“I Have No Fear”

March 30th, 2017


Joe always chuckles when fans bring up the dreaded word “distractions.” It’s like an excuse for anything they don’t like.

Remember when the Bucs signed Brent Grimes? Fans freaked because, so they preached, Grimes’ colorful, feisty, outspoken wife Miko would be a distraction — the ruination of the Buccaneers franchise.

How exactly did that turn out?

Currently, the Bucs are in the running to be featured on “Hard Knocks,” the NFL Films-produced reality series which annually appears on HBO.

(No, Joe does not know when HBO will announce this year’s featured team. Last year, HBO announced on March 23. So your guess is as good as Joe’s.)

A vocal sect of Bucs fans are unnerved by the prospect of “Hard Knocks” coming to Tampa Bay. Distractions will kill the Bucs, they say.

Winning Bucs coach Dirk Koetter does not share this philosophy.

“I have no fear,” Koetter said of “Hard Knocks” possibly coming to One Buc Palace, as he spoke to Joe and other reporters yesterday at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix.

Why isn’t Koetter bothered? That’s because he’s been through “Hard Knocks” before, and so have a few of his assistants. As one Bucs coach told Joe at the East-West Shrine practices in St. Petersburg back in January, you don’t even notice the NFL Films guys after the first day or two.

In short, “Hard Knocks” isn’t a distraction. To suggest otherwise is 1970s high school football paranoia. If “Hard Knocks” is a distraction, then the Bucs have mentally weak SOBs on the roster. And Joe doesn’t believe that to be the case at all.

Loads of camera crews already hover all over the place at One Buc Palace during training camp various media outlets. Shoot, the Bucs themselves dispatch crews. So a few extra cameras or a half-dozen extra producers on site would kill the season? C’mon.

If that was the case, then the Bucs drafting America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston, would have destroyed the franchise. Just in his rookie season, so many national media types — replete with camera crews — descended upon One Buc Palace to monitor Jameis’ every move. And the team has improved each season with him on the roster.

Joe loved what stud tackle Joe Thomas of the Browns recently Twittered about distractions. “Good teams don’t LET themselves be distracted.”

In other words, as Bill Belicheat would say, “Do your job.”

That reminds Joe of what Joe’s high school coach used to say about distractions, a man who played for John Madden, Tom Landry, Lou Holtz and Gene Stallings. “Distractions are distractions if you let them be distractions.”

(OK smart alecks, Joe Thomas actually played on good teams at Wisconsin.)

Or, as Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht perfectly said, a Belilcheat disciple himself, “Losing is a distraction.” There is none bigger. None.

If somehow, “Hard Knocks” at One Buc Palace in August is linked to losing games in November and December, then that tells Joe the Bucs have much larger issues at hand.

Besides, nearly half the teams in “Hard Knocks” history end up in the playoffs. Given the current playoff drought by the Bucs, Team Glazer should be cutting a check to Time-Warner, parent company of HBO, to ensure the team is featured this summer.

Bring it, HBO!

34 Responses to ““I Have No Fear””

  1. ben Says:

    bucs are not an exciting team to watch yet so prefer to watch a team in top 5 on either side of the ball

  2. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    I don’t want our bucs on Hard Knocks

    That program is nothing but a distraction which is what this team doesn’t need…

    ESPECIALLY……………..if they are posed to make a playoff run this year

  3. gotbbucs Says:

    GMC would know where the cameras are at all times.

  4. Miko Says:

    what good can come out of it? NONE…It will hinder more than help…

  5. DallasBuc Says:

    Hope it doesn’t happen but if it does I am comforted that Koetter and Smith have been through it an will know how the mitigate the distraction.

  6. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    A young up an coming football team with young budding superstar QB who possesses an infectious personality that naturally attracts all who get anywhere near him. Yea right not as exciting, where you been everyone is beginning to pay attention to this team. Just read an article last night on Yahoo sports begging the question “are the Bucs the best team in the south division right now”??? The writer ended the piece with “you would be better serve to get to know this team sooner than later”. We already on the map but because of the dilligence,drive and passion of Fameis I would now be totally Okay hard knocks.

  7. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    What good can come out of it??? EXPOSER homie. Something we’ve been deprived of for a long time. Ion know about y’all but I’m tired of watching highlights of sport shows coming on an seeing negative plays from the Bucs. Someone scoring on us someone missing a tackle. Its like they look for certain teams to show in a negative light. If you ever wanna see that change then taking advantage of something like Hard Knocks is where you might wanna begin.

  8. Joe Says:

    what good can come out of it?

    A lot!

