Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow

November 16th, 2015
jameis 1115

Cowboys QB Tony Romo greets America’s Quarterback after the Bucs win yesterday.

Welcome to Victory Monday, Bucs fans.

So the Bucs’ playoff chances are still a reality. A stretch? Sure. A long shot? No question. But real they are.

The Bucs are currently 4-5, tied with Washington, Philadelphia, Chicago, St. Louis and Seattle. Meanwhile, Green Bay is in second place in the NFC North and reeling. Atlanta, too, seems to be circling the drain. Oddly enough, the Bucs play three of the aforementioned teams still this season beginning with the Eagles next.

So let’s look at the remaining schedule:

Eagles: With Sam Bradford suffering both a shoulder injury and a concussion, it is very possible the Eagles will be led by Mark Sanchize next week.

Colts: Andrew Luck is doubtful while recovering from a lacerated kidney.

Dixie Chicks: Bucs already beat them.

Saints: Bucs already beat them, too. Besides, the Saints are playing really gruesome defense.

Rams: This team is as inconsistent as they come. A winnable game.

Bears: Another meh team.

Stinking Panthers: Right now, it sure smells like they will rest starters in Week 17. The Stinking Panthers will have wrapped up home field advantage. Carolina currently has a three-game lead in the division, a two-game lead over the Vikings and a four-game lead over the Giants for the best record in the NFC.

Yeah, losses to the Redskins and Giants, especially the Redskins, really sting, as the Bucs very easily could not only be 6-3 but have tiebreakers over those two teams. Alas, it is the Redskins and Giants who now have tiebreakers over the Bucs.

Remember: Four of the last five years a team with an 8-8 record or worse has made the playoffs. However, no NFC team with less than 11 wins has earned a wild card berth since 2012, when Leslie Frazier’s 10-6 Vikings trumped Lovie Smith’s 10-6 Bears, which drove Lovie into a forced exile to his now-famous suburban Chicago basement.

Getting Healthy, Soon?

When Vincent Jackson hurt his knee on a hit from Hawk Goldson in Washington, Joe learned from a trusted source that Jackson’s initial diagnosis was that he would be out six weeks. Last week, Jackson said he doesn’t need to be 100 percent to play.

If the six week-layoff is still in effect, that means Jackson will miss three more games and return to play the Saints in Tampa on Dec. 13. That would only help America’s Quarterback, Bucs signal-caller Jameis Winston.

One would hope, also by then, that either Austin Seferian-Jenkins is either back on the field or the Bucs simply put him on injured reserve and sign a pass-catching tight end off the street (if there is one walking the street). Right now, the guy is burning a roster spot on a team that has blocking tight ends trying to catch passes.

If Jameis is able to win games with the likes of special teams cat Russell Shepard (who showed yesterday why he is a special teams cat), and undrafted rookies Donteea Dye and Adam Humphries, imagine what he could do with both Jackson and Seferian-Jenkins on the field?

And people wonder why Jameis throws so much to Mike Evans.

And still, with glorified slugs at wide receiver not named Evans, the second-year Bucs wideout never caught a pass on the game-winning drive.

Pass Defense Sound

It looks like Lovie finally has found his right combination in the secondary. After running guys in and out — remember Loaf — the past two weeks Sterling Moore and Hey Jude have gotten the job done quite well.

How well did the secondary play yesterday? Dez Bryant was targeted 12 times by Matt Cassel and Bryant only caught five balls for 45 yards.

The Bucs used to be given fits by tight ends. But future Hall of Fame tight end Jason Witten had but five catches for a grand total of 42 yards.

Just like the way Demar Dotson and Evan Smith didn’t get their starting jobs back on the offensive line because the line was playing so well, Moore and/or Hey Jude should keep their jobs unless their play is slipping.

In the past two games, the Bucs have held opposing quarterbacks to a total of 399 yards, an average of 198 yards per game. Not bad for a lot that was getting fried week after week.

