“This Team Isn’t Ready To Go Over The Top”

August 1st, 2011

Strip away all the chatter about the 2011 season to the core and you’re left with the the ultimate question for fans of the young Buccaneers, especially as they look up at the Saints and Falcons in the NFC South:

Are the Bucs ready to make a Super Bowl run?

In Joe’s mind, the Bucs absoloutely have to be ready because when you come off a 10-win season, what the hell is left?

Especially when you have a stud quarterback and enough pieces in place at skill positions. Call Joe cynical, but banking on Freeman and others staying healthy more than one year at a time is a dangerous path. Hell, the odds of Ronde Barber and Aqib Talib being out of the league in 2012 are pretty good.

Plus, the Bucs’ stated goal is to win the division. And, of course, if you can win the nasty NFC South, then you’re certainly good enough to get to the Super Bowl.

All that written, Joe understands why the organization is acting like it’s at least a year away. Maybe that’s smart, since they probably help themselves more in the long run by sticking with young, emerging players over free agents. And Joe gets that a lot of fans agree.

Steve Duemig, the dean of Tampa Bay sports radio, weighed in on the ultimate question today on WDAE-AM 620. Speaking about the Bucs’ disinterest in signing a big-name free agent from outside the organization this offseason, Duemig emphatically said the Bucs will do it when they are ready for a Super Bowl run.

“This team isn’t ready to go over the top,”  Duemig pleaded.

Now Joe’s hardly saying the Bucs should have signed a big name free agent in the past week, but don’t put Joe in the camp that says the Bucs aren’t ready to win now.

Joe keeps coming back to finishing 10-6 with Josh Freeman and plenty of talent, and the jilted Coach of the Year candidate. 

Win now, fellas. No excuses.

76 Responses to ““This Team Isn’t Ready To Go Over The Top””

  1. Fear The Glo Says:

    Not until they can stop the damn run.

  2. McBuc Says:

    I agree Joe…Also, I like that we are signing our own hometown big names.

  3. McBuc Says:

    Fear the Glow, maybe this year they will…

  4. Eric Says:

    Excuse number 25……………..

    The truth is the bucs will spend in 2013 when there is a salary floor.

    Until then, Hugh 2.0.

  5. the_buc_realist Says:

    this team is not ready to take second place in the division. They will have continuity withe the roster and their third place as well.

  6. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Stovall signed with the Lions

  7. DailyRich Says:

    They may be a better team this year but with a worse record. The competition is tougher, and what’s more, we’re not sneaking up on anyone. We’ll take the right steps, but this ain’t the year.

  8. Brain Says:

    If we get better play from our DEs, MLB and stay healthier, there’s no reason why we can’t go the distance. All of those things are reasonable to expect: we have 2 impressive rookie DEs and Ruud is addition by subtraction. I’m not as confident on the health issue but last year was unusually bad for injuries so it’s unlikely we’ll match that any time soon.

  9. BigMacAttack Says:

    I don’t quite agree with the Big Dog here. I think now that they will only if they have to and the right player is there. I honestly think Dom wasn’t all that interested in what was out there. It’s kinda hard to believe that but he must have a lot of faith in the team he has and one more good draft may just do it for them. But I honestly think they are ready for a run right now, but first and foremost you have to stay healthy. I know Raheem will lob “Goals” out there, but not in a cocky way, more of a quiet confidence, that is prevalent though the entire locker room. I have high hopes this year, and if it is half as exciting as last year, win or lose, we’re in for a wild ride.

    And Thomas and Eric can suck it, again.

  10. Capt.Tim Says:

    “hell, the odds of Ronde Barber and Aqib Talib being out of the league by 2012 are pretty good!”

    I have said that all spring.

    Good thing everyone is cool with that! Some teams wanna win. The possibility of losing their starting CBs would make them nervous.

  11. Brandon Says:

    Capt. TIm,

    Yeah,. we might lose our starting CBs… and? Biggers and Lewis are likely ready to step in NOW… and on top of that, where the hell do you think we found Donnie Abraham, Ronde Barber, and Brian Kelly? Oh, the 3rd round for Abraham and Barber and Kelly in round 2. CBs do not hold the value in the T-2 that they might in other defenses. Good CBs can be found (obviously) from round 3 and on to being an UDFA (Brent Grimes). Spending money frivolously doesn’t guarantee anything other than not having that money for other players when the time comes.

  12. mjmoody Says:

    Day 5 of training camp, just after the very first padded practice, and before the entire team has even been on the practice field together seems a little early to be saying what this team can or can’t do.

