The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have entered the week as a 7.5-point favorite over the Los Angeles Chargers ahead of their Sunday’s clash at Raymond James Stadium. The Buccaneers, who are leading the NFC South with a 1-2 mark, are riding the momentum of a two-game winning streak and they hope to sustain it against the Chargers, who are on a two-game losing streak with rookie quarterback Justin Herbert as starter. With veteran quarterback Tom Brady at the helm, the Buccaneers hope to improve their record against the Chargers. In their previous 11 meetings, the Chargers have an 8-3 record against Tampa Bay.

But with Brady’s amazing statistics against the Chargers, the Buccaneers are hoping to change their fortunes on Sunday. Brady has faced the Chargers 11 times in his 20-year career with the New England Patriots. During that span, the 43-year-old Brady has a 9-2 mark and has thrown for 3,284 yards and 20 touchdowns against the Chargers. Against the Broncos, Brady had his best game as a Buccaneer, completing 25 of 38 passes to eight different targets for three touchdowns without an interception.

Gronkowski also had Chargers’ number

Brady’s reliable target in New England – tight end Rob Gronkowski – has had his share of success against the Chargers. Gronkowski, who cut short his retirement to join Brady in Tampa Bay, is undefeated in four games against the Chargers, where he tallied 19 receptions for 240 yards and five touchdowns.

After recording just two receptions in his first two games, Gronkowski finally connected with Brady against the Broncos, catching six passes for 48 yards as the Buccaneers cruised past the Broncos, 28-10. Against the Chargers, around 10,000 Buccaneers fans will have a chance to watch Brady in person after Florida relaxed its rules on gatherings amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Buccaneers to miss several key players

Despite being a favorite over the Chargers, the Buccaneers could miss some key players in their Week 4 clash. Pro Bowl wide receiver Chris Godwin is expected to be sidelined against the Chargers due to a hamstring injury that kept him out of this week’s practice. Another wideout, Scotty Miller, did not participate in Thursday’s practice due to groin and hip issues.

Running back Leonard Fournette also did not participate in practice as he was dealing with ankle issues. Good news for the Buccaneers was that wide receiver Justin Watson was a full participant in Thursday’s practice despite his shoulder issue. If Miller won’t play, Watson will provide Brady with another target aside from Mike Evans, who caught two touchdown passes in their win over the Broncos. On defense, a groin injury limited cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting’s participation in Thursday’s practice. Outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul did not practice as he was given a rest due to nagging knee injury.