“Fans May Not Like To Hear That”

June 1st, 2015

Glazers2013Former college quarterback turned NFL scout turned NFL Network draft guru Daniel Jeremiah slammed the Bucs last week. National uber insider Peter King buried them today.

And a local beat writer offered painful talk to Bucs fans on Saturday.

Esteemed Buccaneers scribe Woody Cummings used the “R” word, despite knowing if irritates and agitates Tampa Bay faithful — especially during the sunny optimism of late spring.

Cummings, of The Tampa Tribune, used the bully pulpit of WDAE-AM 620, the Buccaneers’ flagship station and Joe’s media partner since 2009.

“The Bucs haven’t wanted to admit it, but there’s just no question, guys, they’re rebuilding this football team. That’s just the way it is. Fans may not like to hear that, but that’s what’s happening here, It’s what’s been happening for two years,” Cummings said.

“They tried to build it on the quick last year and it didn’t work. Then they go back to the plan and say, ‘Alright, let’s go to the draft; that’s where we’re going to find our starters, and if we can’t find them there we’ll try to fill it in free agency if we have to. But we’re going to find young guys who can play for this team for the next five, 10 years and hopefully they’re going to learn how to play quickly.’ So, yeah, there’s going to be problems at times if you’ve got [left tackle Donovan Smith] starting at that spot. But if he’s your best left tackle, you gotta go with him.”

Yes, the Bucs are rebuilding, but that takes on a different kind of meaning in the weak NFC South, won by the 7-8-1 Panthers last year. Heck, the rebuilding Bucs could be 5-7 in December and legitimately be in the hunt. It would be easier temper expectations and keep fans patient if, say, the Bucs were in the NFC West.

But Lovie Smith and Jason Licht are brimming with optimism and believe loads of those “close” losses last year will translate into victory in 2015. Licht repeatedly refers to Dirk Koetter as the biggest offseason acquisition.

“Rebuilding” or not, Joe knows one thing Bucs fans rightfully demand: an opening day victory against the lowly Titans and Marcus Mariota in Tampa. Joe can’t bear to consider the painful fallout if the Bucs lose that game.

63 Responses to ““Fans May Not Like To Hear That””

  1. Mike10 Says:

    “Re” in the word “rebuilding” implies there was something previously built.

    Can we be honest, this thing has been rebuilding since Gruden, Brooks, et al. left

  2. Nick Says:

    “Rebuilding” means new quarterback. Teams turn over the roster every year. the Beli-cheats are no different. The illusion of roster stability is there because the same guy is under center every season.

  3. The Other Side of the Coin Says:

    When there is no n news beat writers have to make some. That’s all this is.

  4. Supersam Says:

    I’d bet a lot of money that if Mariota comes in week one and kicks our butts and Jameis struggles, it could very well be the beginning of the end of Licht and Lovie.

  5. Supersam Says:

    I’ve been on a few Titans pages and they all say that Mariota is having zero trouble adapting to a “pro style offense”. Wasn’t that supposed to be a big downfall for him? The big difference between him and Winston?? Titans seem pretty darn happy with how he’s doing.

  6. Tom S. Says:

    This team is rebuilding? But we had a “rockstar” GM for 5 years? How is that possible, Joe?

  7. Tom S. Says:

    @supersam: Let’s wait until the bullets fly before you pat yourself on the back because Mariota looks good in shorts. Also, if you are such a big fan of Mariota and checking out the Titans board, maybe it wouldn’t be a stretch to stay on those Titans boards, like, permanently?

    P.S. The problem with Mariota isn’t just learning a pro offense. It’s poor deep ball accuracy/ball placement, not throwing receivers open (because he didn’t need to), being comfortable making progression reads and feeling the pocket (had a bit of a fumbling problem). Oh and the risk that his running style will get him injured in the NFL (sprained his AC joint against OSU in the championship game when he got rag dolled by a d-lineman). Jameis is the better QB, but you’ll find out that out soon enough. You’ll probably be too busy on the Titans message board at the time to admit it though.

  8. Supersam Says:

    All I’m saying is Lovie and Licht made it clear that they like Jameis more because he came from a ” pro style offense”. And if that’s there only argument, for there sakes they better hope there right. they won’t be able to get a job at publix if there wrong.

  9. sneedy16 Says:


    I did not here any of that. From what I have heard from the Titans sites is that they have a ton of rollout passes because he isn’t accurate from the pocket. Mariota will be lucky if he don’t get hurt the first game to be honest.

  10. Supersam Says:

    The Titans have a hall of fame defensive coordinator. I would not be surprised if Jameis struggles, and the Titans steal a win.

