The Buccaneers (11-5) are led by 43-year-old star quarterback Tom Brady, who has Tampa Bay playing in their first playoff game since 2007. This season, Brady has not slowed down, completing 65.7 percent of his passes for 4,633 yards, 40 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
Tampa Bay is also coming into the playoffs on a four-game winning streak. The last time the Bucs lost was in Week 12 against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Bucs also have an outstanding defense, which has played a major part in their success this season. They are ranked sixth in total defense and second in run defense, only allowing 80.6 yards per game.
As for the Washington Football Team (7-9), they got into the playoffs by defeating the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 17. WFT is led by veteran quarterback Alex Smith, who has brought some stability to the quarterback spot since the team moved on from Dwayne Haskins.
However, what has helped the Football Team reach the postseason is the play of their defense. WFT has a stout front seven, which features rookie defensive end Chase Young and Montez Sweat flying off of the edge. Sweat led the team with nine sacks, while Young finished right behind him with 7.5 sacks.
Date: Saturday, Jan. 9
Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
Notable Statistical rankings (Football Outsiders)
Bucs: #2 Overall — #3 offense, #5 defense, #26 special teams
Washington: #16 Overall — #32 offense, #3 defense, #16 special teams
Bucs: -8, -375
Washington: +8, +310
Fantasy football start/sit advice
Antonio Brown, WR, $6,100
If Mike Evans does not end up playing on Saturday, then that means more targets for Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, and Scotty Miller. Out of those three wideouts, Brown could have the biggest impact. Last week against Atlanta, Brown had a season-high 11 receptions (15 targets) for 138 yards and two touchdowns. It was Brown’s first 100-yard game with the Bucs and third-straight game with a touchdown.
For his efforts, Brown scored 39.8 DraftKing points, which is WR1-type value. This weekend, the veteran wideout will be going up against a WFT defense that has only allowed one touchdown to opposing wide receivers in their last four games. They are also ranked fourth against wide receivers (OPRK).
Ronald Jones, RB, $5,500
Bucs running back Ronald Jones made his return to the starting lineup last week after missing the previous two games on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Jones had 78 yards on 12 carries and a touchdown. He also scored 13.8 DraftKing points, which is solid production for an RB2.
In his last three games, the 23-year-old running back is averaging 5.74 yards per carry. But on Saturday night, he’ll be facing a tough run defense in Washington. This season, they are giving up 112.8 rushing yards per game and ranked third against RBs (OPRK).
Antonio Gibson, RB, $5,700
If the Football Team has any chance of pulling the upset over Tampa Bay, they will have to run the ball with rookie Antonio Gibson. Gibson is battling through a toe injury but still mustered 75 rushing yards on 19 carries last week. But he will have a tough challenge on Saturday trying to pick up yards against the Bucs’ defense, which is only giving up 80.6 rushing yards per game.
Logan Thomas, TE, $4,900
Second-year wide receiver Terry McLaurin is in the same boat as Gibson battling through injuries. If he is not 100 percent, then look for whoever is under center for WFT to get the ball to tight end Logan Thomas. Thomas snapped his three-game streak without a touchdown, grabbing one last week against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The veteran tight end scored 12.7 DraftKing points, which is good for DFS players looking for a value play. This weekend, Thomas is going against a Bucs’ defense that is ranked 15th versus TEs (OPRK). And they have allowed three touchdowns in the last four games to opposing tight ends.