“Don’t Sleep On Our Defense”

June 19th, 2017

Watch out

There is a whole lot of hype about the Bucs and making the playoffs this fall and, of course, the offense led by America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston.

Hell, if you watch “Good Morning, Football” on NFL Network weekday mornings, you’d swear the hosts are on the payroll of Team Glazer. Bucs fans love the way it-girl Kay Adams gushes over the pewter pirates.

But hold up! Folks aren’t seeing the forest for the trees, said Jameis. It is the defense that should be getting attention, he said.

Appearing last week with Tallahassee sports radio icon Jeff Cameron on ESPN Tallahassee, Jameis noted it is the Bucs defense folks should not only give props to, but fear.

“Don’t sleep on our defense,” Jameis said. “We have some horses over there. Now, people look at how productive our offense was but if our defense wasn’t as good as they were last year, we wouldn’t have been in a couple of those games late in the stretch when we went on a five-game winning streak.

“Our defense is really talented. Coach Mike Smith has done a great job with that side of the ball. Like I say, the leaders they have over there: Lavonte David, Kwon Alexander, Gerald McCoy and Clinton McDonald. With the addition of Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves — I mean, he’s a Gator but he’s really talented.”

Joe is looking forward to cutting the “Ira Kaufman Podcast” later today because Joe will needle the famed JoeBucsFan.com columnist and lone Pro Football Hall of Fame voter for the Tampa Bay area.

Joe and Ira go round-and-round on this: Ira claims the Bucs defense failed the team during its late December playoff push. Joe argues it was the offense to blame, specifically relying on arena league talent at receiver aside from Mike Evans. The Bucs scored a grand total of three points in the fourth quarters of one-score losses in New Orleans and Dallas; Joe can’t hang that on the defense.

Well, now we have the Face of the Franchise, the starting quarterback, giving props to the defense for keeping the Bucs in games.

What say you, Ira? (Joe will find out later, and you all will enjoy when the podcast is posted this week.)

28 Responses to ““Don’t Sleep On Our Defense””

  1. ARGH_M8E Says:

    Shhheeeeeeeeee-it… I can’t wait!

  2. Tampa Tony Says:

    Defense carried them for 5 games but outside of that sucked the rest of the year

    Jameis turnovers killed the Bucs in one score games that combined with d not being able to stop the run

  3. tnew Says:

    It was BOTH the offense and the defense that screwed the Bucs at the end of last season. They both did enough to win individually, but collectively, they lost. In the Dallas game, both, Ezekiel Elliot and Dak Prescott had their career best games. But Jameis had a chance to make a play late that the team needed and couldn’t. (the thing most forget is that he was getting chased to his left by David Irving, who also had his best game of the year and Winston didn’t have any time to set up).

    For the Saints, there was a discussion regarding a bad decision from Winston in the Seattle game that I disagreed with, well in the Saints game he threw a similar ball except it was second down in his own end zone. Evans looked to be interfered with, the official actually looks like his instinct was to pull the flag but no matter. Poor decision there. The second int was a HORRIBLE route by Sheppard, slow on his break, slow to get his head turned and the DB just made a good play. But they offense did manage to score 24. The defense gave up 31, only one on a short field, and couldn’t get off the field on first down and created 0 turnovers themselves.

    So, two games, two total team losses.

  4. RayJameisStadium Says:

    The best is yet to come….
    ….expect different!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!

  5. tnew Says:

    Sorry.. couldn’t get off the field on third downs..

  6. tnew Says:

    Joe, the day that Jameis blames anyone but himself for a loss or personally takes credit for a win, I will be shocked. Its amazing that he is able to do this and maintain his confidence. Jameis is so quick to pass on accolades.

    Being said, I think the Defense will be better this year as well. As long as our aging defensive line stays healthy, it will be a good year.

    I think this team will be top 10 on both sides of the ball, barring any major injuries on the lines.

