Mental Weakness Troubles Derrick Brooks

December 18th, 2015

derrick brooks 0507Bucs godfather Derrick Brooks saw some things he didn’t like last night while watching the Buccaneers — and it wasn’t just the final score.

In a rare treat for Bucs fans, the iconic Brooks joined Steve Duemig this afternoon on WDAE-AM 620. It’s rare to hear Brooks talk about a Tampa Bay game so quickly after the completion.

Brooks sees unacceptable mental weakness in the Bucs.

“You gotta stop the penalties. You got to, as players, stop putting the team in positions because you’re not mentally tough, with some of these penalties,” Brooks said. “Some of the penalties last night was not performance-based, attitude-based. And not showing the type of football IQ you would expect after 20 weeks of football, [including] training camp and OTAs.

“You expect the football IQ to be a little bit better. You expect the consistency would be a little bit better. As I sit there and watch the game and say, ‘The only thing were consistent at is being inconsistent.’ And that’s not fun to say.”

Brooks went on to say too many Bucs are playing with the wrong attitude.

He seemed particularly stunned by three plays: Donteea Dye not finishing his catch and tossing the ball into the air before the whistle blew;Austin Seferian-Jenkins tossing the ball out of the end zone because he was upset after getting called down at the Rams’ three-inch line; And the Bucs not showing enough want-to and allowing Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald to blow up a 4th-and-1 run easily.

As for that undeveloped football IQ, Joe likes to call that stupid and uncoachable. Lovie Smith hasn’t gotten through to some of his players in two years. Those guys needs to hit the road since they can’t play under Lovie.

53 Responses to “Mental Weakness Troubles Derrick Brooks”

  1. SchlomieBarMitzvahCircumScissorStein Says:

    So this week it’s a mental focus issue. If guys are “playing with the wrong attitude,” that boils up to the head coach. Derrick Brooks won’t be honest and speak the truth. He knows what the truth is but he’s got his head so far up L. Smith’s arse’ it’s not even funny. The problem with holding back (speaking the truth due to loyalty, doesn’t help solve the issue. So in other words, Brooks is holding back the truth, which then realistically, goes against everything he stands for. See the hypocrisy here?

  2. Buccfan37 Says:

    As usual the Bucs are a work in progress. The lack of a stop of the Rams on the opening kickoff drive spoke to a long night in store for the Bucs. Not professional! I’m not sure this team could beat any other team at this point. They could not.

  3. Patrick in VA Says:

    I think you’re right Joe. As much as people, and even myself at times in the past, have piled on to Lovie about not getting through to our players, I’m really thinking now that the players we have now simply do not have the types of personalities to be champions. We don’t have winners. We have me-first punks on this team. We have players that fold under the big moments. You could see it in the frustration on Jameis’ face last night. You can tell that he’s working so hard to inspire and he’s not being inspired by the feedback he’s getting from his team. He sees what they are. He’s in the huddle and hearing what is being said before and after those bonehead, selfish penalties. He knows who he’s dealing with and I think he’s growing tired of having to carry this bunch of children on his back. Grown men don’t whine the way that these kids are every single game. I can see an egregious call or play being cause for an explosion, but every game we see one or more of our players acting like petulant children. It’s a bad look and it’s hurting the team. Every week we look like bush league amateurs either because they don’t conduct themselves like pros or because we are screwing up the most basic aspects of the game, like lining up correctly. How do we constantly get that wrong. I don’t watch a lot of other teams so I’m not an authority, but I’ve never seen another team get called for these things and we’ve been called for it almost every other game. It’s absurd.

  4. Waterboy Says:

    Jimmy Johnson said years ago that back when he was inquiring about Charles Haley that there were all kinds of people saying stay away from that guy you don’t want him he’s a trouble maker and causes all kinds of problems then they’d say but he is smart. JJ said that’s all he had to hear to know that he wanted him. He then went on to say that one thing you can’t overcome or change is a dumb football player. As long as he’s smart you can work with him but if he’s dumb he’ll mess up in crucial situations and cost you games. This article sounds like a perfect example of that.

