Tampa Bay Buccaneers Have Hope, but No More Throwback Games

Tom EdringtonSenior Writer INovember 10, 2009

You loved the "fade back to 1979" orange jerseys. You loved the effort, you loved the result, and you love the fact that there's hope.

What you won't get is another "Orange Sunday" this football season for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Bucs were cleared by the NFL offices to wear the old orange for one game.

Want another?

The Buccaneers would have to petition the league office, and Tuesday they said it won't happen.

That's the end of that.

It was a special Sunday that culminated with the wild and wooly win over the Packers in that 38-28 comeback.

Tampa Bay fans have what they haven't had this year. They now have a glimmer of hope, and his name is Josh Freeman.

Freeman's biggest attribute last Sunday was his poise under fire. He never had a look of panic; he was cool-hand Josh. When forced, he'd roll from the pocket but still kept looking downfield, searching, waiting for someone to get open.

He was a cool breeze in the faces of the fans who have been slapped silly in the previous seven losses. His success came because he got help from his teammates. Wide receivers received and blockers blocked. Special teams were once again special, and that was how the winning table was set against the Packers.

Those huge returns by Clifton Smith set up two touchdowns. Geno Hayes' punt block and the 31-yard return by Ronde Barber added another. It was what Freeman needed. He needed a chance to not bear the full burden of scoring.

It happened the way it needed to.

Relief?

Perhaps the most relieved were the Glazers. They have hope that this team will not have the first pick in the draft and the enormous financial obligation that goes with it.

"Feels like a lot of years," said team captain Barber, noting that it's been so long since he's seen a win, it did feel like years.

For the fans, well, for now they were simply happy that the team didn't look horrible.

Indeed, the losses have not been nail-biters; they've been ugly and disorganized.

The wounds were open and flowing.

Green Bay came in and applied the appropriate tourniquet and the salve to go with it.

Winning heals all.

In this case, just one measly win was soothing.

And it gave hope.

If just for one week.

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