Adapting Quickly

June 14th, 2014
Change needs to come quick for the Bucs, Lovie Smith says.

Change needs to come quick for the Bucs, Lovie Smith says.

Most reasonable NFL observers would give Lovie Smith a mulligan if the Bucs stink up the joint this season.

After all, it’s the first year of his administration. He’s getting used to his new players and the players are getting used to him. Often with first-year coaches, there is a learning curve.

Lovie doesn’t want to hear that.

Earlier this week, he remarked he is not interested in being 5-11, even thought that ugly mark would be an improvement.

Lovie noted after minicamp closed Thursday that fans aren’t interested in learning curves, and he doesn’t believe there will be one, primarily because Lovie and his coaches are used to teaching teams how to play Lovie’s defense.

“It was hard. I think it was harder back then,” Lovie said about installing defenses for past team. ” Since then we as coaches have gotten a lot better in the system. I’ve had a chance, I left here and went to St. Louis [Rams], we put the package in then, I went from St. Louis to Chicago, so we’ve had a chance to go places and install it and see how quick it can come together.

“And nowadays, there’s no rebuilding and, ‘Hey guys, you’re making progress.’ Nobody wants to hear about all that. That progress has to speed up fairly quickly and it has, and the players, we have a group that we’re playing a similar defense, that’s been easier also.”

Lovie emphatically has stated on many occasions that there is no rebuilding — that fans should not tolerate a rebuilding process. The time to win games is now.

Of course, if things go south, Lovie’s words could come back to haunt him. But Lovie is a smart guy. If he didn’t believe the team could improve significantly this year, then he wouldn’t be trying to paint himself into a corner.

28 Responses to “Adapting Quickly”

  1. DallasBuc Says:

    All talk so far. History tells us situations like this with all the coaching and player turnover doesn’t result in winning right away. Hope he can buck the trend but not going to be too upset if we don’t being that it is in fact a rebuilding year.

  2. Thomas Says:

    History? Seems like KC won alot of games last year for a first year coach. This isn’t t the NFL from times past, this is the NFL of now – an entirely different critter in many regards.

    What about the panthers? Something tells me we are in for another year of ‘Fire Rivera’ signs. The Falcons are as bad as we were- only they have gotten worse. The way I see it the big competition comes from the Saints and they are yet another year older.

    I will be shocked if we don’t go at least 9-7 if not win the division.

  3. The don Says:

    Yup

  4. Bawlmerbucfan Says:

    The difference with Lovie, as opposed to our last two coaches, is that when he speaks….we actually believe him.

  5. Touch_Down_Tampa_Bay Says:

    There is a different way of thinking in this coaching staff. They are implementing a great system defensively that works according to history. These coaches are great teachers and they kept and acquire the right personalities to learn and execute this system. Odds are the history of dominating Tampa 2 with Lovie’s flavor is about to repeat itself. The offense is a mystery which has great players on an up tempo scheme. History is about to begin with the offense.

    Then again according to history the last time we change uniform we went 9-7. I’ll embrace that…

  6. biff barker Says:

    “We believe Lovie !”

    Signed, Darrell Revis and Mike Williams….

    Me? “I’m not so sure” signed, Mike “the Cannon” Glennon.

  7. Barry Says:

    Smith get only 2 years, right?

  8. Dick2111 Says:

    I don’t think Lovie is painting himself into a corner. I’m convinced that he honestly believes this Bucs team will play some great football and end up with a decent record, and so do I. He’s got confidence in his coaches and confidence in his players, and rightfully so.

    This year’s team has much better depth than any of our teams since the Super Bowl year, and that’s a major factor I think in today’s NFL. Injuries killed the Bucs last year (and the year before) because we had no depth. Injuries are just a fact of life in the NFL, but looks like we’re much better prepared to deal with them this year.

  9. Macabee Says:

    I don’t think it’s just talk. I’ve heard it enough from both coaches and players they think they can win now. As DallasBuc said, there has been enough turn over to give one pause and the Bucs are playing the 19th most difficult schedule in the NFL this season only surpassed by the Falcons at 11 in our division.

    But there is no doubt in my mind that we are a better team and they will be better coached this year. How many more games would we have won in the last 2 years with a few simple in-game adjustments or not going ultra-conservative when we had leads in the last few minutes of a game?

    Then there is just plain ole luck. Not that anyone would wish, but if anyone has been following, some unfortunate things have happened recently to our division opponents that certainly gives the Bucs some advantage.

    We may not have a Herm Edwards predicted season, but we won’t have a Nate Davis/USA Today predicted season either. Everything’s possible! Go Bucs!

  10. Buccfan37 Says:

    It will be a definite bummer if the Bucs don’t win at least half of their games.

  11. Touch_Down_Tampa_Bay Says:

    @Macabe – I’m with you….