Lay Off Gerald McCoy

Gerald McCoy will have fans freaking out again after yesterday’s near-invisible game. He had one tackle, total. Depending on if you are a glass-is-half-full guy or glass-is-half-empty dude, GMC either whiffed on a tackle for loss, or forced Darren McFadden into the arms of Howard Jones.

Let’s be real. Look at who the Bucs have on the defensive line other than GMC. If you were Dallass offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, or any offensive coordinator, would you really run at GMC instead of a collection of castoffs and marginal players on a losing team? Of course you wouldn’t.

Welcome Back, Lavonte David

Along with GMC, stud outside linebacker Lavonte David has been much-maligned this year for invisible play. It got so bad, Joe couldn’t refer to him as a “stud.” He was playing more like a dud.

Yesterday, David showed he was still alive. The guy was everywhere, including a tackle of McFadden for no gain on the game’s first play.

David led all players with 12 combined tackles (five tackles, seven assists).

Welcome back, Lavonte!

And now the Bucs prepare to travel to Philly to play the ordinary Eagles and what looks to be quarterback Mark Sanchize. As Joe stated, brittle Sam Bradford had both a shoulder injury and a concussion yesterday. These days, the way the NFL is paranoid about concussions, few players bounce back to play the very next week, though Bradley McDougald sealed yesterday’s game for the Bucs after a concussion against the Giants.

As Lovie would say, time to streak.

NFL Thoughts:

Bills: Finally a compelling game on a Thursday night. Well, compelling as the game had playoff implications. It was a snore fest until the final quarter. The Jets, thanks to being in quarterback purgatory, are coming back to earth.

Jags: Blake Bortles wins his first road game. In fact, the Jags had gone damned near two years since they last won a road game. Bortles’ 15-yard pass to Allen Robinson in the fourth helped put the Jags over the Crows.

Lions: The Lions beat the Packers at Lambeau Field for the first time in 24 years. What the hell is going on with the Packers?

Dolphins: Ryan Tannehill actually won a game with a touchdown pass. It helped that the Dolphins knocked brittle Sam Bradford out of the game.

Steelers: Pittsburgh only had two quarterbacks active and the backup was injured Ben Roethlisberger. Landry Jones got carted off and Roethlisberger proceeds to go wilding on the Browns with 379 yards passing, bum ankle and all.

Bears: They blew out St. Louis. Bratty Jay Cutler threw for three touchdowns. St. Louis is such an up and down team. As Adam Schein said, if 8-8 is your goal, Jeff Fisher is your guy.

Stinking Panthers: Beat up on the lowly Titans and little Marcus Mariota had another awful game. Cam Newton is your leader in the clubhouse for NFC MVP.

Redskins: Kirk Cousins and the Redskins offense rolled up 512 yards of offense on the Saints. Cousins was out of his mind with four touchdown passes and 324 yards passing.

Vikings: The Vikes are now in first place in the NFC North thanks to Adrian Peterson slicing Oakland for 203 yards rushing.

Chiefs: OMG, the Chiefs won in Denver. That rarely happens, but that is exactly what will get Peyton Manning benched. Is it over for him?

Patriots: Tom Brady, yada… yada… yada…

Cardinals: Wild game last night. Can brittle Carson Palmer get sacked without fumbling? The Cardinals are good, but as fun as that game was, it tried Joe’s patience. Penalty… penalty… penalty… review… penalty… penalty… penalty… review… Joe was about ready to go out to Denny’s for biscuits and gravy and breakfast this thing ran so late. When will the NFL learn we don’t watch for the refs?

Non-NFL Thoughts

* Joe is pretty sure the Everett Golson era at Florida State is over. Or it should be. Florida State looked meh the first half and then Jimbo benched Golson, inserted Sean Maguire, and it was as if Chris Weinke returned to school. There is a reason Brian Kelly let Golson walk.

* Damn, Joe feels for Kevin Wilson and Indiana. Every year he puts a fun, competitive team on the field but they just cannot get a big win. Coming from behind to push Michigan to overtime before, of course, losing.

