to give the Buccaneers a shot at the playoffs.
This scenario would be nothing short of a miracle, but at least the Buccaneers still have playoff aspirations, unlike the team that has been mired in a 17 year drought.