2010 Goal: 8-8

May 10th, 2010
Pat Kirwan of NFL.com believes Josh Freeman will lead the Bucs to the playoffs... in 2011.

Pat Kirwan of NFL.com believes Josh Freeman will lead the Bucs to the playoffs... in 2011.

The Bucs were beyond horrid last year. That’s not a revelation to any Bucs fan.

There were a myriad of reasons why. From going to the youth movement to bagging offensive coordinator Jeff Jagodzinski to the heinous Jim Bates Experiment, which blew up in the face of Raheem the Dream.

So despite many Bucs fans pining for a playoff run this year, it won’t happen. Bucs fans should be patient and realistic. Maybe winning as many games as the Bucs will lose will be a more rational goal.

That’s the word from Pat Kirwan. The former NFL front office executive, who co-hosts the superior “Movin’ the Chains” heard exclusively on Sirius NFL Radio, hosted a live chat recently on NFL.com, in addition to his duties with CBSSports.com. Kirwan suggested rather than playoffs, the Bucs should think .500.

Scott, Canada
Hey Pat, love your insight. Can you tell me how you see the Bucs this year? Do they have a chance to make some noise in the South, do you see them starting both new wides and both DTs?

Pat Kirwan, NFL.com
Thanks, Scott. The Bucs will be better this year than last. I think Josh Freeman will be a fine NFL quarterback. I think you closed in on the No. 3 spot with Carolina, but not ready to compete with the Saints or Falcons. Both rookie DTs will play a lot. You should be aiming for an 8-8 season and then if all these young players shape up make a legitimate run for the playoffs in 2011.

Playoffs in 2011? Playoffs? Did Kirwan write, “playoffs?”

Kirwan assumes first, there will actually be a 2011 season. If there is, that means the Bucs’ heralded rookies this year will have to grow up awful fast. Unless Team Glazer and general manager/rock star Mark Dominik go on a spending spree for the 2011 season — unlikely — that means this year’s rookies will have to mature awfully fast.

42 Responses to “2010 Goal: 8-8”

  1. Gary Says:

    I would be proud of 8-8.

  2. Jonny Says:

    I hope it is above 6 wins, these Gruden lovers will know the true meaning of “progression” instead of “fluctuation” between mediocrity and absolute worst.

  3. Mike Says:

    I’d say it’s quite early to predict the 2011 season. Not sure what he sees to predict that. What if the new guys on the DL don’t pan out or both receivers fall down. What about the running game and the goat?

  4. Matt Says:

    I think playoffs in 2011 is a legitimate goal.

    Of course, that’s WAY down the line, but I don’t think it’s crazy to assume we’d have a shot then, assuming things go well and we actually re-sign half our team by then.

  5. TJ Says:

    8-8 is possible Freeman has talent but he has to stop throwing so mnay INT’s 18 is a alot for 9 games. The Bucs I really think are better than the panters and right on the hills of the falcons and we are the last team to beat the Saints

  6. sgw94 Says:

    Again my thing is this on predicting records. Its easy to throw numbers around but its a lot harder to sit down, look at a schedule, and pick 8 games we should/could win. Id love for Kirwan to do that. Not saying 8-8 is impossible but on paper at least its improbably at the moment.

  7. sgw94 Says:

    improbable that is

  8. Eric Says:

    Well considering the 79 bucs went to the playoffs in their fourth year, from expansion team, one would think playoffs in the third year of the new regime would be expected.

    In more recent history, the 1-15 Falcons turned it around pretty darn quick, with a very young QB.

    The schedule looks a bit harder to me, Steelers @Cardinals, @Ravens, @niners, @Bengals @Skins.

    I can’t imagine the Bucs being favored in any of those games, and would have to finish 8-2 against the remaining 10 with four of those against the Saints/Falcons.

  9. Mark Says:

    That’s always the problem with prognostication. It’s based on strength of schedule determined by that teams winning percentage last year. Past performance does not equal wins/losses.

    I am going to guess that 7 is the realistic magic number to be considered progress. But what the hell do I know? (answer: the same as everyone else)

    Be Competitive in every game.