  13. Capt.Tim Says:

    Brandon- think so? I wonder if Philly improved their chance of getting to the SuperBowl? I guess they never are lucky enough to draft rookies with

  14. Hunter Says:


    Yes they went 10 and 6 last year. But the reality is they beat one team with a winning record. That team the saints had absolutely nothing to play for. Plus the Bucs rank in the 30’s against the run and sack production. Sure they have promising young talent but that doesn’t lead to big wins. I think the Bucs are in for a rude awakening in 2011. I think Dom missed an opportunity to truly build on all the good things they did last year by not filling a few key holes on the roster.

  15. Brandon Says:

    It’s still early, but having looked at the schedule a bit I can confidently say that this team will win 11 games or more this season. Why so much confidence? Perhaps because I went on record last season and said the team would win 9-10 games last year: http://www.tampabay.com/sports/football/bucs/tom-jones-bold-predictions-for-tampa-bay-buccaneers-in-2010/1120781 Posted under “brasho”

    Before the season starts, I will be sure to post my official game-by-game predictions, which barring a catastrophic event or injury in preseason, will have us winning at least 11 games.

  16. NickinMelb Says:

    Its too convenient to say that the Bucs are ready to go over the top which translated means “don’t expect the Glazers to invest in any free agents worth a hill of beans this year.” I am not one to say we go out and sign every top free agent but please tell me we needed something besides a freakin kicker. Last year they said we weren’t ready so there will be no big free agent signings. It made sense and I believed them. This year we’re coming off a season of narrowly missing the playoffs and they still say the same thing???? To convenient Glazers too convenien. I am not saying we break the bank but we didn’t even have a “Sean Jones” comparable signing. A freakin kicker?????? Come on man are you trying to fill the seats or pad your walllets???

  17. Traew Says:

    I am a win now kinda guy – so I gave the “sheep” on the Pewterreport board a whole lot of grief about their blind love affair with Mark Dominik – who is nothing more than a yes-man for the Glazers who they have had in their back pocket for close to a decade.

    Now, that does not deny the fact that he has struck gold on some draftees and free agents. I will give him credit for many of those moves.

    But his good fortune also gave the Glazers some breathing room. They could afford to adopt this “blueprint” plan and insist that they are grooming the young players for a big Spuper Bowl run in 2012 and beyond.

    The true test will be when the contracts of Freeman, Williams, Blount, McCoy and all the other young guys come up for renegotiation. If the Glazers pay – then they will have been honest with the fans. If they don’t, then we shall see…

    But the first true test of “we want to reward our own guys” was Barrett Ruud – and they let him walk. Of course we can now argue if Ruud was worth it, but the same will be said in 2012 and beyond.

    My gut tells me the Glazers are playing a big shell game. They will find a reason not to pay when the piper comes due. And all the sheep will continue to make excuses…

  18. Brandon Says:


    You can only win the games against the teams you play,,, and the Bucs won 10 games in the NFL, which I don’t care if you play the Redskins every week, is not an easy task.

    The Saints had plenty to play for, as a matter of fact, Sean Payton blames the Saints collapse against the Seahawks on the fact that he “tried to beat the Bucs” and left his starters in to get the crap kicked out of them before the game. The Saints were trying to win the game, plain and simple…otherwise Drew Brees would have played a quarter, and all other Saints stars would have been sat out or barely playing. They wanted to win that game, and much like the season before in NO, they didn’t.

    As for the other teams we didn’t beat with a winning record, 4 of those losses could have gone either way… bad luck, lack of talent, whatever it was, we came close and didn’t get it done… still an admirable feat considering the Bucs were the youngest team in the NFL last season…AND WILL ONLY GET BETTER!

    So, anyways, what are these holes in our roster you are talking about? I see a very solid roster with good young players and competition at EVERY position. I wish we were a little bit more sure of our situation at safety, but the only free agent that was worth anything was Eric Weddle and he went and got paid way too much by San Diego, good for him. I like the guys we have, especially if Tanard gets reinstated.

  19. Capt.Tim Says:

    Damn it!

    I guess they aren’t lucky enough to Draft rookies with potential. When their rookies show up, they must all suck.

    We played a lot Of rookies last year. Part Of that was great research by Dom.

    Part of it was that we were stripped of talent and depth, and had tons of holes to fill.

    A lot of rookies can play. The question isnt can this kid do the job. The question is- can we win a Championship with his skill level.

    Management doesn’t think so. They’ve said that when the team was ready to fight for the Championship, they would sign the missing pieces.

    Not signing anyone, by their own plan, tells you they don’t think we are ready to win yet.

    Some of these guys must not be as good as we hope.

    Different opinions?