  7. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “…I mean, he’s a Gator but he’s really talented”

    Now that is funny. lol

  8. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I see the defense improving in some areas. Maybe not so much in other areas.

    Pass rush and run stopping should take a huge leap forward.

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    It’s hard to argue against the fact that our defense played well down the stretch. With the additions and another year for returning players, we should see improvement.
    I expect improvement on both sides of the ball this year.

  10. Jersey Buc Says:

    Tampa Tony, you’re absolutely right. Interesting that the Bucs claim they couldn’t run any type of 3-4 last year because they lacked the personnel to do so. They sign Baker, draft the guy out of USC in the 7th round…and now they have the bodies to play that type of scheme? Two guys kept them from running a defense, that would have allowed Spence and David to stand up and come off the edge to pressure the QB? I bring this up, because of the Rams game and Broncos game. Winnable games where once again, a lack of pass rush hurt. Throw in the Raiders game, and the defense at best cost this team three wins…outside of the Dallas and New Orleans efforts. Not sure what defense Winston is talking about it. Hype doesn’t equal fewer interceptions thrown, fewer penalties, more QB pressures or filling the proper run gap. Less talk, more production. Not being pessimistic, but to me hope for a great year means everyone being healthy and BETTER at their specific position than last year. Go Bucs!

  11. Pickgrin Says:

    Jameis is right. The play of the defense in the 2nd half of the season was absolutely what created the resurgence of this team’s ability to win – and had the team in contention for a playoff push.

    Ira is right. Defense gave up more points in the 2 losses (26 and 31) then any other game the 2nd half of the season. Cowboys Oline just manhandled the Bucs D – plain and simple. Gholston was out in the 2nd Saints game and we couldn’t stop the run which opened things up for Brees who will be a 1st ballot HOF QB for a reason. Brees is deadly in the dome – especially if he has you on your heels and guessing if another run play you can’t stop is coming…

    Joe is right. The offense couldn’t come through in the clutch at the crucial ending moments of the 2 play-off killing losses.

    Everyone is right.

    Lets hope the Defense can start this year resembling the D that sparked that 5 game win streak – giving up 10, 17, 21, 05 and 11 points to some very good offenses (aside from Chicago). We had all our Dlinemen except Jac Smith healthy and playing together finally and a legit pass rush resulted. This benefitted the DB’s play immensely and our safties play in particular looked notably improved as a result.

  12. Mike Johnson Says:

    Bucs still neglected their meat and butter at DE during the draft. I won’t sleep on our Defense But We’d better get off to a better start this yr if we want to be in contention. Seems like we let team convert an awful lot of 3rd downs into 1st ones last season. What could is scoring 42 when the opposing team scores 43?

  13. Stpetebucsfan Says:

    Be careful Pickgrin or you’ll get busted for nuance on a sports blog. LMAO


    But all things considered it’s Joe’s point that really bothered me last year. Our freaking offense went to MY highest level of frustration.

    SPBF’s frustration levels with offense in the 4th Q of a close winnable game.

    3.) Offense can simply score a TD and give us some breathing room and we don’t!

    2.) Offense can just move us into FG range to help the cause and we don’t!

    And the thing that hacks me worst of all is what happened far too frequently last year and that is to have a lead and not even run some clock and give the D a breather. I’d love to see the stat on 4th Q 3 and outs.

  14. Pickgrin Says:

    SPBF – Its kind of hard to “run clock” when your running game is as anemic and inconsistent as the Bucs were in 2016.

  15. Bucsfanman Says:

    To chime in SPBF, there were some extremely questionable coaching decisions as well. Koetter screwed the pooch on several “clock-management” calls. It almost seemed like he was calling scared.
    Even though our run-game stalled Pickgrin, we did not stay with it. It drives me up a wall when we’re down in points because we abandon the running game way too soon. There is no reason to be hurling the ball every play when you’re down one TD in the 3rd quarter. Move the sticks, live to play another set of downs.

