Next Up, Winning Opponents For The First Time

October 16th, 2017

Dirk Koetter kryptonite in Buffalo

Your cellar-dwelling Buccaneers have yet to face a team with a winning record this season.

That’s the cold reality as the 2-3 Bucs try to climb out of the NFC South basement.

Though they looked like the Rams of the Greatest Show On Turf yesterday, the Arizona Cardinals are not a special football team. But as Bucs fans know too well, if you don’t pressure an NFL quarterback, he turns into Case Keenum Joe Montana.

Up next is a road trip to the 3-2 Bills coming off their bye week. Buffalo is undefeated at home and has allowed just 15 points per game this season. That’s a nasty Bills defense, and defense-first head coach Sean McDermott had plenty of success against the Bucs as Panthers defensive coordinator.

Even going back to 2014, Dirk Koetter’s offense with the Falcons scored just one touchdown in two games against McDermott’s defense.

Quarterback Tyrod Taylor is the first mobile quarterback the Bucs will face all year. So that will be a new challenge. Statue-like, pocket passers are completing at a ridiculous 70.9 percent rate against the Bucs this season, so maybe Taylor will be a welcome change.

After that, the currently 4-2 Panthers come to Tampa on Oct. 29. So Carolina is assured a winning record when they arrive.

This is it right here for the Bucs. It’s time to stand up and take down a couple of good football teams.

If the Bucs can’t do that and fall to 2-5, well, then the Bucs officially will have serious problems, including legions of fans in a state of shock or gone until next year.

49 Responses to “Next Up, Winning Opponents For The First Time”

  1. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Buffalo is the breaking point for this team I truly believe

    I said the team must win in Arizona to keep pace in the NFC playoff race, but a loss to the Bill will start sending SOS smoke signals from the Glazer’s ships circling in an endless whirlpool of losing the past few seasons (minus last year).

    We can only hope the bucs play well next week or else…………..

  2. denjoe Says:

    Who will be the new GM?

  3. JonBuc Says:

    For some strange reason I believe they can actually beat Buffalo…even if it’s The Beard at QB in some type of revenge game for him. 🙂

  4. doolnutts Says:

    Losing always sucks… But losing how we lose is alarming. Most fans blame coaching, Winston, OL, No D pressure but to me what is most telling is that it is a combined failure more often than not. If it is not one thing it is another… If this season ends south it may be time to have a real long hard look at the overall team. No one’s job should be safe if this team can’t get to a 9-7 record at a minimum.

  5. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    JonBuc Says:
    October 16th, 2017 at 10:13 am
    For some strange reason I believe they can actually beat Buffalo…even if it’s The Beard at QB in some type of revenge game for him

    Well Fitz can do it, since he’s been in that environment before but we’ll see today if Jameis cannot go?????????????

    I’d rather see Fitz starting than Jameis just because they’re in a familiar environment and because he played well yesterday.

    Give Jameis time to think and heal better.

  6. Supersam Says:

    This season could get ugly in a hurry, im hearing calls for Keotters head already… Mike smith needs to rethink his defensive scheme, cuz it ain’t working.

  7. Steven007 Says:

    I think the new Den of Depression is the comment section of JBF.

  8. D-Rome Says:

    Joe, are there any excerpts from “You Win In The Locker Room” that may give us insight as to why Mike Smith’s defensive game plan looks a lot like Lovie Smith’s game plan?

  9. D-Rome Says:

    This season could get ugly in a hurry, im hearing calls for Keotters head already… Mike smith needs to rethink his defensive scheme, cuz it ain’t working.

    I actually do not think Koetter should be fired. The issue is that he’s coaching like someone learning on the job. I think he can get better.

    All that being said it amazes me what Raheem Morris was able to do with that team 7 years ago. He probably should have won coach of the year with that effort.

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The Atlanta & Carolina losses this week helped but we need a winning streak soon.

    Time to stop the excuses and there are many……Turnovers, inaccuracy, lack of running game, run fits, pass rush, pass defense, kicking, playcalling, tackling was this week’s…..
    The only strength of our team is punting and unfortunately we get too many opportunities.