    Just to know we will have decent game plans and adjustments during the game already makes this season better. I truly feel this way even if we go 0-16 we are going to see “effort” in our coaching staff TO WIN the games. We are no longer going to watch only 1st halves effort only on the coaching staff like last year. Just thinking of that makes me static! Of course, I want us to go all the way all the time but if it does not happen I know I will enjoy games this year more than last. The nightmare is over. Go Bucs!

  12. Harry Says:

    @Macabee,
    I completely agree. I believe Lovie is saying what he believes about this team. As I’ve said before, CAR does not have one WR on their roster that caught a pass for them last year. Add into that the fact they have no LT and I say the Panthers hit the bottom of the NFC South this year. I think ATL is beatable. Our competition is NO, and we can compete with them this year.

    Lovie is doing a great job. I love this guy.

  13. THETRUTH Says:

    He should have the same opportunity Schiano had average season this year and a 0-anything start , let’s see if local radio boy starts yelling for his head. I’m sure lovie will get a pass If that happens. I do hope for at least 8-8

  14. tickrdr Says:

    Macabee Says:
    June 14th, 2014 at 8:36 am

    I don’t think it’s just talk. I’ve heard it enough from both coaches and players they think they can win now. As DallasBuc said, there has been enough turn over to give one pause and the Bucs are playing the 19th most difficult schedule in the NFL this season only surpassed by the Falcons at 11 in our division.

    But there is no doubt in my mind that we are a better team and they will be better coached this year. How many more games would we have won in the last 2 years with a few simple in-game adjustments or not going ultra-conservative when we had leads in the last few minutes of a game?

    Then there is just plain ole luck. Not that anyone would wish, but if anyone has been following, some unfortunate things have happened recently to our division opponents that certainly gives the Bucs some advantage.

    We may not have a Herm Edwards predicted season, but we won’t have a Nate Davis/USA Today predicted season either. Everything’s possible! Go Bucs!

    —————————————————————————–
    Always love your posts, and agree with most of your takes……. but I strongly believe that it is almost impossible to predict the strength of schedule based on last year’s records, as ALL teams are in a state of constant flux, whether due to injuries/retirements/free agency/player improvement/draft etc. Two quick examples: First, the Atlanta Falcons of 2012 looked to be a formidable opponent in 2013, but went 4-12! Second, look at our own Bucs and the optimism on this very board about our 2014 prospects. Are the opponents on our schedule this year looking forward to playing the lowly 4-12 Bucs as an easy win in the upcoming season?

    tickrdr

  15. blackmagic00 Says:

    We should fully expect a better team than what we’ve seen in the recent past. But realistically .500 or above should be enough to know we’re on the right path. Expecting playoffs in the first year is a way to get your heart broken. If it happens it will be the most exciting thing to happen since the super bowl. However, having a winning record is a step in the right direction as long as it’s not just the ball bouncing our way as it has in the fluke seasons of rah rah and schitler.

  16. Mort Says:

    Is that really the expectation? .500 football?

    Forget that. Playoffs need to happen again. Jon Gruden is the last HC to take the Bucs to the playoffs and he was fired after a winning season. That needs to be the expectation and that’s why Rah and Schiano only got two years. Disappointment.

    Lovie is a proven commodity that we haven’t had since Jon was scowling on the sidelines and he has the ability to lead a team to believe in him and want to play for him like I haven’t seen since Marty Schottenheimer. This is a recipe for success when you combine that with the talent that was left on this roster and the upgrades Lovie & Licht have made this off-season.

    Playoffs has to be the expectation. Forget that loser mentality of hoping for 8-8. That’s garbage.

  17. Macabee Says:

    tickrdr,

    You have every right to be reticent given our records over the last few years. But when I say anything is possible, you and I both know that anything can happen. There’s a guy out there named Murphy who warned us about that!

    As you know when the NFL releases the regular season schedule, they also release a strength of schedule. What I posted was their best guess of how the games line up. Like the weather, we both know there is no perfect predictive science.

    But I will reiterate, I think the Bucs have every right to be optimistic – can’t really be much worse. Then there are those “glass half full” guys like me who are eternal optimist. Against all odds I always give us a chance. lol

  18. Eric Says:

    I’m super impressed with Lovie. I knew he was a great coach but didn’t know he was so good at personnel.

    He’s made this team miles better already.

    We’re gonna be right in the mix.

  19. Barry Says:

    Let’s just cut thru all the BS, hire Jon Gruden.

  20. blackmagic00 Says:

    @mort. It’s not a loser mentality. It’s real expectations. When you have as many new pieces as we do there’s going to be error. I don’t want our fan base to turn on this coaching staff just because we miss the playoffs. It’s real tiring seeing so many changes every couple of years. Lovie is a proven winner but still needs a little time to get everyone on the same page. A winning record is what I’m hoping. If we make the playoffs I’ll be the happiest buc fan alive.

