The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are currently on a roll, winning their last two games against the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos after dropping their opener to the New Orleans Saints. With a 2-1 mark, the Buccaneers are currently ahead in the NFC South. Carrying the momentum of their winning run and with veteran quarterback Tom Brady leading the way, the Buccaneers are a 7.5-point favorite when they take on the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. The 43-year-old Brady has an impressive record against the Chargers in his 20-year career with the New England Patriots. In 11 meetings against the Chargers, Brady won nine, throwing for 3,284 yards and 20 touchdowns against them.

Brady is impressive vs QBs taken in the first round

Not only that, Brady has an impressive record against rookie quarterbacks taken in the first round. In his career, Brady has a 17-2 record against rookie quarterbacks who were selected in the opening round of the NFL Draft, per a report by Joe Reedy of the Associated Press (AP). Brady also has a 12-game winning streak against them, with his last loss happening in 2009 when the Patriots were defeated by the New York Jets, who had Mark Sanchez as the starting quarterback back then. On Sunday, Brady will take on 23-year-old Justin Herbert, who was taken 6th overall by the Chargers in the 2020 NFL Draft. This will be the first time since the 1950s that two quarterbacks with a 20-year age difference will face off in an NFL game.

Herbert, during his news conference on Friday, said it would be an incredible opportunity to play against Brady, adding that he will learn from the valuable experience.

Ex-Patriots rusher promoted to the 53-man roster

The Buccaneers will take on the Chargers without running back Leonard Fournette, who is suffering from an ankle injury.

As insurance, the Buccaneers have promoted rusher former Patriots rusher, Kenjon Barner, from the practice squad to the 53-man roster for their game against the Chargers. Barner played five games for the Patriots in 2018, rushing the ball 19 times for 71 yards in 42 offensive snaps. Despite his short stint with the Patriots, the team gifted him with a Super Bowl ring after their 13-3 win over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII.

With the Buccaneers, Barner is expected to have a role with the special teams, possibly as a blocker, which he played during their Week 3 win over the Broncos.

Rookie wideout hopes to step up

With Pro Bowl receiver Chris Godwin out with a hamstring injury, the Buccaneers are hoping that rookie wideout Tyler Johnson could step up against the Chargers. Johnson played sparingly against the Broncos and was never targeted by Brady. But without Godwin, Johnson hopes that he could earn Brady’s confidence. “Basically, coming out there every day [and] trying to make an impression, not only to him but pretty much everybody,” said Johnson.

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