Growing Rift Between Ward, Bucs?

October 24th, 2017

Bucs head coach has different story.
(Photo courtesy of

Seems like two parties have a different idea of what is going on.

We all read T.J. Ward’s comments after the galling loss to Buffalo. He went off on Bucs defensive coordinator Mike Smith for limiting his snaps. Ward also expressed confusion about what his coaches want.

Winning Bucs coach Dirk Koetter has a different story.

In his day-after presser, Koetter said he had a sitdown with Ward last week to review the team’s goals for Ward and what he must do to meet those goals.

“I think it’s different in every case,” Koetter said about players griping publicly about how they are used. “Again, the players get grades every week and the grades are reflective of how the coaches grade them. I talked to the players today about, you know, anybody that is frustrated or has an issue – the best way to take care of an issue on a team is to go to someone who can do something about it. Then I outlined who those people were.

“The second thing – in T.J. [Ward’s] case ironically enough, I did have a sit-down with T.J. in my office last Thursday and I laid out exactly what he could do better.”

This springs to mind a story Joe heard Bill Parcells discuss from his days as a college assistant coach. He gave a player an assignment on the sidelines and sent him into the game and the player blew the assignment. Parcells went totally bananas on the kid. So much so the head coach had to step in and calm Parcells down.

When Parcells tried to explain to his boss that he told the player what to do, Parcells recounted, the head coach replied, well, it’s obvious you didn’t explain it well enough.

Perhaps that is what is going on here? How could Ward claim he doesn’t know what is expected of him when he had a one-on-one with Koetter just three days before the Buffalo game.

If the losing continues, and the defense continues to get shredded at this pace, the griping will only continue and grow louder. How Koetter is able to douse a potential insurrection smoldering in his locker room will be very interesting in the coming days.

As the old football axiom goes, the best deodorant is winning.

64 Responses to “Growing Rift Between Ward, Bucs?”

  1. Gobucs Says:

    I’d rather lose with ward playing then sorry as s Conte or a rookie.

    How is Conte still on this team? That’s an indictment on this staff.

  2. feelthepewterpower Says:

    Let’s stop blaming one another and cast our blame on hurricane irma and hard knocks 😉

  3. R.O. Says:

    Sun-tzu has a very good story on this very topic.

  4. Laura DeMeo Says:

    Bucs are so cheap…can’t even get Ward a jersey that fits? And don’t get me started on those nut hugging pants!

  5. Buccaneer scotty Says:

    Cut his ass and trade Djack they are cancer go with the rookies! Denver and Washington knew what they were doing throw fat ass in there too!

  6. Buc believer Says:

    OK OK ENOUGH with this winning head coach stuff!!!! What has he won??? Last I checked he has a .500 record soon to be losing record. Joe you lose ALL credibility with your “winning” moniker.

  7. Kobe Faker Says:

    Can someone help me?

    Am i going blind?

    I see TJ ward getting bit on playaction for a td every game…and he is upset?

    Kkoetter doesnt have it as a head coach. He easily gets run over by malcontents. He wants to be buddies with the players

    This training camp was club med and taken over by the “baker effect”. Our flopping kwonie caught this baker effect and tears his hammy and misses 6 games because he was so lackadaisical and lazy

    Licht beer not only brought in old has been worthless players on the field but also cancer into the lockerroom…

    these are not jameis type players.

    “real gms remove and cut malcontents like tj ward and chris baker, not overpay and allow them to destroy the team within”

    Kobe Faker

  8. Bucsfanman Says:

    2 words: BUYER’S REMORSE!
    Kobe you are not blind. TJs given up a couple of TDs. He needs to shut up or go away. Frankly, we have safeties that can allow TDs just fine without him!

  9. Patrick in VA Says:

    I think a few people are alluding to it here, but it’s looking like all the mercs that we’re bringing in are the issue. The people that have been brought up in and groomed in the system are thriving. The people who are stopping by and grabbing a check, shocker, aren’t buying in. Free agency works when you have a classy guy like Vincent Jackson. These guys may have talent, but it’s obviously not working because they’re not buying in to the Bucs way of doing things. Ward is cut from another team and shows up expecting to be showcased after he’s past his prime and coming off injuries? Jackson and Baker were non-participants in the biggest part of the season where getting acclimated to the system on a new team is done and they’re surprised that there isn’t chemistry or a bigger role on the team for them? These guys are still free agents. They’re not Bucs.

