Coach Bruce Arians and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a huge game on Sunday, the NFC championship vs. the Green Bay Packers. Just don’t mistake it for the Super Bowl.
“We don’t play that game this week,” Arians told reporters. “That’s the message to everybody. We play the Packers in the NFC Championship Game.”
Arians wasn’t finished.
“You start thinking about the Super Bowl, you’ll get your ass beat and you’ll be packing your bags on Monday,” he said.
The Buccaneers are the fifth seed in the NFC. The Packers are No. 1 and 3-point favorites, as of Thursday afternoon. But the Buccaneers have saved their best for when it means the most, as any team quarterbacked by Tom Brady often does.
So the world is awaiting the Brady-Aaron Rodgers matchup. Just don’t make plans yet for a Brady-Patrick Mahomes or Brady-Josh Allen matchup, Arians warns.
For the record, the Buccaneers beat the Packers 38-10 in Week 6, but Arians and others have suggested that that result doesn’t mean much now either.
Apparently, Packers head coach Matt LaFleur agrees: “When you get to this time of year, it really doesn’t matter. You’re in the playoffs. You’ve got to focus on what’s in front of you, both good and bad. We’re always focusing on the future.”