A matchup surrounded by playoff implications awaited the Buccaneers following their Week 13 bye.
Tampa Bay, which had dropped two consecutive games entering Sunday, rose to the occasion.
The Bucs got back in the win column with a 26-14 win over the Vikings. Minnesota entered the tilt hot having won five of its last six and was in must-win mode given its slim playoff hopes. But Tampa Bay stood its ground and now is primed to reach the postseason with a pair of contests against the Atlanta Falcons and a date with the Detroit Lions remaining on its schedule.
Bruce Arians understandably was riding high following his team’s important win. Arians believes the Bucs displayed their identity against the Vikes and he confidently expressed as much after the game.
Tampa Bay obviously has the talent to be a nearly unstoppable force, but it’s been an up-and-down campaign for the new-look Bucs. Arians probably should’ve waited for his team to show some consistency before making that bold claim.
Players and teams will leave no stone unturned when looking for motivation, especially over the winter months. So don’t be surprised if Arians’ remarks serve as bulletin-board material for whoever the Bucs meet in January.