“Pop And Sizzle”

September 28th, 2011

Monday, Bucs coach Raheem Morris made his weekly appearance on “The Blitz,” co-hosted by former NFL quarterback Rich Gannon and popular sports radio personality Adam Schein, heard exclusively on SiriusXM NFL Radio.

 Naturally, Joe recorded this and transcribed the appearance for your reading and dancing pleasure.

Adam Schein: Coach, what a win, how are you?

Raheem Morris: Hey man, I feel great. The pressure of wins and losses have gone up greatly because of my appearances on “The Blitz” so I credit you guys for making me have the will to win these football games.

Rich Gannon: Coach, I know it was not pretty at times but it’s great to have a win over a team that you have not had luck with in your own division.

Morris: It’s good to get the winning ways in our division going again and it is a step in our goal of winning the NFC South. It is a major deal to beat guys in our own division, especially in our house.

Schein: I agree with you that it was a major deal. I know you were honest with us last week — I don’t think it was coachspeak — when you said, ‘I can’t call this a rivalry because since I have been coach they have whipped our butts head-to- head, they have beat us head-to-head.’ This is a game that I think your team had the right intensity, the right mentality, I thought the crowd in Tampa was amazing. I think the fans fed into that. You know Raheem, I am being serious, I buy into your football team, that was a real moment for you. If you lose, the naysayers say, ‘Oh, Tampa, they overachieved last season.’ You win and it is, ‘Tampa is legit. Tampa is in the landscape of the NFC.’

Morris: Yeah, I kind of agree, it was a coming of age moment for us. When you want to win home games defend your home, get the crowd into things, get them cheering on third downs. The defense was playing really well and the crowd was into it. It was like old school Tampa Bay Buccaneers, playing defense, running around, hustling and hitting. We’re getting better. At times a little bit it’s ugly as you said. But to be able to go out there and execute our four minute offense, run with power consistently right at the Falcons, that was a big time statement. No better way to run three times in a row in a victory formation.

Gannon: Lets talk about your rush defense. You held them to 30 yards on 15 carries and your defensive line played consistently across the board. You had four sacks and took the ball away four times.

Morris: I don’t necessarily buy into the theory that each week you have to stop the run. I’m more into a situations. What must we do to win the football game and yesterday was stopping the run. We had our guys play man-to-man coverage against some very talented receivers. When the defense had to stand up and stop the run we were able to stop the run and get the ball back. Watson and Clayborn were forcing fumbles. They played big and it was awesome to see.

Schein: It was a tremendous effort, especially in the fourth quarter, out of your team this year against a Falcons team with a bevy of weapons. How do you bottle this up and get this type of execution from your defense in the fourth quarter week in and week out?

Morris: I’m not sure that was our best fourth quarter defense because when we had to come back against Minnesota we had to play some big time defense. Certainly it was the best start on defense that we had, we get a sack and a fumble. That was phenomenal to get to the quarterback and he had to be aware of us and worry about that. That we would make them kick field goals, the red zone battles were huge for us. We just have to play hard, smart, fast and consistent.

Gannon: Your thoughts on Julio Jones?

Morris: We did a nice job on him all day. We had Talib on him and he got a nice gain against our young safety, a big bomb when we went to Cover-2. But we gave him a man-to-man look and battled. On the other side, we had E.J. Biggers lined up with Roddy White and I give the edge to Biggers. White is a tough player but Biggers was right there and gave him competitive looks all game. Then we had the battle of the old guys. I had Ronde on Tony Gonzalez and he had a great day. I felt great about how they played.

Schein: Coach, it was a great win for your team all around. I thought your quarterback was clutch again but if I had to nitpick, you can still have some more pop and sizzle in your offense for four quarters. Takes us through that. Tell us what you saw both negative and positive.

Morris: You know Adam, I like that. I will use that in our meetings, pop and sizzle. We want a little more pop and sizzle and when you don’t have that, you better be consistent. What our quarterback did early was recognize his problems. He was not throwing the ball with the greatest of accuracy but he made some easy throws. We got him some screens where he was able to get the ball into people’s hands that could actually go out there and make plays. He did a nice job of adjusting and using his feet to pick up some third down conversions. He kept the other team’s offense off the field which is the best defense you can have. We have to do a better job of red zone offenses and watch turnovers but he recognized what was not working we won by using his head. I love the way he is going and what he is developing into.

