Tampa Bay BuccaneersThe Buccaneers will welcome the Chiefs to Raymond James Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 2, for a prime-time battle in the same venue in which they contested the Super Bowl two seasons agoScott Smith
The last time the Kansas City Chiefs visited Raymond James Stadium, they walked off the field under a rain of confetti.
It wasn't a celebration for the Chiefs but rather for the newly-crowned NFL-champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who had just become the first team in league history to win a Super Bowl in its own home stadium. A swarming defense had harassed Kansas City's sublime quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, all night and made sure the Chiefs never touched the end zone in a 31-9 decision in Super Bowl LV. The game capped a historic season for Tom Brady in his first season as the Buccaneers' quarterback, as he won his league-record seventh Super Bowl championship and resisted a passing of the torch to Mahomes, the league's brightest young superstar.
The Buccaneers and Chiefs will now get together for the first time since that Super Bowl battle, once again in Tampa. The two elite franchises will enjoy the prime-time spotlight of Sunday Night Football, with kickoff scheduled for 8:20 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 2.
Brady was 43 when he took that seventh title over the 25-year-old Mahomes and, against some pretty significant odds, those two separated-by-generations quarterbacks are still at the helm of their respective teams two seasons later. And thus we have yet another premier quarterback matchups at Raymond James Stadium, one week after Brady and Aaron Rodgers did battle in a 14-12 Green Bay Packers win.
The Buccaneers' final-drive comeback came up just a bit short in that contest, as their two-point attempt to tie the game was batted away, but the team remains in first place in the NFC South and is now three-quarters of the way through an opening-month gauntlet that featured three 2021 playoff teams and the dreaded New Orleans Saints. The Buccaneers will battle to get out of that gauntlet with a 3-1 record, which would set them up nicely in their pursuit of a second straight division title and a high seed in the conference playoffs.
The Chiefs are also coming of a low-scoring and disappointing loss that dropped them to 2-1. After opening the season with wins over the Cardinals and Chargers, in which they scored 71 total points, the Chiefs lost a 20-17 contest in Indianapolis on Sunday in which Matt Ryan led a 16-play touchdown drive in the fourth quarter after Chiefs kicker Matt Ammendola missed a 34-yard field goal.
The Buccaneers and Chiefs are both left to consider 'what-ifs' after their narrow Week Three losses, but both will surely turn their attention to the immediate future this week. Tampa Bay and Kansas City last met with the Lombardi Trophy on the line; the stakes aren't quite as high in Week Four, but both teams clearly still have Super Bowl aspirations.