Saints-Bucs: What's Next for Tampa Bay?

Neal HowardCorrespondent ISeptember 17, 2007

IconAfter Sunday's Saints-Bucs game, everyone wanted to talk about New Orleans' lackluster performance.

But what about Tampa Bay?

The 31-14 upset is proof that the Bucs are a team on the rise.  After four years of futility on the heels of a Super Bowl championship, the Bucs may finally be back.

What does that mean?

First, that coach Jon Gruden may have better job security for next year.

His victory in Super Bowl XXXVII may be the only reason Gruden is still with the Bucs—but if he can beat the Saints, what's to stop him from putting together a successful season?

Second, the win also means that Jeff Garcia might stick around a little longer.

Everyone thought the 37-year-old Pro Bowler was done when he signed with the Eagles before the 2006 season. His performance after Donovan McNabb's year-ending knee injury earned him another shot in the league—and his 243 passing yards and two touchdowns against the Saints prove that Garcia still has it.

Expect him to hang around long enough to try to carry this team to the playoffs—either this year or, more likely, next.

Finally, the win should boost the confidence of Bucs fans everywhere.  After four years of embarrassment, maybe they'll finally get behind a team that was on top not so long ago.