  11. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    When I look at this team, I can see a scenario where we go 5-11, but I also see a scenario where we could go 11-5. The NFL is a league where most games are very close, and often times games are decided by a bounce here or a bounce there. Although we were a bad team last year, there were definitely 3 or 4 games that we could have (and probably should have) won.

    The most important position in all of sports is the QB. We had the worst QB play in the NFL last year. I expect much better this year, even from a rookie. Freeman’s rookie year was much better than what we got last year, and Winston better be miles better than Freeman.

    Also, our defense was pretty much atrocious for the first half of the season. No way around that. They did, however, improve to probably slightly above average. Although Lavonte had a good season as far as always being around the ball, he didn’t have any splash plays. I expect him to have a bunch this year, because he’s that good of a player. Him forcing turnovers will greatly improve our chance of winning.

    Our division doesn’t appear to be very strong. Do any of the other 3 teams in our division strike fear into any of you? Those are 6 winnable games. Obviously we won’t win them all, but I could see us winning 3 or 4 (as opposed to zero last year). We have winnable home games with Tennessee and Jax. We have the Redskins. The games are there to be won, very similar to 2010.

    I don’t see us as any threat to the good teams, but I could foresee a scenario where we win our division and make the playoffs. It would take some luck, but we’ve been so void of luck in the last few years, maybe it’s our time to get some good fortune. One can dream.

  12. Tom S. Says:

    @Supersam, if you honestly think a pro style offense is “there only argument” for drafting Winston, you are willfully ignorant. Winston is more accurate on NFL throws than Mariota (who threw a lot of bubble screens and short passes in college inflating his number), is able to play from the pocket, has shown the ability to throw players open, does his absolute best when the game is on the line (See: BCS Championship game against Auburn, Louisville, Notre Dame, Miami, BC, Georigia Tech). How was Mariota against OSU? How was he against Arizona? Honestly, 3 QB’s played in the playoffs this past year and you’d be fooling yourself if you didn’t think that Mariota looked like the worst prospect of the 3 out there.

    But obviously you are looking at Titans messages boards fawning over Mariota. That’s great. You should stay there, because obviously you love Mariota and are rooting for him to succeed over the Bucs and Jameis.

  13. Rrsrq Says:

    Of course they are. If Logan and V-jax are not on this team, they could possibly not have an offensive starter with more than three years experience except EDS, if they go with the youguns on the line and skill positions

  14. Tom S. Says:

    *4 QB’s played in the playoffs of course. Mariota was 3 out of the 4. The 4th, Sims, went undrafted.

  15. sneedy16 Says:

    That same hall of fame coordinator wasn’t doing well last season, that’s why he was fired. The problem with running a new defense is that they will make mistakes, so I don’t think it will be an easy win. The Titans didn’t really have any really good unless they will depend on Green-Beckham and an OK RB. I think the Titans are overhyped, just because they got Mariota.

  16. Jack Burton Mercer Says:

    Winston has also shown the ability to throw a linebacker or two open. Wake me in September.

  17. Rrsrq Says:

    The Titans have a HOF defensive coordinator who has had Great players on that defense, quick, name a Titans defensive player…… They will be in learning mode just as the Bucs were last year. Besides, MM may not even start the season off if Zachary has anything to say about it. That same Lebeau defense got beat by a 2-14 team last year.

  18. sneedy16 Says:

    What makes matters worst is the same HOF defensive coordinator got out coached by a QB coach impersonating an Offensive Coordinator. lol

  19. Bucfansinz1986 Says:

    JBF says…”Heck, the rebuilding Bucs could be 5-7 in December and legitimately be in the hunt. ” Uhhhh, wasn’t Lovie saying something eerily similar in the midst of a dismal 2014 season?? And you laughed at him…..

  20. bucs4lyfe Says:

    You can tell this is a losing franchise just by listening to the media. i think every team is rebuilding so aspect of the team that was weak every single year. the quarterback and offensive line and special teams can be pointed to as the main issues of the team. you dont get enough sacks or int’s fine but whats your overall defense like say 3rd downs. they addressed special teams with multiple returners, multiple lineman and a quarterback yes they upgraded those positions. patriots try to upgrade every offseason but quarterback and offensive line is stable. that dumb because no one sits on their roster and says we got what we need except mark dominick and raheem morris

  21. bucco brice Says:

    go ahead and rebuild…that’s ok…the mess that started with horrible gruden drafts needs to end…keep drafting and it will come together…F the free agency crap…

  22. Joe Says:

    @BucFansinz1986 — Sorry, dude. You can’t compare 5-7 to 2-10, like the Bucs were last year.