  5. Patrick in VA Says:

    @Waterboy – nailed it. Dumb, selfish and entitled are a toxic mix.

  6. Defense Rules Says:

    SBMCSS … The only hypocrisy in your statements is yours. Derrick Brooks said that too many Bucs are playing with the wrong attitude. Do you really disagree with that statement? What’s untruthful about it? Too many fans want to pin everything that goes bad on the HC. But anything that goes good is either because of Jameis or sometimes Dirk Koetter.

    Nothing in life is that black or white, and certainly not in the NFL. When Lovie took over play-calling responsibilities for the defense, he set himself squarely in the crosshairs for fans to shoot at him. I’m quite sure that L&L knew that many of these Bucs defensive players were marginal at best. But they obviously made a conscious decision to focus on the offense in the 2014 & 2015 drafts. I seriously doubt that they … or the Glazers … expected any more than 6 or so wins this year. Starting a bunch of 1st and 2nd year players on offense, and a number of circumspect players on defense isn’t exactly a prescription for winning the SuperBowl.

  7. softastissueMcCoy93 Says:

    Attitude comes from the players. Strategy and system comes from coaching. If guys can’t win one-on-one match-ups who’s at fault coaches of players? What great strategy was in place for McDonald to play like he did? Passion like that comes from within.

    Again we blitz last night and was burned, we played zone and missed tackles and didn’t pressure the QB. Coaches don’t make tackles, drop balls, hold and jump offside.

    Blame Lovie for bringing in his former rejects from Chicago, but also blame the players for not taking advantage of the opportunities that they are put in. Drop easy pick, drop TD’s and so on.

  8. Patrick in VA Says:

    While “Dunkaneers” is a cute tag to put on the team while we’re thinking about what the team could be, I think a more appropriate label for the team would be calling them the “flunkaneers” as this year has been all about failures on behalf of these players to execute simple aspects of the game and behave like professionals. It’s one thing to be out performed and have a down season. Only one team gets to win the super bowl and only so many teams even get to the playoffs. It would be one thing if we looked like a professional team and the other teams were just better. That happens. This season has been an abject failure on the part of this team simply looking like they belong on the field with adult football players. Yes, we’ve won some games. That’s great. In almost every game we’ve looked like a JV squad for 70% of the game and sometimes the other team has managed to out-lose us. It’s not for lack of us trying to lose the game. They just lost better than we did that day.

  9. bucrightoff Says:

    Dunceaneers has a good ring to it. Players being stupid + no accountability from coaches is not a good combination

  10. Patrick in VA Says:

    @BRO – I like yours as well. I wonder if it would be a uniform violation if we put some of those twirly helicopter things on top of the players’ helmets. I mean, if they all wear it then it’s still uniform, right?

  11. Mike Johnson Says:

    There is nothing wrong with Lovie Smith. Fire him next season and I guarantee you somebody swoops him up fast. A lot of you really do not watch the game. You watch splash plays and touchdowns. But you don’t watch Defense. We just do not have the right mentality on Defense nor right combinations. Kwon Alexander will get there by year 3. But we just don’t have that meanness. Last night, I watched a QB who I swore came out of the stands, Pick our defense apart with all of the time in the world. My wife said, Honey that Rams QB could drink a cup of coffee back there. Yep honey, he sure did. We gotta attack free agency and the draft hard on D. What good is having Jameis if you can’t stop the opposition?

  12. Buc since '74 Says:

    What caught my attention last night was Winston not taking crap from that head hunting D. More importantly was Mike Evans and ASJ about to go completely THUG in defense of Jameis – and I LOVED seeing that! We may be young and immature, but we will throw down if needed. Fight for your brother! Then learn to catch that leather flying thing and maybe we’ll win some games. That’s after we find what experts refer to as a Defense.

