Saints 31, Buccaneers 24

December 24th, 2016
(Photo courtesy of Tampa Bay Buccaneers.)

(Photo courtesy of Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Not good enough.

Simply stated, that was the story of your beloved Buccaneers against a second-rate Saints club today.

Now Tampa Bay sits at 8-7 and will battle on New Year’s Day against Carolina for a winning season — and for a miracle shot at the playoffs.

In a quarterback-driven league, America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston, wasn’t ready for prime time for the second consecutive week. Two picks by Jameis were really the difference today.

Joe seriously can’t get too angry at the Bucs’ defense. This is what the Saints do to nearly every team in the NFL. The loss of defensive Will Gholston hurt the run defense, and Drew Brees had his Hall of Fame moments but not so many that they couldn’t be overcome.

It was a predictable November/December story for the Bucs offense. They pay dearly for having a lack of weapons at receiver. And with Cameron Brate injured in the game, a rousing finish was a massive uphill climb. The Bucs threw twice to Brandon Myers with the game on the line.

Painful stuff.

Doug Martin, of course, was not on the field because of the dreaded “coach’s decision.” Joe could see him on the sidelines from the press box, wearing pants and sitting between Jacquizz Rodgers and Charles Sims. We’ll see what Dirk Koetter has to say about his $8 million-per-year running back after the game.

Stick with Joe through the night for plenty on this painful Christmas Eve.

73 Responses to “Saints 31, Buccaneers 24”

  1. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    What a stupid call to try an onside kick, when we had all our time outs, and plenty of time.

  2. Buc believer Says:

    Way to choke Bucs!!

  3. NashvilleBuc Says:


  4. BusteisWinston Says:

    The stupidity was not showing more urgency with the clock. Not getting a score before the two minute warning was awful. As was Jameis for the second straight week in crunch time. Had chances to win if he upped his play, instead he folded.

  5. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Chris, I was saying the same thing. There’s no pressure on the Saints to gay a first down when they start a drive in our territory.

  6. Crabdogg Says:

    Not about the inside kick. Game was well over before theb

  7. University of Seffner Says:

    The officiating was questionable to say the least.

  8. unbelievable Says:

    Well it was fun while it lasted. Another season with nothing to look forward to past December.

    Team has made some big strides but still has some critical holes.

    OL, DL are huge priorities, then WR, then S.

    I really hope Dirk koetter figures out how to play to win all the time. His conservative play calling has become increasingly predictable in critical situations and a big factor into our offensive woes.

  9. J$Mac Says:

    The Fuccaneers lose again

  10. JP4 Says:

    Obviously, ‘America’s Quarterback’ is not enough to make up for the Bucs lack of quality depth. Too many INTs, not enough talent at WR, OL, & TE. Joe can fanboy all he wants about Winston, this team needs more draft picks and productive FAs.
    The Allen/Domenik regimes left this team only a little more talented than the Cleveland Browns. Go Licht!

  11. BucfaninMi Says:

    They don’t deserve to be in the playoffs! They’re not good. No heart!

  12. Fred E. Buc Says:

    Onside kick was the right call. If the Saints get a first down, they run the clock out. Doesn’t matter if it’s on Bucs 40 or there own 35. The Bucs had to prevent a first down, period. They didn’t.

  13. Flgamma1856 Says:

    Well that rams and raiders game we gave away really bit us in the butt

  14. rayjay1122 Says:

    We suck. Winston sucks. Our defense sucks. Koetter sucks. I am sick of this team and am sorry ii wasted my Christmas to come see this garbage.

  15. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    This was going to be a close game against a good team on their field.

    You simply cannot dictate a total momentum change…and a change on the scoreboard to start the second half and expect to overcome that.

    I’m sorry but it’s the freaking N F L. Don’t they teach returners protocols about how to handle the ball…our guy looks like a perfect tape of how not to be a kickoff returner!!!

    That single play changed Karma…#3 gets picked and N.O. scores the next play.

    Three plays into the second half and we needed a perfect effort to come back.

    You can’t go up against a high scoring team like the Saints and simply give them seven and momentum to start the second half

  16. Ndog Says:

    LVD with the missed tackle to put it away. This defense should be embarrassed starting with the “leader” McCoy who did nothing as usual. This defense needs talent up front as ALL of them to be replaced. Ayers did nothing today, McCoy sucked as usual, and everyone else are just a bunch of backups, with exception of Spence who might turn out ok as a situational pass rusher. Draft 7 dline man and make sure they want to compete.

  17. BucfaninMi Says:

    Pretty typical Bucs in December.

  18. WeAreLost Says:

    @ J$mac
    I like that name its funny as sh*t.

