Naval Tradition: nothing but Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash

Five Fast Facts About the Buccaneers:

- Cadillac Williams’s real name, Carnell, is Spanish for “meat.”
- According to Wikipedia, kicker Matt Bryant went undrafted and had such low-end jobs as working in a pawn shop and playing for the Frankfurt Galaxy.
- Coach Jon Gruden was narrowly defeated by Lindsay Lohan at FreckleFest ’07 this past spring.
- Owner Malcolm Glazer should not be confused with author Malcom Gladwell. Key differences: Glazer owns EPL team Manchester United; Gladwell is a published author who thinks writing a running diary is hard.
- This offseason, the Bucs signed alleged date rapist, drunk driver, dirty player, and Super Bowl goat Jerramy Stevens. Good luck with that one. Lemme know how it goes.

Projected 2007 Record:
0-16, last in NFC South

Actual 2007 Record:
2-14, last in NFC South

Three Longer Notes About the Buccaneers:

1. The Bucs quarterback depth chart, in no particular order, looks like this: Chris Simms, Jeff Garcia, Jake Plummer, Luke McCown, and Bruce Gradkowski. At one time or another all have been called gay for reasons other than being a quarterback. To wit:

- Simms has his boyfriend’s initials tattooed on his leg. Pretty gay. However, he’s an exceptionally tough gay man, as he completed a game against the Panthers last year despite having his spleen destroyed and subsequently removed. So he’s a tough, gay, crappy quarterback — or, as I like to say, a tough Eli Manning.

- Garcia was famously accused of being gay by Terrell Owens after their relationship in San Francisco soured. Garcia has since married a Playmate of the Year who went to court for fighting with another woman over him, but still: what a fruit. If we can’t take T.O. at his word, really, who can we trust?

- Jake Plummer chose retirement over playing for the Bucs. This happened for one of two reasons: (a) the shame of fighting Chris Simms and Jeff Garcia for a starting position was too great to bear, or (b) he was terrified of being responsible for more than just handing off the ball to whichever cog of the Running Back Industrial Complex was Mike Shanahan’s flavor of the month. Anyway, Plummer married a Broncos cheerleader, so he’s gay too.

- Luke McCown is a McCown.

- Gradkowski is named Bruce. Everyone knows that’s one of the names the gays took, just like Lance and Julian.

2. Bucs supporters are the only fans who can look at their team’s logo and say, “Well, at least the pirate ship is less gay than the last logo.” As you certainly know, before adopting the pewter and red color scheme, Tampa’s team color was — and I think this is the official term — creamsicle. With that came this logo:

That’s “Bucco Bruce.” He has a big feather in his hat, an exquisitely manicured mustache, a hoop earring, and I’m pretty sure he’s winking me. Even the surviving Village People think he should have been a little more subtle.

3. The Bucs mascot is Captain Fear. His web page says that his hobbies are “Surfing, Jet Skiing, Sword Tricks, and Attending Birthday Parties,” which is what I’ve always looked for in a life partner. However, I found this unauthorized history of him somewhat more entertaining:

Captain Fear used to sail around the Caribbean, drinking rum, eating meat and chocolate, and looking for those makeshift rafts that the Cubans make so that he could smash them. He had a crew of some of the biggest baddest toughest guys you’ve ever seen, as well as a bunch of hot bitches to keep them company. They were known throughout the area as the Buccaneers.

One night, while sailing around near Florida, probably dolphin hunting or doing something equally sweet, they got caught in a storm. Or maybe there was no storm and it was just good old fashioned drunk driving. Well, whatever the reason, Captain Fear and his ship ran aground on the beach in Tampa Bay. It just so happens that they crashed into a football stadium which was both sweet and convenient. There were some losers there who were trying to play football. They might have been ninjas, but nobody knows (ninjas suck at football). Anyway, they challenged the Buccaneers to a football game and were completely OWNED by the Bucs football skills.

After that, the Bucs took over the stadium and pimped it out with pirate flags and cannons and stuff and began calling it home. All their hot pirate chicks became their cheerleaders and they had some jolly good times. Captain Fear went kinda nuts and he can usually be seen running around the stadium between plays and during halftime beating up kids and shitting on the sideline and just partaking in all kinds of mischief. The people of Tampa never really minded too much because they like to watch the Bucs kick ass every Sunday.

In retrospect, those three paragraphs should have been the entire season preview.