  23. Andrew 1 Says:

    Yea Gruden was great and all, but that regime did no favors in stocking this team with talent. In fact towards the end of his time in tampa, that’s about the time when the talent on this team started depleting, and it never recovered. Then in comes Mark Dominick and he failed pretty badly at stocking this team also, with the exception of a few players. So the main thing that will insure L&L has a long stay in tampa is that they draft well, something that hasn’t been done right since Rich McKay. They’ve got to hit on at least 1 player from every draft from here on out, and then I think the talent will slowly start to recover. And the wins should follow.

  24. BucFan20 Says:

    “They”? Lovie had control. It was his way. I think he has lost control but nobody will say so. The Glazers and Licht are in control.

  25. drdneast Says:

    Big surprise. Titans coach said pretty much the same thing. Titans saw aur Dirk Kotter with a Dick LeBeau.
    If Marotta out plays Winston then the Titans will win and Joe is going to take a lot of grief.

  26. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    I’m with you bro! We have an easy schedule in a truly crappy division. We’re not ready for the Super Bowl or even Conference title game but we could make the playoffs,be one and down and begin putting the finishing touches on the team.

    BTW What is with this either or absolute when it comes to Fameis and Marcus.
    One doesn’t have to suck to make the other one look better. It’s actually possible that they’ll both have good careers and opening day will just be the first in what are hopefully many memorable showdowns…with us coming out on top of course!

  27. Joe Says:

    If Marotta out plays Winston then the Titans will win and Joe is going to take a lot of grief.

    Eh. *shrugs*

  28. Andrew 1 Says:

    The great thing about Grunden though was that he could make chicken salad out of chicken sh!t. Even though the talent was depleting while he was here, he would still get this team to win a good 9 games. That says a lot about him as a coach. But by the time that regime left, the coaching was gone and the talent was gone. But finally I think we are building a foundation that’s not going to crumble. This team IS on the right track to becoming winners again.

  29. PA Bucs Fan Says:

    One more draft and we should be right there knocking on the door. I think that the offense should be the main focus in next year’s draft.

  30. salish_seamonster Says:

    Game one = one game. I know it’s wishful thinking, but there shouldn’t be any meaning concocted from a W or L in week 1. Don’t care who the opponent is. Especially for a building team, the perspective of a full season is what matters.

  31. Kevin Says:

    I agree they are RE_STRUCTURING the team….but completely re-building????? NO. This team has A LOT of strong pieces in place. Last season was tanked and anyone with a brain larger than a pea should see that. I’m glad they are bashing the Bucs. Last season they thought it would be a big turnaround and we all know what happened. This year they are calling for another flop and I feel confident they will be wrong again!!!

    Go BUCS THE SOUTH BELONGS TO TAMPA THIS SEASON!!!!! Calling it now. Drew Brees will be on his ASS when we play him. GO BUCS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. The Buc Realist Says:

    In week 1 we will see the 2 most talent devoid teams go at it. Finally some of the local media have recongized this. Its year 7 and the rebuild continues. Licht will have to draft the team out of this as Other players refuses to come to Tampa if they have any other offer, ( as we saw this past off-season ) .

  33. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Sure….game one is important….and I would be nice to prove our choice of QB right off the bat….but let’s be realistic….it’s a team sport….and we need to be firing on all cylinders to beat anyone….

  34. Tampa Tony Says:

    Year 7 of the Glazer rebuilding plan since firing Gruden. Smart fans have known it’s been a rebuilding project since then. Amateur rockstar gm, bad coaching hires and more bad drafts. 5-6 wins will be a success from what us paying fans are use to

  35. I know why Says:

    when you only get one draft pick right from last year and miss on basically every trade and free agent signing….while cutting or dealing away guys that go on to start at other clubs, you “rebuilt” this team on your own. It didn’t need to be completely rebuilt, just better choices needed to be made last year and they weren’t. Fact! So now lets go with the “rebuild” model, whatever….

  36. LakelandBuc Says:

    If we can get Ezekiel Elliot next year,that would be the final piece for our offense.Rebuilding is a good thing if you draft the right players.

  37. jerry55044 Says:

    If you don’t like what the media says then stop reading it, if your looking for respect win some god damn games it’s that simple. Bucs are 2 an 14 you can’t change that until you find the piece’s to put a winning product on the field. There are huge holes on this team even after the draft, look at the top 5 teams can tampa honestly compete with them. Cold hard facts tampa is rebuilding were not a good team yet.