  11. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Unfortunately, this team tends to play better with their backs against the wall. You could see that last year with us putting ourselves in a hole early, and you can see it this year with us spotting Arizona 31 points. We have zero rhythm offensively until the opponent plays prevent, and our defense is generating zero pass rush from the edges. We had better get it figured out quickly, because we don’t really have any cupcakes on the schedule. I don’t think any of us fans can withstand another disappointing season with high expectations.

  12. GhostofSchiano Says:

    On a positive note, at least it won’t be in the snow Sunday.

  13. German Buc Says:

    We need to go desperation mode from the beginning. Jameis plays somehow reluctant to start the games. I blame the ‘protecting the football-matra. If there is nothing left to lose – as in the fourth quarter against NYG and NE – he started playing well.
    Sad to say: this is on coaching!!

  14. Bculaw Says:

    Don’t disagree with the “backs against the wall” mentality, Hawaiian Buc. My thought all season is that there seems to be very little urgency on either side of the ball until the game is in the balance late. Problem is, the game is in the balance from the first snap on. I’d love to see the team come out aggressively just one week. Up tempo, no huddle on offense, attacking on defense. Everything seems so passive this year on both sides of the ball. There’s no identity and no urgency.

  15. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    You are absolutely correct. Raheem did so much, with so little.
    It makes you wonder what he would have done, had the Glazers not got so cheap on him.

    We can easily be 2 and 5, the way we are playing lately.
    Buffalo has a winning record at home, and Carolina is playing lights out.

  16. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I support this team.

    I didn’t care for Jason Licht his first year, as anyone who has been here will vouch for. I was told I was wrong about him while everyone else supported him.

    And I am here to tell you they were right and I was wrong. Jason Licht was a rookie GM. Since then, he’s done exceptional in the draft, except perhaps for this year (every GM has a down year). And by exceptional, I do not mean perfect. No GM is perfect.

    Jason’s biggest weakness has been free agency. But even in that he has gotten better. Again, not perfect, but better.

    And he has maintained control of the salary cap as well.

    So tell me…why would you want him gone?

    Is it because there is no running game?
    Come on now. He drafted a RB this year who did not work out. Don’t tell me he should have taken Dalvin over OJ. OJ falling to us was a miracle that will pay off for 10-15 years. Dalvin might last ten years…if he’s lucky.

    Is it because of the lack of talent on defense?
    First, when you draft a franchise QB, you make building around him the priority. Second, take a better look at the defense. GMC, Grimes, David, Alexander and Beckwith to name a few, and there are others. With the focus on offense, he had to rely on free agency for most of the defense. And like it or not, you cannot acquire every free agent you go after. Not and still maintain control of the cap.

    Is it because of Robert Aguayo?
    No denying, that was a screw up…but not one that should cost a GM his job. It;s a kicker for heaven’s sake. He’s find a new one who is good, if Patrick Murray isn’t the guy.

    It takes time to lift a losing franchise out of the gutter. He’s building a team with both offense and defense…something that will eventually be comparable to the Steelers or Patriots.

    Give me a break, people, and wake up. We might want everything now, but long-lasting success does not come that way. Only short-term does.

  17. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    And the only people who want to get rid of Koetter are the ignorant, the trolls or the people who THINK Gruden will replace him.

  18. Eric Says:

    This team looks suspiciously like Atlanta when Dirk and Mike were run out of town.

    Naturally, our ownership had to jump right on those cast offs rather than look for the best people for the most important positions in the organization.

    It is those boneheaded decisions that have placed us in the present circumstance.

    The teams effort on Sunday should be a complete embarrassment to the Glazer boys.

  19. Lamarcus Says:

    We need to wake up and get serious on talent. These gmcs of the world are not working. Never will work. 8 years same story. New coaches same story. Time to clean house to prevent these things

  20. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    I think Jason Licht has done a great job IMO, outside from a few draft picks I didn’t agree with but the Draft is not exactly a science and GMs rely heavily on their scouting departments and personnel. Maybe our GM should fire his scouts and talent evaporators and get new ones. If you look at our GMs overall work since he’s been here, he’s actually done very well.

