Scary Bad Bucs Defense Played On Halloween

November 3rd, 2010

josh freeman 092710

Joe was drunk with joy (and other liquids) following the Bucs thrilling win over the Cardinals Sunday. Part of that was Joe had to calm down he was so frightened.

No, this Steelers fan was not knocking on Joe’s door looking for a treat. Joe was frightened beyond words that the Bucs gave up 305 yards passing to the likes of Max Hall and Derek Anderson of all people, and coughed up a 17-point lead.

Winning cures all ills but Joe is having a hard time getting that memory scrubbed from his brain. It seems this nasty image also left an impression upon Joe’s good friend Justin Pawlowski of WDAE-AM 620.

Justin, who hosts the award-winning “Blitz” on Saturday afternoons, has gone of record suggesting the Bucs defense is not much different under Raheem Morris than it was under the heinous Jim Bates Experiment.

Sunday’s showing seemed to reinforce Justin’s thoughts of the Bucs defense, so he wrote in his weekly “What I Learned” column.

1. I learned that no lead is safe in a game involving the Buccaneers. We’ve seen the Bucs have to come back in the 4th quarter in 4 of their 5 wins this year including Sunday’s game in Arizona. The Bucs offense has shown the ability to score when needed most, but what about the Bucs defense? Raheem said the defense played phenomenal on Sunday, but other than 2 interceptions thrown right to defenders returned for TDs, what was so phenomenal about it? The defense blew a 17 point lead in the 2nd half and gave up 28 points to an offense led by Max Hall and Derek Anderson. Yuck! I know that “stats are for losers”, but giving up 400 total yards to the Cardinals and still having one of the worst ranked defenses against the teams they’ve played is cause for concern. Hey, at least they’re running the “Tampa 2” which is better suited for these players!

Watching the immortal Anderson rally from a 17-point deficit, when the Bucs should have stomped on the Cardinals’ collective throats, was so unnerving to Joe he broke out in hives.

This is why Joe wrote earlier in the week that with LeGarrette Blount in the game, defenses have to play the run more honestly which means the Bucs should — and can — absolutely turn the offense loose.

All of us witnessed this Sunday. It can be done.

The way the Bucs defense has been playing lately, the Bucs are going to have to win shootouts to get to the playoffs.

46 Responses to “Scary Bad Bucs Defense Played On Halloween”

  1. Tommy Boy Says:

    I know controversy makes for better stories but Palowski’s constant negativity is so tiring. He’s becoming predictable. True the defense gave up a 17 point lead. They did however have 4 interceptions which 2 were returned for TDs. It makes no difference if they were thrown right to the defender. The defense was in position to make the play and they made it! Good lord Palowski get a new song and dance. Part of the blame goes to Raheem for putting them in soft coverages after building the lead. Point is this defense got turnovers and scored TDs and this fool is bitching about it.

  2. Atrain WD40 Says:

    Any one can throw for three hundred yards if they don’t care how many times they turn it over….. ask Kitna and Cutler they rack up both the yards and the int’s plus a loss or two.

  3. jfgobucs Says:

    I see that Shawn Merriman was released…it may be that he’s not on the “Juice” anymore..but we could use a pass rusher ?

  4. Atrain WD40 Says:

    Why not take a shot he’s in the last year of his contract

  5. derf Says:

    Tommy, tommy, tommy…sure the Bucs won but part of winning and growing and getting better is to analyze what happened. Giving up that many yards to an average team (Cardinals) can be overcome; however, giving up that many yards to a good team (Steelers/Saints) and the young Bucs offense will not be able to overcome that and will lose.

    Do you really think that Matt Ryan will make the same throws as Hall and Anderson did? How about a Joe Flacco? I doubt it.

    Justin isn’t being a Negative Nancy but he’s breaking down the film and the teams play. Sometimes the truth hurts and sometimes the truth is like the Steelers girl – it’s ugly and in your face repulsive

  6. Atrain WD40 Says:

    derf i’d agree with you if he spent equal amounts of time breaking down the positive side of the games.

  7. Ash Says:

    I’m growing tired of Justin. I still love the b day challenge but getting tired of his bucs analysis.

  8. derf Says:

    Atrain – Hey I’m not going to defend anyone but when time is short why focus on what’s going well and instead shore up the negatives?

  9. lakeland bob Says:

    What about the stat that we lead the league in picks.Does that remind you of Jim Bates defense Palowski?This team is only in the second year of rebuilding.What the hell do you expect,the Steel Curtain?

