The Trainwreck Of 2014

September 4th, 2015


As Joe likes to tell friends, “In the end, things work out.”

So Joe uses that philosophy when looking back at the complete and total trainwreck that ensued from virtually the moment Lovie Smith took the podium as the new Bucs coach — to the team walking off the field after losing (winning, actually) to the Saints to end the horrific 2-14 season.

Goodbye, Donald Penn; hello, Anthony Collins.

Goodbye, Jeremy Zuttah; hello, Evan (Dietrich-) Smith.

Goodbye, Darrelle Revis; hello, Alterraun Verner and Mike Jenkins.

Sit down, Mike Glennon; welcome, Josh McClown.

Oh, and the defense? Feel free to meet Ghost Johnson.

Aside from picking up Mike Evans in the first round, damn near every major move the Bucs made blew up in their face like a child playing with gunpowder. Drunks couldn’t try to make as many mistakes.

Colllns, Johnson and McClown were quickly jettisoned as if they had the MRSA.

Last night, while appearing on the WFLA-TV Channel 8 broadcast of the Bucs-Dolphins game, Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht sort of apologized for having a hand in one of the worst chapters in Bucs history, and confidently said he learned his lesson the hard way.

“A lot of the things that Lovie and I did last year wasn’t really reflective of what we wanted to do,” Licht said, without giving details.

“We went out and we had a lot of money [to spend]. A lot of times [going drunken sailor in free agency] doesn’t work out and we know that. Especially myself with my background and coaches that I have worked for is that you build through the draft. And that’s how you build your team. You get your cornerstone players through the draft, and then you can chip away at free agency. Get some nice players that are middle-range free agents like Clinton McDonald and [Alterraun] Verner and those types of guys.”

This is why the Bucs didn’t sign any big-named free agents this year, and instead looked for role players that fit offensively and defensively. Licht noted that in a perfect world, you acquire your best impact players in the draft.

That’s the smart way to do it. But it was sort of refreshing for Joe to hear a general manager on live TV admit the sins of the past and lay out for Bucs fans how he plans on fixing things to build for a brighter future.

Yes, 2014 was horrible. But Joe believes it will all work out in the long run.

Why hello, America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston.

13 Responses to “The Trainwreck Of 2014”

  1. The Buc Realist Says:

    I wish they asked him if he still thought that “Dominik left them in good position???”

  2. Bucboy Says:

    OMG…please tell me Jose’ did not just say it was all going to work out in the long run?? Please define “long run??” Does long run mean when Team Glazer gives Lovie his walking papers?? The one (1) clear concept missing from this post is that despite the great analysis on Lovie/Licht’s total miss on player evaluation is the fact that as a HC, Lovie cannot develop (coach) players to be better at the skill positions. Lovie may be an excellent DC, but as a HC…as the guy responsible for taking players who are not top talent and coaching them into starting NFL players, he is a total and miserable failure.

    I am hoping to avoid being totally derised by not mentioning my views on “America’s Quarterback” and stick to just criticizing the HC in 2015. What about the unending weekly press conferences where Jose’s boy Lovie talks about being 1 game out of first place…1 game from being a playoff team…1 game from being in contention. Ok, they may have been 1 game away at times statistically, but 1 game from competing with the Seahawks, Patriots, Packers, the Boys, the Colts, etc, etc?? Not even close at being coached 1 game away from compteting with those teams in the NFL.

    I said it last year and I will say it this year….Pete “whiner” Carroll, Bill Belichick, Mike McCarthy, hell yes Bruce Ariens, Joe Pagano…etc could come in and compete with the Buc’s roster allowing for the changes they would make over their first season….I totally believe Chip Kelly could take this roster, cut some and add some players making this team a winner. It is not the players…it is the HC. We need a coach who can evaluate players…who can take Matt Cassel who is 3rd string on the Bills and win double digit games with him at QB1….can game plan differently for each team they are facing…To think we were 24 hours away from having Chip Kelly…..can you imagine TB with Chip Kelly 3 years later??

    So…long run = Team Glazer hiring another HC….I totally agree with Jose’! If long run = 2 more years of Lovie as HC like the Big Poodle says should happen…no way…

  3. Buccfan37 Says:

    Last year the Bucs head honchos went to the used showroom to pick their fill in players, this year they went to the mark down rack at the flea market. Cheaper is better on a budget though the warranties are expired and purchased as is.