Gannon: I know you took a glimpse of the Colts. I’m sure you are excited to be playing on Monday night.

Morris: I’m excited to be playing in primetime. I got a chance to see the old boss. I get a chance to talk to him on Saturday. I get a chance to get him in here and run a good show for the old boss. He will be in the box watching us and I have to make him proud. I know this is a trademark of yours Adam, but I hope to give him some pop and sizzle.

Schein: I do think on two levels, yesterday was important for a win over the Falcons and it’s rare that you guys are on primetime. This is a great opportunity on a center stage to announce on national television that you guys belong on national television and the Bucs will be a force all season long.

Morris: That was sort of my talk last night to the team. Our goals are to win the NFC South and to do that, it’s impossible to ignore us and this is an opportunity to show the world what they are missing. I can’t wait.

Gannon: How do you prepare [for Monday Night Football]?

Morris: We are rookies at this. We’ll go with the normal Wednesday practice and Thursday and Friday and then we will double-down with a Friday practice on Saturday and have a walk through Sunday. We will try to execute our best plan to be our best self.

21 Responses to ““Pop And Sizzle””

  1. HugeBucFan Says:

    I love that the team is excited for the monday night game im just as excited i bought my tickets last night lets get the stadium sold out and rock the colts on monday night for the world to see

  2. Nick2 Says:

    Not sure what Raheem was thinking when he says he gave the edge to Biggers versus Roddy White. I was screaming to put Talib on him as White had something like 6 catches for 140 yards. I know they had chosen to go man on man and keep safeties at the line but 140 yards is not shutting down Roddy White. Thats really testing the bend but don’t break philosophy. From what I could see Biggers was totally outmatched but did manage to tackle him every time. What competitive looks was EJ giving him??? Maybe a wink and a nod.

  3. OAR Says:

    Not to mention, we got lucky Roddy White pulled a Michael Clayton impersonation on two easy catches! One would have been a TD and the other a first down at our 5.

  4. Rudy Says:

    I apparently did not see what Coach saw to say that Biggers had the edge over Roddy White in that game. Looked to me like Biggers was being dominated.

  5. Bobby Says:

    Yeah…E.J. came up big on a couple plays where he saved a TD on one and knocked the ball away on another but Roddy White was our best defender on a couple of plays….. I’m really looking for Gaitor to mature because I see him as a cover corner. He has speed and he is always around the ball.

  6. Jake Says:

    E.J. did alright White was thrown to 18 times and caught 9 and had no long runs after the catch and no td’s, I’d take that over what C. Johnson did to us anyday.

  7. sunrisejeff Says:

    Couldn’t agree more Jake.

  8. Pete Dutcher Says:

    If EJ can get better, then fine. But if he cannot, he’s not nearly good enough. The Bucs need a shut down corner on each side.

  9. Dave Says:

    “E.J. did alright White was thrown to 18 times and caught 9 and had no long runs after the catch and no td’s”

    EXACTLY. For those that don’t know, Roddy White was one of the best WRs in the league. Biggers played with him on an island most the day. Yes Roddy dropped 2 and caught 6. Biggers also defended 3-4 , stopped a TD and never let him get any YACs.

    I am not saying he played great, but for a top flight WR vs teams 2nd or 3rd best CB, he did alright.

    If you were to tell me right now that against Indy Wayne & Garcon will have over 100 yards but no TDs and Dallas Clark & Addai will be completely shut down ….. I will say

    I’LL TAKE IT!! and bet the house the Bucs win.

  10. Meh Says:

    I completely agree that Biggers did not have ‘the edge’ on White. Not even close. Biggers was abused by him for stretches of that game. However, to be fair to Biggers, he kept him in front of him so he never got the big play after the catch. He also had some nice breakups late to save the game.