  10. d-money Says:

    Here is why stats are for losers. The Cardinals had 400 yards of total offense Sunday but 239 of those yards ended in either no points or points for the Buccaneers.

    I’m not going to say everything is perfect but its the classic bend but don’t break defense that the Tampa 2 is built upon. You let them have as many yards as they want betweem the twenties but when they get near the red zone you stop them and that is what the bucs did for the most part on Sunday.

    Granted they let them score more than I would have liked but you can’t argue with the end result.

  11. ShortyBuc Says:

    “Joe was frightened beyond words that the Bucs gave up 305 yards passing to the likes of Max Hall and Derek Anderson of all people, and coughed up a 17-point lead”

    Hey Joe …wasnt at least 14pts of the the 17 point lead given up by a Stroughter boff of punt and Blount Fumble way deep in our territory…wouldnt this be a special teams/offense issue and not really the defenses fault??

  12. bucfanlostiniowa Says:

    I’d say one touch down is special teams/defense ’cause they didn’t hold em out of the end zone, and the other one is on the offense for the fumble is that better? Also how bout Freeman’s horse collar tackle tryin’ to save the touchdown that was awesome!

  13. Joe Says:

    Also how bout Freeman’s horse collar tackle tryin’ to save the touchdown that was awesome!

    You mean the 15-yard penalty? Joe’s not sure he would call a personal foul “awesome.”

  14. Joe Says:


    Of course one touchdown was returned on Blount’s fumble. On Stroughter’s mishap, the Bucs defense may have had to work with a short field, but we’re talking Derek Anderson here, not Tom Brady. Two words: Stop them.

  15. bucfanlostiniowa Says:

    No the penalty (which I believe was declined) was not awesome I meant the fact that he was able to drag him down with one arm, how many other QBs could or even would try to do that. Give me a break!

  16. ShortyBuc Says:

    Your right Joe…should have stopped Derek Anderson…hopefully with a way better QB like Matt Ryan this weekend we can show something better than in AZ

  17. Tommy Boy Says:

    People forget that the “Derek Anderson’s” on the other team get paid as well. My point about Palowski is if you listen to him as well as read what he writes he is always finding the negative and ignoring the positive (for example the turnovers). He does it with a sarcasm that undermines his supposed love of the Bucs. I’m not saying there is no relevance to bringing up the weaknesses I’m just saying that it is boring/tiring after you’ve heard it all before from the same person. Palowski is the person who complains about how much money he lost in taxes after winning the Powerball $300 million jackpot.

  18. Troxell8t8 Says:

    I agree there are many aspects of this defense that need to be improved. However, to minimize interceptions because the QB threw it right at the QB? Come on, now that is ridiculous. I thought Hall’s INT to Hayes was because Jones came in on a blitz and hit him as the ball was being thrown. Almost as ridiculous as Yasinkas writing an article that Ronde Barber isn’t HOF worthy because of the system he played. Justin, please don’t become another Pat Yasinkas. Absolutely write about the shortcomings of the defense, but don’t minimize the turnovers the defense gets because somehow the guy on the other team was in a giving Christmas mood.

  19. lakeland bob Says:

    They stop the run so lets complain about the pass defense.Larry Fitzgerald and Steve Breaston are both excellent receivers.The defense is scarey,but they seem to get the stops when they matter most.I just wish we would blitz more because we’re not getting enough pressure from our front line.

  20. OB Says:

    I swear I watched the Bucs stop Arizona on the Bucs two or three yard line on fourth down. If I was not dreaming, that is a defense. Picking up a fumble and running it in for a touchdown is luck, being in a position to intercept is skill. Somehow we cut the running yards we give up, why? Same players, maybe they are molding into a team? Learning each play? Atlanta will tell a lot, but with the Bucs right now, no one know what or how they will do anything, but they keep it exciting because you don’t know if we will intercept, catch a bomb, run over people or ?

    Remember most of you pick them to lose most of their games, the Vegas odds makers, I believe, only picked them as favorites once. Yet in spite of all, they win more than they lose. I like them and I can’t wait to see their next game.

