(Buccaneers.com) — The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are headed back to the postseason for the first time since 2007 and will have chance to pursue a second championship to pair with their Super Bowl XXXVII victory after the 2002 season.
The Buccaneers clinched their spot in the NFC playoff field on Saturday with a 47-7 victory over the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. The win improved Tampa Bay’s record to 10-5 with one game remaining at home against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, January 3.
Tampa Bay became the fourth team in the conference to claim one of the seven available playoff spot, joining Green Bay, New Orleans and Seattle.
Tampa Bay also moved closer to securing the top Wild Card spot and the fifth overall seed, which would lead to a first-round matchup with the eventual winner of the NFC East. The Buccaneers only need to beat the Falcons in Week 17 to clinch that position.
The Buccaneers cannot move any higher than that fifth spot because the first four seeds go to the four division winners. New Orleans clinched the NFC South crown on Christmas Day with a 52-33 win over the Minnesota Vikings, improving to 11-4.
Tampa Bay could still tie the Saints at the top of the division with a win over the Falcons and a Saints loss at Carolina in Week 17 but New Orleans has an iron-clad tiebreaker with its two-game head-to-head sweep over the Bucs this season.
CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL STORY ON BUCCANEERS.COM