It is truly a miracle that either of these teams are in the playoffs. Let's start with the Washington Football Team. At one point this team was 2-7 going nowhere fast with Dwayne Haskins. There were reports that Haskins wasn't preparing to the standards demanded to be a starter in this league. He was benched for Kyle Allen but he quickly got injured. That made way for the best story in football this year.
Alex Smith came in after missing two years with a gruesome broken leg injury. The team went 5-1 when he started including handing the Steelers their first loss of the season when they were 11-0. This team is 2-8 without him. He went 783 days not playing football, he had 17 surgeries to repair his leg, his life was at risk because of infection, he was told he may never walk again, he was told he may need his leg amputated and that he would never play football again. Thankfully none of that happened and he helped lead this team to the NFC East title. The only candidate for the NFL's Comeback Player of the Year is Smith. Honestly the league should rename the award the Alex Smith Comeback Player of the Year.
What TV Channel is Buccaneers at Washington Football Team on?
Tampa Bay-Washington will be shown on NBC at 8:15 p.m. ET. You can live stream NFL Games on fuboTV.
How to Watch Tampa Bay-Washington
When: Saturday, January 9
Where: FedExField - Landover, MD
Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
Live Stream: fuboTV (watch NFL free with fuboTV)
But even with Smith's heroics the team is 7-9 and it seems wrong that they even made the playoffs, let alone are hosting the Buccaneers in a playoff home game. That's how bad the NFC East was and they were really in this predicament because of the poor play of their sophomore QB Haskins who they cut in the penultimate game of their season.
Smith is the obvious choice to start but he is still experiencing issues with a calf strain in the same leg that he broke. Coach Ron Rivera said because of this they will consider rotating Smith with backup Taylor Heinicke. Even if Smith was at 100 percent, the Football Team would be considerable underdogs against the greatest quarterback of all time.
Thinking about it more though, how are the Buccaneers in the playoffs? Tom Brady is obviously amazing and they've had the weapons on offensive in place for quite some time. Not to mention this Tom Bowle's led defense is one of the best in the league. Even with all that talent, the Bucs haven't made the playoffs since 2007. Brady is 43 and no QB has been this good for this long.
He easily could have fell off certainly learning a new system for only the second time in his career. This 11-5 regular season record only adds to Brady's outstanding legacy even if they unexpectedly lose to Washington. Both teams have defied the odds to be playing in the first primetime game of Wild Card Weekend.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Washington Football Team Betting Odds
Tampa Bay Odds: -8
Washington Odds: +8
Money Line: Tampa Bay -410 - Washington +330