First-Tackle Rust

October 4th, 2015
Mike Evans makes a stunning admission: He forgot what real football was like.

Mike Evans makes a stunning admission: He forgot what real football was like.

So how rusty was Mike Evans last Sunday?

Consider this, he hadn’t been tackled since 2014. The old school NFL players in Joe’s reading audience just crapped their pants.

In the modern NFL, everybody is terrified of injury, so wide receivers and running backs rarely, if ever, get drilled or tackled in practice. Nobody believes in it any more.

Enter Evans, he didn’t have a catch in preseason and didn’t play too much because of a bad hamstring. He returned in Week 2, but the one ball he caught was ruled out of bounds and he didn’t get taken to the turf.

Evans admitted that last Sunday in Houston was more than just a little rust. He had forgotten what real football was like.

“I hadn’t got tackled. You know, so I forgot how it [felt] and how physical the game was. I kind of forgot for a little bit,” Evans said on the Buccaneers Radio Network. “Woke me up real quick. Hit the ground a lot.

“That turf was terrible. It was brand new turf, I think it was only in a week or two. Not making excuses or anything. But it was bad. It was bad. I got all these burns on my body from the turf.”

A cynic might wonder why the Bucs targeted Evans so much in that game, but there are no excuses for him. His three drops were all bad ones — at critical times. Evans said “not looking the ball in on easy plays” was an issue, and that’s just a screwup for than anything else, not rust.

9 Responses to “First-Tackle Rust”

  1. Walter Says:

    I wanna see his numbers on a good day

  2. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    I hope we don’t have another Michael Clayton on our (dare I say) hands.

  3. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Mike “stonehands” Clayton


    You gotta believe Evans has heard of him by now after all them drops


  4. tickrdr Says:

    Joe says:

    “A cynic might wonder why the Bucs targeted Evans so much in that game”

    I am one of those who is very happy to have Dirk Koetter as our offensive coordinator.

    But I do not understand why Mike Evans was targeted 17 times vs. Houston, while Vincent Jackson was targeted only 4 times! Why not more slants and short passes for our rookie quarterback. In fact, Doug Martin has only been targeted for a pass three times this entire season. Jameis Winston leads the league in yds per completion, but his completion percentage is poor, in part because there are fewer short passes and checkdowns to keep drives alive. We all know that the BUCS were only 1 of 12 on third down conversions against Houston, but we are also only 9 of 40 for the year! (22.5%)

    Is this Koetter’s gameplan, or Jameis locking onto his primary receiver?


  5. Buccfan37 Says:

    That Texans turf sure took a beating. The teams complained about that turf before the Bucs game, now it’s probably worse.

  6. Buccfan37 Says:

    Actually the teams the Texans played before the Bucs played on the old field, the Bucs got to break in the plastic burner field.

  7. Buccfan37 Says:

    That’s funny, Evans says he is not making excuses as he is making them.

  8. FortMyersDave Says:

    Lets just hope that Evans does not turn into Clayton Deux! A lot of players have sophomore slumps but I get that bad feeling that this guy is gonna have real trouble recapturing that edge he had last season though he had a lot of bad moments last season 2; remember how he simply could not get up off the grass toward the end of that Lamb game last year and cost the Bucs any chance of a last minute comeback via the clock run off he caused by not crawling off the ****ing field????

  9. Danr Says:

    i want someone to ask the kicker about the turf.