Buccaneers beat Chiefs 31-9 in Super Bowl LV


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9 in Super Bowl LV on Feb. 7 in Tampa Bay.

This marks the first time in NFL history a team has played a Super Bowl at their home field, which is a milestone for the Buccaneers football program.

“It was incredible. You know it was obvious at the game that I would say we had probably 75% of the fans were Bucks fans, so it was a definite home field advantage, even though the NFL tries to keep the stadium neutral,” Chris Boniol, Specialist Head Coach for the Buccaneers, said.

The Buccaneers were dominant throughout the game, not giving up a single touchdown.

“The Buccaneers had a better game plan,” David Baxter said. “Their offense did not turn the ball over. Their defense put a lot of pressure on Patrick Mahomes, especially in the first half, by shutting down his ability to make plays and get the ball to Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce.

Though the Buccaneers may have bested the Chiefs, many did not expect for it to be by such a large margin.

“First, I think they had a great defensive game plan to really shut down that high powered Chiefs offense,” Terrell Jackson, avid Buccaneers fan and Jupiter High math teacher, said. “Second, the offense was able to run the ball, which means they controlled the clock and gave their defense time to rest on the sidelines.”

Jackson was ecstatic when the Buccaneers won the Super Bowl, and said no one gave them a real chance to defeat the Chiefs.

“I wasn’t shocked that the Buccaneers won, even though I thought the Chiefs would pull it out,” Tyler Waterman, Jupiter High freshman, said. “I just did not think the game would be such a blowout.”

The game itself was not like a typical Super Bowl matchup, as the scores tend to be a bit closer than this year.

“I thought the game was not as exciting as prior years in terms of great offensive plays,” Baxter said. “It was more of a defensive battle in which Tampa Bay’s game plan proved to be something that the Chiefs could not solve.”

Baxter says the Tampa Bay game plan consisted of several players stepping up and making great plays to contribute to the win. Those great plays allowed the Buccaneers to their second Super Bowl victory.

“Developing and executing a winning game plan for a game like the Super Bowl is critical to success,” Baxter said.

As per Baxter, Buccaneers star quarterback Tom Brady had a lot to do with the success, and his key plays proved vital to the success of the team.

“They have Tom Brady,” Waterman said. “If you have Tom Brady with a good defense I give him a chance on any team.”

Considering the Buccaneers went from having a 7-9 record in the 2019-2020 season to winning the Super Bowl in the 2020-2021 season, they have made a substantial leap in the last year to get to where they are now.

“The fact that [the Buccaneers] used to be the ‘laughing stock’ of the NFL; everyone used to make fun of them because they were terrible,” Jackson said. “But the more people made fun of them, the more I began to like them.”

Boniol won a Super Bowl kicking for the Dallas Cowboys when he was 23 and 25 years later he took home another Super Bowl win as the special teams coach for the Bucks. Boniol reflects on the emotional difference between the two victories.

“This one I enjoyed more to be honest with you, I think because as a player, I was young. I was only 23 years old. And then now. It’s been 25 years since that’s happened…to get back to that game is your great appreciation for how hard it is to win a championship. The other aspect is. Now I’ve got a family and I’ve got kids that were able to enjoy the experience. This time as well as those last time I was just a single guy, you know, and I had no immediate family. My mom, dad, brother enjoyed it, but this still was a lot more. I definitely enjoyed this a lot more,” Boniol said.

With little time to train for the Super Bowl, Boniol and the team prepared themselves in two weeks mentally and physically. 

“We had two weeks of practice, and we had some great practices but we also had some walkthrough and doctor practices. Just because at that point in the year. I think it’s about being mentally prepared but you also have to make sure you’re not physically worn out. So you have to be physically fresh for that game,” Boniol said.

Boniol started his coaching career in 2010 and he and his family have moved around the country to find a great team to work with, and they moved to Tampa in 2019 to settle down and be a part of the Buccaneer coaching journey. 

“I love the Florida culture. I think that that’s one of the definite benefits of coaching in Tampa, but it’s a good organization and everything is like many other organizations around the NFL,” Boniol said.