November 5th, 2015
Harsh words for the anchor of the Bucs linebackers.

Harsh words for the anchor of the Bucs linebackers.

Two players, one could argue, have not played up to their talent ceilings with the Bucs in the past two years: Gerald McCoy, and the other is certainly Lavonte David.

Joe is a defender of GMC. He’s a good player. And Bucs fans seem to hold him to outrageous, unrealistic standards.

But has Bucs coach Lovie Smith gotten the most out of him? Perhaps not. That is not to say GMC isn’t effective.

But the player who has not just declined under Lovie, but is virtually invisible this season, is David. The stud linebacker has almost become a non-factor, a stunning drop off from a guy who appeared on his way to being the next Derrick Brooks.

NFL analyst Doug Farrar of SI.com believes the problem with David is very simple. David doesn’t fit Lovie’s defense, Farrar suggests in a column about overrated players.

Yes, David has been a tackling machine since he came into the league in 2012, but like most players in Lovie Smith’s fractured defense, he’s struggling to find a role. David is at his best when he’s on the move, and he’s been asked to hit the hole against run plays too often. It’s probably a matter of scheme fit over a decline in talent, but it’s not pretty either way.

This is very damning for Lovie. How can you take one of the game’s top players, then drop a boatload of cash in his lap, and he not just wilts in your defense, but has become almost a non-factor? Has any player other than a rookie actually improved playing for Lovie?

With a couple more wins, Joe is pretty sure Lovie returns in 2016. And mainly because of the near-perfect way he has brought along America’s Quarterback, Bucs signal-caller Jameis Winston, the franchise’s meal ticket.

If Lovie were to be judged solely on how he has (not) coached up defensive players and by his defense, then he would be in serious, serious trouble.

29 Responses to “Overrated?”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Missed tackles don’t have a thing to do with scheme…

  2. bucrightoff Says:

    Overrated? No
    Underwhelming since Lovie took over? Quite

  3. mac Says:

    It’s all about value… We are not getting much value from our two highest played players… When you pay a guy $100 million it would be nice if he was at least in the top 5 at his position… Sad…

  4. Killian Says:

    Mason Foster was turning into a stud too in Schiano’s defense, then went by the wayside in Lovie’s Defense.

  5. mac Says:

    Highest paid… Not played…

  6. DWE Says:

    I give The offensive coordinator credit for bringing along Winston not Lovie

  7. TAC Says:

    The best in the business resides in the Tampa area Mr LVD, call him.

    I have seen some missed tackles too, but always a step or 2 behind, is there also, looking lost.

    Rivera’s Carolina D looks more like the old urlacher Chicago D than anything Lovie has trotted out so far. Took Rivera a couple of years, so maybe there is hope. Looks like they got the middle LB right.

  8. rjhurst813 Says:

    So true! All David does is run downhill, he over pursues his gap, routinely fooled on play-action, read-option, and counter plays. He seems lost in space and he is not making plays when he has the opportunity. In this system, he has to do more than stuff the hole and blitz. In Schiano’s first year we were great at stopping the run, but guess what? Teams stopped running and killed us on the pass. We were first against the run and last against the pass. Everyone always seem to forget that stat.

    We can’t adjust the entire scheme to fit one player, especially when we don’t have the corners that will allow them to blitz all day. Now if you want to blame Lovie for getting rid of Revis, I will not complain. That was a horrible move.

  9. BeeMoney Says:

    Man all this BS about Lovie!!!!! LVD needs to get down or get rolled over!! Anybody heard of Brooks, Urlacher, and Briggs???? They did quite well under Lovie and it looks like Kwon Alexander is going to be good under Lovie as well.

  10. rjhurst813 Says:

    @ BeeMoney,

    I agree David is not owning the scheme, and it shows on film. Ronde played a new position in a different scheme his final year and he produced. There was an article on the site where David referenced Ronde advising him to own the defensive system under Schiano its has to be the same with Lovie’s system. Stop pouting an make plays. Hopefully, he will become inspired by the performance of Kwon, now that he see what can be don’t at LB in this system.

  11. Supersam Says:

    At some point we have to stop blaming the coaches and start blaming the freaking players!!! He got paid!! I remember when Mike Williams was a bad a$$ reciver for us, and then we paid him. I’m afraid what will happen to Doug Martin next year if we throw a bunch of cash at him too. I’ve watched wvery bucs game this year atleast 3 times, and from what I see Lavonte David just don’t look interested in playing football. Simple as that.

  12. Buccfan37 Says:

    Lovie is a defensive genius, lol somebody forgot to tell David. LVD does start, his impact is a part of the whole, he will be fine.

