TAMPA, Fla. — It’s Jameis Winston revenge game week.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-1) beat the New Orleans Saints (4-2) in the game that mattered most last year in the playoffs. But, Tampa Bay has lost five straight regular-season games against New Orleans.
This will be their first match-up against Winston in a Saints uniform. Tampa Bay fans are more than familiar with Winston after the team drafted him first overall in 2015. His former Tampa Bay teammates can’t wait to see him again.
“I can’t wait, I can’t wait. I’m actually going to text him and tell him to get ready,” Buccaneers outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul said. “I can’t wait to play Jameis, man. It’s going to be fun. He’s like a brother to me. I remember we went hiking in the offseason in Colorado, but I can’t wait to hunt him down.”
“Jameis is a guy that I am still super-close with,” Buccaneers tight end Cam Brate said. “I talk to him all the time. I always watch him when I can. It will definitely be different. Last year in the playoffs he went in for one play, threw the touchdown pass. Obviously, at the time I was pissed that we gave up a touchdown. Secretly I was like, good for Jameis.”
In Winston’s final season with the Bucs, he infamously threw 33 touchdowns and 30 interceptions. He has been surprisingly efficient with 13 touchdown passes and three interceptions this season. Bucs' head coach Bruce Arians said there is a reason for that.
“He’s probably throwing it 15 times less a game,” Arians said. “They’re playing with the lead. We didn’t have that many leads back then. We had to throw it. He’s playing very well at the position.”
Sunday’s game in New Orleans kicks off at 4:25 p.m. ET.