  10. JabooBuc Says:

    GoBucs- thanks for leading us off this morning with stupidity.

  11. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    BS Ward needs to go

  12. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Ward should not need coaches to tell him that he can’t give up touchdowns.
    Haven’t seen the big impact he was supposed to have in run support either.
    Both Koetter and Smith are excellent communicators so I have no doubts that
    Ward’s issues have been clearly discussed. More likely Ward doesn’t think he’s doing anything wrong. Get him out of here!

  13. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    BS Ward just needs to go

    A true professional in any job does not go behind your employer’s back and complain out loud to other people cause if that happened in a regular civilian or military job—you either get wrtitten up or fired.

    BS Ward is a “me first” guy by his short time being here. His play and attitude does not warrant the bucs keeping him and John Elway knew what he was doing by releasing him.

    Oh by the way, he was calling out the whole broncos organization after he was released…..but I guess buc fans don’t remember that.

  14. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Hasn’t Ward been torched like everyone else? He shouldn’t be airing his grievances publicly.

    And, I absolutely agree….Joe needs to stop with the “winning” head coach….

  15. Wewantgruden Says:

    Good work Joe. This article supports my argument that DK is way over his head. Zero accountability for his coaches or players. To my point, I wonder how many of them will be at Rocco’s Tacos tonight at International Plaza many sighted last week. Doing shots of tequila with the Tampa bimbos is probably not the best thing to be doing the night/morning of Wednesday practice.

  16. bucster Says:

    Jason Licht knows DBs.

  17. dm4bucs Says:

    Let’s look at the bigger issue as fans. The safety position is rotating four players throughout the game and the numbers show it just isn’t working. Pick the best 2 and let them play and gel, this will also help with communication on defense throughout the game.

  18. adam from ny Says:

    dam joe why u block me

  19. adam from ny Says:

    you know i know whats up

  20. D-Rome Says:

    Seems like two parties have a different idea of what is going on.

    I’ll believe the guy on the team that has actually been a Super Bowl winner.

  21. johnnybuc Says:

    lol what someone says they need to get ward a jersey that fits😂😂 jesus how stupid can some people be he wears his jersey like that on purpose plenty of people do it. his jersey does fit… i don’t know how u could be confused and think it doesn’t, or that they are too cheap to get him one that does 😭😂😂

  22. BucFanFromOH Says:

    ^^ What Patrick in VA said!

  23. JonBuc Says:

    I liked the signing at the time…then came injury…seemed like he was far more concerned with his hair during the Patriot game than what was happening on the field…now this after being burned by a makeshift TE…disappointing like the season as a whole.

  24. Lamarcus Says:

    Tj ward is a bust and needs to go asap. Cancer43

  25. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    I wouldn’t mind sending a strong message while it’s still early enough in the season. Trade or cut both Ward and Swaggy and just be done with it!

    These two are simply not talented enough, nor hard working enough to get away with being prima donnas.

  26. 813bucboi Says:

    I don’t know about yall, but I like seeing players pissed off after a lost….those are the type of players we need….players that are pissed at losing and hate the feeling….

    funny how the 2 guys we brought in are the 2 guys already sick of losing…..keep baker and ward in and stop with the rotation….they its hard to get a feel for the game when your only playing every other series….

    if you don’t want to switch to 34, then play GMC at DE across from ghloston and let clint and baker plug up the middle….blitz the LB’s and let the CB’s play man press…damn…is it that hard!!!!….GO BUCS!!!

  27. tmaxcon Says:

    Buccaneer scotty

    Only cancer in bucs locker room is that fraud DT cancer93… No one and I mean no one can captain a uninspired blowout like cancer93… until the leader of losing culture is eradicasted bucs will continue to be soft losers

  28. PRBucFan Says:

    oh come on lol

  29. tmaxcon Says:

    Ward is a winner obviously he is pissed playing on a heartless defense captained by a mentally weak clown and an organization with a STEEP tradition of losing and being embarrassed… bucs organization is the problem not ward or djax they just want to win while the bucs organization proves year in and year out all it understands is failure and losing… 4 good years in 41 does not give organization much credibility…. reality sucks

  30. Blake_Bucsfan Says:


    So you’re telling me Ward hasn’t been getting lit up in coverage?