  11. SteveK Says:

    Yeah, Biggers was “serviceable”, but nothing outstanding.

    You have to ask yourself, would Asomougha or Jonathan Joseph of done a better job?

  12. BamBamBuc Says:

    Biggers did fine. First off, 3 of Whites catches (that I can remember, maybe more) were not even when Biggers was covering him. They ran cover 3 a couple times and Barber was on him short, while Biggers took Douglas deep. Barber almost picked off that pass. But White did catch 2 against Myron Lewis and 1 in a zone against Barber. Biggers also tipped the pass away from White that Barber did intercept. Biggers made the opening tackle on kick coverage. Biggers made an open field one-on-one tackle against Michael Turner. Seriously, Biggers did ok. I’ve watched the game a few times over now and unless White was catching short passes when Biggers was 10 yards off him, he wasn’t doing much. White did drop two… one was man coverage and Biggers had him pinned against the sideline. Ryan made a nice throw and White dropped it. Another was near the goalline and could have been a TD, but again, Biggers was on Douglas in the corner of the endzone. He only came into the picture when he broke off coverage to come up for a tackle when White dropped it.

  13. Jrock (mobile) Says:

    I’m not on board with you steve. I think we could have used a good FA signing in the 3rd down/scat back or LB position, but not cb. Biggers aint bad, we’ve got some talent at the position

  14. BamBamBuc Says:

    Jrock, I’d even keep it simpler than that. If we dabbled more in the FA market (we did get a very good punter/KO specialist that really hurt a division rival) than we did, I’d say simply a quality backup RB. Doesn’t have to be a scat back, per se. Simply a RB that can come in and gain yardage on runs or passes, maybe have some ability to make guys miss (either agility like scat-backs, or break tackles like Blount). Graham does ok, but never seems to make people miss or break tackles.

    I actually like our LB depth. With Black out of the lineup, I don’t think any of us minded seeing Watson out there playing. A sack/FF was well worth it. And when Geno went out after busting up Grimm’s knee, Adam Hayward filled in pretty well. I don’t recall once in the game ever thinking to myself “Man, if Geno were in, he’d have made that tackle). Not because Geno is perfect or anything, but because Hayward is a decent backup. Also, we did get Zac Diles.

  15. Mauha Deeb Says:

    Biggers allowed 8 completions on 16 targets with 3 pass deflections and 2 of the 16 targets being drops drops by the receiver. 1 completion to Jones for 18 yds and 7 completions to White for 104 with a long of 30yds. Not really impressive numbers by any means.
    I’d put the blame for the TD on Lynch, not Barber considering Lynch was covering deep middle.
    They purposely stayed away from Talib. He was only targeted 4 times allowing a mere 28 yards on 3 receptions. If he hadn’t have missed a tackle on one of the Jones receptions the number would be 3 completions for 14 yards. Gotta make that tackle.

    @BamBamBuc White had two catches not on Biggers. One on Lewis and one on Barber.

  16. BamBamBuc Says:

    You forgot the stat about how many TDs Biggers gave up to White. Yeah, the 7th round nickel CB against the All Pro WR. How many TDs did Roddy White catch against EJ Biggers? He must have really lit him up all day, I’m guessing at least 2 if not 3 TDs, right? Oh wait, yep, that’s right…. Biggers let Roddy White catch exactly 0 TDs and deflected a pass that was intercepted by a teammate. To me, that’s a pretty good day, regardless of what the stat sheet says. If all I had to go on was a box score on Monday morning… yeah, I’d say Biggers got torched. But, it’s about more than that. Biggers was pretty much on an island with White all day, and gave up 0 TDs. I’m not saying Biggers is the BEST #2 CB around. But he’s not even our #2, he’s our #3 behind Ronde (who had one HECK of a game).

    Also, based on those numbers, I’d have targeted Talib a LOT more. Biggers gave up a 50% completion rate, Talib a 75% completion rate. And if they’re saying the late drop by White was Biggers coverage, that’s even worse. He was covering Douglas on that play. How’s he expected to cover two guys at the same time, and still hold them to 50% completion rate? Maybe they need to get someone over there to help out on one of those guys. And I’m glad he covered the guy in the end zone, coz White still could have been tackled before getting in the end zone, Douglas was already there.