  21. Duffiedawg Says:

    I am a long-time (since inception) Buccaneers fan. Going into the new year, I was at my lowest ever as a Buc fan. My complaints?:

    Schiano fired, thank goodness
    New Coach? hired Lovie Smith, absolute best choice
    QB experience? hired Josh McCown, bypassing Vick, etc.
    CB? cut Reavis Island, 16m cap
    Replacement? got Verner, not an island, but great

    And so on…

    Every qualm I had about the Bucs on January 1st has been completely satisfied, with the exception of OG. If Nicks can return, even 90%, I know we will be OK, Even if Nicks doesn’t make it, we have two draftees that will do well.

    I feel sure we will go 10-6 or 11-5, maybe even take the division. How far we will go in the play-offs? Unsure, but they will know we were in the hunt.

    Go Lovie, GO BUCS!!!

  22. DallasBuc Says:

    How can all of you disagree with me about it being all talk? That is precisely what it is at this point! I am not saying that Lovie and the rest of you don’t believe what he is saying about being confident in our future success this season but it is not a given and they still have to actually do it. I can’t wait for this season to start and all this winning to happen like the rest of you but I also am realistic about the odds and challenges inherent in new coaching staff, 50% roster turnover and unproven QB. For those of you that are challenged in reading comprehension I am not saying that we will not have a great team that has tons of success and wins lots of games in the first year under Lovie, I am just saying that it will beat the odds. Looking forward to seeing all this talk come true. Go bucs!

  23. Buc the Haters Says:

    @ DallasBuc

    Fair assessment, but ‘all talk’ implies that the confidence isn’t based on anything real like personnel, talent, quality schemes, intelligent play calling, etc… If you just base your speculation on numbers and history and strength of schedule (from last year’s performance), then yes it’s quite improbable that we will have a winning season. But, when u factor in all of the ‘real’ elements like talent, personnel, schemes, recent & most relevant history, I think we stack up really solid against any team. And I honestly don’t know if anyone weep be able to stop our offense. I say we’re winning it all THIS year.

  24. Buc the Haters Says:

    Will not weep

  25. DallasBuc Says:

    ‘All talk so far’ means just that and implies that there are no games won to back it up yet. There was a lot of lofty talk this time of year last year and then our QB, coaching staff and team had a nuclear meltdown when the actual games started. I don’t really understand the fascination with fans and media getting so involved in the prediction business, especially this early in the football season. It’s fun to think about how great our Bucs could do this season and all that but predicting greatness from unproven products then reading some wet blanket takes from me gets treated like spit talk and arguement ensue…over meaningless Nostradamus babble! I just don’t get it.

  26. Buc the Haters Says:

    I do agree that the amount of speculation gets ridiculous…. And even with all the craziness last year, we still were only a few points short in a handful of games. (not super far from like 9-7)… And that was with far less talent & poorer coaching than we will have this year. So, I think 11-5 or 12-4 isn’t that far-fetched bcuz if we would’ve achieved our potential last year, we could’ve gone like 10-6 & we’re wayyy more stacked than last year. So, that’s the source of my optimism….

  27. owlykat Says:

    Macabre can tell you I was not full of optimism when last year started. I predicted we would lose our first four games in a row in my PR posts. I knew Schiano and Sheridan were fools. I was predicting they should both walk the plank half way through the season too. While I feel just the opposite about Lovie, when I believe he is making a mistake, such as missing his opportunity for a Franchise QB with our first pick or letting Foster drop to 130 pounds when we face the danger of the Charlotte big backs running him into the ground in our opener, I won’t hesitate to say so. I have supported this team from the beginning with Spurrier taking the snaps and I have just about had all the suffering I can stand when I know they can do a lot better with the players they have. Before the Bucs I was a Dolphin Fan and actually experienced their 17-0 Perfect Season. Lovie and Tedford have a bright future here and if they play their cards right they can establish that kind of dominance here. A Bucs Dynasty can be their legacy when they retire!

  28. White Tiger Says:

    I don’t like putting a number of wins on any season, and while I do hope we win more than we lose, I can’t say I believe it very likely that our offensive line is as talented as the other key positions on offense.

    But…I expect the defense to be GREAT from the “JUMP”! Most of the talent on the defensive side of the ball was previously assembled – and WASTED by NOT playing a 4-3 Under Tackle, up front coupled with the Tampa-Two secondary…

    I’m looking for GMC to BLOW UP right up from the start.

    The only thing that has me concerned on defense – how much the rule changes (regarding hitting) may have on the effectiveness of the secondary playing the run & delivering messages to WR’s about throwing against them – a hallmark of Dungy and Monte, and Lovie-coached defenses?

 
 

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