October 19th, 2011

A main reason the Bucs offense was solid last year and a key element in Josh Freeman becoming a top-flight NFL quarterback was the play of wide receiver Mike Williams.

The way the rookie out of Syracuse played, it appeared Williams was about to be a superstar.

That hasn’t happened this year as Williams numbers have been sluggish. This, in turn has led to Freeman struggling as well. Even Williams last week described his play as “terrible.”

Joe’s good friend, “The Commish,” Justin Pawlowski of WDAE-AM 620, who no longer has a sometimes Saturday show but has a regular every-Saturday show heard now through the fog of hungover Saturday mornings, wonders aloud on his blog if Williams is indeed regressing.

Williams has just 25 receptions for just under 250 yards and 1 touchdown this season. When you compare those numbers to the first 6 games he ever played in the NFL last season, when he tallied 28 receptions for 365 yards and 3 touchdowns, you do become concerned about a regression. The good news is with as good a year as Williams had last season, he only had more than 100 yards receiving in a game once. He’s just a couple big games off his pace from last season, so maybe it isn’t panic time yet on Williams.

Joe has heard in some circles that the asinine lockout and the lack of OTAs has hurt Williams in his ability to pick up different coverages that he is seeing. This makes sense. Defensive coordinators had little to do during the asinine lockout other than to watch tape. Surely they developed exotic coverages to try to take Williams out of his game, and thus far it has worked.

If lack of OTAs is the reason for Williams’ struggles, the longer the season goes, the better Williams should get. And he did show signs of breaking out in the win over the Saints.

12 Responses to “Regression?”

  1. d clark Says:

    M will is gonna be alright. He has alot of time left and with arrelious starting to come on more and more each game will help him out. That’s not to mention the emegrence of parker and dez briscoe, with the return of stroughter. He’s due for a big game. Possibly this week because I’m thinking the bears are gonna shutdown earnest in our running game but their corners are very suspect.

  2. Real Talk Says:

    Im not worried about Mike Williams at all. No way will this guy be Clayton #2. If not this week he will def break out after the bye

  3. TBSwarm Says:

    Just throw him more slants! He will find a way to break a few.

  4. flmike Says:

    Can’t remember who said it to me, but someone posted that they didn’t expect the Bucs to actually hit their stride until week 8 or so, and thats what looks like is happening.

  5. tcaviar Says:

    Joe they have looked at tape on a guy who came in as a rookie and scored double digit tds with a second year qb.He is getting double teamed but Freeman has been struggling that’s why K2 and Mike Williams numbers are down. After Freeman’s performance and think he’s back.

  6. BonesMahoney Says:

    It doesn’t really matter what defensive coordinators did during the lockout. Their players still have to pickup the system and plays and whatnot. That’s one of the reasons there was a record amount of points and passing TDs around the league through the first handful of weeks. Freeman has just really struggled and so has Williams. Hopefully the game against the Saints helped them both turn a corner.

  7. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    I fully expected that this team wouldn’t peak until around midseason and that their second half of the season would look much better than the first. It was obvious from the beginning that the lockout would affect the youngest teams more than the veteran ones.

    Remember that before this season started, Freeman had only just over a year of starting experience. Williams had a single year. Benn had less than a year. Briscoe only had a few games. Parker had a couple. Stocker had zilch.

    This is the main reason I came so unhinged about the lockout. Its effect on the youngest team in the league could be seen coming a mile away. I still expect some ups & downs over the next several games before they hit some semblance of consistency. For all intents & purposes, the first half of the season is the Bucs’ offseason to a certain extent.

  8. Matt Says:

    Remember the TD called back for a procedure call against Minn. If that counted 26 catches for about 300 yds & 2 TDs. Not that far off

  9. IMHO... Says:

    tha main thing that has regressed is his hands. More practice and film study and he’ll be good 2 go

  10. Garv Says:

    Mike Williams is fine. Anyone else see him play on Sunday?
    Mike Williams is NOT Michael Clayton and takes responsibility for mistakes rather than pointing fingers.

    Seriously folks, #19 is NOT a problem on this team, far from it.

  11. McBuc Says:

    Garv…Don’t you know, if a Bucs receiver does not score a TD every game, and post 10 catches a game, he sucks!? Welcome to the Tampa fan base. Our team is number 1 in the south with a 4 – 2 record, but hey, they are in a slump. I will take a 4-2 slump every day and twice on Sunday. Then they complain that the “main stream media” does not give the Bucs respect. Half the fans say the same type things as the media. Slump or not, they are finding ways to get it done as a team.

  12. Adam Says:

    When I hear about a receiver with a good rookie year and a fading second year, my mind drifts to the horror that was Michael Clayton. The good news is you don’t hear MW making excuse after excuse about his performance. Clayton was always “injured,” or wasn’t getting the right plays called, and then one year he showed up fat (but he could block (rolls eyes).

    I think Mike Williams will figure it out.