    Ward has made exactly 1 good play for us, but seeing that he doesn’t wear the number 93, he clearly can’t be the problem.

    At least Lamarcus is more objective with his haterade.

  31. New York Buc Says:

    TJ Ward comes from a dominant secondary, a playoff team and a pro bowl player and knows how to win. He has credentials and credibility. Meanwhile we are 30 to 31st in the league! Running a defense that is as confused as it was last year. Why blame TJ? It’s coaching and scheme!

  32. tmaxcon Says:


    this is deeper than one player missing plays in one or two games. this is organization wide. Every year this team over the course of MULTIPLE GM’s and Coaches have brought in pro bowl / proven defenders that have REGRESSED or simply forgot how to play. If it was just one player i’d blame the player but it is NOT one player it’s every damn defender they sign regresses or plays bad in tampa. All these players did not get stupid or lose their talent… When you have a defense and face of the franchise who is a soft quitter who is all show and NO FINISH it wears out veteran proven winners. They have been on defenses with REAL captains and real leaders. The bucs defense has been void of leadership for over a decade. glazer pansy owners are more worried about the DOLL playing clown’s feelings than fixing the problem. neither gmc or lvd deserve a C good players yes but leaders and captains ABSOLUTELY NOT! This is not about ward or djax this is about a failed organization that has never WON consistently and has no clue how to fix the problems. way too many fans confuse leadership with popularity same with talent. fore example tandy and rudy are way more popular than they are talented. until the losing culture is eradicated they could bring in reggie white, jerome brown, too tall jones and the greatest badass of all time decon jones and they would fail in this locker room and organization.

  33. tmaxcon Says:

    if decon jones was in the bucs locker room he would cram a batman doll right up ole softee’s arse first time he witnessed one of cancer93’s loss celebrations or him coming flat REPEATEDLY!

  34. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    “until the losing culture is eradicated they could bring in reggie white, jerome brown, too tall jones and the greatest badass of all time decon jones and they would fail in this locker room and organization.”

    Having read many frivolous and haterific filled posts of your’s in the past. I’d assume you equate eradicate losing culture with getting rid of Gerald.

    And if you honestly believe that the guy wouldn’t be successful with the names you mentioned on the same line, then it just goes to show how juvenile and simplistic your understanding of football, and life in general is.

    The Jags are winning right now, do us all a favor and go hop on that bandwagon.

  35. tmaxcon Says:


    another fanboy who can’t handle the truth!!! Simple as that. The bucs record proves everything that I write sir…

  36. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    No, it doesn’t. In your mind, you think the success of a 53 man squad is determined by your own projected, perspective of 1 guy. And nothing could be further from the truth.

  37. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “How could Ward claim he doesn’t know what is expected of him when he had a one-on-one with Koetter just three days before the Buffalo game.”

    Ward didn’t say that he didn’t know what was expected of him, Joe.

    He complained that he wasn’t playing enough. He was unhappy that the Bucs did not expect enough of him.

    He wasn’t a part of training camp, and then he was injured for weeks. He’s proving himself to be a bad locker room presence. And I’ll tell you something…Baker is no better.

  38. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Patrick in VA Says
    “I think a few people are alluding to it here, but it’s looking like all the mercs that we’re bringing in are the issue. The people that have been brought up in and groomed in the system are thriving.”

    You nailed it.

    Unfortunately, Licht had to bring in free agents because we don’t get enough picks in the draft to fix the team quickly.

  39. tmaxcon Says:


    so all these pro bowlers who have came here and failed just simply forgot how to play… OK you are right genius.

    when the team comes out and REMAINS flat that is 100% on the team captains who are on field leaders. NO DEFENSE in history of the league has been blown out more or embarrassed more than a GMC led defense. take your blinders off the results prove that.

  40. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I was reading comments about Ward from his former team’s fans yesterday. They all said he was a dirty player who focused on causing knee injuries.