  13. bucrightoff Says:

    Mike Johnson Says:
    December 18th, 2015 at 4:32 pm
    There is nothing wrong with Lovie Smith. Fire him next season and I guarantee you somebody swoops him up fast

    Lol no. Certainly not as a head coach. As a DC maybe. But this is his last chance at HC, he’s either gonna turn it around here or he’s never coaching again. It’s as simple as that. His overall resume is now being examined more in depth, and people are starting to realize he’s really not that good a coach.

  14. Johnny "America's Commenter" Dejay Says:

    To sum up Mr. Derrick Brooks’ comments: “You can’t fix stupid.”

  15. SCBucsFan Says:

    I just hope Jameis doesn’t succumb to the rest of the teams’ mental problems.

  16. The original "Kevin" Says:

    Broken record bucs

  17. The original "Kevin" Says:

    That will be the name I get on the back of my next bucs jersey. At least I know it wont be going anywhere any time soon

  18. 813bucboi Says:

    a few teams would take him as HC…the bears have been a mess since they canned him…10-6 sounds real good right now…GO BUCS!!!

  19. The Buc Realist Says:

    Don’t worry sheep, I am sure that when Lovie spends 85% of practice with the defense to focus on stripping the ball that all these mistakes will go away!! That our Lovie!

  20. 813bucboi Says:

    see you guys Monday…out finishing in key west for the weekend…no kids no wife…just me beer and my brothers….life cant get any better!!!!GO BUCS!!!

  21. BucFan20 Says:

    And just think. Lovie will get to clean house again,hand pick more players and we get to do it all over again. Be sure to get excited when it starts. I won’t. That is why my heart is not broken now. I have been around long enough to know the Bucs will be the Bucs unless something happens by accident.

  22. Espo Says:

    I feel like we have 11 Sabby Piscitellis on the field at any given moment.

  23. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “Those guys needs to hit the road since they can’t play under Lovie.”

    Some of these guys couldn’t play under any coach and clearly don’t belong in the NFL.

  24. Mike Johnson Says:

    Right on Derrick Brooks. You hit the Nail..dead on its head.

  25. Ed Kerber Says:

    So other than Jon Gruden, which head coaching candidate is good enough to replace Lovie?

  26. KW Buc Says:

    Hate to say it but anything DB55 has to say at this point is meaningless — he states the obvious but pulls back from suggesting the obvious changes needed.

    Great player, best Buccaneers ever, but a shill for Lovie and the organization. I wish that wasn’t the case.

  27. bucrightoff Says:

    813bucboi Says:
    December 18th, 2015 at 5:08 pm
    a few teams would take him as HC…the bears have been a mess since they canned him…10-6 sounds real good right now…GO BUCS!!!

    Bears are in better shape than we are right now lol. And I’m now Fox fan either, but he’s clearly a better coach than Lovie. Not even up for debate.

  28. cmurda Says:


    These players that need to hit the road, are you sure about that? If the coach isn’t getting through to his players, are the players at fault or the coach? My vote is the coach. Look at some of the better coaches in the league. You simply don’t see this undisciplined, lackluster, flat (as Lavonte David repeatedly says) football under their watch. Lovie does not demand accountability and that is the reason that the Will Gholston penalties and the inexcusable illegal formation penalties happen. Players being ill-prepared and mentally weak is directly attributable to the Head Coach. Either the player should be benched or Lovie Smith is not doing the job as Head DCoach. Either scenario results in the Head Coach shouldering the blame. I see Lovie Smith being a good coach when a team is fully stacked with already great, seasoned players such as a Packers team but he is a liability for a young, talented football team that needs direction and accountability. Prove me wrong Lovie but I doubt you will.

  29. Waterboy Says:

    So cmurda if you guide a horse to water is it your fault or the horses fault if he dies of dehydration?

  30. Waterboy Says:

    Lovie won with Rex Grossman so I think that proves he doesn’t need a stacked roster to win but he does need competent players. So if he starts benching all of the players for penalties there wouldn’t be anyone left to play, the only thing he can control is getting rid of the guys that aren’t performing or giving 100% after the season.