  17. Joe Says:


    I actually like our LB depth. With Black out of the lineup, I don’t think any of us minded seeing Watson out there playing. A sack/FF was well worth it.

    Dekoda Watson made as many impact plays in one series than Quincy Black did in two seasons.

  18. McBuc Says:

    BamBam nailed this one.

  19. BamBamBuc Says:

    OK, so to set the record straight, I actually went back again and charted the defensive plays paying specific attention to EJ Biggers. Was he brilliant? No, he gave up 8 catches for 122 yards between Jones and White. He missed a tackle that turned a short catch into a first down early in the game. However, he did tip the pass that Ronde intercepted to end the first half, possibly saving us 3 points. Based on the final score, that’s huge and it was against Roddy White as well. But that’s not all. With about 7 minutes left in the game, the Falcons chose to “pick on” Biggers with White, going at him multiple times in a row. Gaining 15, 14, the long sideline drop by White, then another 15 yards. The Falcons were driving and “abusing” Biggers to do it. With 4:42 left in the 4th Qtr, Biggers covering Douglas in the corner of the end zone, Ronde and Lynch in short zones, Matt Ryan pumps then scrambles. Biggers stays with Douglas, Barber comes up after Ryan, and Lynch drops back, leaving Roddy White all alone. Ryan gets the pass off to White, who proceeds to drop the pass. If anyone is at fault on that coverage, it’s Lynch. When Ronde moved up after Ryan, Lynch should have been the man to move up on White. This is where it gets good. 4:25 left in the game, Ryan passes over the middle to White, Jones and Lynch are late getting help over the top, Biggers on an island with White jumps and tips a sure TD at the last second. Next play, Ryan under pressure scrambles and tosses it up in the corner of the end zone for White again covered by Biggers. The throw is deep, Biggers catches the ball out of bounds. Falcons settle for a FG because Biggers shut down White when it counted and never saw the ball again. Say what you want, look at the stats and say he was abused, but Biggers came up HUGE when it counted.

  20. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @BamBamBucs I never said he didn’t allow a TD. But his allowing of 122 definitely lead to points on the board, be it TDs or field goals. He was reasponsible for 1/3 of the passing yards alone with no one else allowing more than 49yds(Sean Jones on the busted coverage) and 37 yards(Barber). I already gave him credit for the PDs. Can’t give him too much credit for the int as it has little to do with his coverage and far more with Ronde being Ronde.

    As far as your analysis of the completion ratio, dude, Talib simply covered so well there were few chances to target him. Don’t twist it. Why target talib when outside of his missed tackle he was shutting plays down. Like I wrote earlier, if not for that missed tackle Aqib was 3 of 4 for 14 yds. That’s 3.5 yds a target.

    Are you saying Lynch was supposed to be manned up on White? I doubt that. There is also little reason for the FS to be playing left short zone. I’ll have to check on that one. I could be wrong.

    He did make some good plays. But the few good plays are masked by the many bad ones which with out a doubt lead to points on the board. I didn’t just look at the stats and say he was abused, I watched the game a couple times too.

  21. BamBamBuc Says:

    It’s cover 3. The wide CB covers the deep 3rd, the slot CB covers the short flat, the Safety covers the middle zone. When Ryan scrambled, Lynch vacated his zone, and Ronde moved up to attack Ryan, leaving the short/middle zone completely unattended. That was not on Biggers.

    I’m not discounting any of Biggers couple missed tackles that lead to a decent chunk of yardage, so why would I discount Talib’s? If not for that missed tackle? Yeah, well maybe Talib should have made that tackle then. And the blown coverage? You put that on Jones, but watch from the snap, Talib is following Jones, trailing him as if it’s man with deep Safety help. Ryan pump fakes and Talib slows down, and when the ball is thrown he’s full tilt towards Jones but too far away. Yeah, so was Jones, but I can’t completely discount Talib on that coverage until some coach say it was something other than Safety deep zone/CB man coverage.