“Run Around And Make Plays”

June 8th, 2016
Former NFL linebacker and current SiriusXM NFL Radio talking head Kirk Morrison is a big fan of Bucs DC Mike Smith.

Former NFL linebacker and current SiriusXM NFL Radio talking head Kirk Morrison is a big fan of Mike Smith.

Joe remembers when Bucs fans began to turn on former Bucs commander Greg Schiano.

Long before the MRSA infected the locker room and before leaky, sleepy Josh Freeman went mental, Schiano was asked about the term “making plays.” Schiano grimaced and said, in so many words, he didn’t exactly want that.

Schiano worded it poorly. He meant to say: “Players must stay disciplined. Do your job and don’t try to do too much and find yourself exposed and out of position.”

It wasn’t like Schiano wanted to strip defenders of the chance to make plays. But to hear Kirk Morrison talk, that’s just what Lovie Smith did to his defense.

Co-hosting “The Blitz,” with Bruce Murray, heard exclusively on SiriusXM NFL Radio yesterday, Morrison said he spoke to many Bucs defenders who told him Lovie Smith’s scheme nearly made it impossible for some players to make plays (read: turnovers), which Coach My Scheme bellyached about more than if someone gave Joe a warm beer on a hot summer day.

Bruce Murray: When you look at what they did on defense, they bring in Brent Grimes. They take a chance on a guy like Noah Spence in the second round, obviously they have Vernon Hargreaves. You know, you have three guys who could make significant contributions to a defense that is getting there and may ultimately become what everybody thought they would become under Lovie Smith.

Kirk Morrison: I think with Mike Smith coming in as a defensive coordinator, it is doing to help out those guys. It will simplify the defense. You may say, “Uh, say what? You have to simplify?” No, but you have to simplify it in that it is a base 4-3 and can play multiple schemes. Last year, I had a chance to talk to a lot of those guys being around that franchise and it was difficult for some of those guys to play in that Lovie Smith Cover-2-style of defense because it is all about area and all about alignment. Some of those guys thought they were stripped of their playmaking ability because they had to play so much into a scheme. I think now under Mike Smith it gives those guys a little freedom to go run around and make plays.

“Run around and make plays.” Well. Joe has heard Lavonte David use those exact words. Joe has also heard Mike Smith often refer to David, in gushing tones, as a “run-and-hit linebacker.”

Joe has heard several Bucs defenders refer to Mike Smith’s defense in similar ways that Morrison did.

In other words, they are allowed if not encouraged to make plays.

51 Responses to ““Run Around And Make Plays””

  1. Buc1987 Says:

    LOL Joe keep pounding Lovie’s few remaining defenders into submission.

    I ain’t sayin’ Mike Smith is the answer either, but Lovie was broken and there was no glue in sight.

  2. ATrain Says:

    I will say it again WATCH OUT for Lavonne and Kwon they are going to run over people…Like the Twin Tornados of A$$ Kicking

  3. Joehelldeloxley Says:

    @ATrain I like this “Twin Tornados of A$$ Kicking” !! Nice expression.

    Lovie is a good mirror of part of our society, fitting absolutly people into box even i fthey are not fitting in it.

    Give the guys some space, some freedom, let them express their talents and then good things will happen.

  4. Bob in Valrico Says:

    If you have players that are always around the football,it doesn’t make sense to confine them to a certain area of the field.Lovie.defense may have been too complicated for his players,but it didn,t take an offensive genius or star quarterback to pick it apart.Lovie threw himself under the bus and his stubbornness kept him there.

  5. biff barker Says:

    Ironic how the run and hit style was how we used to describe Monte’s T2.

  6. tmaxcon Says:

    So the new defense is “Run Around And Make Plays” Lovie’s defense was “run in circles and watch people score”

  7. Buccfan37 Says:

    87… Glue? Lovie was like a cheap spackle specialist, cover the hole with a smear and watch it fall out when it dries.