  31. Bucs Fan Since '76 Says:

    Lovie will be the head coach next year. From the Glazer boys’ perspective, Licht and Lovie have had two good drafts, and tripled their win total year over year. They got a franchise QB and MLB, plus two quality starting lineman from this draft alone. Those are solid metrics for the Glazers to judge, and while I hate their business model, I think they believe in the stability thing.

    My best guess is they will draft heavy at DB. The offense should be exponentially better, especially Jameis, and if they resign Doug then they could be really special. Obviously, they need VJax healthy, however.

    Overcoming the institutional culture of losing at One Buc is a huge challenge, one made even more difficult by the dearth of talent on D, and the youth and inexperience of the team overall.

  32. richbucsfan Says:

    mental toughness might be a good description of the situation … I tuned in a bit late but in time to see the Rams’ first TD….our linebacker got turned in a circle and had no idea what was happening… seems to me the defensive scheme takes too high an IQ for this bunch…dumb it down to pee wee league defensive schemes and maybe they’ll get it…it’s pretty sad that this bunch after being exposed to the scheme still doesn’t get it after nearly two years of running it…if it’s that difficult to learn then do something they can grasp…. this is ridiculous

  33. Lefty Says:

    This tripling win total is a goddamn joke. Lovie lowered the bar so much with a two win season last year that 6 wins should be celebrated? Schiano won four in his last season hear. If the Bucs lose out, I think the head coaching position should be thoroughly analyzed. I don’t have an answer for who the best replacement would be, but if that’s the case, we’ve regressed from any earlier season progress, and Lovie will have bettered us by only two wins from Schiano’s final year…with even more more humiliating games than the prior regime.

    It does seem the need to validate the position as head Coach is held to a different standard with Lovie, he has F’d a lot of things up.

  34. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    @ Bucs Fan Since ’76

    I’m with you….and I was with you there in ’76…….not many of us on the site.

    All those calling for Lovie to be fired are wasting their energy….not going to happen…

    I expect the Offense to improve greatly next year….I think we only need 1 top-tier WR….and to resign Martin.

    We will pack the defense with picks at DE, CB & S…..I suspect several players to be gone.

    I am excited about our prospects for the first time in many years…..Winston, Evans, ASJ, Smith, Marpet, Alexander……added to LVD, GMC, Mankins & VJax makes for a great combination of veterans and younger players.

  35. Destinjohnny Says:

    Lovie laid back style works for vets but for young players???

  36. Howard Cosell Says:

    I was literally dumbfounded when ASJ threw the ball at the sideline.
    I instantly knew a flag would follow and the Bucs wouldn’t score.
    That was the straw that broke the camels back. If that punk had kept his
    composure we would have scored and the momentum would have shifted
    to the Bucs with plenty of time left………..but NO…..instead…

    “Some men you just can’t reach. So you get what we had here last night, which is the way he wants it. Well, he gets it. I don’t like it any more than you men.”

  37. Howard Cosell Says:

    ASJ really needs to issue a public apology.

  38. Lovie Is Dog Poo Says:

    Lefty Says:
    December 18th, 2015 at 7:20 pm
    This tripling win total is a goddamn joke. Lovie lowered the bar so much with a two win season last year that 6 wins should be celebrated? Schiano won four in his last season hear. If the Bucs lose out, I think the head coaching position should be thoroughly analyzed. I don’t have an answer for who the best replacement would be, but if that’s the case, we’ve regressed from any earlier season progress, and Lovie will have bettered us by only two wins from Schiano’s final year…with even more more humiliating games than the prior regime.

    Quite right. Lovie set the bar so low that if he goes from 2 to 6 to 7 to 9 wins in his first four years, none of which will make the playoffs, the Lovie loser crew will demand a contract extension. It’s amazing they pretty much absolve Lovie of any significant blame for where we’re at. At the same time, we’re supposed to give him 100% of the drafting credit, and then blame all the bad FA signings on Licht.

    You’d think Lovie was a .650 winning percentage coach with only 2 or 3 years missing the playoffs instead of barely above .500 and with 1 playoff appearance since 2006 with how hard he’s defended.

