5 Bucs players the Vikings should be most concerned about this week

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) Chris Godwin and Tom Brady
(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) Chris Godwin and Tom Brady /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Rob Gronkowski /

Rob Gronkowski – TE

Rob Gronkowski is on this list for one reason, and that reason is that Eric Kendricks isn’t going to play.

A week ago, Kendricks’ backups allowed Jaguars tight ends Tyler Eifert and James O’Shaughnessy to have pretty solid games. Gronk is light years better than they are and he will take advantage of Eric Wilson, Todd Davis, Ryan Connelly, or whoever is lining up in the middle of the defense for the Vikings on Sunday.

Gronk is also beginning to shake off the rust from his brief retirement and he is starting to get back to form. He is still one of Tom Brady’s favorite weapons in the passing game and he will get his targets on Sunday.

The Vikings need to be ready for Gronkowski and not underestimate his ability just because he’s in the twilight of his career. Minnesota should try to get a safety on him when possible and make sure there are plenty of guys closing in when he catches the ball.

Obviously, the Bucs’ elite wide receiving options will be a major concern. But if the Vikings overlook this future Hall-of-Fame tight end, he could be the one who burns the defense for multiple scores and becomes the difference-maker.