  13. flmike Says:

    He’s still thinking and not reacting, it’ll come

  14. ATrain Says:

    Two high paid players are not playing well under Lovie.. Two of our best players not playing well under Lovie and Yall defend this CLown…

    This is the same coach who spent a bunch of money in free agency last year and all were bums.

    This is the same coach who brought in McClown to QB that was a JOKE!

    Lovie is a GOOD COACH… Yall are a JOKE.

    I hear he needs more time, He is change the system and they have to learn the system… A GOOD Coach makes a system that works with his talent and builds around them..

    Lovie has had as much time as Schiano and not done anything close to what he did as far as wins.. Yall called for Schiano’s head and you defend this basement bum.

    Of course yall probably are the same fans who called for Chucky to get fired. HAHAHA That was the best JOKE Chucky laughed all the way to the bank..hahahaa


  15. Defense Rules Says:

    @ATrain … I get from your comments that you’re not a huge of Lovie, and I don’t have a problem with that. That’s one of the things that makes sites like JBF interesting to me.

    But what I don’t get are some of your other comments and bashing players who don’t even play for us to make some vague ‘point’ about Lovie being a bad coach. Josh ‘McClown’ for instance (as you call him). Playing for the 2-6 Browns this year, Josh has completed over 65% of his passes, thrown for 11 TDs against only 4 INTs. Jameis through 7 games for our 3-4 Bucs has completed almost 59% of his passes, thrown for 10 TDs against 7 INTs.

    Now before you ask, I’ll take Jameis any day of the year. But why bash Lovie because of bringing in Josh McCown? We didn’t have the OLine last year, nor the run game, nor the OC to support Josh. He’s obviously better than what we saw. It’s the same thing to me as the Mariota argument: who’s to say how good Mariota would be learning in the same system that Jameis is learning in. The comparison is really irrelevant … you are where you are.

  16. OneLove Says:


    The only JOKE here is you(and a few other “non-sensical radicals”)! When are you going to actually put some of the BLAME on the players! You see it time and time again, the PLAYERS are calling EACH OTHER OUT! Hell, former players are calling the CURRENT PLAYERS OUT! Stop the HATE!! It’s not good for your heart and soul!!

    FYI, “GOOD COACHES” make it to the super bowl and win multiple division titles!

    Your attempt has failed and been shut down!

    “Another one bites the dust”

    THANK YOU!!!

    “It’s as simple as that” – Lovie Smith

    “Changing coaches about halfway through a rebuilding effort is a recipe for perpetual failure.” – Johnny “America’s Commenter” Dejay

    “If Lovie don’t no how to coach so be it… Hard to believe he would get a job offer and you wouldn’t…. Wonder why??? Your idiots that’s why…” – JAB83

    “So my advice would be, yes, it’s okay to throw things at your TV when your team has a monumental collapse like the Bucs did on Sunday in Washington. But take a deep breath and understand that it is only going to get worse if you continue to jump from one coach to the next.” – Peter King

  17. Pick6 Says:

    lovie needs to invest in a strong defensive mind at coordinator, even if said coordinator chooses not to run Smith’s scheme. if he wants personnel control, he should be able to delegate both coordinator roles. he found a guy to coach the offense who believes in bending the scheme and playcalling to the strengths of his roster, and it has worked out really well. if lovie wants to get the most out of his most talented defenders, he needs a dirk koetter on defense and he can just focus on press conferences

  18. JAB83 Says:

    I’m sorry…. A “super talented player” adjust to systems not the other way around…. See the Titians and MM for the latest example….

    LVD is suffering from the same issue GMC is suffering from…. To much hype… Best player on a bad team….

    Give him a reality “check” in that he is paid to perform the task he is asked to perform!!! If he can’t excell at that he is not as talented as you believe…. He is just good at what he dose….

    That said, LVD will be back as soon as he sees what it is he is lacking….. Personally I think he as well as everyone else on the D saw what they are lacking last week…. AND YOU CAN THANK THE ONLY PLAYER DRAFTED BY LOVIE ON THAT SIDE OF THE BALL FOR IT!!!!!

    Its called heart, passion, drive to succeed and most important a will to win!!!!

    ONE PLAYER just one…. Is all he needed to draft to get this D playing to a higher potential….

    Lovie has done EVERYTHING right to build up a horrible Offence…. And just enough to start the turn around of a talented D that was lacking “something.”

    Kudos Lovie, you cant do everything in one year and two drafts but you sure have changed the tide and epic momentum of losing for our team….

    As a part of the 12th man I will do my best to support the new direction for better or worst….

    These Trolls and Fans of Depression will soon become Fans of Inspiration …. The 12th man factor is rebuilding also!!!!