  9. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    There’s two ways to look at it. First, you can say it’s a distraction because of all the cameras. However, you could also argue it could help the team. With the players knowing there are cameras on them at all times, it could actually heighten the competition, thus bringing out the best in the players.

    If all things are equal, I’d prefer we don’t do it, simply because I really don’t know what effect, if any, it will have on the team. I’d just personally not take the risk. However, if we do it, I really don’t think it’s going to make that much of a difference. If we are a good team, we will be a good team regardless if there are cameras there or not.

  10. Defense Rules Says:

    “Besides, nearly half the teams in “Hard Knocks” history end up in the playoffs.” And each year, 12 of the NFL’s 32 teams … almost half … end up in the playoffs. Coincidence? I think not. “Hard Knocks” is a non-factor in determining whether or not Bucs will make the playoffs this year. Bring it on.

  11. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    Has a Hard Knocks team ever won the SB the year they were selected?

    Not concerned about distractions so much, as I would rather them be a mystery to everyone, including opposing teams.

    The day that the Patriots are on Hard Knocks, let me know…..

  12. Joseph Mamma Says:

    Right after the season the Falcon’s were on Hard Knocks, the Falcons sucked and both Koetter and Smith were canned. I’m sure they would be super pumped about it.

  13. tdtb2015 Says:

    It will hinder the weak minded. It makes it easier for coaches to know who to cut the ones who don’t belong. That is a plus++++!!!!

    Good point Miko!

    Is like when they play the game. You better be paying attention or you might end up on your butt.

    Athletes know how to stay focus. These athletes are about to get paid the big $$$.

    The more I write the more I want HBO to film at One Buc Place.

    Come on Hard Knocks!!!!!

  14. MarineBucsFan Says:

    I actually hope HBO picks us for Hard Knocks. I like the insight it provides on young players trying to make the team, Coaches getting at the players in between plays during practice, GM’s making roster moves, the camaraderie of the team, and just watching things come together through preseason.

    I watched the RAMS last year, that one was a little dry but my favorite was Houston Texans. Bill O’Brian has a great personality and it was hilarious watching Vince Wilfork kick FG’s and actually make them!!!

    We have great personalities on our team as well and I think it would do more good than harm. This show is for the fans, especially guys like me who don’t live in the Tampa Area and can’t go to camp practices. I love the idea of it.

  15. Eric Says:

    Bucs are not an exciting team to watch yet?

    LOL I am being unbiased when I say that you’re dead wrong. Our defense after TNF was one of the best in the league to watch. Jameis and Evans had some kind of acrobatic pass and catch nearly every game.

    I don’t know what you’re watching but this team was definitely one of the most exciting teams on a consistent basis to watch all season long.

  16. AhhhBucItThen Says:

    First, let me start by saying…Joe’s, this is by far the most appreciated website that I recognize (outside of the lovely ladies that “act” on a couple hubs😏). Second, this is my first of many comments on this here site. I frequent this site at least 5x’s a day to get all my Buc news and share with everyone that will listen (and of course take credit for being the first to know). This morning I am compelled to comment about this issue of “are the Bucs ready to be on Hard Knocks”. My opinion…HELL YEAH we are ready. And the reason…not so much the exposure but the experience. When playoffs roll around and we have to play in a hostile stadium, I want my guys prepared to NOT think about the media, or pressure of being in the homes of millions but concentrate on the task at hand. That being winning between the lines. P.S. Nole on Sat, I look for your comments first.

  17. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    It would be the highlight of my TV viewing each week which isn’t much outside of football season. Fameis rookie season I was like no. But now I would actually love it.

  18. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Miko Says
    “what good can come out of it? NONE…It will hinder more than help…”

    The good that comes of it is exposure. The more fans Tampa has, the better the network coverage and the more prime time games we get. Being on Hard Knocks allows other fans to build an interest in our players, so they will want to see how things play out.

    It has been said that players ‘play up to the cameras’ on Hard Knocks. I’ll say it differently…the cameras hold players accountable. Their effort level is on the tape. And if they put on a little show, it is because they are playing (or practicing) well. That builds confidence and swag.

    The perceived negatives are imaginary. If Tampa is going to make the playoffs, it will happen regardless of whether they are on Hard Knocks.

    Those cameras are not there during the regular season, therefore any imagined distraction would be long gone.

  19. ITH Says:

    I think tweeted out is the correct term, not twittered but I sent a BucsTake to the Commish on this topic. While I’d prefer the Bucs to remain under the radar, it would create a good PR / national opportunity for stars like Jameis and otherS

  20. briandorry55 Says:

    It’s an awesome show. Bring it on. Can’t wait.