  39. KW Buc Says:

    Lovie Smith / Jeff Fisher
    Two mediocre coaches who managed to get to a SB and lose … who somehow get alot more respect than they deserve. “You are who your record says you are”

  40. DavidbigBucsFan Says:

    You know it’s funny how certain kinds of people up here talk like they’re at One Buc Place behind the scenes and in the coaches meetings reading and hearing all that goes on. You sit here saying Lovie only teaches take aways or he teaches the defense to be soft and laid back or be nice guys when they play.

    You clowns don’t know didley. You don’t know jack. You are clueless.

    Defensive coaches can’t stand soft players or players without passion but when the team is devoid of top or even mid tier talent what can you do?

    If a player don’t get it he plain just don’t get it. It’s not like Lovie came into a team full of talent like Belichick has where he can cut a player for muffing a punt and play someone new. Lovie to a large extent has to play the ‘better’ players he has right now even if they’re the ones making the mistakes.

    You say he doesn’t demand accountability. Says who……….you??? Lovie seems to be a very organized person and organized people cannot stand chaos and penalties cause chaos but if the back ups aren’t good enough what can be done?

    Lovie came to a team full of mediocre players from Raheem and Schiano. They helped turn the Bucs back onto the yucks.

    You say he handpicked his players? Well duh he had to. The only players who any coach will choose even if they don’t have experience in his system are superstars. There haven’t been many the last two years and they all went to other teams so unfortunately he is left with getting ones he was familiar with. Unfortunately these guys haven’t panned out.

    Of course you guys will bring up Revis which I actually understand that, but I understand what Lovie did, I mean Verner was a Pro Bowler for the Titans. Now he’s only good for hitting the bowling circuit.

    As usual you guys cry a river but offer up no solutions. Where are the great coaches that can replace Lovie? Where are the great players out in the streets as you write that can replace the mediocre ones the Bucs are over run with? Where are the clairvoyant answers to all your whining?

    You guys moan about Lovies quiet demeanor but don’t you remember eventually what happened with Gruden and his Chucky antics? Players tuned him out and that squad of professionals tanked the rest of the season because Monte Kiffin quit the team mid season.

    Lovie Smith has a proven track record as a head coach. Bill Belichek did not become a great coach until AFTER Tom Brady fell in his lap. Lovie went out and got his ‘Tom Brady’ in Fameis .

  41. Evo Says:

    Personally I don’t think mental IQ is a problem on offense. Yeah The O-line looked bad most of the night. But Those guys fought 8 of 10 plays. In my opinion our problem lies with the defense and it’s “leader” I go back to that video of McCoy “Mic’d up” Look it up for those who haven’t seen it. Then look up players like Ray Lewis Mic’d up if that’s too extreme then watch the game last night.

    We doubled Donald all night and he beat double teams and caused havoc all over the place. Yet our defensive “leader” one of the best D tackles in the game can’t get near the ball most plays. I say it to me friends all the time and I’ll say it hear. As long as McCoy is our defensive leader. Our Defense will never be good. We need an alpha male. I was hoping it was alexander. That shows you how mentally weak our defense is when a 21 year old rookie can come in and take over a defensive locker room before training camp. That tells you lovie knows where our problem lies.

  42. Lovie Is Dog Poo Says:

    DavidbigBucsFan Says:
    December 18th, 2015 at 9:24 pm
    Lovie Smith has a proven track record as a head coach.

    And guess what? It’s not particularly great. That Rex Grossman Super Bowl basically blinds people to the overall accomplishments of the man. People refuse to even consider looking deeper because they know it’ll show what he really is: very mediocre, at his very best.

    Don’t you think an 11-year NFL vet head coach would have his players ready to play the awful Saints and quite poor Rams? Noooope, two turds in a row instead. This team has at least as much talent as the Jets, yet the Jets look significantly better after 12 games of Bowles. Isn’t it pretty much unacceptable to be looking at less than 10 wins in two seasons from a guy who has more than a decade in the league as a head coach?