  38. Stanglassman Says:

    Titans planning huge change to accommodate Marcus Mariota is the Head Line and the GM quote “our coaches have worked very hard on coming up with a system within our system for Marcus.”

    It sounds like it’s the Titans who are adapting their system to something Marcus can learn more than him having zero trouble in a “pro style system”.

    This ’15 Buc team is better than the ’10 team. The division is worse and Jameis better than Freeman. I agree with HawaiianBucFan that with a little luck this team could sneak in the playoffs.

  39. Buc1987 Says:

    Supersam…let it go. Let it go.


  40. Tony Says:

    NOTHING is more stupid and inane than this nonsense that if the Bucs don’t beat the Titans in game one then everything is a failure and a disaster. Jameis is a rookie QB who looks like he may have 2 rookie offensive lineman in front of him. There will be growing pains. Game one of a rookie season SHOULD be his worst game with steady improvement coming afterwards. This is why Tampa is in the predicament they are in: hasty decisions, quick triggers, and quick fixes. Enough. Give Jameis and the rookies time to evolve and the fruits will come.

  41. Java Says:

    Local media and the Mariotta mob will go nuts if Whisenhunt gets innovative with Marcus and he shreds Lovie’s predictable/passive defense. Until the Bucs hire a innovative and creative coach who maximizes the players strengths the Bucs will be the Raiders of the NFC.

  42. Howard Cosell Says:

    We’ve been rebuilding since Malcolm turned over control to the boys.
    However, Howard is a good judge of intentions and it seems like the
    sons are a lot more serious this year. It’s a vibe that Howard gets.
    Small cues and clues. Howard can read you like a book.
    We’ll see.
    Howard is excited for this year. IT feels 10x more focused than last year
    (which was a cluster ****).

    *Weak schedule

    *Got rid of the ***holes like the Ghost and sent a message.

    *Mankins has a year and is animated and focused. Last year he
    seemed forlorn and lost.

    *So far L&L seem like pretty good drafters. That means the two linemen
    may be a lot better then Joes terrified nightmares.

    *3 words: Jameis ****’in Winston.

    *3 more words: Dirk ****’in Koetter.

    *The defense has had year under Lovie.

    *The whole team has had a year under Lovie

    *Howard likes this George Johnson cat and thinks he might step
    up and give us that much needed edge.

  43. Architek Says:

    Hawaiian you and I see it the same.

    If they start out decent – they can have a respectable record and build on the future with realistic expectations.

  44. Howard Cosell Says:

    *If the media is against you then you’ll win.
    *If the media picks you to win 10 games then you’ll win 2.

  45. Fire Goodell Says:

    Remember that “real football doesn’t start until November”.

  46. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Tom S. Says
    “@supersam: Let’s wait until the bullets fly before you pat yourself on the back …”

    Why? Are not Bucs fans giving Winston credit before he plays a down?

  47. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I predict we lose week one. But I doubt Mariota will play.

  48. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Howard Cosell Says
    “We’ve been rebuilding since…”

    I say since Schiano. He brought in a few good players thru the draft. Other than that, GMC and David are all that have been added before Lovie.

  49. Buccfan37 Says:

    All teams are in a constant state of rebuilding, the better ones just try to maintain their edge. Like Bum Phillips once said coaching the Oilers, something to the effect that his team was going beat the damn door down to advance his team the following year. The Bucs need to do the same and I’m thinking fans will be surprised this year in a good way.

  50. Buc-A-New Says:

    I am SO STOKED for my team if they can get an OL that provides three seconds for JW to throw.

  51. WS99 Says:

    BuccaneerBonzai Says:
    June 1st, 2015 at 8:08 pm
    I predict we lose week one. But I doubt Mariota will play.

    Why? Are you just wanting to save face if we lose?

  52. Buc-A-New Says:

    WS99 Says:
    June 1st, 2015 at 8:53 pm
    BuccaneerBonzai Says:
    June 1st, 2015 at 8:08 pm
    I predict we lose week one. But I doubt Mariota will play.

    Why? Are you just wanting to save face if we lose?
    At this point DB can not Possibly be more right Bonzai. You have the worst team in the league playing the second worst team in the league if you want to just state blatant stats. Said worst team got Winston who is ” running the offense like he has been doing it for two yrs” and the second worst team got a guy who you predict won’t even start.
    IMO if we don’t beat Tenn then we are in for some pains.

  53. BoJim Says:

    Man. The negativity of some of you guys amazes me. The season hasn’t even started yet.

  54. Andrew 1 Says:

    You look at the good teams, they’re seasoned and polished. Do they have some holes and weak spots? Yes. But they have a game plan that works, the players to make it work, and the experience it takes to make it work. Those are the 3 things that all the great teams have in common.

