The Saints were coached by legendary USC coach John McKay. of the Buccaneers played their first season in the AFC West with understanding that the following year they would move permanently to the NFC Central. The Bucs would select LB Lee Roy Selmon with their first draft pick and traded for Steve Spurrier to give themselves a veteran QB. On September 12th the Buccaneers played their first regular season game in Houston against the Oilers, and were shut out 20-0. A week later they played their first game at Tampa Stadium against the San Diego Chargers, once again they were shutout, losing 23-0. A week later the Bucs finally got on the board with 3 Dave Green FGs. However, they still lost at home to the Buffalo Bills 14-9. The Bucs lost their next 2 games as well before facing their expansion brothers at Tampa Stadium. With both teams fighting for their first ever win the Seattle Seahawks stunned the Bucs with a last minute FG 13-10. A week later it was heartbreak again as they played it close all game with Miami Dolphins before losing 23-20. It would be the last close game the Bucs would play all season. Already 0-7 the Bucs would continue to lose, being shutout a total of 4 times on the way to an embarrassing 0-14 season, in which they were outscored a total of 412-125. The Buccaneers had ended their first season, and were still waiting for their first win. The team will forever be remembered as the worst in the history of the NFL as Coach John McKay once replied "He was all for it, " when asked about his team's execution.
Prior to the final season at Tampa Stadium, which had recently been named Houlihan's Stadium a year earlier the Buccaneers got a new look, discarding the old effeminate red and orange pirate, for a meaner sleeker look feature a red pirate flag on a pewter helmet. The Bucs would use the new Pewter Power to have them flying out of the gate winning their first 5 games. However the ship would hit rough sees as they lost 3 in a row. Instead of sinking the Bucs righted the ship and would go on to earn a wild card spot with a 10-6 record. Highlighting the Bucs successful season was Trent Dilfer who had a solid season passing for 21 Touchdowns, Mike Alstott the powering fullback who bulldozed his way for 7 TDs and countless first downs, and Warrick Dunn who captured the Offensive Rookie of the Year. In the Bucs first playoff game in 15 years the Bucs slaughtered the Detroit Lions 20-10 behind the powerful running of Alstott in the final game at Houlihan's Stadium. However, their season would come to an end a week later with a 27-7 loss in Green Bay to the Packers.
1998: To assure their new stadium is ready the Buccaneers start the season by playing their first 2 games on the road. Unfortunately both games were against playoff teams, and the Bucs lost both. The Bucs would finally open Raymond James Stadium on September 20th, as the Bucs rallied from an early deficit to beat the Chicago Bears 27-15. However, an early tough schedule and offensive struggles would cause the Bucs to get off to a rough start. The Bucs would finally reach the .500 mark by handing the Minnesota Vikings their only loss on the season 27-24 at the Pirate Ship. However the Bucs were not able to capitalize on the momentum as they lost their next 3 games. With their playoff hopes all but gone the Bucs would win 3 in a row to keep hope alive, but a 20-16 loss to the Redskins in Washington sealed their fate, as the Bucs needed to win their last game to finish with a disappointing 8-8 record. Following the season the Bucs would use a 2nd Round draft pick to select PK Martin Gramatica, a move that came after Michael Husted missed 7 key FGs.
As 2005 is now ending we see that Even before Hurricane Katrina left their city destroyed the Saints appeared in for a long season in the NFC South. Without a home and possibly playing all their games on the road its going to be a trying year for a team already trying to piece together their lives, as New Orleans lies in ruin.