  4. Harry Says:

    The unknown component of that philosophy is are you a good judge of choosing the right talent in the draft? I like Licht as he practices what he preaches about acknowledging and cutting mistakes early. But is ASJ, Sims and the rest of last years draft talented? A year ago it seemed like it, now I am not sure. This last draft seems better, but at this time last year, the ’14 draft looked awesome. Time will tell I guess

  5. georgia buc fan 39 years Says:

    @ Bucboy, you said a mouthful. Until we get a Head coach that can coach or at least have his staff do their jobs and hold the players accountable [what do they get paid for?] Where Is the fire ? Where is the pride ? These players and coaches are getting paid [quite hamsonly] for putting out a S@#T product. WE need a coach that’s going to kick some ass and take names not this touchy feely crap of the modern nfl . Vince Lombardi must be rolling over in his grave.

  6. Pickgrin Says:

    Licht has added a lot of talent in the last 18 months. Some mistakes have been made (especially in FA last year) and it is refreshing to hear him admit them openly. And even better that he moved quickly to rectify those mistakes.

    But the talent level of this team has gone up substantially since Licht took over compared to what was here when Dom was fired.

    Dude drafted 4 legit starters with his 1st 4 picks this year. That chit’s hard to do.

    Remember that last year’s draft was based around the scouting work that Dom’s staff compiled. This year, Licht had his own scouting staff in place and they flat out killed it IMO.

    Building and maintaining the nucleus of your team through the draft is the only way to truly be successful in this league. But that only works if you have an eye for talent which neither Dom nor Bruce Allen had. Licht and his excellent staff seem to be dialed in to that process pretty well so far. Time will tell – but I believe we are definitely headed in the right direction now and that this team will be “relevant” soon and a contender for many, many years to come with our cornerstone franchise QB already in place. That alone means more than most of us even understand yet.

  7. Buclife Says:

    Well said Pickgrin!

  8. The Buc Realist Says:

    Its time for a Lovie confidence poll!!!!!!

  9. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    The Buc Realist Says
    I wish they asked him if he still thought that “Dominik left them in good position???”

    He did cap-wise and contract-wise. He got us McCoy. David. Martin.

    Sam did about the same thing if you think about it. Three good players and cap room when Dungy took over.

    Since then, Lovie has added so great talent through the draft. Sure, there were a couple duds…but one of the good things about Lovie is that he moves on quickly.

  10. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Still don’t know if Donovan Smith will pan out at left tackle, he hasn’t looked great all preseason and he feet need work. If there’s a reliable Lt tackle and guard on waivers Bucs should snag them for depth, Marpet will need time but should develop well.

  11. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Bucboy Says
    “The one (1) clear concept missing from this post is that despite the great analysis on Lovie/Licht’s total miss on player evaluation is the fact that as a HC, Lovie cannot develop (coach) players to be better at the skill positions.”

    Not even historically accurate.

    You know…I just read the rest of your post. I think I’ll stop commenting here, because there is just so much wrong about it, lol.

  12. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    So…I guess all the Love bashers are not working today. Probably jobless.

  13. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Agree with Buclife….well said Pickgrin!!! Nothing like a rational take instead of some of the stuff here…some of you actually contradict your own posts..

    but as a HC…as the guy responsible for taking players who are not top talent and coaching them into starting NFL players, he is a total and miserable failure.

    That is NOT the responsibiity of the HC!!! Where are you guys getting this. The corporate CEO of Burger King is not responsible for teaching his employees how to flip a better burger!!

    The positions coaches are the ones responsible for that. Now if you wish to fault Lovie for the position coaches he selected last year I’m with you!! I was always nervous about Tedford because of his lack of NFL track record. Arroyo was sadly in sooooo over his head.

    Then you guys concede that Lovie was a decent DC. You could then say he screwed up with Frazier and that might be a valid point.

    IE The HC is the CEO of his team with only so much time in any day. The HC is judged by his ORGANIZATION and assistants and coordinators he employs.
    They are NOT the guys who develop talent. Some of them have difficulty giving that part up but it’s not their responsibiity. Sam Wyche was with Bill Walsh when they developed the WC and Joe Montana. Wyche himself a former NFL QB never gave up handling his QB’s. Lovie seems to have difficulty giving up being a DC.

    But can we agree to judge Lovie’s 2015 team on the ONLY thing that matters?
    W’s and L’s. If this team doesn’t win at minimum six games I’ll join in the Lovie hate.

    We and Lovie in 2015 ARE what are record says we are!!! 0-0 No matter how much you guys yammer on about how bad he is it doesn’t change the FACTS.
    He has a winning record…he has a SB of only 50 coaches to claim that.

    Have all of you enjoyed careers of uninterrupted success. I worked over 25 years in broadcasting. I can look back on some success but there was one job as a radio station program director where I got too cute by half and my “creativity” just blew up in my face. I was 2-14 that year.

    Seriously have none of you had a 2-14 year in your own careers? Have you all just graduated from HS/college and enjoyed uninterrupted success? WOW!
    I’m impressed. Not one job or year on the job where you experienced failure.