  16. Pickgrin Says:

    Bucsfanman – Of course he was “calling scared”. Especially during the Dallas game. Did you see what the LDE was doing to Cherilus practically every play out there?

    Its amazing we were even still in that game because both Oline and Dline for the Bucs were getting there asses handed to them on just about every play.

  17. Bucsfanman Says:

    Yeah, that Dallas game was not a shining moment for our trenches. There was a game, I can’t recall at the moment, where he decided to take a knee with 1:30+ and a couple of timeouts before the half and in a game where we were either trailing or close. I remember thinking, “What the hell! 2-minute drill anyone?” This was prior to the “Rag-doll Game” in Dallas!

  18. SOEbuc Says:

    @Tampa Tony and Jersey Buc

    Once again, Smitty said multiple times his defense takes about 7 weeks to understand. When did that defense come around and dominate for a five game winning streak? I think Chicago was week 6.

  19. Buc4Lyfe79 Says:

    Believe it or not you’re both right, and it all came back to lack of quality depth. Gholston went out down & our run defense tanked, which led to not being able to get off the field in those playoff spot on the line games. Dotson went down, and “Goz,” along w/ the rest of us were suddenly forced into realizing his playing days were past him. No depth past ME#13 (Licht stating it wasn’t o -line but #3 having to hold the ball because receivers couldn’t get open) A starting running back on the bench because of Josh Freeman/ASJackass priorities…Although being in attendance to see us snuff out the panthers that final game was at least some form of reprieval.

  20. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    I wonder what the over/under is on Fameis being the starting QB here in Tampa at least 15 season’s??? That’s a lengthy period of time to have to wake and be disgusted with someone tampa tonya😄. I love it.

  21. Bucsfanman Says:

    He does have a point though Nole. We only go as far as Jameis goes. He HAS to clean up those turnovers. Yes, he should improve with the additional weapons. Gotta put in the work though!

  22. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Show me QB who was perfect the minute he entered the league and I’ll show you a video game character. Every member of team has to get better in order for us to win a chip. Some make it they’re business to ragg solely on the QB for reasons I believe,well I’ll keep mt sentiment to myself.

  23. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    All I heard was “he’s no luck”this he’s no luck that. To those who use to stress I say “thank Gawd”.

  24. Bucsfanman Says:

    Easy Nole! I get your frustration but I think everyone agrees on this subject. There’s nobody on this team that doesn’t need improvement in some aspect.

  25. Lord Cornelius Says:

    D-line health and learning Smith’s defense was obvious detriments early.
    Lack of a run game and offenseive weapons were an issue all year.

    6-2 last 8 games and also 6-2 when McDonald/McCoy/Ayers all started. When those 3 were all banged up it was extremely visible on the field in terms of no pass rush.

    In general I think the defense won more games single handily than the offense and it isn’t even close; which is why I’d lean to Joe’s opinion.

    In our 9 wins; the defense gave up an average of 15 PPG; which would be #1 in the league over a full season.

    In those same 9 wins; the offense averaged 23 PPG; which was their total average for the 2016 season and about average for an NFL team. Meaning they didn’t even really play relatively better than in the losses in terms of scoring.

    I don’t know any clearer way to show that we won on the back of our defense more than anything. It also is a good sign that our offense was still average in scoring despite a year 2 QB / no run game / no weapons.

  26. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Great post Lord. It is because of that info right there I find it hard to understand that “If” this offense lives up to the hype it is receiving a deep pkayoff run should totally be expected by more posters around here. Not just making the tourny but a deep run.

  27. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    It doesn’t get any crystal clearer than what Lord just said.

  28. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Fanman I ain’t trying start ish. I do feel lets say luck was our QB and had done everything Fameis has done to the T(good and bad). I don’t think some round here would be as critical of him bro. Its cool tho,as long as they have the energy to redicule without giving any props I’ll have the energy to be around to Nike check they @$$. And you can put that everythang I love.