“I Don’t Think They Have Any Character”

December 12th, 2011
The Bucs fielded a crushing assessment from Bucs beat writer Rick Stroud

The list of things wrong with the Bucs grows weekly and fans and media are piling up with damning criticism.

St. Pete Times beat writer Rick Stroud jumped on top of pile today, sharing fightin’ words during an interview on The Dan Sileo Show on WDAE-AM 620.
Rick Stroud: Just because a little adversity strikes, I don’t understand why, you know, why that team couldn’t right itself, stop the bleeding sort of speak. I think that the most alarming thing … . It amazes me. I’m sitting here thinking these guys were 4-2, having beaten New Orleans and Atlanta with essentially the same team. You lose Gerald McCoy and Cody Grimm; you replace one with Tanard Jackson. It doesn’t make sense that they’re performing at such a low level. Unfortunately, there’s going to be changes made.

Dan Sileo: Rick, why are you afraid to use the word, ‘They quit? (yes, Joe knows that’s two words)

Stroud: I don’t think they quit. I don’t think they have any character, Dan. I mean, I think they’re out there competing, but I think what you find out about your football team is not in good times. You know, everbody’s a winner in good times. You know, you’re 10-6, you know, there’s lots of love to go around. It’s when adversity strikes. And it’s in a season and in a game. And they haven’t been able to respond to it …

You can hear all of Stroud’s interview here.

Joe has no explanation for the Bucs’ lack of resiliency and their emotional weakness. It was the exact opposite last season when the Bucs displayed loads of character and were comeback kids thriving in late-game adversity.

25 Responses to ““I Don’t Think They Have Any Character””

  1. flmike Says:

    The lack of character and leadership comes from the top, thats the Head Coach. He has no true leadership skills or ability whatsoever, he looks more lost than his rookies do, he is abysmal and he has made me hate my team. This organization is a piss poor joke if they allow this to go on unabated any longer, Raheem needs to go and he needs to go now, you have 3 games left, we are going to lose them anyway, just fire his ass now. It doesn’t matter who is named interim, he shouldn’t be here 10 minutes after the end of the Atl game anyway. Just show me and the rest of your fans something, anything to say “We aren’t happy with this either” but no, nothing from1 Buc, just silence. Like i said if Raheem is here next season, I am not. And I am sure I am not alone.

  2. Jeff Says:

    What the Bucs lack is exactly what the Broncos have. A true leader. Same talent generally. You see the immediate difference it makes.

  3. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    Agree with Jeff. Denver added John Fox and there was phenomenal improvement in the defense, then they started Tebow and the offense suddenly has tremendous character & resilience. It’s obvious the Bucs need some new ingredients in both coaching as well as personnel. I don’t care if Raheem stayed on another decade, he’d never win anything at all. You either have it or you don’t. Raheem doesn’t have it.

  4. BucFan South Tampa Says:

    Look on the bright side, we have the fifth pick of the 2012 draft, as it stands today. Maybe the second by the time the seasons ends. Of course then we will pick another damn DT who can tackle or a corner who cant cover, or a wide receiver who cant get separation, but other than that, the future is so bright I have to wear shades.

  5. flmike Says:

    That win was more about Chicago losing than Denver winning. Put either Cutler or Forte in that game for Chicago and they win going away. I wouldn’t put to much stock into Tebow being in Denver much beyond this season. Elway clearly doesn’t like him, and having lived in that area for a very long time, Elway IS the Broncos, and now that he is running that organization and will probably be it’s next owner, if I were Tebow I wouldn’t sign any long term house lease.

  6. Matt Says:

    5th? I’m pretty sure we’re still stuck around 8 or 9.

    We’re going to lose every SoS tiebreaker so will pick at the end of all of the teams with our record.

  7. CreamsicleBananaHammock Says:

    If, however, you are indulgent, but unable to enforce your commands; and incapable, moreover, of quelling disorder: then your soldiers must be likened to spoilt children; they are useless for any practical purpose

  8. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    I once dreamed of 11 and 5 with a playoff berth, now I’m dreaming of 4 and 12 with a top five draft pick. My, how things can change.