  8. The Buc Realist Says:

    The Incompetent one’s defense can still work in the NFL “if” !!! it needs the most “IFs” to actually work nowadays!!!! If the offense can get the lead, If the offense can run the ball to limit playtime for both thems, If the offense keeps the defense off the field. If the defense can get to 3rd-and long. If the defense could stop the run. If the defense has hall-of-famers and probowlers at every position.

    “If” all these conditions are meet, then maybe coach my scheme’s scheme will work!!!!!

  9. Rrsrq Says:

    Interesting take as I recently heard on ATL sports radio that Mike Smith downfall was his defense gave up too many big plays, hopefully it was a result of not having the playmakers that we should have

  10. William Walls Says:

    Realist pretty much nailed it.

  11. Bring bucs back Says:

    The Bucs “D” was always VASTLY superior under the never-could-win-the-big-east, overwhelmed, former Rutgers head coach, than it was under the 20 year nfl coaching veteran, defensive guru, former-super bowl-participant coach; coach you-know-who.

    What does that tell you?

  12. ToesOnTheLine! Says:

    @ bring bucs

    It tells me two things I’ve held fast to…(1) Schiano should have gotten a third year, and (2) Lovie was a desperation move by the Glazers to calm the masses and sell “new logo” merchandise. Water under the bridge though…I feel good about the way a lot of things are now shaping up for the Bucs.

  13. LargoBuc Says:

    Thank you Kirk Morrison! Finally someone that actually knows a bit about the team he is supposed to be critiquing! I was getting so fed up with that “we’re not going anywhere without Lovie” narrative!
    And thatt’s what gives me so much hope right out the gate. Yeah, Koetter is a first year head coach. But we got Mike Smith as our defensive coordinator! Not only does he have rapport with Koetter, but being a seven year former NFL head coach he can help Koetter when he runs into some unfamiliar territory. Raheem and Schiano never got that luxury. The future is bright guys!

  14. Mike Johnson Says:

    Pounding and ex coach gets you..no wins. If it did? Our Bucs would be 10 times superbowl champs! If readers notice (and they do) its the same ole malnourished 4 0r 5 who wait for Joe’s daily feedings of Lovie meat to eat.
    Kinda sad seeing we have not won one regular season game under this new regime. I can’t wait to see what we actually have. And I can’t wait to see these same Lovie haters turn..Benedict Arnold on Koetter and Smith…if they lose

  15. The Buc Realist Says:

    @mike johnson

    You are wrong, Its not just the same 4 or 5 that have been telling you for over 2 years that it would not work!!!!! Its national respected NFL analyst!!!! Its former and current players!!! Its finally the local media!!!! Its only left of what it the Tampa2 mafia and a handful of sheep left they still support coach my scheme!!!!

    Oh, how the tables have turned!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Pat Says:

    IMO, limitations put on the Bucs D was absolutely ridiculous. It was like covering Area 51 where the defender guards a piece of turf but forgot to initiate a no fly zone.

  17. Erik w/ Clean Athletics 'The Kwon Alexander of Bucs Fans' Says:

    Our new philosophy on D is light years ahead of Lovie’s.

    Our D will be vastly improved, trust that.

    Wow, we actually have Thinking Men coordinating our Offense and Defense.

    And we have elite-level talent across the board.

    Look out, NFL…

  18. BigHogHaynes Says:

    Are you kidding me? Allowed to make a play, why do you think your out there, to make a play, get on the field and make a play, I just hope they can pick up this new scheme and play better with more confidence but …. I have hope for the incoming talent!

  19. BigHogHaynes Says:

    @ the RealBIGOT; if the offense gets the lead, that’s the name of the game: if the offense can run the ball, I think we did that: if the offense can keep the defense off the field, that was Coach K’s job: if the defense can get to third and long, we had a lot of slant passes completed against us on third down so we did that too, if the defense had all pro players at every position: damn sure didn’t have that, lack of talent since we weren’t allowed to draft defense for two years! LIKE OF TALENT

  20. The Buc Realist Says:

    Its always someone else’s fault isn’t it!!! Someone else that let the scheme down!!! Go ahead and try to tell us how the “MAN” held the incompetent one down!!!! LOL!!!