    Look, building a team to compete takes time and it’s not like you can have all the players you want all the time; there is such a thing as compromising and every NFL GM has to do it because every position cannot have superstars……it’s fiscally not possible.

  21. LakeLand Says:

    This Buc team reminds me of the 2014 Atlanta Falcons. Loaded with talent, but have a clueless coaching staff. It was mostly on Mike Smith and Dirk Koetter bad decisions.

  22. Mike Johnson Says:

    We Beat Buffalo? Forgetaboutit! In their stadium? Please refer me to your..weed sources! I’d luv some of that. Those 1st 2 Cardinal Drives were like the Cards were having paced walk thru without pads. My wife looked at me and said, Bladerunner or American Maid. We cut off the TV and the movies. Blade runner was great! I am placing the blame squarely where it should be…Captain Dirk Koetter! He’s the commander. Somewheres theres an owner named Arthur Blanks who is sayin, We let Koetter and Smith leave Atlanta..for a reason! People every week its the SOB’S (same ole Bucs). And I..along with a lot of fans are sick and GD tired of it.

  23. Negative Jeff Says:

    Called the AZ game. Last year’s clubbing was the precursor for what happened yesterday. Long-standing Bucs fans should have known better.

    Now Bucs Fans, get ready for another loss. Buffalo’s defense is stout, and with JW out 4-6 weeks, we’re fuc k ed.

    JW is the Bucs biggest disappointment. He failed us all and he failed himself. he’s never gonna be a Franchise QB. Good thing the Bucs don’t have to pay him that big deal yet.

  24. DallasBuc Says:

    To think I was actually excited about going to this game when I secured these tickets. I am almost considering selling my great seat tickets at a loss just to get some hours back in my weekend. It’s too early in the season to be this disappointed.

  25. 813bucboi Says:

    @D-ROME…I agree…dirk deserves the axe if we finish under 10wins….he’s doing less with more and that’s unacceptable….

    in regards to buffalo, im seeing an “L”….bills coach will have this team ready to go….they’ll jump out on us and shady will run wild…

    if dirk and smitty couldn’t come up with something in 10days, what makes you think they’ll do so in 5days…GO BUCS!!!

  26. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Joe…..suggestion for a poll.

    Should Dirk Koetter hand the playcalling over to Monken?

  27. MIKE Says:


  28. Keir Says:

    Why did the offense suddenly have life why Fitz went in? There are some things wrong with Jameis and I dont profess to know what it it…but he cant seem to get out of his own way. The touch passes that Fitz was wizzing around seemed better than the passes Jameis throws out. I am not advocating for Fitz to start, but maybe Jameis needs to watch the tape of Fitz to see what is possible if he gets his head out of his @#&. Koetter is to blame as well, that was the worst half of football I have ever seen too!

    These are the tough times that test a fan base…some will jump ship and others will just watch the trainwreck as if we cant look away. I did turn to the Steelers v. Cheifs game a few times to see what true football looked like. Then back to the train wreck. At least Fitz provided some excitement and drama till the end.

  29. unbelievable Says:

    Well said Bonzai.

  30. unbelievable Says:

    Seriously Joe? What did I do?

  31. sorryitriggeredyou Says:

    Glazers will let this drag on till end of season then make Koetter fire Smitty which is only half the problem, Koetter is the other half.

    Here’s how you fix my bucs. Keep smitty, force Koetter to hire a play calling OC, demote Moonkin, do not renew Licht and place Derrick Brooks at GM. Watch that DLINE go from all garbage to all world in one year and VHIII everyone will realize isn’t super human and can’t cover great receivers forever.

    With #3. Draft quality QB prospect in round 3 or 4. Give #3 competition. Do not pick up his option. If he has great 4th year then load up the truck if not then franchise him if you can.

  32. sorryitriggeredyou Says:

    @Keir cause it was garbage stats created against a soft zone defense. Dont be fooled.

