Pounded From All AnglesDecember 15th, 2013
Joe was mighty disappointed in the Bucs defense today.
They’re loaded with talent at all three levels. They were healthy. (Yes, Joe knows Lavonte David and Mark Barron got banged up.) Niners stud left guard Mike Iupati didn’t play. The Bucs were back home, coming off a huge performance. But the Bucs dropped a dud.
Make no mistake whatsoever, the Bucs were supposed to be in a push for the playoffs this season. That’s right playoffs. Greg Schiano even talked in detail about how this team had all the talent in place. And that opening-day defense started today’s game, a rarity in the NFL in Week 15.
So was that a playoff-caliber defense Bucs fans saw today? Joe didn’t see that.
Plays were made. Absolutely. There was great effort, a brutal task considering the Bucs offense struggled to move the ball. But the Bucs were manhandled often at the line of scrimmage, they couldn’t contain Colin Kaepernick, and they didn’t get off the field well on third down. Their starts didn’t force a turnover.
San Francisco ran the ball down their throat.
Joe doesn’t expect much from Mike Glennon, Skye Dawson, Bobby Rainey and others on the offensive side, but Joe does expect to see a defense that looks like the real deal.
The Bucs didn’t flash that enough today. Joe really wants to see that in the final two games. That could become a critical evaluation point for Greg Schiano.