  21. Jolly Bucs Fan Says:

    Let LVD and Kwon loose and see the destruction and havoc they will wreak. Oh I look forward to it. Schiano had his issues but his defense knew how to use david and it was always better than coach my scheme.

    I also have very high hopes for both Verner and Banks. Maybe they were ruined forever by Coach My Scheme. But we are talking about a former pro bowler, and a CB who once shut down Calvin Johnson and was considered one of the better young corners.

    I have my shades out folks and 200hpf on. The future is oh. so. bright.

  22. 813bucboi Says:

    as ive said before….if wasn’t the scheme, it was a combination of talent and intelligence…our talent and i.q. level on the defense currently is far more superior to what lovie had to work with in the 2 years he was hc…..it is what it is tho….ive also said jameis made dirk look twice as good as a oc….the question is will jameis and mike smith continue to make dirk look like an nfl hc?…is dirk competent enough to win at least 10games and make the playoffs?…time will tell and I cant wait….GO BUCS!!!!

  23. Mike Johnson Says:

    Buc Realist..You’s a sad little man dude. Get help. Do you need a mental health discount card? I know where you can get one sir. Ohh and change your underwear. They are probably..quite soiled by now!

  24. BuccaneerBonzai Says:


    Well said.

  25. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    The Buc Realist Says
    “Its always someone else’s fault isn’t it!!!”

    You know…the same could be said when you are defending Jason Licht.

    The truth…THE TRUTH…is that it takes two to tango. Responsibility was on Lovie for bad coaching, and on Licht for not providing Lovie with quailty defensive players.

  26. The Buc Realist Says:


    I have heard numerous times NFL GM Licht take blame for these that went wrong!!! Funny how he took full responsibility for Anthony Collins but not as much for the incompetent one’s hand pick free agent failures!!!!!!

  27. Bob in valrico Says:

    Hard to stop slant pass when your told to
    line up 7 or 8 yards off line of scrimmage. Lovie was still on sideline playing it safe trying not to lose.

  28. Swaggy64 Says:

    There is mounting evidence that Licht is pretty good at evaluating talent and drafting it out of college, but is less competent when acquiring pro free agents. Only Jason and Lovie know for sure who between the two of them was the most hot for Mike Johnson and Anthony Collins, but that both were big time busts set us back, well, at least one year. As for Verner, the only thing that has preserved his roster spot is a lack of experienced depth and the fact that his free agent contract wasn’t as fat as the other guys. I only hope Hoke and Maxie can return him to pro bowl form.

  29. Buc since '74 Says:

    Hey Bonzai – cut and paste a Lovie quote taking responsibility for anything… We’ll wait…

    Oh – and by quality defensive players – are you referring to players like Darrell Revis, Dashon Golston, and Mark Barron – to name a few?

  30. Bucsfanman Says:

    I definitely like this mentality. Go make plays!

    We all know the scheme failed, that’s painfully obvious. What I don’t agree with is this sentiment that players were not “allowed” to make plays in the system. B.S. all day long! Maybe the system didn’t fit individual player’s abilities, but no way did it preclude them from making plays.
    It’s akin to Martin going left on a play to the left when the hole was wide open on the right. Why’d you go to the right Doug?
    Good players make plays.

  31. tmaxcon Says:

    The only lack of intelligence with the bucs defense and defenders were from the Incompetent Lovie Smith and his unqualified staff of losers. It’s one thing to be stubborn but lovie took far past ignorance.

  32. salish_seamonster Says:

    I would love to hear even more specific criticisms from players, even if they’re anonymous. Maybe it’s not healthy or productive, but I still can’t get enough of Lovie bashing.

