Firstly, the most obvious similarity is the record. Both the Oakland Raider's and the Buccaneer's stand at 3-4, 2nd in their respective divisions. This is misleading though! While our records may be the same, Tampa Bay's wins and losses have boiled down to much closer games against some of the most competitive franchise's in the league: Cam Newton and the Panther's, Eli Manning and the Giants, RGIII and the Redskin's, Adrian Peterson and the Viking's, Romo and the Cowboy's, and lastly the Chiefs. There is no denying that they have played in much closer games with more competitive teams.The Raiders have struggled with 3 awful losses against SD (our last TD being in "garbage time"), MIA, and DEN, with one competitive loss to the undefeated Falcons, and squeaked out wins against basement dwellers JAX and KC, and a offensive shootout with Big Ben and the Steelers.
No one should sleep on this Tampa Bay Team, as they have looked very hot offensively the past couple of weeks, and if Freeman gets comfortable and streaky, he can put up touchdowns in a hurry (averaging 9pts per quarter last week against the now 5-3 Vikings). After reading over statistics from both the Buccaneers and Freeman,thus far one thing I have noticed is Freeman's ball security. While he has only thrown 5 picks on the season, he has funbled 4 times as well (although none we lost). This is a key area for the Raider's this week. As our defense has really come to life of the past couple of weeks one of the most exciting things has been our ability to create fumbles. If we can get at Freeman and really swat at that ball, he may not be so lucky in recoving those fumbles.
Defensively Tampa bay has 10 interceptions on the year (including 2 pick six) with the team leader being the veteran Ronde Barber with 3 INTs. They have sacked the Quarterback 11 times with 5 of those coming from Defensive End Michael Bennett. There defense also has 6 forced fumbles on the year, with Michael Bennet casuing 3 of those. Containing and accounting for Michael Bennett will be a top priority for the offense this week.