  19. JAB83 Says:

    And before you say look at his win loss record…. Look at the full scope of that which you so willfully and ignorantly ignore… Winning is a formality of THE FULL SCOPE of building a championship caliber Team… So you can take the win lose record and shovel it up your pee hole….

    It really is
    As simple as that…

    PS, if Lovie continues to not get the job done by the time his contract is up… Then we can talk about finding a better coach…. He will have done his part in helping us to long term success…. If for no other reason than showing a really good coach that we are willing to honor a contract!!!! So dont kid yourselves thinking you can find a better coach willing to stick his new k and career on the line to come here and attempt to turn things around in less then a year!!!!!


  20. Tiny Tim Says:

    LVD stated after the Titans lost that the defense was deflated after the first play of the game where Major Wright was flagged for unnecessary roughness. That showed a lack of heart and mental toughness on the player’s side including David. You cannot blame Lovie for that. That statement right there tells me all I need to know about the leaders on this defense. If Kwon is any indication of the type of player Lovie would like to draft on the defensive side of the ball, then we may be in good hands. McCoy and David are merely good players (not great) until proven otherwise. I am not sure why we even debate this. And no Joe, no one is holding McCoy to unrealistic standards. We would just like to see him have more than one tackle and one QB pressure for a 60 minute football game. That is not too much to ask. Akeem Spence had a better stat line than McCoy in only his first game back. That is unacceptable.

  21. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    I will wait for it, but hopefully horrible Lovie is fired ASAP

  22. bucrightoff Says:

    JAB83 Says:
    November 5th, 2015 at 11:53 am
    PS, if Lovie continues to not get the job done by the time his contract is up…

    Awesome, looking forward to having poor coaching costing us games until 2019. If he makes it to the end of his contract, that confirms the Glazers are running the franchise into the ground to move it to London.

  23. tmaxcon Says:

    Talented Players Win Championships NOT systems… Great coaches get the best out of the players they have on their roster NOT force them to be robots in a pathetic scheme that is not relevant. It’s the coaches job to recognize players strengths and weaknesses and adjust their system accordingly. Loive has proven time and time again he is incapable of making adjustments whether it’s game day or to his scheme. Being stubborn is going to be the death of lovie in tamap.

  24. rjhurst813 Says:

    @ Tmaxcon

    LVD had a great year leaving Leonard Johnson on an Island in man coverage with top receivers. Teams were outright targeting Johnson, but it’s OK as long as David can blitz all day long.

    Doesn’t David deserve some of the blame that you are tossing Lovie’s way. If you look at the film you cannot defend LVD’s play on the field. It’s like he not even trying. He’s always out of position, and he looks confused.

  25. mike10 Says:

    TBBucfan, good point.

    But if it is a scheme thing (as the experts suggest) it’s damming to me that 2 of our best players on D are playing bad on a bad defense. Then we see things like Barron going and excelling @ a different position in STL… I’m looking at the coaches on this one.

    … and Joe, it’s the organization that’s selling fans on McCoy’s lofty expectations. We’re supposed to be smarter and think less of the leagues HIGHEST paid defender?

    I’m confused.

  26. JAB83 Says:

    Awesome…. I figured out the problem… You read one sentence and ignore the rest of the statement… Hmmmm… Maybe some of the problem with this team Falls of The Fans of Depression like you Bucrightoff…. Wish you would jump off the ship like your name suggest vs being a Troll…

    @Tmax… Being stubborn is not being willing to see things in any other way then the way in which you see them… Applys to you and the rest of you Trolls that refuse to see the positive signs of long term improvement… Which I might add has taken place in a relatively short time… A TON of the issues you folks take issue with directly stem from NOT HAVING coaches in place to do all the things you have to do to build a Champion… Our previous 3 coaches destroyed that foundation…. May have been better “game day coaches” in some respects but totally destroyed the foundation….

    Try not being so stubborn and ADJUST your perspective… Systems win Championships when the players do what they are suppose to do…. Lovie has established an Offence in less then TWO years…. This suggest HE HAS CHANGED LIKE YOU ARE CRYING ABOUT…. get your panties out of a wad and STFU little girl…

    Tmax = stubborn Fan of Depression infected by Trolls desease

    Hope this helps you “change”, your depressing mind set and become a true Fan of Inspiration….

    Be the 12 man not a sorry fan

  27. Mo_Downs Says:

    Short Version:

    David leads the team in tackles.

    McCoy has been playing with one shoulder all season.

    Conte is 3rd on the team in tackles behind #1 David and #2 Kwon.

    Beyond these FACTS, I have no nits to pick.

    Go Bucs..!!

  28. godzilla13 Says:

    Thank you Mo_Downs Says, thank you

  29. Matt Says:

    7 sacks 6 interceptions then never again hmmm crazyyyy . This team is not using him properly or he’s being lazy