  33. BigHogHaynes Says:

    @the RealBigot: was that what you call race baiting? I smell you stinky !!

  34. DB55 Says:

    The Bucs have gone to the playoffs once since 2007.

    Lovie Smith has been to the playoffs once since 2007.

    Any questions?

  35. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    The Glazers know who was in charge of what. They kept Licht and fired Lovie. Nuff said.

  36. LakeLandBuc Says:

    In 2015 the Tampa Bay Bucs ran the exact same defense as the Carolina Panthers. The only difference was the personnel, Carolina had far superior players in their system ( and they were in their 5th season in the system). Riverboat Ron ran the Cover 2 in Chicago as Lovie DC before Lovie fired him. Lovie biggest mistake was going all in on offensive players in the draft, you have to have young guys who can learn and grow into the system. When the Bucs passed on Aaron Donald and drafted Mike Evans, I knew then Lovie days were limited. You just don’t pass on a defensive talent like Donald, he’s perfect for the scheme. Why cut Darrelle Revis? he fit the scheme more than Josh Norman did for the Panthers. I believe those two players ( Revis and Donald) would have elevated the scheme. But it’s over now, Lovie is gone, why cry over spill milk?

  37. Buc1987 Says:

    The Buc Realist…It’s okay none of this matters. You’re in a no win situation with these guys.

    It’s like this. If the team does well this year, it’s because Lovie laid the foundation for the current regime. If the team does poorly, it’s because they got rid of Lovie.

    You can’t win!

  38. Mike Johnson Says:

    SOS. Joe settin’em up and Buc Realist and tmaxcon knockin’em down.

  39. DB55 Says:


    Me and you sound too much alike. Scary.

  40. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    LakeLand, it’s not the system that I’ve complained about. It’s Lovies unwillingness to deviate from it when it was clear that we didn’t have the personnel to run it. The in-game adjustments also seemed to be nonexistent. Lovies stubbornness is what ultimately cost him his job. I get the argument that we only drafted one defensive player in two drafts, but Lovie could have told Licht to draft defense, but didn’t. Lovie also brought in some former Bears and Tampa2 Cowboys (which is why I think he didn’t draft defense) and it didn’t work out. When it comes down it, the Glazers know which guy made the decisions. They fired Lovie and kept Licht. That says it all.

  41. LakeLandBuc Says:

    DB55, I don’t know who decided to cut Revis, and trade Barron and Goldson or who decided to pass on Aaron Donald. But whoever was responsible should have been fired. And who wanted an all-offense draft ( that is unheard of) and then come back the next season and draft ” ONE ” defensive player. It hard to imagine a defensive guru like Lovie agreeing to that.

  42. Bob in valrico Says:

    Ron Rivera gives team a chance to win. Lovie was afraid to take chances and lost games because of it.

  43. BigHogHaynes Says:

    No,…L&L laid the foundation, some of you just hate to give credit where it’s due, you wanted the man to apologize, I believe he would have had he not been BACK/STABBED, it’s all in the way it went down, IT”S WRITTEN ALL OVER YOUR FACE “LICTH” ALL POWERUL BACK/STABBER! Like it or not this team was torn apart and put back together under L&L! 2 years worth of foundation!

  44. BigHogHaynes Says:

    GAME TIME: I’ll put up a better fight tomorrow!

  45. BigHogHaynes Says:

    I yea who the hell is Kirk Morrison, never heard of him, some of those same “guys” he TALKIN about will need a job after training camp!

  46. Buc1987 Says:

    Hog…denial sucks.

    Morrison is among the many people Joe has brought to the site that clue you in as to how horrible Lovie was as a HC. Sure who is he, then again who are all the other people and players that have put it out there for you to see.

    Yet you dig in and I can’t think of why.

    Why don’t you REALLY tell us why you still care so much about a former Bucs HC?