  19. Fred E. Buc Says:

    If I’m correct, if Lions lose to Boys, then lose to Packers, and Skins lose to Giants, and Bucs beat Carolina, the Bucs are in. No, not what we want, but I don’t believe they are eliminated unless the Lions beat the Boys. If they do, they get a playoff spot…

  20. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    RayJay if thats how u feel then go somewhere else. Go be a dolphins fan or something dude.

  21. J Says:

    The coaching staff had been horrible in the past 2 games and winston. Let’s be honest, was not good enough. Well there is next year.

  22. unbelievable Says:

    Fred E- if you don’t do that then the saints are punting from around their own 30 Versus our 40 yard line. Field position is critical when you have limited time and no timeouts.

    On side kick was the wrong move.

    So was wasting all 3 timeouts and end of the half when the defense actually held them. How much did we lose by? Oh that’s right.

  23. Hizzie Says:

    We couldn’t stop the run today. You can’t win unless you make teams one dimensional. The pass rush wasn’t there and those to 40 plus yard passes killed us. I still like the progress the Bucs are making. Despite everything they’ve been in position to win the last couple games. Let’s hope the front office makes the right moves in the offseason to get us over the hump.

  24. JameisDungy Says:

    Last week I thought the oline just failed the Bucs.

    This week I think Jameis wasn’t good enough and Dirk….is just a guy.

    Lovie would have this team with 8 wins as well. The difference was that Licht was worried teams like the Niners and Browns would hired Dirk. Yea they’d both still have the same wins.

    I understand injuries and lack of talent provided by Licht. However, if you’re going to fire Lovie you should have just brought another offensive guru.

  25. 941bucsfan Says:

    That onside kick means nothing. all they needed was one first down, and when you get 8 yards on the first carry the game is pretty much over no matter side of the field you are on. The saints maybe had 1 3 and out all game and you expect them to have another, you play to win the game and thats what the onside kick was for. Jameis Made a big mistake with that 4th qtr interception and that was a huge reason for the loss. Lets move on to 2017

  26. dee Says:

    We are a soft football team JW has no weapons d line and o line needs work

  27. JameisDungy Says:


    Jameis made a huge mistake for sure. But why did he make it?

    Because we don’t have a kicker than can actually make kicks from 50+ yards.

  28. unbelievable Says:

    JameisDungy you’re crazy LOvies team had no defense. Defense is the reason we went on that 5 game win streak

  29. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    Again guys….draft who you want…sign your favorite coaches…and I guarantee that you will still lose more games than you win in the NFL when you make absolutely critical mistakes like our kick returner has now done twice.

    That gave the Saints a total swing in momentum as well as control of the scoreboard.

    If you go into most NFL stadiums and start the second half trailing and then give the home team another seven points just three plays later to start the second half you are NOT GOING TO WIN GAMES! This kind of tom foolery MUST STOP.

    A high school kid gets better instruction on how to play the ball in all of the various combinations. The ball can only do so many things on a kickoff…are you telling me in a professional league the player doesn’t know how to handle every situation? Just horrible reflection on the ST coach as well as Koetter.

  30. buccfan305 Says:

    2nd year ina row with the playoffs in your hands and you f#@king choke…this is exactly why I stay cautiously optimistic. Well we can start looking towards the draft. At least look towards the draft came in week 16 this year and not week 4 like it usually does. I still think think the onside kick with 3 time outs and 1 min and change left was the stupidest call of the game. That just tells your defense you have not confident in them.

    Better luck next year

    GO BUCS!!!


  31. JameisDungy Says:

    I’m doing the ESPN playoff machine. Seems to me the Bucs have no shot at the playoffs.

    Detroit can lose the next two and they’ll still get in over Tampa.

  32. Bucnut2 Says:

    The truth is this was NEVER a playoff caliber team. We are an average, team with an average defense, average QB, average offense and average coaching staff. Anyone watching NFL football other than just Bucs games has known this.

  33. Warrenfb12 Says:

    Sorry guys, same old Bucs. Hurts me too.

  34. Benjamin Coburn Says:

    Onside kick was right call and it actually almost worked. Guy dropped it and scooped it up right before they came crashing in. Either way a firsg down is game. weirdest thing is Evans getting momentum then not giving him at least a shot near the end. You give evans a shot or even two and he gets at least one. Instead myers? Is it Jameis thag takes him out of games or Kotter? He may attraCT a lot of qttention but every time it’s thrown to him he gets it so… instead we throw many contested catches to people who can’t get those.

  35. Buccfan37 Says:

    The game never felt like the Bucs would outscore the Saints. End of the season blues.

  36. unbelievable Says:

    We’ve been eliminated. Oh well.

    We’ve made progress and have 4 major holes to fill. I think we are playoff bound in 2017 if we can stay healthy and Dirk Koetter stops going into pus$y mode.

  37. No Surprise Says:

    This team is still half losers. No heart, urgency or even effort from most of them. You can tell by watching they don’t care. I am thankful that I have only supported this team by buying a hat since Gruden was fired. Ten year rebuild?