    When they went after him, I warned that he would be an issue and no one listened. Warned against Bakers too.

  41. tmaxcon Says:

    other franchises are very successful with the so called mercs so since the bucs can’t figure it out just take it out of the equation. that is quitting or running your organization scared and that is a failed approach. The CBA no longer allows for teams to be built over a 5 year period with a 3 year window to contend or whatever conservative formula you pick.. not enough practice time and not enough hitting allowed.

    for a team to contend consistently and let me be clear 2 playoff wins in 6 years is NOT contending that is failure. The team must WIN at all aspects of the game and that includes Free Agency… You can manage your organization SCARED and not sign free agents. It’s not 1970 folks. Successful franchise are solid in free agency, drafting, preparing and game days right now the bucs are not successful at any phase of the game and have not been for a very long time.

  42. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    “All these pro bowlers”

    Ok let’s run through the probowler free agents/ trade acquisitions that he’s has had the luxury of playing with.

    Darelle Revis, came here off a freshly torn acl, wasn’t his former self that year. Then gets booted out of the door by Lovie and goes to win a super bowl.

    Tim Jennings, straight up bum when we acquired him, only got playing time because of Lovie.

    Brent Grimes, had a phenomenal 2016, just barely missed the playoffs.

    T.J. Ward, got here past his prime and dealing with injuries. Has made one play. Gets burned on the regular, rabble rouser.

    Wow such a long list dude. Yup you got me. GMC ruined them all. Are you effing joking? Go watch WWE dude, it fits your mentality and view of the world a lot better than football.

  43. tmaxcon Says:

    it’s not tj wards or djax fault the organization is more concerned with soft players feelings over winning year in and year out.

  44. tmaxcon Says:


    you are as hopeless and the once great Hawaiian Bucfan… Nice cheery picked list there. you ignored too many to waste any more time with you. it’s ok to be a fanboy but next time try and pick a winner

  45. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    Name other defensive probowler free agents that he played with and ruined. That’s All I could remember.

  46. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    Is it Ward’s fault that he gets used and abused on one of Buffaloes TD bombs?

    Oh no that’s right…we can’t expect the loudmouth to actually play his position and COVER somebody!!!

    And of course we all know from your perspective that couldn’t have been Ward’s fault…of course it was GMC’s for not sacking the QB before he could hit the wide open backup TE!!!

  47. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    You clearly don’t recognize what a fanboy is. I’m an objective bucs fan. I wish the best for the team but I don’t lie to myself about what they are.

    I know this season is done for. The difference between you and me, is that you try to blame all of our shortcomings of an entire team on one guy like some idiot child.

  48. tmaxcon Says:


    this is not about one bomb or one bad game for ward or anyone else. this is about a franchise who has a weak mindset lead by clowns. An organization that has PROVEN IT DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO WIN!!!! It’s never won consistently in the entire history of the organization… sorry, i understand it does not fit the perfect world hugs and trophy philosophy so many of you cling to but, until the losing culture is fixed they could bring montana, rice and the d line above in and it will fail…. bad is bad no matter how much sugar blind optimists want to coat it with. T J Ward did not lose that game on Sunday a bad bucs organization lost that game.

  49. Bucsfan951 Says:

    @blake: stop feeding the fool. He gives very general statements and asks for people to give examples to defend their statements. Once you give an example, he will blow you off. He is a true eff boy! Don’t feed the troll.

  50. tmaxcon Says:


    another fanboy in denial… why not raise our standards instead of criticizing those who want to support a winner. low standard fans

  51. Blake_Bucsfan Says:


    According to you, even when we had an elite defense, and made the playoff’s every year under Dungy, we were still garbage.

    That tells me your “standards” are, and will always be incredibly childish and unrealistic.

  52. Kobe Faker Says:

    the present GM cant make tough decisions

    very soon he is going to overpay alot of our players and we will be stuck for over a decade thru jameis prime years

    we need a reset….

    jameis is going to get jealous when the other young QBs start winning superbowls

    “Im the originator and only member of Jameis winston Nut Carriers”

    Kobe Faker

  53. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    LOL, at the fire them all guys. The team is 2-4 so you are going to hear some dissent when the team had high expectations coming in. You cant fire everyone that gets pissed off about losing. DJax had a good game Sunday and Baker has been solid in the stopping the run but you fools want them gone. Ward just wants more playing time. All the safeties suck so I am sure he just thinks he is better than the others.

