The Tampa Bay Buccaneers pulled off a surprising upset on the road in Week 1 topping the New Orleans Saints 48-40 in what was an offensive shootout. The Bucs veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick put together a stellar outing completing an efficient 21 of 28 passes for 417 yards along with four touchdowns to no interceptions and a 97.1 passer rating.
In response to that huge performance, Fitzpatrick has voiced much confidence in his ability on the field stating that he feels that he's playing the best football of his career, via Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.
“You know I’m better right now than I’ve been at any point in my career and lot of that is mentally and whatever else,” Fitzpatrick said Thursday, via JoeBucsFan.com. “But there’s a lot of different throws and things that are so much ingrained in you, so much muscle memory from working and doing it for a long time. Truly I feel like the older I’ve gotten the better I’ve become.”
The 35-year-old has shown some great comfort playing in the offensive system in Tampa Bay now that he's in his second year with the franchise. Fitzpatrick had a strong connection with his receivers that saw Pro Bowler Mike Evans haul in seven catches for 147 receiving yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, wideout DeSean Jackson had five catches for 146 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns.
This was the affirmation of the confidence that the Bucs have placed in him all along over the last few months since Jameis Winston was handed his three-game suspension. The ball is now in his court to potentially secure the long-term starting job with Winston's continued questionable behavior off the field losing him favor with the team.
The Bucs will have a tough challenge in Week 2 against the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles in what should be an intriguing matchup.