  9. Bobby Says:

    @flmike….Please dude. Give Tebow and the team their props. Tebow, unlike the Bucs, is showing improvment week to week. The entire Bronco team is rallying to this kid because he is a leader, whether you want to recognize it or not. I was one who predicted that Tebow would not only succeed in the NFL but would be a pro bowl QB. He works too hard to not progress and as he does progress he will not only beat teams with his feet but he will beat teams with his arm too. Elway WAS the Broncos. Right now Elway is a crotchety middle aged man that the fans would gladly run out of town on a rail and TEBOW is the Broncos. Thank God that we have a kid playing football that fathers can actually point to and tell their kids “Son, that is a true sports hero…a high character individual whose actions both on and off the field are worth emulating.”

  10. BucFan South Tampa Says:


    That Sun Tszu is an awesome coach, think the Glazers will hire him?

  11. Meh Says:

    We do lose every SoS tiebreaker in the draft.

    If we assume Colts, Rams, Vikes are the top 3 and we assume the bucs lose out then all of the following teams need to win once more for us to take the #4 pick: Dolphins, Browns, Jags, Skins. I’m assuming we lose to the panthers since we lose out in this exercise so they’re not on the list.

    Remaining schedules:

    CLE: @ARI, @BAL, PIT
    MIA: @BUF, @NE, NYJ
    JAX: @ATL, @TEN, IND
    WAS: @NYG, MIN, @PHI

    Every single one of those teams has at least one winnable game left. I’d be surprised if they all win, but we could still move up a bit from where we are.

  12. CC Says:

    5 times Super Bowl winning DeBartolo ownership would be nice. A man can dream.

  13. McBuc Says:

    “Just because you are a character does not mean you have character”

    The Wolf

  14. eric Says:

    Yeah and “Mr. April” Mark Dominik can draft more Hall of Famers and win the delusional championship.

  15. Jeff Says:

    Leadership is reflected in performance every day, and it doesn’t have to come from your head coach or QB (but it helps). Broncos and Tebow get better every day because Tebow makes everyone on the team better (accountable, effort, will, pride, etc.) regardless of how he plays personally. You’ve got 53 guys playing their hearts out. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Bucs get worse because they obviously lack all of those traits. Includes owner, GM, HC, and all players. Tebow is a very unique example of high quality leadership, for sure, but the Broncos and Bucs are living in parallel universes heading the opposite direction.

  16. Buddhaboy Says:

    Yeah, didnt Debartolo express interest in the Bucs a few years back…..If the glazers cant pony up any more, pass it on to someone that can.

  17. flmike Says:

    I was forced to watch the tape, my wife is a Bears fan as much as I am a Bucs fan.
    Really, don’t confuse yesterdays win as anything more than a depleted injury ravaged Bears’ team fumbling at the most in opportune moment. if anything the Denver D won that game, they kept them in it all afternoon, and as WE learned coming back every week, week in and week out is not a winning formula. Really, put Forte in that game and its 21-0 Bears, put Cutler in and its 35-0 really, I watched it. I admire the kid for his perseverance but that win was the Denver D’s win.

  18. Ben Says:

    They don’t have any character and sadly that comes from the very top of the organization.

    Owners with character would’ve never released Derek Brooks, and company, the way the Bucs did. Think about Dungy’s exit, is that how someone with character would’ve handled that?

    Everyone used to blame Gruden for not having any character, but now it seems more likely it’s the Glazers who don’t value it in their organization.

  19. BigMacAttack Says:

    Well I just watched Raheem’s presser today, and I’ll give him one thing, He is Resilient! The guy never changes. He is even keel, looking forward and I like that. They know they need changes, they see what we see and everybody else sees. They even get to see it from 100 different angles. I think maybe it best to keep him, but as I said before, if they are going to fire him, then do it now and get a head start. If they are going to keep him then they should give him a vote of confidence now, and extend his contract 2 more years, with a pay raise. Changes do have to be made and the players aren’t getting it done on the field, but after 24 hours I am still inclined to think Raheem is the right man for the job. Get him some top flight coaching help, and some veteran free agents to help the kids learn and grow.

