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O.J. Howard: Buccaneers 'right up there' with NFL's top offenses

On paper, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' offense is loaded.

Tom Brady, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski, O.J. Howard, Ronald Jones, a solid offensive line aided by first-round pick Tristan Wirfs. All the pieces are there for an explosive year for Byron Leftwich's unit.

Howard joined Good Morning Football on Tuesday and underscored the potential in Tampa this season.

"You look at us and line us up versus any offense in the league, we're right up there with the top of them," the tight end said. "So only time will tell how good we are. But I think when you put us on paper, we're one of the best in the league, if not the best."

The Bucs offense was explosive last year, but too often was undercut due to the cavalcade of turnovers from quarterback Jameis Winston.

Six of Tampa's nine losses a year ago came by one score. With Brady in town, Howard believes that figure can be flipped.

"One thing about Tom, I watched him for years in New England, he's always in the game," he said. "I think that's something he can bring to our team. No matter what the score is or how it starts in the first half, I think you always have a chance to win when it comes down to the final minutes of the game. He'll keep it close."

In three seasons, Howard has yet to enjoy a true breakout campaign, averaging 485 yards per year. With Gronk in town, the former Alabama tight end isn't worried about his numbers, but rather learning from an all-time great TE.

"There's so much you can take from Gronk," he said. "Just the way he plays physical down the field, at the second level of his routes, his run-after-catch ability, his YAC. I mean, there's so much you can take from him. I mean, you can take his personality. Gronk's such a cool guy. I met him a couple times already. There's gonna be so much fun in our room. We've got so much talent."

The pressure is on coach Bruce Arians and Co. to turn that talent into a playoff appearance.

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