    I mean I defended Schiano pretty much to the end, but I gave up once he was gone. That’s not the case with you. If you think Realist needs mental counseling, then perhaps you guys can get a 2 for 1 discount.

    There HAS to be another reason why you continue to defend the guy. He’s not related to you is he?

    Who means more to you Lovie Smith or The Tampa Bay Buccaneers? So far from what I can tell it’s Lovie. Your expectations and proclamations about Lovie speaks volumes.

    So really what’s the deal? Fans HATED Schiano like cancer, yet I defended him. Like I said when he left I dropped it. They hired Lovie and I was fine with that.
    If more fans were on this late, they would tell you how much I defended Schiano. I got attacked left and right, but I handled my own just fine. You on the other hand only showed up after Lovie was fired. Like you’re some kind of Stephen A Smith wannabe.

    Like you have some vendetta against the team you support. Which from what I can tell you don’t support at all.

    I think I have a bit of a clue. Why is that you call Realist a racist for un-racist statements? That’s the clue my dear friend. That HAS to be the ONLY reason why you support him. It’s a color thing. It HAS to be. You’re a BUCS fan right? If so then ignore the likes of Realist, tmaxcon or anyone else that STILL criticizes your beloved former HC.

    Joe continues to crank out article after article about WHY Lovie got fired, but you can’t let it go. Dude let it go. Many fans didn’t let it go after Schiano was fired. They still bashed him. I was silent. You on the other hand seem to have some alter-agenda.

    So just come out and say the TRUE reason why you STILL defend him, because most of us know the reason why by now. You won’t be banned for saying it. So say it.

    Lovie’s black and you’re black too. SAY IT!

  47. Buc1987 Says:

    Fine you’re gone for now, but I’ll still be here to re-post this for the whole freaking summer. So get used to it. Just say it already or go the ef away. We don’t need Lovie Smith fans. We need Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans.

    Nobody got backstabbed, the team regressed under Lovie. I had high hopes for Lovie, but the team regressed.

    The guy went around during his first year and proclaimed why he had to get rid of so many players was because and I quote “We we’re 4-12.” Then went out and produced only TWO wins. What does that mean to you as a Bucs fan?

    Honestly answer that question. A coach says repeatedly that the old coach produced only 4 wins and he says it smugly as if he could do better. Then gets 2 wins after that.

    Answer the question or you’ll look like you already look.

  48. LakeLandBuc Says:

    Whoa Buc1987.. lol

  49. Buc1987 Says:

    LakeLandBuc…I’m the realist person you’ll ever meet. I pull no punches and I don’t hold back. lol

    I can’t stand the division in America and it comes from all sides, races, creeds and colors.

    It’s people like him that are the problem. I wish I could have told anybody that disagreed with Schiano or GW Bush for that matter that they’re only doing it because they’re white. Sadly that seems to be the case right here with Lovie.

    You reap what you sow.

  50. Bob in Valrico Says:

    A .250 winning percentage is indefensible to all but a few.Eight games from mediocrity.Worst record of any of our last 3 coaches.There is no injustice here!

  51. BigHogHaynes Says:

    @Buc1987: yes I’m black, it’s not like I was given a choice, but I wouldn’t change it for the world, love being black. No outsider (Kirk) is gonna come in and tell me how to feel about my team or its players, I’m sure you don’t think that I’m the only one who thinks LOVIE got BACK/STABBED, your opinion differs from mine but we both could be WRONG. Thanks for the Steven A. reference, I like him. As for The Realist and Tmaxcon their just so DISRESPECTFUL and that is what I defend against, now when you say people like me, do you mean black people or black people that show no fear of going toe to toe with arrogant jack-asses. One other question, when someone makes a let’s say colorful statement is it you (Buc1987) that I turn to to see if it was racially motivated?……and yes I voted for Obama just because he was Black, it seemed like the right thing to do! SUMMER BREEZE blowing through the Jasmine in my mind!! I’m here for the SUMMER!