“Diminishing Returns”

October 22nd, 2014

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New Orleans Saints

The Bucs defense has struggled mightily to get off the field, and all that extra playing time isn’t helping.

Yes, Joe knows the Lovie Smith defense takes what feels like forever to master and all those snaps should be good for teaching, but Joe’s talking here about the effect of fatigue.

Former Redskins and Texans general manager Charley Casserly, now an NFL Network analyst, spoke on WDAE-AM 620 this morning about how the Seahawks’ defense has dropped off this season. Casserly explained that less depth on their defensive line has brought many more snaps to Cliff Avril and former Bucs stud Michael Bennett.

That’s resulted in “diminishing returns,” Casserly said.

There’s plenty of that going on with the Bucs to a point. Lovie crafted his defense to be fast and flying to the ball. He even had everyone cut weight and body fat in the offseason. But that speed edge gets neutralized when you’re on the field too long. The Bucs defense was completely gassed in New Orleans, showing up sluggish and worn late in the game.

Of course, there are no excuses for what the Bucs turned out against Baltimore and Atlanta. But in a competitive game, Tampa Bay has to find a way to move the chains and keep its defense off the field. Joe might vomit if the Bucs are a step slow chasing Teddy Bridgewater in the fourth quarter Sunday.

22 Responses to ““Diminishing Returns””

  1. HawaiianBuc Says:

    I’m still beyond shocked how bad our defense has been, but it’s just another example why it’s best to just completely ignore the preseason. If anyone remembers, our starting defense looked like the ’85 Bears in August. I expect (more like hope for) a much better performance the rest of the year. I’m not saying we are great, but we are much more talented than what we’ve shown so far.

  2. Another J Says:

    It’s not just fatigue, We’re also dealing with a lack of talent, and Coaching.

  3. Brent Says:

    Agreed Hawaiian. If this doesn’t get better soon Frazier has to go. Going from solid d to the worst in the league is inexcusable. Frazier is in charge his responsibility.

  4. RastaMon Says:

    …I know we traded 2015 4th round pick for Mankins…but heard we don’t have a 5th in 2015 as well….anyone confirm this

  5. HawaiianBuc Says:

    @Another J,

    I think you’re right, but it just doesn’t make sense. We’ve got some pretty good individual players. We’ve got the best 3 technique and 4-3 OLB in the game. We’ve got a pro bowl CB and a pretty good young CB. Our other LB’s are at least average, if not a little above average. We have an all-pro safety in Goldson, and another first round safety. We have major holes in the pass rushing department, but they still shouldn’t be this bad. Most of those guys aren’t performing up to their abilities, which obviously points to coaching. However, we have a DC and a head coach that are well known and highly respected for their defensive coaching. It just doesn’t add up. I don’t know the answer, but defense was the one area of our team I wasn’t at all concerned with coming into the season. Boy was I wrong.

  6. Buccfan37 Says:

    Some three and outs on defense would help greatly. Agree, there is talent on our defense, now if they can all get on the same page we could see what we expected in preseason to show up now.

  7. Patrick in VA Says:

    Sounds like it’s a total team deficiency on both sides of the ball. Because we always defer, we have no choice but to say that the defense is mostly at fault because we are constantly playing from a deficit. Then the lack of a run game, and the need for points since we’re behind, means that the defense is able to neutralize the offense making it one dimensional and keeping the defense on the field all day.

    In other words, we need to draft a QB.

  8. passthebuc` Says:

    Drafting a qb in 1st rd would be a continuation of the drafting stupidity that put us where we are today. You build the team from the center out.

  9. BucFan20 Says:

    Draft a QB because the running game is not working. Great idea.

  10. Zam Says:

    I was laughing when I heard Duemig and you talking about fatigue. Would that we were so lucky as to be blowing leads because of a tired defense!

  11. Tomcin Says:

    Imho I don,t think at this point a QB should be our 1st pk. It should be LT or a DE. Of course Lovie Dovie & Licht will screw it up. If they are still around. I’m kind of sick and tired of these retreads being hired as coaches. Get a young HC to build your team around. Maybe Schiano should have been given 1 more year. At this point who knows. Speaking of young coaches I like the sound of Lombardi even though I don,t know much about him.

  12. willie d Says:

    This team needs a best player on the board attitude. also cheap solid players need to stay. last leg expensive players need to go. make Eric Page the head coach.


  13. DB55 Says:


    Now the we have TJ Fukishima we don’t have to worry about a pass-rush. Personally, I would be on the phone with chicago trying to trade mccown for Jared Allen but I’m a moron so what do I know.

    Looks like we trade our 5th round pick in 2015 to buffalo.

  14. DB55 Says:


    We don’t have a 4th or 5th right now.

  15. RastaMon Says:

    We need with the 1st 3 picks in 2015 in no particular order

  16. Patrick in VA Says:

    @Rastamon – I don’t know if we can say that without seeing what the values of the players available are when we pick but I agree that we should put a premium on building our lines. People talk a lot about how the Cowboys’ turn around has come from the defense learning the scheme (which they have) or DeMarco Murray going off (which he has) but a lot of that has come on the back of them building up a really solid Oline that has opened holes for Murray and kept the offense on the field so the defense can play the way they’re supposed to. Skill players, QBs, and everything else should be tertiary after we first fix our O-line, followed by our D-line.

  17. HawaiianBuc Says:

    QB is not the biggest need on our team, not even close. That being said, if you have the opportunity to draft a game changing QB, you BETTER do it. I’m not saying we will be in position to do that, and you certainly can’t reach, but if (for example) Mariota is there and you believe he’s going to be great, you take him and don’t even hesitate. QB is the most important position in sports. Having a good QB versus a great QB can be the difference between sitting at home in January and playing in February. A great QB can hide all kind of holes, unlike any other position. Again, I’m not saying there will be a QB like that available, but if there is, we must grab him. I promise you a LT isn’t going to have the same effect.

  18. Newbucsfan!!! Says:

    The Cowboys already had Romo though!

  19. Newbucsfan!!! Says:

    Oregon is like denver, they simply want to out score you and let their defense play with a big lead. Winston is like a combo of brady & Mcnab, with a great defense unbeatable, with a good team around him he’s still great you just don’t want the ball in his hands at the end of a game. With a bad team Winston can still carry it to compete but I don’t know if Mariota is that good or if his competition is that bad.

  20. HawaiianBuc Says:

    Obviously since he’s a Hawaii boy, I’m a little biased towards Mariota. I know a bunch of people that know him, and by all accounts he is an absolutely great kid. However, I am wary of anyone coming from that system. But when I watch him play, I see him as a more intelligent Kapernick. Kapernick would be a huge upgrade from probably any QB we’ve ever had, so I’m okay with that.

    As for Winston, take away the off the field stuff, he’s the absolute perfect NFL QB. On the field, does he even have any weaknesses? I haven’t seen any. But you simply can’t ignore the fact that he has the maturity of an immature 5 year old. If we drafted him, I would employ a full time babysitter to keep him out of trouble. If he wasn’t so damn good I would never want him on our team, but I’m at the point now where I don’t really care as much as I probably should.

  21. Brent Says:

    Ditto rastaman, except my draft would be:
    Qb-mariotta or Winston

    If qb is special u gotta take it while u can. I woul grab a low cost to middle cost dt and MLB. I wouldn’t invest any more assets on this d. Just fire frazier

  22. ElioT Says:

    Just take a look at the Bucs’ current D-Line Roster!


    Go Sucs!