Third Down Conversions Miserable

December 8th, 2011

When you don't use your team's best offensive weapon, of course one can expect the offense to struggle.

Joe can see that Woody Cummings had one of those bury-the-head-in-the-spreadsheet days. The Bucs beat writer for the Tampa Tribune decided to mine for some information and pulled out a few really good nuggets.

It seems the Bucs offense — surprise! — is dismal during this awful six-game losing streak at converting third downs.

The Bucs have converted just 21 of 73 third-down tries (28.7 percent) the last six games, and one reason for the poor results is the preponderance of third-and-long situations.

Of the 73 third downs the Bucs have tried to convert the last six games, 44 have been on plays requiring 5 yards or more. On those plays the Bucs have converted just eight times, for a 24.3-percent conversion rate.

This really isn’t a surprise to Joe for one simple reason:

The Bucs have one of the better run-blocking offensive lines in the game and a running back who averages 4.4 yards a carry (more than Frank Gore, more than Michael Turner, more than Marshawn Lynch), and the Bucs simply refuse to use him.

Meanwhile, the Bucs must work in the notorious Benn’d-around play game after game, rarely with positive results.

18 Responses to “Third Down Conversions Miserable”

  1. BucfaninMI Says:


  2. passthebuc Says:

    Watching what the Rays might do this winter is more fun than anything the Bucs have to offer as entertainment.

  3. Mr. Lucky Says:

    It sad really

    1st down – Run Blount into the middle
    2nd down – incomplete pass
    3rd down – put in Lumpkin who does/attempts an up the middle release or flare out incomplete pass.

    The offensive co-ordinater is OFFENSIVE. Not since the days of Clyde Christianson has the offensive lacked this much imagination.

    Funny but shouldn’t the HC be telling the OC to ‘get er done’?

    Maybe coach Rah should have sent Olsen home instead of Price!

  4. TheProsUseAdvoCare Says:

    I disagree with your sentiments that we have “one of the better run blocking offensive lines in the game” but nonetheless we do not run enough. Our running back makes our OL look far better than they are. Then again, our OC makes them look worse then they probably are.

  5. BonesMahoney Says:


  6. Bob Says:

    Does it appear to anyone that Blount’s biggest problem is getting going quickly. It seems that Carolina held him in check because they knew if they could stop him before he got to the offensive line, he was easy to bring down. Even the announcers talked about this. Perhaps this is the reason the Bucs are leary about his being a third down back. What say you?

  7. SteveK Says:

    Maybe? Blounts gonna be alright. He is still learning, and needs to work on acceleration.

  8. SteveK Says:

    And besides, a coinflip on 3rd down with Blount is better then what we got.

  9. BKNYfootballhead Says:

    A below average starting QB this year, that’s a pretty damn big reason, too.

  10. thibs5599 Says:

    I have seen way too much shotgun this season. Even on first and second down we are running out of shotgun. I remember when gruden was he we would go a whole season without even using the shotgun he hated it for a while. WHY IS OLSON STILL ON THIS TEAM

  11. thibs5599 Says:

    isnt it the goal of all defenses to get to the running back before he gets to the offensive line. Usually if a team does that results in a negative play. I do know what you mean though because it seems blount cant get his feet going like some other backs, however that should have nothing to do with him as a blocker

  12. foxworth Says:

    Any body remember a bull of a fullback they call the a train ,all this talk about blount and i agree but who the h@ll is the full back and where is he on short yardage situations .We have a pretty good o line why is it our fullback only blocks, am i the only one who sees this ? Yeah blount could get it all done but hes not only one on the payroll.

  13. Oahubuc Says:

    Run and punt. We have no other strengths.

  14. gotbbucs Says:

    i know stats are supposed to be for losers, but the numbers associated with this team right now are mind boggling. if heads dont role as soon as this season is done then ownership will have some serious questions to answer.

  15. Patrick Says:

    “I know stats are supposed to be for losers”

    Remember…..that’s a quote that came from Raheem.

  16. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Last year, Blount struggled on short yardage situations. This year, he has not. The reason – he hasn’t had any opportunities. Has he even ran one 3rd and short this entire year? Even one? I can’t think of one. That is ridiculous. It doesn’t matter if it’s 3rd and inches, we are passing the ball. I’ve never seen a more predictable offense. As I keep saying, if I know what we are going to do on offense, it’s a pretty safe bet the other team does too.

  17. gotbbucs Says:

    it was meant as a jab at raheem, patrick. im well aware of all of his ridiculous cliches.

  18. Paul W. Says:

    Someone needs to remind the players that


    I get it though… next year Raheem is gonna roll out with his new theme: