WR Mike Evans wants 11-year Bucs playoff drought to end this season
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have not tasted the playoffs in over a decade. Wide receiver Mike Evans is hoping to finally end the drought in the 2019 NFL season.
The Bucs have ushered in some significant changes to their roster and coaching staff this offseason. According to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, Evans still has high hopes for the 2019 campaign:
“I mean, nobody wants to lose,” Evans said. “And nobody wants to be playing at the end of the year when you don’t have a chance to make the playoffs. I want to win, even thought it’s at the end (of the season). But I want to make the playoffs. That’s everybody’s goal.
Evans added that despite the team’s recent struggles, he expects the Bucs to take that next step this season.
“It will be a major disappointment if we don’t make it this year, like it has been every year, but especially this year. I feel like we’re loaded on both sides of the ball and we have a really good rapport overall.
“Everybody has been playing well. Everybody has been having a really good training camp. I mean, if we don’t do it this year, it’s going to be tough to do it all the other years. I know we’re in a tough division, but we’ve got the guys to do that.”
While it is encouraging to see Evans so confident in Tampa Bay, making the playoffs will be much easier said than done. Not only are the Bucs in the midst of some major changes but they also play in one of the NFL’s toughest divisions in the NFC South. Although all of their new faces are still getting acquainted with each other, teams like the New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers remain as formidable as ever.
Fortunately, having a player of Evans’ caliber will certainly go a long way in the Bucs’ efforts to make the postseason. He has put together five consecutive 1,000-yard seasons ever since entering the league and is coming off his best year yet after finishing the 2018 campaign with 86 receptions for a career-high 1,524 yards and nine total touchdowns.
The two-time Pro Bowler could see his target share increase even more moving forward with the departure of wide receivers DeSean Jackson and Adam Humphries this offseason. Regardless, Tampa Bay will need much more than just Evans if they hope to become a playoff contender