Why Bucs Went Offense

October 1st, 2015
One way to overcome a soft defense is to build an offense.

One way to overcome a soft defense is to build an offense.

Yesterday, Joe came across fans disgruntled by Lovie Smith’s defense. Understandable. Overall, the Bucs are third-worst in rushing yards allowed.

Red zone defense? Worst for allowing touchdowns once opponents reach the red zone.

So if you have to give up points, you better score them, right? This is one way to overcome an underwhelming defense.

Given how stagnant the offense has been in recent years, it explains why Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht went so heavy with offensive draft picks — only one defensive player drafted in two years.

Per the research of Scott Kacsmar of Football Outsiders, no defense since 2012 has been worse than the Bucs’ at gagging away one-score, fourth-quarter leads.

You know what this tells Joe? The Bucs’ defense, since the beginning of the former commander Greg Schiano administration, was fried near game’s end because they were on the field so much. The offense couldn’t move the chains to save its life.

So how do you combat that? You beef up the offense and get America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston. Guess what happened when the Bucs had a one-score lead this year at New Orleans? They won.

27 Responses to “Why Bucs Went Offense”

  1. FLBoyInDallas Says:

    Yeah they barely held on to beat the Saints, but against the Titans and Texans the defense was gassed in the fourth quarter because our offense couldn’t sustain drives. In those two games the Bucs got absolutely steamrolled in time of possession. Unless Winston starts completing more than 47% of his passes (whether you blame the QB or the WR’s I don’t give a damn), and guys learn to make plays on 3rd down (both on offense and defense), this will continue to happen. Somebody needs to step up instead of everyone acting like victims.

  2. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    LMAO….all this under a defensive minded coach no less.

  3. Bucnjim Says:

    Offense red zone scoring 29th. McCown/Glennon disaster combo was 17 in 2014. In today’s NFL you have to score TD’s not attempt 50 yard field goals for your offensive scoring. Even if we made every kick last week you are not going to win with 19 points a game.

  4. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:


    I agree Winston and the team must get better. But I also feel expecting more so soon is eexpecting too much.

  5. bucrightoff Says:

    Guess what happened when the Bucs played Drew Brees with his arm at under 50%? They still had to hang on in the last 3 minutes to win. A good offense can help a defense, but it’s being undersold just how bad this defense really is. Any half decent QB will absolutely rip it apart.

    Of course they’ve also blown about half those draft picks on offensive players whose contribution is minimal, so it didn’t really help all that much. Probably should have spent a pick or two trying to find a top pass rusher, or another corner or two seeing as we have to run out washed up former Bears instead.

  6. Marlow Says:

    Made a lot of bad decisions with the 16 or so million we saved on Revis too. How are those guys paying off?

  7. DallasBuc Says:

    Joe- what did the Bucs offense do to help secure a win the 4th quarter of that Saints game?

  8. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Barron, Clayborne, Bowers, Foster, Black, Gaitor, Price, Lewis, Grimm. Watson. Miller, Moore, Biggers, Talib. Moore, Hayes

    These Dominick defensive picks….aren’t helping us much…..

    Our disastorus drafts for years have left us impotent on both sides of the ball.

    I have some faith that the last two are moving in the right direction.

  9. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    And yes….you can add Revis and a lost 4th round pick to that long list of Dominick picks….

  10. Danati74 Says:

    CB Jennings and Jenkins were constantly getting beat. Jennings is not the same player he was on the good Bears defense. Jenkins never really lived up to his 1st round status. Verner is getting demoted, but I believe he needs a little more time. He is a good corner. He stated the team was checking out different combos. How did that work out? The guy Lovie likes least is our best corner. Shows how good he knows players. We are in trouble on defense. Im guessing next year we will draft all defensive players. Maybe one offensive player. I don’t know what to think of this team. Its still early, but I had high hopes for this team…and may be the usual outcome.

  11. Dreambig Says:

    The only positive thing I can say is the offense has a log of young players and should get better.
    Defense and coaching? Thats another story.

  12. CC Says:

    Honestly from my perspective. We are bad in all 3 phases of the game.
    Go Bucs!