  10. sgw94 Says:


    Considering the fact that the Browns had a better record than us last year and were a lot more active in free agency, hired Holmgren and had a pretty damn good draft I wouldn’t exactly mark that game down as a win to start the season either.

    For me I think there are two different issues here. I can predict a 6-10 record but I’m not sure that means anything as far as what the Glazers want. If we go 6-10 and are in all of the games I think thats a good thing. If we go 8-8 but get our asses smashed in the 8 losses and there are major screw ups in big games that could definitely be seen as a sign we have the talent but not the coaching to go with it. Either way I don’t think the final record in and of itself will be the litmus test. Record is major but improvement is really what I think the Glazers and even most fans want to see most.

  11. JDouble Says:

    Joe said “So despite many Bucs fans pining for a playoff run this year, it won’t happen.”

    This is the garbage that earns your site a bad rap. How about throwing a probably in there Joe? You wanna state it as fact and still call this a Bucs fansite? Did anyone expect the Falcons to go 11-5 with rookie QB Matt Ryan and a crappy defense? You never know what can happen on any given Sunday. Giving up on the season before our first OTA is pathetic.

    You should just rename the sire JoeBucsHater.com

  12. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    JDouble, These are Pat Kirwan’s words, which Joe explains at the start of the next paragraph. “That’s the word from Pat Kirwan.”

    Please get real.

  13. MichiganBucsFan Says:

    I know it’s more realistic to look at 8 wins. But in the back of my mind I remember the way the Bucs offense played against Green Bay (a top 5 rated defense) in week 9 and they way we shut down the saints in the second half when we came back to beat them in overtime. I know there is a ton of potential for this team to be great, and I know that it’s more likely going to take a year or two to pan out but…. I know what they are capable of and will be wishing for a playoff run this year

    and yes I do remember the other games when we got our asses kicked

  14. JimBuc Says:

    As Steve White points out, what difference does the number make? If they go 11-5 but most of the wins were flukes, who cares? (Except Eric). I just want to see them improve by competing for a whole season instead of for just the last five games

  15. Eric Says:

    Count me among the insane who actually measure a team by wins and losses.

    Other members of the asylum:


    “competing isn’t everything. its the only thing”
    “just compete, baby”

  16. Joe Says:

    Count me among the insane who actually measure a team by wins and losses.

    Other members of the asylum:


    “competing isn’t everything. its the only thing”
    “just compete, baby”


    What would Bill Walsh and Chuck Noll say?

  17. JDouble Says:

    “” Joe here,

    JDouble, These are Pat Kirwan’s words, which Joe explains at the start of the next paragraph. “That’s the word from Pat Kirwan.” “”

    No Joe, those are not Pat Kirwans words. They are not in quotations. What Pat said it clearly posted below your comment. Pat said 8-8 is a good goal for this team, which it is. YOU translated that into the idea that the Bucs can’t make the playoffs.

  18. JDouble Says:

    I think you’re so use to putting a negative spin on everything, to keep the rabid negative fans (your fanbase) tuned in, that you don’t even realize how ridiculous it has become.

  19. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    JDouble – Did you hear Pat Kirwan on NFL Radio? I did. This is what he was saying.

    There’s hardly a negative spin on this site. And Joe never tries to keep anyone tuned in. Simply just putting the info. out there as I see it. Thankfully, tens of thousands of people like it. There’s a lot of positive here if you’re open minded to seeing it.

  20. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    Also, JDouble, Joe would say that at most one-half of one percent of the visitors to this site every day actually comment. So how can you speak for the audience here?? Joe can’t even do that beyond knowing that they love the Bucs

  21. Eric Says:


    Good point , as both “built through the draft” and exercised patience with young players. No FA back then though, so the comparison is slightly flawed.

    Since Mr. Walsh learned his craft from many years with Paul Brown, and Noll from Don Shula, I doubt either would be even remotely impressed with Raheem Morris.

    But, since everyone is thinking we have Hall of Famers in the draft, might as well think we have Bill Walsh or Noll “in the hopper”.

    The dynasty awaits.

  22. Joe Says:


    Didn’t Noll play for Paul Brown?

