Denver Broncos vs Buccaneers Madden 21 simulation

Denver Broncos, Noah Fant (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos, Noah Fant (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

How did the Denver Broncos vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers matchup turn out in the latest Madden 21 simulation?

The Denver Broncos host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this Sunday in a must-win game. The Broncos are shorthanded again with quarterback Drew Lock out, as well as wide receiver Courtland Sutton, running back Phillip Lindsay, cornerback Davontae Harris and outside linebacker Von Miller.

The Buccaneers are without wide receiver Scotty Miller. Other than that, the Buccaneers’ injured players participated in practice on a full-time basis on Friday.

At quarterback, Jeff Driskel faces off against Tom Brady.

Both of these teams have some very good playmakers on both sides of the ball. Honestly, if the Broncos were at full strength, I could see them both score 20+ points.

That did not happen in this matchup, however.

The Buccaneers had the ball first to start the game. Tampa Bay was able to drive down the field, including a 22-yard reception by Rob Gronkowski down to the Broncos’ 25-yard line.

On the next play, Bryce Callahan returned a called fumble down for a touchdown. However, The Buccaneers challenged the play and it was overturned. No fumble. No turnover. No Broncos touchdown.

Despite this good fortune for the Bucs, they weren’t able to get another first down on the drive, so they kicked a field goal for a 3-0 early lead. Keeping a Tom Brady-led team to a field goal is very crucial. If the Broncos can keep doing that throughout the game (or even just one or two field goals), they have a great shot of winning this game.

One of the biggest problems from last year is that the Broncos did not really take many shots down the field. On third down late in the first quarter, Driskel threw deep close to the end zone for Jerry Jeudy. It went incomplete, forcing the Broncos to attempt a long field goal.

The 51-yard field goal hit the crossbar and bounced out. The score remained 3-0 Bucs.

Now, one of the things that will help the Broncos beat the Bucs is pressuring Brady. Jurrell Casey has been a dominant rusher and he showed nothing less in this game, sacking Brady early in the second quarter. He has proven to be a huge pickup by the Broncos from the offseason.

That sack created 2nd-and-18 and the Bucs ended up getting pressured by outside linebacker Malik Reed for an incomplete pass.

In this game, drops haunted rookie Jerry Jeudy. He finished the game with no catches. This cannot happen in real life if the Broncos are going to win this game. It will have to be a complete team effort since they are missing so many key pieces.

A positive in this game was the Broncos’ ability to stuff the run at times. There were not a lot of huge gains on the ground by the Bucs, and that included several consecutive stuffs. Eliminating one part of the Bucs’ game would definitely help the Broncos win. Leonard Fournette did not have another great game against the Denver defense.

The Buccaneers drove down the field late in the first half through some big plays by receiver Chris Godwin. Like I mentioned earlier, the Broncos stuffed the Bucs’ run game at the 1-yard line. That included plays by LeSean McCoy and Leonard Fournette. After all that, the Bucs were held to another field goal, ending the half 6-0.

At the half, Brady had 106 yards passing, while Driskel had 40. Tampa Bay had 122 total yards while the Broncos had 73.

In this game, the Broncos lost left tackle Garett Bolles to injury. He was replaced by new acquisition Demar Dotson.

Now, for the most part, the Broncos did pretty well against the Bucs defense minus a really bad strip-sack by Lavonte David. David returned the fumble for a score, resulting in a 12-0 lead. Tampa Bay went for 2 to go up by 14 points but failed.

Denver was unable to get touchdowns in this game. They settled for field goals on three occasions, going 2-of-3 on them.

Down 12-3 late in the fourth quarter, the Broncos went for a field goal, now down 12-6. They expected to get the ball back as there was about 3:30 left in the game. However, on 3rd-and-15, Brady found receiver Scotty Miller for a first down. The clock inside the 2:00 warning, this game was over following several first downs and the Broncos using all of their timeouts.

The Buccaneers came away with the victory.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 12
Denver Broncos: 6

Next. Denver Broncos: Keys to victory vs the Buccaneers. dark

The Denver Broncos really missed their key players in this game. It was an unfortunate ending to a good game.