  54. DB55 Says:


    Geno Atkins seems to do great with Michael Ghost Johnson next to him. Riddle me that!

  55. Joeypoppems Says:

    Im with you Tmax on raising standards. This was supposed to be the year they team tool the next step and reached the post season. Im done cherry picking small morale victories out of every loss.

    “Oh at least the team didnt quit in Buffalo”
    “At least they came back in Arizona and put up a fight”
    “At least the defense showed up against the Pats”

    None of that matters. Its still 3 straight losses no matter how you spin it.

    Now do I blame it on McCoy? Not 100%. But if Licht is out next year then I think the whole coaching staff gets blown up which would be a great time to trade McCoy

  56. Pick6 Says:

    TJ Ward = not a buc. missed all offseason (not his fault) and just gets dropped in with a bunch of dudes not knowing the scheme

    baker = not a buc. wasn’t known for his team first attitude in washington and somehow i see him as a guy who would do his best work trying to get a contract and not trying to live up to one

    Jackson = not a buc. had his own stuff to do that was more important than the minicamps all JW’s other targets attended. however, i think he cares enough about winning and his legacy to keep putting in the work…at least as long as getting above .500 feels possible

    this season is being derailed at the moment by guys wearing bucs jerseys but not as invested as many other teammates in making the bucs as good as they can be

  57. firethecannons Says:

    our team is toast

    trade tj ward for a draft pick and throw in swaggy baker too.

  58. I'm a Tandyman Bucs Fan Says:

    Send Wards ass down the road.., He’s a me guy and cancer. The Bucs don’t have a Von Miller or Ware on the edge Talib in the backfield to cover his ass like he did in Denver. He’s not going to be a Pro Bowler in Tampa. Watch film from last year when the Bucs were winning with their defense. Those people are still there so put them on the field and let them win again. You guys can throw in the towel but I won’t. Theres a lot of Football left and the Bucs can right the ship if the Coaching staff does the right thing. If not it’s time for Chuckys return!!!!

  59. Bucsfanman Says:

    Stand up Tandyman! Well said!
    First off, if you’re a Buc fan you fight through it. If you don’t, you’re NOT a fan to begin with!
    Ward has been here long enough for a cup of coffee yet he’s the most vocal malcontent on the team?! Baker in a close 2nd?! Really?!
    If he were such a consummate pro, he’d be spending more time getting his teammates ready and mentoring the rook. Nope, he’s not even man enough to confront the coaches. He takes the easy way out, social media.
    Yea, that’s a guy we want on our team!

  60. unbelievable Says:

    someone should wake tmax up from his coma and tell him Gerald isn’t even the face of the franchise anymore.

    Poor guy- his entire life revolves around hating a guy for being a so-called leader, who isn’t even the leader.

  61. LakeLand Says:

    They should have re-signed Bradley McDougald. They have went through 3-4 Safeties trying to replace him. lol this franchise is a joke.

  62. Owlykat Says:

    Yes they should have kept McDonald and one of the strongest players on the DL that helped us stop the run last year but genius Licht let them both go and has instead brought us two cancers for our locker room in Baker the Bust and self absorbed Ward, who both need to be cut right now. And Licht did not have to bring them in because Licht didn’t have enough draft picks. Every year Licht wastes draft picks making stupid moves and fails to meet the teams needs. Otherwise we would have gotten OL to protect Jameis and open big holes, as well as retain good players and get us excellent DEs to put pressure on the QBs. And we could have used one of the good RBs this last year too. Dump Licht at the end of this season and lure away a proven GM for next year.

  63. Kord Says:

    Should of never let Brad mcD go. Hope the defense starts to turn around at some point very soon. Can’t stomach another sober game watching blown coverages and missed tackles all over the place.

  64. Joe Says:

    Ward didn’t say that he didn’t know what was expected of him, Joe.

    Ward also said he was “at wit’s end” trying to understand what the coaches wanted.