  33. Redtop5588 Says:

    German Buc is spot on it’s coaching let Winston play the coaches got in his head about turning it over that’s the reason for slow starts until it’s go for it not to lose he balls out let the man play best An we ever had there holding him back sad to say

  34. Pistol Pete Says:

    When Atlanta canned Smith as HC:
    “The Falcons ended their season at 6-10 on Sunday after getting blown out 34-3 at home by the Carolina Panthers with a chance to win the NFC South and clinch a playoff berth.
    The season was also mired by a five-game losing streak and a pass defense that gave up…wait for it:
    280 yards per game, worst in the NFL.
    The defense, which gave up 26 points per game, was also ranked last in the NFL.
    2017 Update-
    The Bucs are currently ranked #31 in Defense, allowing 24.2 points per game, giving up 403 yards a game.
    We are set to play the 31st, 18th and then #7 Offenses in the league in the next three weeks.

  35. OneLove Says:

    I wonder where “Realist” is these days???

    Remember how the ONLY THING wrong with this team was COACHING when Lovie was in charge?!?! Remember how EVERYTHING was LOVIE’s FAULT!?! Everything good that happened to the team, THANKS LICHT!! Everything bad that happened to the team, FIRE LOVIE!

    This was supposed to be the year right!? I was hoping you guys were right! The truth is, you’re not. This has always been an issue with the players. These guys are SO OVERRATED! Sure I agree that we have more talent on this team than we did 2-3 years ago, but let’s not pretend that we have talent like the powerhouses of the NFL. Jameis is OVERRATED! No matter how much Joseph tries to convince you that he is great, the TRUTH IS, he’s not! He can’t throw the deep ball, (Fitz deep TD to Evans yesterday was better than anything Jameis has thrown all year), his accuracy is SUSPECT, and he’s slow with his progressions. Maybe Dirk is putting too much on him? If he is? is that Dirk’s fault? NO IT SHOULD NOT BE! These guys are PROFESSIONAL NFL PLAYERS! When they come out flat, or can’t execute, or can’t tackle, THAT IS NOT A COACHING ISSUE, that’s a PLAYER ISSUE! THESE ARE GROWN MEN who get paid A LOT of money to do this for a living. THEY DO NOT AND SHOULD NOT need someone holding there hand and telling them that they need to start fast or tackle better! 90% of these guys have been playing football their ENTIRE LIVES!!

    I don’t know about you, but i’m tired of the coaching carousel! We need some stability and continuity. We can’t fire our coaching staff every 2-3 years and expect success. I think WE as an organization have PROVED that already!

    Let’s make Tampa GREAT AGAIN!

  36. SOEbuc Says:


    I also like Jason Licht while others want him gone. He’s amazing at drafting. People will just never let the Aquayo thing go, but now they have VH3 to bItch about. Can’t always be perfect folks. Have no clue what you mean when you say “he’s done exceptional in the draft, except perhaps for this year (every GM has a down year).” He got OJ, Justin Evans (who I do believe will develop in time), Godwin, and Beckwith this year. Sounds pretty damn good to me. His weakness is FA but he is getting better and has kept this teams cap dollars at a very good amount and that’s the second most important thing to the Glazer’s other than winning the Super Bowl. I think he’s a good GM and I am about 99% sure he’s not leaving after this year. They might clean house with the coaching staff, but not Licht.

  37. 813bucboi Says:

    @ker…they were playing prevent defense….

    @onelove….@realist and LC always go into hinding after a loss….especially when its dirk and smitty’s fault….as you mentioned, once they were hired he “claimed” it was such a breathe of fresh air….when we started slow it was because dirk and smitty were still “coaching the lovie out of players”….now he wants to use Hard Knocks as an excuse when the cameras haven’t been here in months….LOL…

    this team is regressing under DIRK!!!!….simple as that!!….GO BUCS!!!

  38. ndog Says:

    This pains me to no end but this team will be lucky to win 5 games this year.

    Bills – L
    Car – L
    NO – Big L
    NYJ – W
    Mia – L
    Atl – Big L
    GB – W
    Det – Big L
    Atl – L
    Car – L
    NO – L

  39. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    ndog Says:
    October 16th, 2017 at 1:17 pm
    This pains me to no end but this team will be lucky to win 5 games this year.