  38. JameisDungy Says:

    Still can’t believe we drafted Florida’s 3rd best corner over Tunsil or Rankins.

    Jason Licht traded up for a kicker. Instead of trading up for Von Bell or Michael Thomas.

    Licht is officially on the clock this year.

  39. Benjamin Coburn Says:

    And you can blame huff for q bad play but not the gimme in Jameis threw. Other one waswasn’t great either. Between the easy throws missed, the ints, the terrible deep sacks he didn’t throw away. .. despite bad run d we might have won with even one or two of those things fixed

  40. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    Jameis DOES have weapons, but sadly I am about to say it..Jameis accuracy has been the issue..period..I was almost hoping Glennon would be thrown in..

  41. JameisDungy Says:



  42. mike10 Says:

    This is the same ol Bucs. No different than teams of past years

  43. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Bucnut2, and you’re very happy about it, too. You win. Winston sucks. What are you going to now. Oh yea, nothing! Lol! Deal with it.

  44. Oliver Says:

    Lee, Steve and Ira all picked the Bucs to win…

  45. ElioT Says:

    Loved Hargreaves dancing like a jackass after dropping a pick, down two scores with 5 minutes to go.

    Exactly the type of mentality we don’t need!

  46. PRBucFan Says:

    so we need det to lose and the giants to lose and beat the panthers

  47. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    Still too young and inexperienced. But hey, The panthers lost today so there’s no possible way that we finish in last place. And I’m a firm believer that when you win more games than you did the year before, that you are improving and headed down the right path.

    After learning his lesson about not targeting weapons and protection for Jameis in this last off-season, I can see Jason Licht on a mission to do his due diligence in that regard this upcoming off-season. I cannot freaking wait to see the amount of damage Mike can do with a legitimate #2 reciever on the other side. And I already know what Jameis is capable of when he has all day to throw and wide open targets. See probowl highlights, last year against the eagles, and our opening game this year against the Falcons.

    Yes. This game, and last weeks game, hurt really badly, and it sucks to think about what might have been. But our future is so freaking bright guys. Do not lose faith yet.

  48. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    PR, w need to lose to improve our draft position.

  49. "Ice Man" Bob Gilbert Says:

    We are a “good team”, not a “great” team or a “playoff” team. We will get there though, i have faith in that.

    Jameis is not a franchise QB…YET. Again, he will get there. I have no doubt about that.

    GMC is a “great” player.

    A lot of bandwagon fans jumped on when we were winning, will be interesting to see how many fall off the wagon after two losses.

  50. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Dallas, miscommunication? He was in the pocket and threw it out of bounds. That is intentional grounding, intended or not. I don’t know why you feel the need to keep insulting me?

  51. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    @Eric Sorry bro but you are totally wrong. Its 100 percent legal to throw the ball away if the spot you throw it to has a receiver in the area. Quarterbacks do it constantly, Whether it’s out of bounds, or on the ground 2 yards away near a running backs feet. That was just a bogus bogus call.

  52. DB55 Says:

    The curse of the 100 mil GHost

  53. chipbuc Says:

    Tell me what weapons besides Evans does Winston have? We have no run after catch at all so we literally have to pass all the way down the field. After Brate went down it was all over from there. It would have helped if the defense could have stopped Brees once or twice in the second half. Sadly we are another draft and free agency away from really being a division contender. Its time to set Winston up for success with some real play makers and a consistent run game wouldn’t hurt.

  54. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    That one along with the Fumble play. Coby Fleener had caught the ball, had 2 feet down, full control of the ball, and went to turn up field. That my friends is a fumble.

  55. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Blake, there was. I receiver that far out of bounds. I called it before the refs. I hate it, but it’s the right call.

  56. JameisDungy Says:

    People really believe Licht’s going to provide the O line and wrs for Jameis?

    I don’t doubt that he will give the effort. However, after the Sweezy debacle, the depth at WR/TE how can I be sure he’ll get the right guys?

    The irony here is also that Dirk was hired to be the coach of Jameis yet he was the last one on being on board to draft him.

    Sometimes Jameis gives Dirk legit reasons to not trust. However, you can tell in the play calling that this isn’t his guy for real. Could be another blown decision by Licht.

    You drafted Jameis because he was Lovie’s guy. If you’re going to so rash as to fire the HC because of a decent season with the OC well I guess I wish he did draft Mariota.

    Then again he’ll probably be injured as well with this poor offensive line provided.

  57. Blake_bucsfan Says:

    JameisDungy. Can’t tell how in tune you are with current events, but Mariota DID get injured today. He got dragged to the ground from behind trying to run out of the pockect and got his leg snapped. Fractured tibia, or maybe it was a fibia idk.

