Special Opportunity

October 13th, 2017

Seams await

So how and where might the Bucs capitalize on an edge against the Cardinals?

Arizona’s lone Hall of Fame voter served up his takes.

Kent Somers is the longtime beat writer for the Arizona Republic, which is Phoenix’s species among the living dinosaurs known as newspapers.

While Somers predicts a 23-20 Cardinals victory Sunday, he gave the Bucs a hearty edge in one aspect of the game. Wait for it … special teams.

The Cardinals and Bucs both have big issues on special teams. For the Bucs, it’s at kicker. Nick Folk missed five of 11 field-goal attempts and was shown the door. They brought in Patrick Murray, who told reporters this week that he has worked with a medium to deal with the mental demands of the job. If it helps him, the Cardinals might want to add a medium to their staff. Phil Dawson has missed four field-goal tries, although one was blocked due to a slow snap. Justin Drescher is the new long snapper, replacing Aaron Brewer, who suffered a broken wrist while trying to make a tackle last week. The Cardinals are having a difficult time covering punts. Opponents are averaging nearly 15 yards a return. In contrast, the Cardinals are getting little production out of their return teams.

Edge: Buccaneers.

Very interesting stuff in there. Teams are averaging 15 yards per return against the Cardinals? That’s brutal. At 10.3 yards per return, the Bucs and Bernard Reedy are eighth-best in the NFL. By contrast, Cardinal returners are averaging just 3.2 yards per punt return.

That’s a ton of what coaches call “hidden yardage,” and it’s comforting to know they have a new snapper and a struggling kicker.

Joe has stated on the Ira Kaufman Podcast that the Bucs, even with their pass rush woes and cushion-friendly Vernon Hargreaves, should beat the Cardinals because they’re more talented. Knowing how badly the Cardinals are struggling on fourth down makes Joe feel even better about Sunday in the desert.

13 Responses to “Special Opportunity”

  1. Ozzie in SRQ Says:

    What happened to getting Godwin back there to return punts Joe??

  2. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    So this could be the week where we see a kick return/punt return for a touchdown?


  3. bucsfaninchina Says:

    Speedy Reedy has done enough to keep his return job. No way I want Godwin, the first guy to replace Jackson or Evans if they go down, returning kicks and punts.

  4. Brandon Says:

    Cards struggle on 4th down will help us win… or was that supposed to say “3rd down”?

  5. Nutterbuccer Says:

    If Winston can become more consistent then we will be the favorite for alot of games. I am a die hard fan, FSU fan, and truly believe in winston. However it is annoying seeing guys like Prescott, Wentz, who have less time in the league progress faster in their careers with less weapons around them. Hopefully Winstons career is like how he starts games and seasons, slow at first but on fire in the end.

  6. Pit Says:

    4th down means special teams. So joe is correct.

  7. TampaTown Says:

    No way you risk Chris Godwin returning kicks. He’s too valuable. We can utilize the most underused player on the team, Peyton Barber.

  8. Dirks Great Granpappy Says:

    Let’s not kid ourselves and say dak has less weapons. 3 pro bowl olinemen along with first team all pro zeke and not to mention a hof Te and some pretty solid wr

  9. Bradinator Says:

    @Dirks You are thinking Cowboys, and we have the Cards coming up.

  10. Bradinator Says:

    Honestly our punt coverage is the best I’ve ever seen it. I know it’s a punt but I get kinda excited watching Robinson and Smith roll down as gunners. They are fun to watch. Robinson should be our S/T candidate. More press for the man please!

  11. Pickgrin Says:

    Robinson and Smith are both totally kicking ass on ST as gunners.

    Russell who?? Not even missed a bit based on ST coverage results so far.

  12. 813bucboi Says:

    However it is annoying seeing guys like Prescott, Wentz, who have less time in the league progress faster in their careers with less weapons around them

    the biggest thing in their development is their HC’s….their HC’s were former QB’s in the league….they know what it takes to play that position, how to develop a QB, how to play to a QB’s strengths, and most importantly what NOT to do to a young QB….

    Peterson and Garrett weren’t HOF QB’s but they were in the NFL for a long time….they’ve played the position…they went thru the same thing these young guys are going thru….

    I think its very beneficial for them to have a HC that has played their position…they seem a little more connected and in tune with one another….GO BUCS!!!!

  13. Mike Johnson Says:

    Play hard Bucs. Arians is a smart coach. He unlike our coach, makes a lot of im game adjustments. The key to this game is our pass rush and pushing that middle. fluster Carson Palmer. He does not hold up well under hits and big pressure. But like all vet QB’s, given time, he is lethal. If jameis controls this game we will win it. Martin seems like he is ready. I got us..31-17 over the Cards