  21. TampaFan Says:

    The Buc’s defense didn’t blow a 17 pt lead. one of those comeback points was off Blount’s fumble recovered for a TD

  22. BamBamBuc Says:

    The muffed punt was early in the game, that was Max Hall leading the team to a score on that one. In the second half, Derek Anderson led one nice drive then they got the fumble returned for a TD (one TD given up by offense, one by defense). Then there was a short punt that led to Arizona getting the ball at mid-field and another score. Yes, they should have stopped them on one of the two drives. But what about the 18 point comeback by the Bucs? We were down 7 and tied it 7-7. Then down 14-7 and tied it 14-14. Then down 35-31, and came back to win 38-35. That’s 18 points down and 3 comebacks to win… with no timeouts left on the last one. They had two TDs to Larry Fitzgerald who, if I remember correctly, is one of the BEST in the NFL! Regardless of who’s throwing it to him, Fitz is a beast. And Breaston is no slouch either. My goodness, it’s not like these guys didn’t want to win too. So, our defense gave up 24 points (14 on a short field). They also scored 14 points and had key turnovers and a critical sack/fumble.

  23. McBuc Says:

    BamBam! Right on brother! Always the voice of reason.

  24. McBuc Says:

    Sometimes I think Joe is “stiring the pot” so to speak. On one article he points out that there are no style points, and this is not the BCS, etc…Then he tells us how ugly the win was…I have to thank him though, because the fun of this site is the discusions of the one thing that we all have in common…Buc ball! Keep them rolling Joe and admin Joe. I love this stuff!

  25. Joe Says:


    Joe’s happy as hell the Bucs are 5-2, let’s not be silly. Joe wants the best for the Bucs and Joe is convinced the Bucs are in the race for a playoff berth. Joe is not satisified with that however. For the Bucs to secure a playoff berth, allowing the likes of Max Hall and Derek Anderson to run up and down the field isn’t going to cut it.

    To ignore that is, well, irresponsible.

    Happy? You bet. Concerned? Damn straight.

    Thanks for the kind words! 🙂

    (Oh, isn’t it great to be kvetching about the defense allowing too many yards and points with a winning team for a change???)

  26. BamBamBuc Says:

    “Scary Bad Bucs Defense Played On Halloween”

    Not a line from Justin’s column, but the headline of this thread. I’m guessing that’s your take on his column. However, 4 interceptions, 2 returned for TDs, a sack that forced a fumble… if that’s scary bad, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen scary good. The Steelers defenses do a great job of getting sacks, creating turnovers, and holding opponents to minimal yardage, but I rarely hear of them getting 14 points for their team. It’s not a common thing, it happens rarely in the NFL. By most teams standards, scoring twice from your defense and winning the game is a very solid performance regardless of the yards given up.

    With a 17 point lead, the defense gave up 14 points, which is still good enough to win the game…. except the offense gave up 7 as well. And special teams didn’t help out when they gave up field position at mid-field on a punt. The team had opportunities to shut down the Cardinals, and didn’t do it… that I understand. But it wasn’t scary bad… just another cardiac performance by the team as a whole.

  27. Joe Says:


    Simple question. No qualifiers, no buts, no ifs. And Joe won’t reply (unless you ask) to your answer. (And you don’t have to answer if you don’t want, this just explains where Joe is coming from; he’s already explained actually.)

    You’re good with the Bucs defense letting two horrid stiffs pass for 300 yards?

  28. BigMacAttack Says:

    A partial answer that comes to mind is “Larry Fitzgerald”. He is surely one of the top 5 WR’s in the game. Breaston made some excellent plays too. The catch Breaston made was one of the best sideline catches I have ever seen. They also had some good running plays that opened up the pass at times.
    Look, the Cards went to the Superbowl 2 years ago. They were a 10-6 team last year. 10-6 is what we are hoping and praying to get to this year. They lost Warner and a couple other guys, but they still have good players on the team. I thought the Bucs’ D played hard and made key plays when it counted, lest we forget how young these guys are, and as I said they look like a college team at times with their ups and downs. The ups are ‘Way Ups!”

  29. OAR Says:

    “Cardiac” and “scary” seem to go hand in hand to me!

  30. OAR Says:

    I know my hand wasn’t raised, but I’d like to take a shot at that question to BamBam……..”No!”

  31. McBuc Says:

    Well, my heart was pounding, so I would like to see them shut down those guys as well. At least most of it was Anderson. He flashes at times. I agree with you Joe, we need to unleash the offense like the Rams did back in the day. Sapp used to say to the offense “score 17 points and we will win”…Maybe Ronde needs to pull Freeman aside and say (give us 35 points, and we will win”.