  20. NickinMelb Says:

    Joe here is a good one for you? What if the Glazers told the Man U hooligan fans that they needed to start over dump all of their top talent and start rebuilding with no name youthful potential stars??? Oh lord there would be a riot. I mean they just let go the most expensive soccer player in the world (reynaldo) and the fans went ballistic. Thats like the Bucs having Tom Brady! We would kill to have Tom Brady but nooooooooo we aren’t ready. Then the Big Dog comes on and shills for the Bucs (yes I said it even though he denies it.) Too convenient that the Glazers once again are on the cheap this year even after narrowly missing the playoffs. Gotta love Eric’s post Hugh 2.0. Right on the money!!!!!!!!!

  21. Brandon Says:

    All of you that are still pining for Barrett Ruud obviously have amnesia. The Bucs have been horrid against the run with Ruud at the helm for the past 2 1/4 seasons. He was a big reason for that. If you think he should be “rewarded” for his subpar play, then I don’t know what to say other than, “Learn more about how the game is played.”

  22. Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    I agree with Brandon. Tampa beat up the Saints badly, setting them up to collapse out in Seattle. Despite all that, I don’t quite see Tampa as ready for a Super Bowl Run, yet.
    I think we sneak into the playoffs as a wild card team. Our schedule is a lot tougher this year.

  23. MTM Says:

    Joe – I do not buy the whole “we going to only build with the draft” theory. Here’s why: If the draft was the absolute best way to build your team 100% of the time. Then why doesn’t everybody do it. Even the well managed teams sign draft picks. Do you think Philly Fan(man this hurts) is bummed they picked up Cromartie and Nnamdi. No they are not. So now it looks like the Buc’s will have to rely heavily on the Defensive line (which are all very young), Line backing core which is very young and the possibility of Rhonde getting hurt or Talib going “Talib” again. They could have and should have went after Nnamdi. They are millions under the cap. If I here how they intend on extending core players I am going to puke.
    How do all the teams in the league manage to outspend the Buc’s and keep adding on. I do not see this as a management issue but an ownership issue. Rah and Dom have done a remarkable job with the money they have been allotted.

  24. Thomas "the Truth" 2.2 Says:

    Duemig is almost always wrong on the bucs, except this time. This could easily be a 5-8 win season. They will need amazing luck to qualify for the playoffs.

    However, this whole “the glazers will spend when the team is ready argument” falls coincidentally close to when spending is mandatory. Kind of like “build through the draft” is also the cheapest way, and roster spending coincidentally stopped with Manu. Too many coincidences for me.

  25. Lucas Jackson Says:

    Neither Joe has anything to say about Balog? What’s up with that?

  26. BigMacAttack Says:

    Brandon, we are pretty much on the same page. I don’t see any holes either.

    And why would we want Tom Brady when we have Josh Freeman?

  27. Mr. Lucky Says:

    The Bucs are ready for a SuperBowl run?


    There are too many unknowns on this team – from rookie DE’s to rookie DT’s to a rookie MLB as well. Heck the ONLY defensive players returning who weren’t injured last year are Barber and Hayes!

    This isn’t the proper time to stock up on free agents – except for that killer kicker – Woo Hoo!!!!!!

  28. Matt Says:

    How do you guys know their not ready for a superbowl run? these guys’s mentality is to ignore what everyone else thinks and go out there and win. i think their capable of winning the NFC south if they try hard enough. we were 10-6 last year. can easily be improved to 13-3 if they put their minds to it.

  29. Matt Says:

    It irritates me when people automatically assume the bucs can’t handle it because of the unknowns on the team. how many rookies stepped up last year that nobody knew about and made big plays? i have confidence in our bucs and i believe they can do it. josh freeman is a born leader and is certainly capable of winning a superbowl, even in his 3rd year. He has loads of talent, and loads of talent around him. The only thing that kind of bothers me, is the defense.

  30. RastaMon Says:

    that would be…
    “Stud in waiting…”
    gotta go and pick up the read were I left off…

  31. Patrick Says:

    You guys who keep saying the Bucs went 10-6 last year, don’t you realize that it was with one of the easiest schedules in the league?! Not to say they weren’t any good, but please face the facts. The schedule is much harder this year, MUCH harder. Sorry, but we won’t have as many breaks for this year. As far as I’m concerned, I don’t feel like we upgraded our roster hardly at all this offseason. We retained our same mediocre LB’s and didn’t get new ones (except for Foster, but he’s a rookie), and got 2 new starting rookie DE’s that’ll add to the inexperience and ineffectiveness on the line. There’s just not enough star power on this team! Not enough. Too many unknowns like someone else said. We need to make some moves that are going to give this team a spark and make a drastic impact. I think Dominick’s drafting has been excellent, but I don’t like this approach of sitting out of free agency every stinking year and just watching other teams improve their rosters while we just stick with the same mediocre players over and over again and just hope that all our rookies will pan out. Little to no veteran leadership either……and I’m sorry, a coach who played in the NFL as a backup is not the same as one. Who are these kids going to learn from?