  21. CalBucsFan Says:

    As I’ve commented before while living here on the west coast, I’m starved for all things about the Bucs so on the surface it sounds great. However, having never watched the program (why would I, I’m a die-hard Bucs fan and they have never been on it) my only concern would be if another team gets one piece of information from the show they can take advantage of at game time, whether it be about a player, play call or coaching strategy.

    And those who say it’s all about exposure so Tampa starts getting more national broadcasts and recognition, I totally disagree, winning is the only thing that will bring that on.

    Frankly the more I type the more I believe it has to be a disadvantage for any team to have opponents learn more about their opponent’s strengths, weaknesses, tendencies, even player temperaments, all while peeping in to their locker room, meetings and practices. The difference between winning and losing in the NFL is small, so why give the opponent ANY opportunity to gain a potential advantage?

    Far as I know, the Patriots have never been chosen, yet they are one of the most consistent winners in the history of the NFL. Why haven’t they been chosen by now? What does Billicheat think of the show? My guess is his coaches watch every episode and have a pause button to jot down any tip-bit of info that goes into their database of minutia about all other teams for the next time they play them.

    Maybe HBO should peep in on the Patriots first, perhaps the Bucs might even learn from the best on how to cheat and win while doing it!

  22. CalBucsFan Says:

    P.S. I’m a believer in walking quietly and carrying a big stick!

  23. Eric Says:

    Pats haven’t been chosen because teams that went to the playoffs the year before are eliminated from consideration. They’ve won their division almost every year for the past I don’t even know how long so it’s not even possible.

  24. unbelievable Says:

    Maybe it’s not a distraction but coincidentally every team that has been on it has totally sucked that next season…

  25. Eric Says:

    That’s not true. Of the 10 teams on hard knocks, 4 have gone to the playoffs. Sooo…

    Actually if you do the math and considering teams have a 37.5% chance of making the playoffs (12 of 32), and 40% of teams on hard knocks have made the playoffs (4 of 10), then technically teams on hard knocks had a better chance of making the playoffs.

  26. Capt.Tim Says:

    This is a very exciting team. It has a ton of young talent, that would profit from some exposure(Jameis, Humphries, Brate,Kwon, McCoy, etc). The league knows Evans!
    What the heck- Bring’em on!

  27. Pickgrin Says:

    I get the fear of potential disadvantage by teams gleaning a bit more info about the Bucs than they would be able to do otherwise – and the fear of potential “distractions” based on constantly being under the microscope so to speak.

    But coach K has this in perspective. Fear is BS. FEAR = False Evidence Appearing Real.

    The benefits of the Bucs being on Hard Knocks far outweigh the potential disadvantages. In particular – its high time that the rest of the world get to know Jameis Winston for the stellar human being and incredible leader that he is just like we Bucs fans already know him to be. This is a great opportunity for Winston to get the positive exposure that will surely come from being on Hard Knocks – and help put the nation’s negative image of him that still lingers from the cleatchaser’s false accusations in the rearview mirror once and for all.

  28. OAR Says:

    Speaking of distractions….I can’t imagine the self control required to work in a bubble wrap factory.

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

    The only person I’d be worried about is LVD. He seems a bit fragile mentally.

    Everyone else should be fine.

    I’d love for us to be on Hard Knocks!

  30. Buc4Lyfe79 Says:

    Don’t rule out HBO not having come out with their decision yet to see if the Bucs or another team on their “could be” list signs AP. It would be the icing on their potential drama cake.

  31. COREYATX Says:

    I love Hard Knocks. I love my Bucs. The two together would be incredible. I work in television, and sometimes for the four letter network. NFL Films is the most professional sports organization out there. They are not trying to release team secrets or tendencies. That’s ridiculous. They releasing the ups and downs of what an NFL training camp is. I would love HK’s to film Tampa.

  32. Joe Says:

    Far as I know, the Patriots have never been chosen, yet they are one of the most consistent winners in the history of the NFL. Why haven’t they been chosen by now?

    Playoff teams are not eligible for “Hard Knocks.”

  33. Joe Says:

    Don’t rule out HBO not having come out with their decision yet to see if the Bucs or another team on their “could be” list signs AP.

    It’s not a crazy thought, but some believe Peterson may not be signed until after the draft which would be May. That puts NFL Films in a pinch with just two months planning.

  34. Ray Rice Says:

    All the Aunt Geraldine *ICK RIDERS will be quick to use Hard Knocks as an excuse for his mediocre a*s. SMH