  32. BamBamBuc Says:

    I’ll answer, Joe. If the stats come with a W, then yes, I’m fine with it. Especially considering the fact that most teams passing stats are inflated when they’re down by 17 and have to come back. They tend to throw the ball more. It’s just the nature of the beast. There are many W’s in the NFL where the losing team had 300+ passing yards, and the QB that did it usually isn’t a top notch guy, just a guy in a situation where his team is forced to throw a LOT to play catch up. And the L that they get is usually from the D getting turnovers because they’re expecting pass a LOT and sit back in coverage.

    The Bucs are lucky to have a QB like Josh Freeman who, when put in that situation, is very good taking care of the ball and not forcing passes that lead to turnovers. That’s how the team has managed to come back in the 4th quarter so often, not because he isn’t throwing the ball, but because he’s not throwing it to the other team.

    And by all means, Joe, I’d love a response. That’s what this is all about, right?

  33. OAR Says:

    “Simple question. No qualifiers, no buts, no ifs.”
    Do I get extra nap time or crayons for following directions and answering simply?

  34. Joe Says:

    Do I get extra nap time or crayons for following directions and answering simply?

    No, but perhaps you may receive chocolate chip cookies and milk. 🙂

  35. OAR Says:

    WOO HOO!

  36. BamBamBuc Says:

    Look, oar, it all depends on the results. If the result is a loss, then nobody would be ok with it. So, without qualifiers in regards to the QBs Joe’s talking about… in the Arizona game against Hall/Andersen, yes, I’m fine with it.

    Am I cool with Batch throwing for 300 yards??? Well, he didn’t have to. Ya see, they were killing us. They ran the ball. That’s what usually happens when a team has the LEAD! Batch had 189 yards and 3 TDs, and then they ran the ball down our throats.

    I’m much happier giving up 300 yards to scrub QBs than 200 yards to scrub RBs, that just means that we were getting handled that game.

  37. OAR Says:

    I’m not down on the your content, just the context or non-lack of. I think it’s funny how Joe asked for a simple answer(one word – no if’s, butt’s, etc.) and you couldn’t do it!

  38. Capt.Tim Says:

    Um, I don’t look at it as scrub QB’s. I look at it as 300 ydsagainst a passing attack lead by Larry Fitzgerald and Steve Breaston. They are undoubtedly the second and third best recievers in the NFL, behind Mike Williams. Weren’t those two guys in a Super Bowl recently? So, yeah, against the best pair of recievers in the league, yeah. 300 yds and a win, yeah, I’m good!!

  39. Capt.Tim Says:

    By the way, you guys are Drunk. The defense played good Sunday. Some of those points weren’t on the Defense! They scored 14 points, had 4 takeaways, and at the end of the game , were Knocking people down!! And they stayed down! It was sweet! I’d take that performance any day!! Are you guys skipping yer Meds again? I don’t know what more you could want! Or are we jiust so used ta bitching about the D, that we do it even after they dominate a good offense?? I think that game was the D’s turning point. 14 points, 4 turn overs, smashing hits! That’s what won the game!!

  40. Joe Says:

    And by all means, Joe, I’d love a response. That’s what this is all about, right?


    Of course Joe is happy with the wins. But that win was sort of like firefighters coming to put out a blaze. The flames are gone, the house is saved, but there are still embers burning.

    The task at hand has been solved. But there’s still work to be done.

  41. OAR Says:

    Did YOU just call someone drunk? LOL!

  42. BamBamBuc Says:


    No doubt work to be done. That was expected all year, and into future years. The results have come quicker than anyone could have expected. Are there still improvements to be made? Of course. Was the defense “Scary Bad”? By no means.

  43. BamBamBuc Says:

    A more appropriate title may have been “Buc’s D gives fans a Scare for Halloween”… or “Cardinals give Bucs fans near Scare for Halloween”…. something like that… but the D wasn’t scary bad.

  44. Joe Says:


    Derek Anderson and Max Hall racking up 305 of passing scared Joe. And Joe believes that is, indeed, scary bad.

  45. Capt.Tim Says:

    Oar- the good Captain hasn’t had a drop in months. Nor been on my beloved boat, nor had a smoke in 6 months. Sad, but true

  46. Tampa2 Says:

    Oar, Tuboat Timmie’s Mom found his cigarettes and took his tugboat away from him so he can’t play Tugboat Captain anymore in the bathtub. But I bet he’s sneaking in a drop or two when his parents aren’t home.
    Watch what happens when the Bucs give up 300 yards to the Dirty Birds. There will not be any more talk about the play-offs. We have been extremely lucky to say the least. And Morris has the defense clicking on Bates stats on average. But I bet he will not fire the D coordinator this year.