  32. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I can’t wait for the season to start so we can actually see how good (or bad) this team is going to be!!!

  33. m.wesley Says:

    Patrick,who mentored Freeman?

  34. BigMacAttack Says:

    I feel this team could have made a Super Bowl run last season. What if the refs had not made a handful of bad calls? What then? Where would they be? AT the end of the season the Bucs could have beaten any NFC team. No Greenbay, ATL was over-rated, Saints lost to the Seahawks, the Bears QB sucked, all mediocre. The AFC teams had a few powerhouses on defense but the Jets lack a QB, The Colts were beat up, and the Pats choked, leaving the Steelers. I think on a given day, the Bucs could have beaten the Steelers in a rematch. Just my opinion, just sayin, and they really weren’t that far away. For all intents and purposes, they should be better this year with a healthy more experienced team and the addition of Clayborn & Bowers. Yeah it’s my rose colored, Koolaid guzzelin opinion, but I think we have a serious contender that won’t back down from a fight, right here, right now. Go Bucs! Hell Yeah! Let’s Kick some A$$!

  35. Mr. Lucky Says:

    Matt you’re out of your freakin mind if you REALLY think the Bucs will be 13-3 – SERIOUSLY.

    Last year was a fluke in the fact that the Bucs outplayed themselves and their expectations. It was great to watch.

    could that happen in 2011 as well? Sure it COULD, but odds are it won’t. I’d be happy with a 9-7 season (possible wild card). But SuperBowl talk about a team that has way too many unproven players is ……

    Ok then Matt, be a first rate HOMER

  36. Diaz Says:

    Joe great article like always, Duemig needs to learn from you!!!

  37. BigMacAttack Says:

    All the negativity and pessimism won’t faze this old boy in the least. I’m ready for the first game.

  38. BigMacAttack Says:

    I said 13-3 too. So I’m with Matt. Hide and watch Lucky, you’re in for a surprise. These guys are rockin already.

  39. BigMacAttack Says:

    The wild card here is Josh Freeman. no way in hell I’d bet against him any day of the week.

    Determination Brings Excellence!

  40. K2theSoldier Says:

    9-7 is perfectly acceptable, that wouldn’t be a disappointment for me. Is it enough to win the South? Heck no, but it could get us into wild card contention. Once your in the playoffs anything goes and anybody can win.

  41. BigMacAttack Says:

    C’mon guys. WTF? Can I at least get a little enthusiasm for our team? That’s half the problem with this fan base, is that there are so many negative Nellies in the crowd. Everyone expects to lose. No one ever trys to help elevate the team. And the the other half of the problem is that too many people don’t show up, even when they have tickets, free ones to boot.

    I hate to bash our fans, because yes they are at the games, but so often you’d think you were at a golf tournament where so many are afraid to make any noise. God bless all of our loud rowdy ass fans that never shut up during the whole game.

  42. BigMacAttack Says:

    I’m pissed.

  43. Eric Says:

    Id like to know how the floor got delayed till 2013,

    Got Glazer Boy prints all over it.

  44. Snook Says:

    Ruud sucks. His 1 year contract proves it.

    Smart player. Just doesn’t have the physical talent to back it up.

  45. Snook Says:

    Classic Bucs fans. Always negative.

  46. Brain Says:

    All this talk about “unknowns” is stupid. The Packers won a Super Bowl last year with major contributions from a bunch of rookies, some of which were UDFAs (James Starks, Sam Shields). No team is without issues or unknowns. The Eagles (who I’m sure some of you aspire to follow) have arguably the worst LBs in the league to go along with their “dream team” of above-average veterans who were grossly overpaid. If you guys spent more time evaluating tape and less time dreaming up cynical comments to write on message boards, you’d recognize that these “young unknowns” are legit talents. Again, to use the Packers as an example, Ted Thompson is one of the best in the business and drafted some underrated talents (Sherrod, Cobb, House). The Packers will likely have major contributions from their rookie class again. The same goes for us. Dominik has earned the fans’ trust and this year’s draft class is even better than last year’s. If you don’t believe in that then you’re watching the wrong sport.

    We didn’t load up on big-name FAs because we trust the current group of players in-house. Every team in the league wants to win. There’s major turnarounds every year, both good and bad. Every team expects to compete and prepares their team with that expectation in mind. The problem is that every year hordes of unintelligent fans start crowning teams after FA because of how they look on paper. Every year these fans are proven wrong and the cycle repeats. Think before you press the submit comment button, or just say off the internet altogether.