    Now, take that formula and see if we can make it work. And remember, you have to have all 3 to be a truly great team.

    1. We have a coaching staff (both sides of the ball now) that have proven that they’re game plans work. Lovie’s defense has taken his team all the way to the super bowl, and Dirk’s offense was the only reason why the falcons achieved the kind of success that they did in ATL. So you can put a check mark next to our coaches having game plans that works.

    2. The players to make it work. This is where things get a little muddled (on both sides of the ball). On defense, we have the majority of players to make Lovie’s defense work, but the lack of a dangerous pass rusher on the outside prevents Lovie’s defense from being the best that it can be. So worst case scenario, we should have at least a top 15 (or above average) defense for right now.

    On offense, It all starts with a QB, so Dirk has the most important piece to his offense in place. We also have enough weapons and play makers to move the ball, but our suspect offensive line could (and most likely will) prevent Dirk’s offense from being the best that it can be. How we block will determine how well Dirk’s offense performs, and if that’s the case then our offense will probably be mediocre (some good, some bad) for right now. I expect the offense to improve as the season goes on though.

    3. The experience to make it work. This where turning over a coaching staff every year, and depending on new players to run your system every year really hurts, because it becomes tough to make any progress. The longer we keep this coaching staff and these players together, the better they will be.

    So to sum it all up, we have the right coaches in place, the “core players” players in place, now all we need to do is add the right piece or two to “select” areas on both sides of the ball, and have them (coaches and players) stick around longer enough to grow together. But those two remaining things REQUIRE patience. We do that, and we should be on our way to having a great team again.

  55. Andrew 1 Says:

    lol sorry for the long post, was thinking out loud more than anything else.

  56. Buc-A-New Says:

    Lol Andrew! I, for one, am glad that you typed while you thought. Nice post.

  57. Andrew 1 Says:

    lol thanks Buc-A-New.

  58. Seminole Bill Says:

    Rebuilding? Heck, every NFL team rebuilds every year to one extent or the other. They bring in different players to fill in gaps, guys get hurt, guys get cut, and guys leave on free agency. Think about it this way – we now have the youngest QB in our division, and hopefully in 3 years, the best. By then Brees will be gone, Ryan will be 3 years older and Cam will be on the downside of his career.

    Just get us an O-line and…..7-9 next year, 9-7 in two years, and 11-5 in Jameis’ 3rd year.

  59. Lamdog Says:

    In my life, I never seen such weak minded fans in my life.

    The Bucs lost 8 games by 8 points or less.

    They are in the NFC South. A division won by the Panthers who were 7:8:1.

    The Bucs have a very good chance of going 13:3.

    I am not a betting man, if I was, the two games to put the mortgage on is Tn and Chicago.

    Let’s not get it twisted: Gruden won with Dungy team and fortunate to play the team he coached in the Super Bowl the Year before.

    The is from a 1st year Buc Fan and season ticket holder.

    You can’t write a script. The team gets a coach who was fired after going 10-6. The current team is so bad acquire the number 1 draft pick. The number 1 pick comes from an in state school, who won a Heisman, a national championship and a record of 26-1. To further help your perspective he went 26-1 with the off the field distraction, that would have distracted 99.9% of any quarterbacks.

  60. ChessMaster Says:

    The bucs have been “rebuilding” for the last six years.

  61. ChessMaster Says:

    Gruden won with Dungy’s defense. Only Brad Johnson, Keyshawn, and Alstott were returning offensive starters.

  62. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    @lamdog this is the NFL. The majority of games are decided by one score or less. You mention 8 points or less. Lol in the NFL even the very bad teams don’t come in as 8 point dogs very often. This is not the NCAA where FSU is playing McNeese State, the overwhelming majority of games are relatively close.

    For what it’s worth they did have a couple of games where it did look like they were McNeese State going up against FSU though and that should NEVER happen in the NFL.

  63. Tom S. Says:

    @Lamdog, you are one of “those” people huh? The one’s that think that an offense that was composed largely of players brought in by Gruden was somehow “Dungy’s team.” Maybe look at the roster and see who he brought in, McCardell, Jurevicious, Pittman (had 124 yards in the SB), Dilger, Roman Oben, Kerry Jenkins, Greg Spires. That’s a lot of turnover, and unlike the busts of the past few years, they hit on most of those acquisitions.

    Also, do you think it helped that Gruden intimately knew the Raiders offense the Callahan ran (since, ya know, he developed it) and that it made a difference when he gave those cues to the D before the superbowl? Maybe just a little?