* Your new leader for Heisman Trophy? Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield. Dude is a gamer and he will lead the Sooners back to the playoffs, you watch. But man, how about Oklahoma’s defense shutting down Baylor? Wow.

* Boy, Oklahoma State got a scare in Ames. Joe thinks the Cowboys will be undefeated when they play the Sooners, and then lose.

* Ohio State sure seems like this year’s Florida State. Just barely winning a bunch of games against nobodies and living off of the previous season’s laurels. At least FSU had Jameis to ride. J.T. Barrett is no Jameis.

* Navy is in the AP Top-20. Navy. And, no, Roger Staubach is not the quarterback, Joe honestly cannot remember when Navy was ranked that high.

* Could the Gators somehow knock off little Nicky Saban in the SEC title game? That would be cool.

* LSU has quit. Simple as that. They didn’t show up at all against Arkansas. Hangover after losing to Alabama. Sad, too. Just throwing away a season.

* Joe cannot yet believe in Iowa, sorry.

* Oh, look who is one game away from a trip to the PAC-12 title game? Yep, Mike Leach and Washington State. The Canes should hire this guy. Talk about energizing South Florida. If you can win at Texas Tech and you can win at Washington State, imagine what Leach would do in South Florida? C’mon.

23 Responses to “Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow”

  1. Jameisbucsfan Says:

    In Jameis we trust!

  2. Robert palmer Says:

    Joe your right lay off Gerald Mccoy….and dont let him return until he shows he will earn his paycheck. His arm is hurt waaa waaa.

  3. Jc tree Says:

    You forgot to mention South Florida Bulls big win. That was huge.

  4. Tom Edrington Says:

    Kudos to Navy QB Keenan Reynolds, now the NCAA record-holder for touchdowns scored!!

    Go NAVY!

  5. Clodhopper Says:

    No need to be sorry, Joe.

    Living 20 minutes from Iowa City, I’m a huge Iowa fan and watch every game just like the Bucs, just like I do every year. Don’t get me wrong, we have a great team by our standards. Beathard is an amazing QB for us. I’m giddy as hell about this season, but we haven’t been tested yet. We’ve literally played nobody worth significance. No Michigan. No Ohio State. No Michigan State. We’re barely beating these mediocre teams. IMO the worst thing that could happen to Iowa is one of the top 4 to lose and we make it in the final 4 and go the playoffs. I think we will be embarrassed on the national stage so badly, it’ll turn into an internet meme. I’m sure we’ll lose to either Michigan State or Ohio State in the Big Ten Championship game though.

  6. FortMyersDave Says:

    Cmon Joe: when you are talking about Mike leach and the U of Miami do not say South Florida, you made me think for a split second that you were talking about our hometown Bulls! The Bulls deserve some props as well: they beat the **** out of ranked temple and now find themselves bowl eligible for the first time since Skippy holtz used Jim Leavitt’s recruits to go bowling in his first season before he tried his damnest to turn USF back into a 1-AA program. With Cincy and winless God awful UCF left on the schedule the bulls have a legit shot at 8-4 and a temple loss to Memphis wil then put the Bull into a chance to play for a decent bowl bid not just the expected trip top the Trop to play Sippy and his La tech lads. Go Bulls! Two weekends in that past month with both the bucs and Bulls winning at RJS on the same weekend; I am pretty sure that has not happened since the Bucs had Chuckie and the Bulls had Jim Leavitt as their respective coaches. It was a good weekend for football here in Tampa this weekend!

  7. Joe Cool Says:

    Joe, how do you not mention USF’s upset over Temple? Less than 24 hours on the same field the Bucs got their victory?

  8. James Walker Says:

    Looking at the game McCoy was double teamed and sometimes was chipped by a third the whole game. As long as he continues to draw all of that attention it just means that we just need some DE to make the pass rush work.

  9. Buccfan37 Says:

    USF is the home college team in Tampa. Great win over Temple! Go Bulls. All of the Bulls games should be shown on local TV. The American Athletic Conference has some very good teams.

