NEW ORLEANS (Ticker) -- The
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
New Orleans Saints
are accustomed to playing close games.
The Saints have won three of the last four meetings between the NFC South Division rivals, with those contests being decided by a total of 19 points.
But the Bucs enter Sunday's game at the Superdome struggling and are trying to avoid starting 0-5 for the first time since 1996.
The Buccaneers remained winless with last week's 16-13 loss to the
returned from a three-game suspension to rush for 72 yards on 15 carries.
Offense has been the biggest problem for the Bucs, who are tied for 31st in the league in points scored, averaging just 12.3 per contest.
In an attempt to shake up the offense, Bucs coach Jon Gruden will give second-year quarterback
his first NFL start.
The Saints are coming off last week's embarrassing 34-10 loss at Arizona. Still without
(ankle), New Orleans managed just 41 yards rushing on 15 attempts.
While the Bucs have struggled offensively, the Saints have had their problems defensively. They have given up 26.8 points per game to rank 30th in the league.
The teams split two games last season, with each winning on the road. Saints quarterback
fumbled four times, losing three in a 14-7 loss here last December.
Matchup to watch: Saints left tackle
against right end
Series: New Orleans leads, 16-8.
Next week: Tampa Bay visits St. Louis, October 18 New Orleans hosts Minnesota, October 17