  13. Derrick Says:

    We have to be able to run the ball. We aren’t sustaining drives and that 1-12 on 3rd last week is basically telling our defense good luck boys. Doug and Chris are fine but no push means no chance. Bucs success has never been predicated on scoring a lot of points but it has been about possession and controlling the clock. That’s the point of the cover 2. Bend don’t break. No big plays. Make them eat up the clock too.

  14. Bucnjim Says:

    Not sticking up for the D because I really don’t care for anything this team is doing, but this style of D has always given up yardage between the 20’s. Even during the glory days this D allowed teams to move the ball. Not giving up big plays and keeping the other teams out of the end zone by creating turnovers is what it is known for.

  15. DefenseRules Says:

    @Bucnjim … “Not giving up big plays and keeping the other teams out of the end zone by creating turnovers is what it is known for.”

    You’re right insofar as how Tampa has historically played it, but that hasn’t been the case for several others. Carolina plays a similar scheme and doesn’t normally allow the other team to march up and down the field. Same thing with Seattle.

    It’s really all about play-makers to me. ‘Back in the day’ when we had Brooks and Sapp and (insert other play-makers) we were able to create turnovers and minimize points. The TEAM stiffened when it had its back against the wall (OK, end zone). Having excellent individual play-makers and having great TEAM chemistry is what made it all work IMHO.

    I’m not seeing that right now, although over time (as TEAM chemistry improves) I’m convinced that it’ll get better. We’ve got some play-makers, just not enough of them it appears. Lovie’s constantly inserting new ‘parts’ into the defense, and I still can’t see where that has helped improve TEAM chemistry. But time will tell. Same exact thing with our offense I expect.

  16. Bucnjim Says:

    Well said! I think both Carolina & Seattle have the skill on the D line to make it work.

  17. csidedave Says:

    Right, this offense Joe speaks about got ONE first down in the fourth qtr and fumbled twice. One by America’s QB.

    That plus negative yards in the fourth quarter is not my idea of winning the game.

  18. Tampa Tony Says:

    Tampabaybucfan- Can’t bad mouth the rockstar here. He was too good of a source for the Joes

  19. DefenseRules Says:

    @Bucnjim … Very true. Both Carolina and Seattle have really come a long way defensively in the past several years. And their DLine has been a huge part of that.

    Bucs will get there I’m convinced, IF we don’t keep swapping coaches every 2 years and IF we can have about 2 more excellent drafts (and hang onto those we train up). A team of largely free agents just isn’t the answer. The best teams are built from within.

    Lovie & Licht have made a bunch of mistakes already (especially in that free agent area) but that’s water under the bridge to me. Compounding that by cutting them loose and bringing in yet another HC/GM combo sets us back another 2 years.

  20. Patrickbucs Says:


    All good and sad points you made. One to add to that is a freaking first rounder for Revis as well! Smh

  21. JAB83 Says:

    The point is simple…. The D is good enough… The O sucks… Make them better and the D becomes above average!!! Simple as that…. Just wait on it!!!

    Big win against The Kittens this week will prove this point…

  22. bucrightoff Says:

    DefenseRules Says:
    October 1st, 2015 at 10:59 am
    @Bucnjim … Very true. Both Carolina and Seattle have really come a long way defensively in the past several years. And their DLine has been a huge part of that.

    Bucs will get there I’m convinced, IF we don’t keep swapping coaches every 2 years and IF we can have about 2 more excellent drafts (and hang onto those we train up). A team of largely free agents just isn’t the answer. The best teams are built from within.

    Lovie & Licht have made a bunch of mistakes already (especially in that free agent area) but that’s water under the bridge to me. Compounding that by cutting them loose and bringing in yet another HC/GM combo sets us back another 2 years.

    So you fully agree our management team has made a bunch of mistakes, has drafted average at best (no credit for “earning” the #1 pick), yet you basically want to bring them back because we might have to “start over”. Start over what exactly?

    Remember this team is playing worse than it did under Lovie’s predecessor and you think he deserves more time? Look at the Dolphins, how did keeping a mediocre to poor coach for continuity’s sake work for them? Their season is a disaster and Philbin is going to get fired anyways. But hey, they had continuity for one more offseason…

    Always, always walk away too soon rather than too late. Because if you give Lovie year 3 and he sucks again, it’s an even deeper hole than firing him after this year. I know people don’t want to from the perception of “rebuilding”, but what exactly has been built since January 2014? A defense worse than Schiano, with the same mediocre offense?