    But i’ll give you some reasons for my confidence in Jason Lichts ability to acquire talent.

    Mike Evans
    Cameron Brate
    Ali Marpet
    Kevin Pamphile
    Kwon Alexander
    Adam Humphries
    Donovan Smith
    Vernon Hargreaves
    Noah Spence
    Jacquis Smith
    And Jameis Winston himself

  58. richbucsfan Says:

    I must confess to being wrong…it wasn’t lack of depth, it was internal problems. Obviously, something is wrong with Martin and the HC. A team disrupted won’t win critical games. No doubt they’re too thin at multiple positions, but the main damage was done by Smith entertaining offers for a HC job and now with Martin. We don’t know the internal condition of the team, but suffice it to say, the season is over…no playoffs.

  59. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Blake, there is no receiver that far out of bounds. I want to make excuses for Winston too, but I can’t anymore. He was bad at the wrong times

  60. rayjay1122 Says:

    Screw you Blake. Were you at the game? Didn’t think do you tool.

  61. Bob in valrico Says:

    jameis needs to improve on the deep pass next year.The first attempt was partly on Koetter,you go for a big play on 2nd and 2 not 3rd down.Then you still have a third and two if you do not get it. Also didn’t like the call near the endzone. You set up the opponent in great field position if you throw an INT.

  62. EA Says:

    A few things i got out of this game. Way too many missed or soft tackles, defense didn’t seem to have a do or die mentality, I thought GMC and Alexander played good.
    Jameis is playing at a good level, cant really judge him until they get him more weapons and beef up the O-line. I’d be happy with a 9-7 record and look forward to next season.

  63. @Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    Donovan Smith is a very average LT who looks better out there because of Winston’s mobility.

    I really like Brate. However, he’s a great 2nd TE. Not a #1 imo. Humphries is a solid player. However, as the season has gone he’s been replaced by Shep and even Huff.

    Mike Evans was a no brainer. The drafted was loaded wrs.

    He had the option of Jameis or Mariota. EIther one would have been a good selection. Of course he couldn’t mess that up.

    I’m not saying he’s terrible. He’s just very meh as a GM. What kind of vision does he have this team? Where are the strengths at? What is this team?

    Lets hope next he gets better. Because the truth is this Bucs team could easily be finishing the season with only 4 or 5 wins.

  64. JameisDungy Says:

    oops meant type mines instead. Sorry.

  65. mike10 Says:

    We’ve lost that winning mentality again. Looks like they don’t believe they can win..

  66. DefenseRules Says:

    Love how the wolves come out of the forest after a loss. Yup, this is the Bucs fanbase we have all come to know and love. Had to stop watching in the 3rd qtr to go to Christmas Eve service, but the Bucs were battling. New Orleans, led by a future HOF QB and back at almost full strength AND playing in their own house had a clear advantage over the Bucs starting the game. Kudos to the Bucs for playing them tough and keeping the score manageable … despite a ton of injuries and a decided lack of quality depth. Reality is that this team has overachieved if anything, and that’s due to a lot of different factors such as better overall coaching, better team leadership, depth-players stepping up, etc. Regardless of how next Sundays game turns out, this team has a lot to be proud of and it sets a good foundation for the future.

  67. satchseven Says:

    defense rules you are right they overachieved

  68. cspann Says:

    Gholston being out really hurt the run def. They ran to gholstons side all game long

  69. Tampa Tony Says:

    When the game is on the line your “Franchise QB” needs to step up and win the game. Make all the excuses you want for him but he choked. He was high on throws (as usual) turned the ball over when they needed a score and just doesn’t look like a franchise qb. He’s good but he’s more Cutler than Farve.

    Hopefully next year he learns from 22 turnovers and not being clutch. Your pathetic if you defend this qb and can’t see how his constant turnovers are hurting this team

  70. DefenseRules Says:

    Satchseven … Do you think maybe the Panthers overachieved last year when they went 15-1? Of course they did, and that’s what it takes to win championships in today’s NFL. Teams are all fairly well matched because of the salary cap I think, and it’ll be hard to build dynasties like some in years past. Even if the Bucs do go 8-8 (hopefully 9-7 though) they’ve played much better football, against a tougher schedule, than they played last year or the year before. That’s called progress I think.

  71. LakelandB Says:

    Disappointed that so many of you people can’t recognize the obvious strides that this team had made. Yes dirk coached like a wuss tonight, yes there are obvious gaps to fill, but if you think these are the same old bucs you can gtfo , you clearly stayed watching during the Seattle game, and don’t bother commenting on these boards when we’re 12 and 4 next year.

  72. Pittbucfan Says:

    Ok. Another season of what-ifs and off season moves and maybe next year. Pffft. Swell

  73. Mike Cannon Says:

    Stopped playing hungry when we reached prime time. We didn’t arrive, it was just an opportunity to take the next step.