    (You took my comment down another path, but that’s OK.) 🙂

  23. thomas Says:

    Kirwan is saying that a realistic goal isnt the playoffs or it more realistic to set a goal of 8-8 considering the bucs have a 4th place schedule that is what the league is trying to give bad teams a legit shot at.

    W/ that said – if you look at the schedule there are not 8 wins on it, if they exceed expectations, maybe 6 – which of course cause some of you claim Rah and Dom to be Belichick and Irsay.

    Nevertheless, I think the bucs go 0-6 or 1-5 in the division and if they do – this regime should be excused.

  24. Joe Says:

    A little help for JDouble:

    The following in italics is exactly what Joe typed.

    So despite many Bucs fans pining for a playoff run this year, it won’t happen. Bucs fans should be patient and realistic. Maybe winning as many games as the Bucs will lose will be a more rational goal.

    That’s the word from Pat Kirwan.

    Please feel free to reread that passage in italics multiple times if it doesn’t sink in right away

  25. Eric Says:


    Yeah I think Noll did, but I think he coached under Shula at Baltimore. Not a bad combo as far as learning the game.

    Your right, I did put a little path twist on there.

    But, your Walsh/Noll thing was to demonstrate the virtue of building through young players right? Or, did I totally miss your point?

  26. JimBuc Says:

    Eric — interesting double standard that you are applying:

    When I mentioned to you recently that Gruden’s record included first round playoff losses, you tried to explain away Gruden’s playoff losses (aka “Ls”)by stating that the teams Gruden coached against in those playoff losses (aka “Ls”) were really, really good. I think you noted that one of the losses was against a Super Bowl winner, right? So, for Gruden you consider the quality of the “Ls,” not just whether the column has an “L” or a “W,” right?

    However, now that we are talking about the current Bucs team — you know the team that fired Gruden — an “L” is just an “L.” No explanation needed or considered. Indeed, counting “Ws” and “Ls” is th “only” way to measure a team. See Lombardi et. al.

    A word is coming to mind. Starts with an “H?” H-Y-P . . . .:-)

  27. Eric Says:


    Actually, the word you are looking for applies to you, for stating that trading for Winslow was a good idea, while trading for Keyshawn contributed to the mess we are now in.

    Apparently, in your world, trading high draft choices is only a good idea if done by Mr. Dom.

    Nice try though. However, your “giving up Brooks” comment has dented your cred, I am afraid.

  28. Joe Says:


    I think he coached under Shula at Baltimore

    Noll did coach under Shula at Baltimore, you are correct.

    But, your Walsh/Noll thing was to demonstrate the virtue of building through young players right? Or, did I totally miss your point?

    You missed the point. 🙂 You left off of your list two of the most successful coaches of all time. I’d have included Noll and Walsh before I invoked Tuna. I’m not anti-Tuna but anyone know how many Super Bowls Tuna went to without Belichick? Same number as Joe has coached to a Super Bowl. Sometimes I think Tuna is overrated.

    To Tuna’s credit, he somehow got to the playoffs with Quincy Carter as his quarterback.

  29. Eric Says:


    I agree, Walsh and Noll were better than Tuna.

    I should know better than to read too much into what Joe says!

  30. sgw94 Says:

    Just to clarify, from my perspective if we go 11-5 nobody should be complaining at all. Hell 11-5 will probably mean winning our division and possibly getting a first round bye in the playoffs. I couldn’t give a flip if all 11 wins were flukes, I’ll take that kinda good luck LOL

  31. MichiganBucsFan Says:


    I think you underestimate what our beloved bucs are capable of. Maybe I am biased and will eat my words later but…. I think we are better than 0-6 or 1-5 in what I know is a very tough division.

  32. MichiganBucsFan Says:

    And I can’t help but agree with you sgw94, I’ll take an 11 win season anyway I can get it, no complaints

  33. JimBuc Says:

    Eric — nice non-response response. Maybe you were not “among the insane” when you made those comments about Gruden’s playoff losses being somthing less than “Ls”

    By the way, I did not say that KW’s trade was a good thing or a bad thing. I just mentioned that it worked out well so far and it was substantially less than either the Key trade (2 1st round picks) or the Marshall trading you are always harping about.