  23. DefenseRules Says:

    @bucrightoff … The Bucs have been down this road way too many times. And the result is always the same: we keep changing coaching staffs and we keep losing.

    What the Glazers did under the Raheem Morris regime was ludicrous. Call it what you want, but they basically gutted the team. Then proceeded to try to rebuild on the cheap. Not only wasn’t Raheem ready to be a HC, but he was also doomed from the start. And he ended us not doing the players any favors as a result of his coaching style.

    Greg Schiano was a decent coach (not a great one, but a decent one), but he was also doomed from the start. Late hire for one thing meant less talent available to fill his assistant coaching ranks. And it showed. Some bad personnel decisions (I know, blame Dominick for those) and some bad luck (MRSA … really?) combined with his college mentality, all combined to do him in I think. And oh ya, a lot of ‘soft players’ who should’ve been playing in the Arena League only. So folks booed him out of town (or maybe they billboarded him out of town, not sure).

    And now it’s Lovie’s turn. He’s made some mistakes, no question. But everyone in leadership positions makes mistakes. True leaders LEARN from those mistakes. And I believe that’sthe case with Lovie.

    I for one can’t even imagine how difficult that must be when heading up a professional sports franchise. First you have to cater to senior management(the team might be our Bucs, but it’s their BUCKS at stake,and they are businessmen in the final analysis). Then you have to cater to players (a little thingie like a Players’ Union I’m sure sets a lot of the do’s and don’ts from a coaches perspective). And of course then you have all these wonderful fans like you and me to guide ya. We’re doing our part though, aren’t we.

    Sure, let’s keep changing every 2 years. I’m sure that the results will be different … next time.

  24. bucrightoff Says:

    We keep having to change coaches every 2 years because those in charge keep making very poor hires. Lovie isn’t some spring chicken, his NFL philosophy is deeply ingrained into him and he’s never changing. Why should he? He gets $20 million no matter what happens. What we see now, it’s not going to get much better really. This is a very poorly coached team, and nothing has improved in 19 games. Lovie doesn’t have a long term plan or vision that leads most to believe the Bucs will be any different than the Bears were under him. That means if he stays 10 years, we’ll make the playoffs 3 times, maybe. Sorry, but that sucks.

  25. John McKillop Says:

    As I’ve said many times this organization needs to get out of it’s own way and hire a president of football operations who knows what the hell he is doing and get out of his way and let him rebuild this thing.

  26. bucsbedabest Says:

    The average career for an NFL coach is 4.12 years. In a league with 32 teams, that’s more than two coaching changers per team, over the decade. Over the last 10 years, only three franchises – the New York Giants (Tom Coughlin), New England Patriots (Bill Belichick) and Cincinnati Bengals (Marvin Lewis) – have employed one head coach. Eight more clubs have had only two head coaches over the past decade – Baltimore, Carolina, Green Bay, New Orleans, Seattle, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. One franchise has had three head coaches over the past decade – Chicago Bears. Two franchises have hadd four head coaches over the past decade – Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Houston Texans. Three franchises push the average upward with five full-time head coaches over the past decade – the Cleveland Browns, Kansas City Chiefs and Miami Dolphins. And then there are the Oakland Raiders, with eight full-time head coaches since 2005: Norv Turner, Art Shell, Lane Kiffin, Tom Cable, Hue Jackson, Dennis Allen, Tony Sparano and Jack Del Rio. It should come as no surprise that the 40 combined seasons those four teams have played in the past decade, have accounted for zero playoff victories. Lets wait and not go to five. Lets give Lovie his 4.12 years before joining the other four teams.

  27. Piratic Says:

    “…no defense since 2012 has been worse than the Bucs’ at gagging away one-score, fourth-quarter leads.”

    And if THAT doesn’t sting, how about this:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — By running over, around and through one of the league’s top defenses, the Carolina Panthers staked their claim as one of the NFL’s top teams.

    DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart proved a dominating tandem, and the Panthers seized control of the competitive NFC South with a 38-23 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday night.

    Williams rushed for a career-high 186 yards and two touchdowns, Stewart added 115 yards and two more scores and the Panthers set a team record for yards rushing for the second time in a month.

    And this time it was against the NFL’s fourth-rated defense that came in having allowed only one rushing TD all season.

    The Panthers (10-3) avenged their worst loss of the season and grabbed the top spot in the division, moving one game ahead of the Buccaneers (9-4).

    “People remember what you do in December,” Panthers coach John Fox said. “This was a big stage and I like the way our guys met that challenge.”

    The Monday nighter featuring the top teams in the NFC South was billed as a chance for the division to emerge from the shadow of the tough NFC East.

    The overlooked contenders played even through three quarters, before the Panthers wore down the Buccaneers’ highly regarded defense in the final period behind their emerging stars in the backfield.

    “Those guys are that good,” said coach Jon Gruden, whose Bucs had their four-game winning streak snapped. “Those guys are going to make guys miss. Both of them.”

    Steve Smith added nine catches for 117 yards and a touchdown, and the Panthers overcame Jake Delhomme’s two interceptions behind their dominating ground game, an area Carolina targeted in the offseason by drafting Stewart and overhauling its offensive line.

    “It’s kind of what we’re built around,” Fox said. “I think we got bigger and more physical up front and both of those back are pretty special.”

    They powered the Panthers within a game of the New York Giants for the best record in the NFC. At the Giants in two weeks, the Panthers — yes the Panthers — hold their own destiny for the No. 1 seed in the playoffs.

    The Buccaneers wasted a career day from Antonio Bryant, who caught nine passes for 200 yards and two touchdowns, including an outstanding one-handed TD grab with 2:29 left.

    Matt Bryant’s extra-point attempt after Antonio Bryant’s final score was blocked by Julius Peppers. The Panthers then recovered the onside kick, and Williams scored his 13th touchdown — breaking Stephen Davis’ single-season team record — to put it away.

    “The O-line and the fullback did an outstanding job blocking for us today,” Williams said. “They did an outstanding job getting us to the second level.”

    It was a frustrating night for the Bucs, who roughed up Carolina 27-3 in October — holding Carolina to 40 yards rushing. A win would have given them control of the division.

    Instead, their offense couldn’t keep up. Jeff Garcia lost to Carolina for the first time in six starts despite throwing for 321 yards and two touchdowns. Garcia was sacked five times.

    “Our defense has bailed us out so often this season,” Garcia said. “This was one of those nights were offensively we needed to be better.”

    In his first game back in Carolina since suffering a career-threatening knee injury 14 months ago, Carnell “Cadillac” Williams had a 4-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter to tie it at 17.

    DeAngelo Williams and Stewart then took over.

    Stewart rumbled over tackles for an 18-yard gain before his 4-yard TD run with 13:21 left put the Panthers ahead to stay.

    After Peppers sacked Garcia to end the Buccaneers’ next drive, Williams and Stewart dazzled.

    Williams gained 41 yards, Stewart picked up 3 and 30, and then Williams raced 16 yards for the decisive four-play TD drive.

    “Some of the plays were plays we’d seen before,” Bucs linebacker Derrick Brooks said. “They did a good job of blocking us this time. I’ve got to give them credit for breaking tackles and making us miss.”

    Williams became only the third player in Carolina’s 14-year history to surpass 1,000 yards rushing in a season when he rumbled 40 yards up the middle. That set up Stewart’s 2-yard TD run with 1:56 left before halftime that gave Carolina a 10-3 lead.

    Carolina finished with 299 yards rushing, surpassing the team-record 264 it had last month against Detroit. The total was only 7 yards shy of the most allowed by Tampa Bay.

    “It is embarrassing, definitely,” linebacker Barrett Ruud said. “Especially since you don’t get many opportunities to have that national audience and this was by far our worst game.”

    Since that horrific Monday night loss to Carolina in December 2008, (2008!) our Buccaneers are a ridiculous 31-71. That’s 2489 days that this ship has been floundering. I’ll never be a fan of another team, but this organization has made it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to feel good about the direction of the club.