  20. BamBamBuc Says:

    First, to the Broncos and Tebow…. They remind me of the Bucs last year. Ok, so their defense is better, but they’re winning the same way. Through sheer will-power at the end of games. Anyone remember the “Comeback Kid”? Yeah, what Freeman had last year, Tebow has this year. Denver has equal chance to “regress” next year as the Bucs did this year. Difference is, the AFC West is much easier than the NFC South.

    Second, so we fire Morris. Who would we really get to replace him? The big names (Cowher, Fisher, etc.) would probably go to KC or Miami or somewhere else first. Besides, neither won the big game in their first 10 years anyway. Fisher never did. That leaves us with a bunch of mediocre (at best) schmucks (Sparano, Haley, etc) or untested assistants. Another experiment with another assistant? Really? Honestly, finding a coach to win a Super Bowl is like a needle in a haystack, except there is plenty of hay that looks exactly like a needle and isn’t. At best, there is a 1 in 32 chance of winning a Super Bowl every year. Then you factor in other things like schedule, injury, etc. and it’s a toss up. The coach, alone, won’t win or lose a team a chance at the Super Bowl. The players, all 53 of them on the active roster (more when you factor in injury and things), also factor in. And of course the intangibles. Find whatever coach you want, there’s no saying we’re winning a Super Bowl for the next 25 years. I don’t care if it’s Belichik or Payton that coaches this team, there’s no guarantee. Bring on the DeBartolo’s as owners… still no guarantee. There’s always other factors involved. Winning the Super Bowl is pure chance. We’ve won one, and are damned proud of it. No telling if or when another will happen. We all hope, but there is no “answer”.

  21. crazy Says:

    How can the team believe in #5 as they did last year when he either hasn’t got what he used to have or he’s playing more hurt than we know.

  22. Bucnjim Says:

    There is one point that hasn’t been brought up much and that is motivation. It takes a special person & coach to be a motivator of grown men. Monte Kiffin is a good example of a coach who demanded respect and loyalty just by walking into the room. Gruden was a good motivator, but lost trust because of a couple of bad personnel decisions. Dungy was a better motivator than he was a coach. His teams were always mentally tough. The best coaches in the NFL are able to get the absolute best out of every single player on their team. I don’t think Raheem is that guy who is able to get players to go out and lay it all on the line.

  23. Thomas 2.2.. Says:

    Bambam: It doesn’t matter who you hire to replace rah Rah – you could not possibly hire a worse replacement.

    This team essentially has no coaching, the players do what they want to do bc they get no valuable direction and there is no accountability – mistakes are addressed by cliches:

    We need to be our better self; we need to execute better; we need to play better blah blah blah blah.

    Insert cliche here : ——– and you could be the head coach of the Bucs.

    New drinking game: count rah’s cliches during his radio show or presser. You all will be hammered quick – you will need a funnel.

  24. Plbuc Says:

    The simple fact is this team is beyond repair. When you’re not even competitive every week what makes people think this coach will right the ship. It’s time to blow up the plan and start from scratch. Hire a competent staff and at least half the roster next year wil have to be FAs. High draft picks have not panned out for the Bucs (I.e.McCoy, Talib, Cadillac, Adams). I realize the owners don’t feel the fans pain but for the love of God, at least put a team on the field that isn’t a shameful embarrassment both on and off the field. But then again, the Glazers have demonstrated time and time again their only concern is revenues and no spending. Time to root for another team.

  25. BamBamBuc Says:

    Thomas – That’s quite untrue. There are plenty of worse coaches. Raheem Morris .386 W/L % is better than coaches such as…. David Shula, Mike Nolan, Joe Bugel, Ray Perkins, Lindy Infante, Romeo Crennel, Dom Capers, June Jones… just to name a few. Several of them had 8 game losing streaks or more. Our own John McKay had 88 losses in his career and only a .333 W/L record. Historically, Raheem Morris is not the worst, and not even when compared with a few coaches of the past decade. So, it IS possible to hire a WORSE coach. It is also possible to hire an equal coach. It is highly unlikely to “steal” a TOP coach away from another team. Which leaves mediocre or untested. Untested coaches (as we all know) can end up good or bad. No guarantees of anything. Not saying Raheem should or shouldn’t be fired, but just letting everyone know that what we end up with could be a “Wing and a prayer” coach that we may or may not get lucky and have success with.