    Trading two 1st round picks for Key helped win a SB, but it is undeniable that it contributed to the current mess, as did the picks for Gruden. Even the 2nd round pick traded for KW may contribute to a mess down the road. Who knows? As you are fond of saying “we don’t yet know whether Dom’s player moves were good or bad.”

  34. JimBuc Says:

    So would I Steve, so would I. A little hyperbole never hurt anyone.

  35. Eric Says:


    I think that the Key trade was in 2000. Pretty sure the time limit is up on that one for contributing to any current “messes”.

    Also, remember Key was traded for Galloway. Combined receiving yards for Key/galloway in a bucs uniform is 7734 yards.

    Hardly a mess.

    If it was a mess, please bring on some more!

  36. JimBuc Says:

    Eric – I understand that my comment about Brooks confuses you. Your confusion stems from the fact that in your world the Bucs are perpetually the 2001 or 2002 team, on the cusp of a Super Bowl each and every year save the proper free agent acquisitions.

    Let me clue you in on something. The Super Bowl was won largely by defensive draft picks. The overwhelming majority of the starting defense on the SB were draft picks, not free agents. Not trying to diminish Gruden’s role or the role of the offense, just saying that you don’t even get to the 2001 and 2002 teams without 1995, the year we drafted Sapp and Brooks. So, as long as you can grasp the relatively straightforward concept that the current Bucs are more like the 1995 Bucs than the 2002 Bucs, it should be obvious that you would not want to give up premium draft picks because you could run the risk of giving up a chance to get a player like Brooks (we moved up into first round to get him)

    Again, I know we were just a few players away this year so we should have traded 2 second round picks for Marshall or three picks for Boldin etc. But for giving up those picks and acquring your guys, we would definitely be in the SB this year. 🙂

    (Took you for more a student of Buc history. Must not be given your desire to give up draft picks. Keyshawn and Gruden cost the Bucs SIX premium picks. Is it any wonder that the team eventually collapsed?)

  37. JimBuc Says:

    Eric — The Key picks alon could have been Abraham, Bubba Franks, Shaun Alexander etc. Not just one of those guys but TWO.

    Gruden picks could have been Ed Reed, Charles Grant, Eric Steinbah, boldin, Osi and stll have TWO second round picks to boot.

    Not saying a SB was not worth it, just stating the obvious: premium draft picks often play well for years. Keyshawn Johnson played for the Bucs for a few years

  38. Eric Says:


    As to Key, see above.

    Agree that the pics for Gruden contributed to the decline of team to the extent they only got to the first round of playoffs after winning two NFC South Titles, as well as winning seasons three out of last four years. IMO “decline” is what occured in 2009.

    Trading premium draft choices has already been done by Dom, who, in your world, sacrificed a chance at picking up a Brooks by getting K-2.

    Yeah, I think Marshall and Holmes would look great in pewter. I wouldnt have expected a Super Bowl as a result, and have never said such. But, they would be two very good young players at a position of grave need and and likely would have worked out as well or better than the Key trade.

    Your dupicity is showing.

  39. JimBuc Says:

    My good friend Eric, denial is not just a river in Egypt. Comparing the SINGLE KW 2nd round pick to 6 premium picks over three years? Really? I know you are a “win now” guy, but really?

  40. Eric Says:


    You picked two guys (Franks/Alexander) are all but out of the league. I doubt Abraham would have been a selection given the D-line the bucs had in place.

    In any event the combined 7734 receiving yards makes it a good trade by any resonable standard, and not just because the Super Bowl was won with help from Key. Galloway was a huge part of the 2005/2007 division titles.

    So, your “no doubt contributed to the current mess” analysis of the Key trade simply does not hold up, oh great student of Bucs history.

  41. Eric Says:


    I conceded that the pics for Gruden contributed to the so called “decline”.

  42. tampa2 Says:

    Kirwan throws a bone to the dogs, and they pick it up and run with it. With our coaching these rookies will not be ready for 3-5 years.