    Bills – L
    Car – L
    NO – Big L
    NYJ – W
    Mia – L
    Atl – Big L
    GB – W
    Det – Big L
    Atl – L
    Car – L
    NO – L


    aw cmon now………this team is good for 8-8 now

  40. Defense Rules Says:

    @TheBucsAnthem … “aw cmon now………this team is good for 8-8 now.” Sorry Anthem, I agree with ndog. Our Bucs defense is what it is … no pass rush & a weak secondary. Combine the two & no amount of defensive scheming by Smitty can turn the frog into a prince. The ONLY way we can salvage an 8-8 season is if our offense starts putting up 30-35 pts/game, controlling the TOP AND minimizing turnovers. Through the first 5 games I’ve seen ZERO EVIDENCE that’s gonna happen. I love the Bucs, but the reality is that this team, talent-wise and coaching-wise, is 4th best in the NFC South.

  41. DallasBuc Says:

    Being a Buccaneers fan is such a beating. Not a whole lot of other fan bases have had to endure the unending mediocrity that we have. And just when you think it is getting better you get smacked around by a Case Keenum led Minnesota and a nursing home led Arizona team. With the first few weeks. So demoralizing.

  42. Bradinator Says:

    I’ve watched the Bills several times this year and they are tough. Their D is no joke. If washed up AP can rack up big numbers, just imagine what Shady McCoy will do. For a team that was supposed to be tanking for draft pick when they shipped out Watkins, they sure do look like they mean business. They look hungry and out to prove something. We currently do not look hungry and right now we’re just proving we’re the same old-same old. Our D is un-watchable as they are now. Something has to give and pretty quick.

  43. Jolly Bucs Fan Says:

    Um. Arent the Patriots 4-2? Unless my math is wrong, that is a winning record.

  44. Lord Cornelius Says:

    “@onelove….@realist and LC always go into hinding after a loss…”

    Not really but OK. I just know that the comments are full of depression and negativity. If you get off on that and love relishing in negativity then cool but it’s not my thing.

    At 2-3 I doubt my 11-5 prediction holds. I also made that prediction before the hurricane or knowing we’d lose 9 players vs the Vikings. Or that Folk would miss all his kicks vs the Pats basically and lose us that game. Not really anything has gone our way this year – and everyone acknowledges that luck always plays a factor in the NFL (injuries / schedule / etc).

    Still an early season. Not my style to freak out with hyperbole and call for firing coaches / etc 5 games in. It’d be one thing if the defense sucked last year and continued that trend but the defense was solid last year and has flashed solid in a few games already. They’ve only truly looked terrible in 2 of the 5 games. Played solid against Brady / Eli / Bears imo.

    Absolute joke vs the Cards. Terrible and if they play like that all year we’ll need big changes. But we just saw the Giants destroy the Broncos. The NFL isn’t some exact science like many here seem to think it is – where you can take 1 week of action and make insane determinations for a season.

  45. Lord Cornelius Says:

    “Um. Arent the Patriots 4-2? Unless my math is wrong, that is a winning record.”

    Yeah and the Vikings are 4-2 and a solid team. I guess they weren’t winning teams when we played but it’s the first freaking month of the season lol. Way to spin it hard for the sake of dooms daying.

  46. Warren Sapp Says:

    [Please use your original username “Jay Smith.” Using multiple usernames can and will get you run. Thank you.]

  47. Broy34 Says:

    Bonzai well done. Seriously that was well-spoken. Smith has to go though. Zero adjustments and the fact nobody has gone to Hargreaves and said get up or get gone is atrocious

  48. Broy34 Says:

    Cornelius these people act like last year didn’t happen. I was appalled by their ineptitude especially Hargreaves and if Hargreaves doesn’t get aggressive they’re done. Can’t have that weak a. Link out there and yes anything for doomsday. More comments of negative than good but they’ll continue to say blah blah blah people don’t comment blah blah

  49. Duke Says:


    JW did the exact same thing at FSU. How can that be Dirk faults.