  10. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    I was at the USF game and for only like a quarter full it was really loud, they need a staium, like ucf on campus, itw as a great atmosphere and great win

  11. Buccfan37 Says:

    If Memphis beats Temple and the Bulls beat Cincinnati and UCF, the Bulls can win the AAC East.

  12. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    sign a pass-catching tight end off the street

    What’s wrong with Brandon Myers? The tipped pass was clearly a bad throw from #3 and would have required an Odell Beckham level skill to haul in.

    Meanwhile one of the “plays of the game” was the catch Myers made on that drive that kept us going. That was also a less than perfect toss and Myers saved our bacon.

    Myers caught 47 with the Gmen the year before he came to us and the year before that Myers caught 79 with the hapless Raiders!!!

    This is perhaps one of the biggest mysteries of the year for me. Koetter is known as an OC who loves his TE’s…the number one TE is unavailable and he has a TE who averaged 63 catches the two years prior to joining the Bucs yet he’s on pace to catch one third that many this year. Why?

  13. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Oh and Congrats to all Bull’s fans. You have a right to celebrate and I think you’ve finally found Leavitt’s replacement. Taggert is a very good recruiter and based on the ECU and Temple wins I suspect he’ll be able to bring in a really good class this year to go with all the young players he already has stockpiled.

  14. Buccfan37 Says:

    For this local beating Dallas was freaking HUGE! It was like Christmas before Thanksgiving. America’s team image smudged further. Add in the Bulls win, it’s like hitting the daily double, a rare occurence.

  15. MIke Johnson Says:

    PLAYOFFS? AS coach Mora would say, areyoukiddingme ? Playoffs? Don’t think we will make the playoffs. But we do have a chance to win 3 or 4 more games. A couple more additions and next year will be more probable.

  16. Buccfan37 Says:

    Tom Edrington… look at all those excellent running QB’s in the AAC like Navy.

  17. RedBucOne Says:

    Have you seen James’ locker room speech that was posted on this morning? It sent shivers down my spine! That guy is a W I N N E R! Haven’t heard a Buc like that since Sapp

  18. Buccfan37 Says:

    Joe, I always pull for losers like Indiana to knock off some of those hogs in that conference.

  19. Buccfan37 Says:

    LSU lol, Arkansas always plays tough as the season winds down. Anybody but Ohio St. or Notre Dame in the title game.

  20. Buccfan37 Says:

    Clodhopper… I followed the Iowa season. They edged Pitt in the opener and kept on winning. A big bowl game opportunity coming up for them. They may not favorably match up against the top teams but an excellent season regardless.

  21. Clodhopper Says:

    37, Yes it is an excellent season. 10-0 for the first time is school history. IMO we have the 2nd best QB in my lifetime behind Chuck Long. The team is 11-0 with Beathard as the starting QB. It’s been amazing. 10 months ago the pitchfork mob was trying to chase Ferentz out of town and try to hire Belima (He has a hawkeye tattoo on his leg BTW). He’s a different coach this year. Not as conservative this year as we’ve grown to know him. Which is fun as hell to watch. But to compete for a national championship is far far away from what we are. We have 8 four star and 0 five star recruits. Great devolpment by the coaches but we don’t have the horses to compete against the top tier teams. Maybe if we can stack a few seasons together like this one we can recruit a national championship team. If we lose to OSU in B1G championship and can go to the Rose Bowl, that is a win in my book.

  22. Idontwannahearitanymore Says:

    Just a small sanity check: Unless Cam Newton is not going to play any more this year, you shouldn’t refer to him as “the leader in the clubhouse.” Perhaps you mean to say that he is the leading candidate by an ever widening margin, or something like that.

  23. Buccfan37 Says:

    Gators beating Alabama sounds like a stretch to me. Alabama is the favorite to win the national championship. I’m not even sure they can beat FSU. I’ll have to see it before I believe it.