Third Down StrugglesAugust 16th, 2014
No, the Bucs offense didn’t look good tonight, for the second straight preseason game. Granted, the first game was a complete and utter disaster largely because the offensive line was a complete and utter disaster.
At least tonight, the Bucs’ offensive line seemed to have a pulse. It was better than last week, but that’s not saying much at all. Baby steps, Joe supposes, baby steps.
Still, with improved line play, the third down conversion rate of the Bucs in the first half was downright miserable. (Joe is only counting the first half because for the most part in the second half, the game tonight was largely comprised of future bellhops, technical support reps, bouncers and insurance claims adjusters).
The Bucs converted one of five third downs — one! That simply is not going to win many games in the pass-happy NFL.
“It was better,” Bucs quarterback Josh McCown said of the first-half offense. “It was more of what we need to start looking like. We’re still not there yet.”
No they are not. Yes, the Bucs scored a touchdown in the second quarter and should have had another when wide receiver Mike Evans fumbled the ball just as he was scoring, resulting in a Miami touchback.
If the Bucs hope to turn around the direction of the franchise this season, then converting just one third down in the first half is borderline unacceptable.