  47. nick Says:

    We are building the right way, with our own playas that will turn into superstars, we will win 10 games this year against tougher teams watch out in 12 and 13 and 14 for this bucs team

  48. Pete Dutcher Says:

    I haven’t seen you since the Bucs forum!

    Ruud wasn’t the test. Joseph was. Ruud was washed up, Joseph is not.

    As to a superbowl run, it’s not likely. As I’ve been saying, the Bucs are still in that rebuilding phase. Rebuilding, as I said before, is not just adding talent…it’s developing it as well.

    To expect our DEs to do well enough for us to make it to the SB is expecting too much out of them. What happens when they go 8-8 for the season? Everyone gets mad, stomps their feet and refuses to buy tickets?

    We have DTs in their 2nd year (Miller in his 3rd?), DEs in the rookie years. We may have Hayward now, but don’t ecpect him to start.

    And next year we’ll need to add the final pieces…secondary.

    I believe its possible we could make it to the playoffs on our offense…and maybe by the playoffs our Dline will be gelling enough to get us a second game in. But these guys are too young to go all the way (experience-wise).

    I would be thrilled if the did…in fact I actually put in a prayer request for it this sunday (doesn’t hurt!), but I’m not going to be mad if they don’t go all the way. I won’t even get mad if they do not make the playoffs this year.

    It’s a developmental year. And Dominick is smarter than you think Traew…he’s adding CBs last because they can actually do well as rookies.

    And because they are still in the developmental phase…they are not ready for big spending in free agency.

  49. Joe Says:

    Joe has to give mad props to Steve Duemig for his discipline and self control.

    Some numbskull called his show today and claimed the Bucs should have traded for that attention whore OchoStinko. Steve pretty much let the guy go. Joe would have erupted.

    Joe swears he would take Preston Parker or Dez Briscoe over OchoStinko.

    Look, Joe totally understands why someone would want to punch Marvin Lewis. But halftime of a playoff game is not the time.

    This sideshow act has been washed up for a few years now.

  50. Pete Dutcher Says:

    I should add…what I want to see this year is good football. I can tolerate mistakes…but I want to see them correcting them as they go.

    One thing about the Gruden games…most of them were more stressful than enjoyable.

  51. bucswin Says:

    With Freeman and the way this offense is coming together, the playoffs will always be within reach. If we get any improvement out of the D and the guys stays healthy, a deep playoff run is possible.

    LOL @ Traew for claiming that Ruud was the first test? Pretty funny. And I liked Ruud. But obviously, Morris feels comfortable with the youngsters. Ruud wasn’t a test and anybody who thinks he was doesn’t follow this team closely.

    I wonder if the Glazers are going to sign Freeman when the time comes? Seriously? No wonder our fans have a reputation of being some of the worst in the league.

    Cannot wait for this season and a lot of wins. I think 10-11 wins are possible. Schedule is tougher but to me it doesn’t appear to be THAT much tougher. Then again, you never know which team will surprise and which team will disappoint as the year goes on. So, it’s hard to rank the strength of schedule at this point with any certainty.

  52. Fear The Glo Says:

    McBuc Says: “Fear the Glow, maybe this year they will…”

    Its going on 4 years. They better damn well try.

  53. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I’m with you 100% BigMac. The beginning of the year is the time when fans of ALL teams should be super excited, expecting their team to win the Super Bowl. Isn’t that what being a fan is all about? My brain tells me we may not be a Super Bowl team yet, but my heart doesn’t give a s&*% what my brain feels. Combine this lockout nonsense with what I feel is the most talented Bucs team since our SB team and I can’t wait for some Buc football. I am excited every year, but this year just feels different.

    I’ve said it before and I will say it again: Those of you who live near Tampa and can afford to go to games – go to the games!!! I would give anything to have that luxury. Watching the games on TV are great, but nothing beats the experience of being at a game (it’s kind of like watching porn versus….., well you get the picture). I can’t make it to Tampa this year, but I’ll be at SF and Atlanta screaming my head off for the Bucs. This is going to be a great year, and the great thing is it’s going to get better and better. Go Bucs!!!!!

  54. McBuc Says:

    25th SOS last year…18th this year…not that big of a difference. There is no luck in the NFL, every team can win any game. Come on guys, the Bucs have had 1 padded practice and you so called fans are already giving up. Of course many of you were saying the same thing last year, so I guess it should not surprise anyone.

  55. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    “Id like to know how the floor got delayed till 2013,

    Got Glazer Boy prints all over it.”