    Lovie was sold as a guy who could make us respectable quickly and maybe a playoff team by the end of this year. Instead neither happened, and we’re not all that respectable at the end of year two. No matter how you slice it, he’s a major disappointment as the coach. And his overall track record is not good enough to give him the benefit of the doubt. 3 playoff years out of 11…that’s a below average coach by pretty much any standard.

  43. BucFan20 Says:

    This team was headed for the playoffs and lost the final 4 games of the season. Someone was fired over it. So never say never. Especially after Lovie came out with all the praise Jamies, said he was past being a rookie and how good this team was.

  44. buddha Says:

    The defense is not without talent. We have two pro bowl players and a third who looks like he is a future star. We are weak at safety and cornerback. We have a potent offense that should only get better. Very few touts thought we wo j ld win more than four games. This is a young team that needs to grow together. Lovie is not a great coach but he’s good enough especially if he’s allowed to keep the team together and build over time. I’m tired of cleaning house and starting over ev r y two or three years. This team has a chance to be very good within the next two years. Keep the nucleus together build the secondary with the same determination that you built the offensive line and we will have a winner.

  45. DavidbigBucsFan Says:

    I never said it was great but proven. He has had good seasons some very good.

    As usual Lovies detractors ignore important facts like the team he inherited from Schiano AND Raheem. It takes longer than two seasons to fix a mess like that. I love how you guys are so stiff back, so rigid when it comes to things he says or promised to you as a fan. Yeah he promised to make us relevant again because he came in optimistic but reality set in real quick. Haven’t you guys ever made pain staking plans and they simply fell apart? You say relevant? Were we not just part of the talk about the playoffs for the first time in how many years? THE PLAYOFFS!!! Were the Bucs not just the topic of conversation of someting other than the bumbling fools they had been for over 10 years? Tell me how that is not relevant. Yeah sure it was short but what do you expect?

    Once again you detractors nit pick someones statement.

    So I ask a question if any of you detractors are willing to answer. Where would the Patriots be today if the owners were like you guys and weren’t willing to be patient with Belichek and fired him? It’s not like he had a winning record at that time as a head coach. Now what one thing does Lovie have in common with Belichek? He now has a franchise qb.

  46. godzilla13 Says:

    The players on defense don’t believe in the scheme. Its as simple as that. When the defense can’t even come close to stopping anyone the offense never has a chance to catch up. Hence the players being “flat”.

  47. LargoBuc Says:

    Some of you guys on here are just nuts. Brooks dosent tell you what you wana hear so he’s e

  48. Dave Says:

    Lovie is great you guys are idiots. Talk about “can’t fix stupid”. Lovie is not going anywhere and he should not.
    The only thing that is blatantly obvious is the team lacks talent at DE and DB. LB is thin right now and the O Line is still young and needs a little more depth. WR needs depth.
    These things will be fixed in the offseason and they will be a 10 + win team.
    With Lovie and Winston leading the way and the haters will be calling for Lovies head because of some close loss and the other haters will be talking about how great MM is in Tennessee.

  49. Oahubuc Says:

    When this man speaks, you shut the F up and listen.

  50. Notonline4 Says:

    SchlomieBarMitzvahCircumScissorStein, You are an idiot!

  51. Couch Fan Says:

    Lovie is great


  52. Lovie Is Dog Poo Says:

    DavidbigBucsFan Says:
    December 18th, 2015 at 11:13 pm
    So I ask a question if any of you detractors are willing to answer. Where would the Patriots be today if the owners were like you guys and weren’t willing to be patient with Belichek and fired him?

    Hey dumbass? They won the Super Bowl in Belichick’s second season. Patience? LOL. See I’m gonna keep proving how ridiculous the Lovie Loser Crew is. They gotta mostly be trolls from the Panthers fans. I’d be trolling us too being 13-0. Funny story: Ron Rivera is the reason Lovie made the Super Bowl.

  53. SchlomieBarMitzvahCircumScissorStein Says:

    NotOnline4….Just because you don’t agree with me doesn’t mean I’m an idiot. The truth hurts. Prove me wrong or get back in bed with your mother.