Sack Dropoff Just A Bad Pattern?October 16th, 2013
Through the first couple of games this season, the Bucs shockingly were among the NFL leaders in sacks.
Given how awful the Bucs were in sacks last year, and did nothing but offer lip service to improve the pass rush in the offseason, Joe was stunned at the Bucs’ early success.
(Yes, yes, yes. The Bucs drafted three third-day draftees on the defensive line, and all made the team which should tell fans just how thin the Bucs were up front defensively).
Well, those sack numbers have dropped off considerably. The most recent tally of NFL stats show the Bucs are now tied for 19th in quarterback sacks, though the Bucs have played one less game than many clubs. For those of you who struggle with math at this hour of the day before your daily caffeine inhalation, that means the Bucs are in the bottom half of the league in sacks inching closer to the bottom third of the league.
The Bucs only had one sack facing a guy nearly as immobile as Mike Glennon, and that is Eagles quarterback Nick Foles. Against Arizona and Carson Palmer, it was the same tally.
Joe’s pretty sure the dropoff against Foles came, in part, because the Bucs were simply gassed as the Eagles ran off plays quicker than Joe can down cold beers on a hot summer afternoon. But the Eagles have allowed 16 sacks, tied for 11th most in the NFL.
The simple fact the Bucs let their top 2012 sacker, Michael Bennett, walk away for basically the price of two upper deck season tickets and had chances to obtain established NFL pass rushers in the offseason, but instead just shook their collective heads and said, “Nah, we’re good,” just leaves Joe numb.
Is it water under the bridge? Yes, if your team is able to fill that huge hole.
Initially, it seemed the Bucs did indeed overcome that crater, but they haven’t. So someone over at One Buc Palace needs to man up and confess they blew it with multiple chances to upgrade the pass rush on the defensive line.
Joe’s going to guess that this question, among others, will have to be answered in Bryan Glazer’s office sometime in December.