As is well documented, the Buccaneers are 0-4 in the regular season against the Saints since Tom Brady arrived in 2020.
One of the key factors has been turnovers.
Tampa Bay has had multiple giveaways in each of the four games. Three of the games have featured at least three turnovers. Last year’s 9-0 loss to New Orleans in December featured just two.
Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich said on Thursday his unit has been focused on preventing those mistakes this week.
“You become aware of it, right? We’re aware of it,” Leftwich said in his press conference. “You don’t win games in this league turning the ball over, I don’t care who you are, who’s playing, or who you’re playing against. We understand that. We know we’ve got to do a better job of protecting the football [i]f you want to win against anyone, especially against a good football team, especially against the team we’re facing on Sunday.
“We’re working on it throughout this week — make sure we protect the football. That’s football, [if] you turn the ball over, there’s a good chance you’re going to lose in this league. Everybody in that locker room knows, so we’re trying to make sure we go out here and do a better job of that.”
Tampa Bay’s defense factors into that, too, as the Buccaneers have a -9 turnover margin in the four regular-season games since 2020.
But when the Bucs and Saints met in the 2020 divisional round, Tampa Bay’s defense generated four turnovers and the offense had no giveaways as the Buccaneers won 30-20. Tampa Bay would certainly like to follow a similar script in Week Two.