    I’d like to know how you are able to function in society, much less as a supposed lawyer. Very scary. Yeah, the Glazers, who were not present in any negotiations, insisted on having the floor delayed. How stupid can one human being be? I really liked you a lot better the last couple months when you weren’t here.

  56. Mr. Lucky Says:

    @BigMac – I’ve read these posts and I don’t see the negativity that you do. You and Matt have, in my rational opinion, unrestrained optimism. Myself and others who are predicting an 8-8 or 9-7 season have a more restrained realistic approach.

    So in YOUR mind realistic = negativity???

    LAST year was negative from most everyone, myself included. I’d rather have the bar set lower and be surprised if/when the team surpasses that goal. YOU on the other hand will most certainly be disappointed if the Bucs finish 9-7.

    Look at the very first game against the Lions. They beat us last year (thanks to a blown ref’s call against K2) and they have improved their defense, plus they’ll have Stafford for this game. This game should prove to be close and fun to watch. Who’s gonna win this game? Seriously I don’t know. I HOPE the Bucs win but I wouldn’t be shocked at a close loss. Without seeing any practice/games it’s too early to call.

    That is NOT being negative dude. It’s a shame that you are so intolerant of anyone who doesn’t think or post like you, especially when there are no facts or evidence to back up your position. Personaly I think YOU’RE the negative Nancy.

  57. Capt.Tim Says:

    I’m just not sure I understand the message we’re being told.

    I think we are ready to for a playoff spot, like many others who watched last season. Meybe not a SuperBowl contender, but fight for a playoff spot.

    Dom has said, when the team is ready to contend, we will spend theoney in Free agency, right? No free agency- means management doesn’t think the team is a contender yet.

    Sooo- we do nothing to improve and become a contender?? And don’t give me the” we build thru the draft, we draft Rookies!” speil. EVERY team drafts Rookies. I know we think ours are 10 times better th

  58. Capt.Tim Says:

    I’m just not sure I understand the message we’re being told.

    I think we are ready to for a playoff spot, like many others who watched last season. Meybe not a SuperBowl contender, but fight for a playoff spot.

    Dom has said, when the team is ready to contend, we will spend theoney in Free agency, right? No free agency- means management doesn’t think the team is a contender yet.

    Sooo- we do nothing to improve and become a contender?? And don’t give me the” we build thru the draft, we draft Rookies!” speil. EVERY team drafts Rookies. I know we think ours are 10 times better theirs, but ours haven’t won anything yet. So we don’t know.

    Just seems that if management doesn’t think we can contend this year, we should be doing things to improve. We can’t be in “rebuilding stage” forever.
    What part of the team isnt at championship level? Why not?

    It’s Josh Freeman dynasty, year 3. How many more years before management starts doing it’s part to win

  59. Niko (The Optimist) Says:

    Joe I have to disagree, and Im the bloody optimist!
    I do not feel the Bucs are Super Bowl ready, but are in year 2 of the rebuilding year.

    That DOES NOT MEAN that they CANT go to the SuperBowl. Need I remind anyone of the 1981 San Francisco 49ers who had a top ten offense in 1979 and 1980 but tried over 20 people at secondary. What did they do? They drafted 3/4 of their secondary with Ronnie Lott and Eric Wright among others. Result? Super Bowl first year, and more. So who knows.

    As I explained on Bucstop.com, I think everyone has too high of expectations and thats why no one is willing to settle with signing our own young players as opposed to going out and signing a Free Agent big name guy. Remember, our expectations were 5 wins last year, so it doesn’t matter.

  60. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    @Nico (THe Optimist) — Turn in your optimist card, dude. Too high expectations? They’re certainly good enough to win 10 or 11, and if you’re there, then you have to be thinking Super Bowl run. It’s just simple logic.

  61. thomas 2.2 Says:


    The point that the logical are making:

    “Yes, they can possibly win 10 games. They can just as easily, perhaps more easily, step back and win 6.”

    What does that mean? They are the type of team that if everything breaks in their favor, they can be in consideration for the 6th seed. If it doesn’t they are a 6 or 7 win team. That does not make them a super bowl challenger yet. Green Bay was a unique example last year of youth (Matthews, Hawk and Raji) supplemented by a few key vets – Woodson (12 years – UFA), Ryan Pickett 10 years (UFA), Donald Driver (12 years) Chad Clifton (12 years), of course Rodgers (7 years) etc that was primed to come together. Even the young starters on the Pack had 3-6 years experience like Jennings, Collins, Nelson, Williams etc.

    This team is far from where the Pack was last year in terms of being super bowl ready. Further, the Pack had an excellent pass rush – a key component for advancing in the playoffs. The bucs had/have the worst pass rush in football bar none.

    The bucs are far from that

  62. BigMacAttack Says:

    Now, I’m really pissed.

