Stopping The Regression

July 30th, 2012

Perhaps no player in the NFL had a dropoff season quite like Josh Freeman.

Two years ago, Freeman came “this close” to leading the Bucs to the playoffs. He threw 25 touchdowns and 6 interceptions, an insane ratio.

Then came last season, which appeared to blow up in Freeman’s face, He had 16 touchdowns but an ungodly 22 interceptions, a truly Trent Dilfer-like year.

The key for Freeman this season is to trim down the numbers of interceptions as he has weight this offseason, so writes Pete Prisco of

In studying his tapes from last season, a horrible defense coupled with limited outside speed at receiver led to Freeman’s miscues. Many of his mistakes came when forced passes as he tried to rally his team from behind.

Quite simply, he was trying to do too much.

“Yeah, no question,” Freeman said. “When things aren’t going your team’s way, you want to make a play to win a game. You have to let the plays come to you and play within the system.”

Prisco goes on to suggest Freeman’s terrible season is why former coach Raheem Morris was jettisoned.

Now Joe won’t go that far. If one is to pinpoint a reason for Morris getting run it was the putrid defense, perhaps the worst in Bucs history, that resulted in a grotesque 10-game losing streak.

Who was the defensive coordinator? Well, that was Morris, too.

Just not having Kellen Winslow in Freeman’s ear constantly screaming for the ball should help cut down at least five picks right there, Joe believes.

18 Responses to “Stopping The Regression”

  1. thomas 2.2 Says:

    “limited outside speed at receiver .” What? I thought that they had DomDom’s genius 2nd round selection and Joe’s pet receiver, the speed burner, Regis Benn starting 14 or 15 games?

    And national analysts are saying: limited speed. Wow! Maybe TU will end up higher on the receiver depth chart than Regis Benn after all.

    I know Hawaiian – Benn had a bad knee and it takes at least a year to recover from that. Now he has 2 bad knees, to go along with suspect hands and less than an ideal command of the offense – sounds like a classic DomDom 2nd round pick to me.

    I think if DomDom is around in the future – we just remove him from the room during the 2nd round altogether – because he ends up using our 2nd round picks to benefit other teams: Winslow, Price ect

  2. Eric Says:

    So the guy Dominik traded a number two draft pick for caused five extra picks and mightily contributed to the drastic regression of our franchise QB?

    But that trade wasn’t a mistake………oh. Noooooooooo.


  3. robert Says:

    @ tommy2x2. give it up man…..

  4. Bobby Says:

    OK….now that we have the two most lame posters on JBF out of the way perhaps we can have some intelligent banter on this article. Yes Freeman regressed but I don’t believe it was quite as bad as it looked. His completion percentage was still OK but his decision making was not. I do believe that came from being down 2+ TD’s early in the game and trying too hard to make something happen. His receivers did struggle to get separation but that will typically happen with sophomore WR’s and I think this year it will be different for Mike Williams with the pressure being off to be a true #1. Freeman should have a myriad of targets and he is looking much better already in training camp.

  5. Have A Nice Day Says:

    When the OL allows as much pressure as ours did, you are going to see a lot of checkdowns and passes to the TE. It also allows the defense to play closer to the line of scrimmage. Combine that with the awful TB defense play and you have a team that is forced to throw a heck of a lot and an opposing defense that is always in pass rush mode.

    A defense that gives up incredible amounts of points and an already rough pass blocking OL is a horrible combination to have.

  6. raphael Says:

    LMAO…Free played on a defense that gave up the most points in team history???? I had no idea ?? I thought he played on the offense..just watch Free this year… And BTW that was a awesome move by Rock Star GM to get Free !! haters will hate ..

  7. Pinnacl3 Says:

    I my opinion, Freeman regressed last because he was trying to replicate the season before. Early in the season, he didn’t make plays with his feet like he had done the previous season. I don’t know if he was trying to play it safe or trying to be a pocket passer more. Either way, it cost him. People have got to stop making excuses for him though. I can’t see how some can point the finger at a “buddy-buddy” head coach for not making players accountable and then turn around give so many excuses as to why one of his players didn’t play up to his “potential”. Anyone that saw the games live can probably tell you how our starting quarterback missed open players(yes, players actually got open) and looked hesitant. I was almost like he was trying too hard to make the safe throw instead of making a play. Didn’t turn out too well for the team or us fans.

  8. Eric Says:


    That was scintillating my man, just scintillating.

  9. Bobby Says:


  10. Piratic Says:

    @Eric: At least he made an attempt to give a response that didn’t sound like it was authored by a child. Your posts reek of pubescent turmoil.

  11. snook Says:

    Who’s the fat guy in the picture?

  12. FreemanBomb5 Says:

    I am in the belief that both Underwood and Gant are better then Benn is currently. I’m not saying Benn doesn’t have more potential or upside, but as of now I find it hard for Benn to even make the team. Underwood has looked amazing in camp thus far, Gant has proven to have solid hands across the middle.

    Also agree that our second round picks have been atrocious, considering that was supposed to be the deepest draft in league history. Dom should be relegated to kicking scout, he at least only fails on those half of the time. Nugent and Bowden were replaced by studs in Barth and Koenen, Dom at least did that right.

  13. robert Says:

    i was tired of hearing whats up with brian price, when will he be back etc, etc…every year same ole, same old……

    getting that way with Benn now, unless he lights it up when he gets back they should shop him or dump him. just my .02

    we need guys that are here.

  14. Eric Says:

    Actually, my belief is that the rock’s tenure is directly related to Free. If he blossoms into top tier then stuff like Winslow and Price are small potatoes.

    Conversely, if we have to start over at QB, it’s back to trading cards.

    I think and hope its the former.

  15. Oregano Says:

    I think Bret Favre would gamble when down by a couple touchdowns and throw way too many picks. He tried to carry the team on his shoulders too often. If your going to lose, might as well lose big.

    Bret is going to the Hall of Fame, because he had an huge heart, maybe the same for Freeman.

  16. ChefPaul Says:

    Thomas, I usually agree with alot of stuff you post on here (especially Baby MCoy), but this Joe bashing is getting ridiculous. I bet in your group of friends you’re the “know it all” that everyone avoids cuz they are tired of you ruining everything for them with your negative nelly attitude. Like I said, I usually agree with some of the stuff you say, but the season hasn’t even started yet and (I think I can speak for everyone) I’m already sick of your hate based opinions. If you don’t like Joe, go start your own blog called TomBucsHater. Seriously, What the hell is wrong with you

  17. Mike J Says:

    These stats might be of interest in evaluating Josh’s decline:
    In 2010: 494 pass attempts, 431 rushes (team).
    In 2011: 588 pass attempts, 346 rushes.

  18. The Dutcher Journal (Pete Dutcher) Says:

    I’m tired of Winslow getting the blame. Isn’t it likely that Kellen was guilty of the very same things Freeman was guilty of? Trying to force plays?