    Even Niko has the Bug. And the Captain?

    Not really, I’m just messing around.

    But I’m upping my prediction to 15-1 and it’s all ya’ll’s fault.

    Aloha, my Hawaiian Brother in Arms.

    After we destroy the Lions and their sucky QB, you’ll all feel better.

  63. m.wesley Says:

    Well Thomas if they are that far behind we are not ready to load up on free agents is that what you are admitting?

  64. thomas 2.2 Says:

    No. The Glazers and Dom are admitting that. If you believe what they say, i.e., that they are waiting to add key free agents until they are legit super bowl contenders, and they aren’t adding key free agents, the only logical conclusion is: that the Glazers and Dom don’t think that they are ready.

    The other logical possibility is: this whole “waiting to add UFA’s or trade for key vets” notion is just a b.s. excuse for the true plan to save 50 million on payroll so they can stuff that $ in the Glazer kids and MANU’s bank accounts until the rules require fair market spending in 2013.

  65. Mauha Deeb Says:

    Dang, Niko? How is “The Optimist” not shooting for the stars? My whole world just flipped.

  66. McBuc Says:

    Yeah, I’m with BigMac and BamBam…I hope the Bucs can shove crow down Eric and Thomas’s throat…Of course if they win 10 games and make the play offs I can see Thomas’s post now…”Well, they had the 18th SOS, so they just played easy teams.”

  67. McBuc Says:

    Thomas, I have asked you a few times now, but you never answer…What will you say if the Bucs go 10-6 and make the play offs? I really want to know how you will feel.

  68. Pete Dutcher Says:

    I think the problem here is everyone seems to think it’s “either” – “or”.

    Yes, they won 10 games and that was awesome. I would in no way try to minimize that. But to pretend strength of schedule had nothing to do with it is to do the team an injustice. It’s placing unrealistic expectations on them.

    There are plenty of great things that came out of last year. We had a lot of rookies playing. Going 10-6 was an excellent confidence builder. Last year I predicted 9-7, so I was ecstatic that I was one game too low.

    Niko (The Optimist) Says:
    August 2nd, 2011 at 8:20 am
    Joe I have to disagree, and Im the bloody optimist!
    I do not feel the Bucs are Super Bowl ready, but are in year 2 of the rebuilding year.

    That DOES NOT MEAN that they CANT go to the SuperBowl. Need I remind anyone of the 1981 San Francisco 49ers who had a top ten offense in 1979 and 1980 but tried over 20 people at secondary. What did they do? They drafted 3/4 of their secondary with Ronnie Lott and Eric Wright among others. Result? Super Bowl first year, and more. So who knows.

    You point about the 49ers supports the point I made above last night. The 49ers added the secondary as a last, final piece because secondary is one of the positions that can be picked up more quickly.

    The Buccaneers still need to address that aspect. Even if Talib somehow manages to avoid suspension or getting cut, we still have the other side to address. Barbers replacement should already be on the roster, preparing behind him. But he’s not, so next year will be the year.

    If the Bucs somehow make the playoffs this year, then next year Dominick would have to spend money in free agency, because the team will have proven they are ready to contend.

    We can’t just assume they are ready. That’s how teams make bad moves. We have to make them prove they are ready. They have to earn it.

    And until they do, Dominick won’t be spending money in free agency.

    Last year was great, but as noted, we played a lot of rookies. Most of those rookies did well. But they have to prove they are not “one year wonders” before Morris and Dominick fully commit to spending money.

    Mike Williams, for example. Is he a Michael Clayton or a Randy Moss? )talent-wise)

    Blount…is he an Earnest Graham or a L.T. (or whoever you want to compare him to)?

    Is GMC a Warren Sapp or a bust?

    Are Bowers and Clayborn going to be Gaines Adams or Simeon rice?

    Is Benn a Reidel Anthony or a Reggie Wayne?

    Is Stroughter a Brian Clark or a Chris Carter?

    Too many unanswered questions at the moment. We don’t know enough about the talent and until we do, Morris and Dominick need to keep on treading forward like they have been.

  69. thomas 2.2 Says:


    If the bucs go 10-6 and make the playoffs, i will be pleased so long as they compete in the playoffs and don’t look clearly outclassed.

    I always give credit where I believe that it is due. For example, dom has done a good job, Olson and Freeman – excellent jobs, Williams great job, Blount good job. I was very pleased with Cody Grimm and Talib. D Penn, DJ, Faine are very good when healthy.

    I think Rah and the defensive front 7 stink to the high heavens – I believe that they are the worst front 7 in the NFL. I do not believe that the rooks or GMC will be average NFLers for at least another season. Foster will initially be a drop-off from Ruud. The decisions to go with all these rooks up front will not reap benefits in 2011.

    As for Rah, a very smart football guy made a great point, if Rah was merely the defensive coordinator of the bucs, you would have to think that his job would be on the line. But bc he is also the HC and the team improved purely bc of Olson’s offense, he is insulated from the criticism that most Coordinators get. Rah has scapegoated assistants who have performed better than he as DC. Food for thought?

  70. Pete Dutcher Says:

    thomas 2.2 Says:

    August 2nd, 2011 at 10:37 am
    No. The Glazers and Dom are admitting that. If you believe what they say, i.e., that they are waiting to add key free agents until they are legit super bowl contenders, and they aren’t adding key free agents, the only logical conclusion is: that the Glazers and Dom don’t think that they are ready.

    I cannot believe I’m saying this, but Thomas might be right this time when he says the above….except that it’s not the Glazers, it’s Dominic and Morris.

    Although, I would say that adding hte punter in Free Agency was a key free agent.

    But it could also mean that they feel the team is so talented that no one on the market was better.

    I guess you forgot that possibility, Thomas.

  71. Ravelston Says:

    You can blame the lack of spending on many things but “stuffing $s into Man United’s bank accounts” certainly isn’t one of them. United are the most valuable sporting franchise in the world (Forbes, 2011) because of the massive cash flow they generate. Every penny in their bank accounts – around $250m at the beginning of the summer – they generated themselves.

  72. Pete Dutcher Says:

    Good lord, Thomas…if they make the playoffs, I don’t care if they look good or bad. THEY ARE YOUNG.

    It would still mean that the team has gotten better each year since Morris and Dominick took over.

    If they make the playoffs, it’s a step further. Even if they do poorly. NEXT YEAR they would be expected to do better.

    I think Rah and the defensive front 7 stink to the high heavens – I believe that they are the worst front 7 in the NFL. I do not believe that the rooks or GMC will be average NFLers for at least another season. Foster will initially be a drop-off from Ruud. The decisions to go with all these rooks up front will not reap benefits in 2011.

    They stink to high heaven? Thomas, I think some small part of you has decent instincts, but your way of expressing them stinks to high heaven.

    Everything you say is based from a negative perspective…everything.

    Here’s what I think will happen:
    In the first half of the season, the team will have to be carried by the offense. There’s no way around it. It’s been the same for years.

    Not only does the defensive line have to learn their roles, but they have to learn to gel with each other…to trust one anothers instincts.

    And even after that, they will then have to learn to play the full 60 minutes. Sound’s dumb, but every year under Gruden and Monte, the defense got worse in the second half.

    These guys have to learn their roles, and then apply them for full games.

    It will take at least half a season to do that.

    But if the offense can pull off some wins in the first half, they’ll have a rapidly improving defense from game 9 thru 16. That’s when the team might have a chance at the playoffs.

    There’s always a chance Bowers and Clayborn could surprise everyone and do their thing earlier, but I’ll be happy either way.

  73. McBuc Says:

    Pete, thanks for answering, you are right on.

    Thomas, by your logis would you also say that Gruden was aweful and was carried bt Monte? I for one would not say that, but Gruden never really created that lasting offense. It was never great, but Monte’s defense was always great with a year or two of exceptions. You cannot beleive that these players comeout and talk about how much they love Morris and also beleieve that the head coach had nnothing to do with the team winnning. Your hate for Morris shades your reason. The “overall” defensive stat was middle of the pack, so I would guess even as a DC Morris would be safe. PA is a more important stat than RD, would you not agree?

  74. Eric Says:

    If they win ten games and make the playoffs ill be as happy as Glazer Boy who finds a nickle in his driveway…………..

  75. Dave Says:

    The issue is the D-Line and the LBs. They are young an inexperienced. If Black can breakout and McCoy shows tremendous progress, they have a chance. Starting to rookie DEs though makes it tough. As good as they might become, 5-7 sacks each would be tremendous. Anything more and they are going to be dominant for years to come.

    Basically they need about a sack more a game AND a massive improvement in run stopping. The way the coaches are teaching them to get up field and be disruptive is going to work wonders… but can it work so quickly? I doubt it. I expect improvement and I expect them to make the playoffs but I don’t think they will be good enough at the front 7 on D for the playoff run.

    Who knows though, the offense has the potential to be explosive and consistent and could carry them.

    Can’t wait to find out.

  76. BigMacAttack Says:

    Eric, that’s the most intelligent thing you’ve said in months.

    Thomas, you’re a dumbass, Beavis.

    I don’t even read your stupid drivel anymore. Why waste my time a moron that isn’t even a Buc Fan.