Standing Pat Won’t Do

October 17th, 2017

Does he have an answer?

Despite repeatedly eating handfuls of TUMS the past day and a half, Joe still cannot get over that full-blown puke job of the Bucs defense in Arizona Sunday.

In short, as much as Joe likes and respects Mike Smith, he literally has to go back to square-one and he may very well have to totally remake this defense from scratch. On the fly. In the middle of the season.

Whatever stunt(s) Smith and his crew concocted over the span of nine days in preparing for the Cardinals, it is fair to say his staff wasted nine days of their coaching lives.

There weren’t one or two breakdowns. There were several.

In short, Smith, if he hasn’t already, better come to the quick realization that he has no pass rush of any sort to work with. Through five games the Bucs are last in the NFL in sacks and pressures. Again, that’s through five games. A pretty fair sample size.

To suggest the Bucs will all of a sudden burst out and jump from last in the NFL after five games to the middle of the pack in the next 10 or 11 weeks is wishful thinking. So Smith better be burning the midnight oil thinking of creative ways to get to a passer in lieu of no pass rush from his front line.

Letting statue Carson Palmer, statue that he is, complete his first 13 passes (!) without any pressure whatsoever is unacceptable. Yeah, we can all see you don’t have the horses up front sans Gerald McCoy to get pressure on a quarterback. So what are you going to do about it? Better invent some kinky blitzes.

Here’s a novel concept that worked for Greg Schiano: Send Lavonte David.

If Kwon Alexander can go Sunday (until Joe sees him on the field is when Joe will believe Alexander is healthy), a move to a 34 front isn’t as crazy as it seemed a few days ago when Koetter joked about it. After watching that travesty in the desert, the 43 base isn’t getting the job done. No longer can a defense remain the same to suit one (very good) player when the unit as a whole is a sieve.

(Look, Aaron Donald is the best 43 defensive tackle in the game and Rams defensive coordinator Wade Phillips turned that defense into a 34 defense this season and look at the results. If Phillips can totally change a defense despite Donald, Smith can do the same despite GMC.)

The secondary? Well, it’s really just one position. Whatever happened to Vernon Hargreaves, that’s on the coaching staff. He has regressed and that is a terrible look for a coaching staff that a No. 12 overall pick went from being a competent rookie to incompetent in a handful of months.

People screaming for Hargreaves to be benched apparently did not watch the loss to the Vikings. When Ryan Smith started for Brent Grimes, after three or four passes, the Vikings relentlessly attacked Smith, not Hargreaves. So for the fans that have irritable bowel syndrome watching Hargreaves, you better load up on the Depends if you want Ryan Smith starting over him.

And, sorry, a 53-year old former All Star first baseman is not the answer to an edge rush (what edge rush?)

Sunday’s game was a complete and total breakdown from Mike Smith all the way down to this Will Clarke fella. What T.J. Ward said was damning to the two or three defensive players who always like to beat their chests they are the leaders of the defense.

Only two guys played worth a damn: Brent Grimes, the 2017 Bucs defensive MVP, and David.

Lack of preparation; lack of execution; lack of coaching; lack of leadership; lack of effort. It’s one thing if the Bucs lost to the Dixie Chicks like this or the Packers. It was the friggin’ Cardinals. A complete and total breakdown on all defensive levels.

Those are the kind of games that get players run after the season, and non-players fired.

47 Responses to “Standing Pat Won’t Do”

  1. DallasBuc Says:

    The problem is not the coaching and schemes. It’s a talent problem which is a direct reflection of the GM. We have Licht problem not a Mike Smith problem. Face reality you slaves to fake news excuses.

  2. doolnutts Says:

    Same old story for me and it has been so for a decade. We need to seriously invest in the DL and consider that our only need. Yes, I know we have others but we are at the point that we need serious resources all along the DL…

  3. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    What TJ Ward said, is still really bothering me.
    That, combined with our lack of QB Pressure, and inability to stop the run, led to our Defensive Backs being exposed.
    6 of our next 8 games are on the road, so it can easily get even worse.
    Though I want us to win, I really don’t see us beating the Bills and Panthers, the way we are currently playing.
    Something has to change, and change fast, to avoid total implosion.
    With all the talent we have, a season of total implosion (like my cocky friend predicted) will have severe ramifications.
    Someone will have to be the scapegoat for our failed season

  4. Patrickbucs Says:

    You are correct in that they need to make adjustments especially on the road. It’s up to highly paid coaches to decide how and better do it now with the QB’s we will be facing soon.

    Your Rams d comparison is way off IMO. They have had 3 good games against limited offenses in the Colts, Jags, and Seahawks. They have giving up 39 against the 49ers!, 27 against the Skins, and 30 against Dallas. They were much better in St Louis in a 4-3.

    Go Bucs!

  5. Locked In Says:

    Maybe VHIII has discovered the Tampa club scene, like the molly hamster? Do you think he was one of the young guys Ward was talking about?

  6. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Locked In Says:

    October 17th, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Maybe VHIII has discovered the Tampa club scene, like the molly hamster? Do you think he was one of the young guys Ward was talking about?


    …….molly hamster


    Well if it’s truly a cultural thing, then Koetter and the self-anointed leader GMC aka “Mr Softie” has failed miserably at setting the tone in the locker room.

    GMC is nothing more than a smiling empty uniform…..he already received his big payday many moons ago and is just coasting to retirement or another team……..I don’t think he “gets it”.

  7. I'm a Tandyman Bucs Fan Says:

    Tell Kotter and Smith watch the last 5 games last year and the 2 games they won this year!!!! What they will find is #37 on the field making plays and communicating to his teammates putting them in places to make plays. On the sidelines watching Ward, Conte and Evans getting their asses handed to them is not where Tandy needs to be. I’m tired of all this BS talk about how great Ward is, how great Evans is going to be and Conte well I’ve heard it 2 years now and I’m done watching the Bucs get the hell embarrased!! Wake up Coaches or this season is over and you my friends will be looking elsewhere for jobs!!!

  8. tmaxcon Says:

    Joe not sure why you are surprised GMC led defenses trademark is coming out uninspired and flat…staying up late playing with dolls and action figures takes a lot out of a man the night before a game. We’ve witnessed way too many blowouts under 4 coaches time to start blaming the captain and face of the basement years…. Good player but career loser and horrible leade….team will never compete consistently until the leader of losing culture is gone

  9. dooshlarue Says:

    I’m sorry but I don’t see Mike “Man Boobs” Smith lighting any fires under our under performing players on D.
    I remember seeing him on Hard Knocks getting mad and it was funny.

    It was something like ” Oh gee willikers guys…..come on now”

    That is not my idea of fire and passion.

  10. tmaxcon Says:

    If GMC was half the man you fanboy clowns think he is he would have turned in his C at halftime

  11. Bucsfanman Says:

    We finished last season so strong, what the heck?! By accident we should have more sacks.
    But oh, wait! We HAD to have the greatest run-stopping DE of all time Will Gholston(sarcasm!). How’s that working out?! I’d say we did quite the job stopping AP. Right?! Am I right?!

  12. Cwis Says:

    I say we switch to a 3-4 and give us one more defender in coverage. Can’t hurt at this point.

  13. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    VHIII is a coaches Son, so it is hard to imagine he would be a party animal.
    Yes, Tampa has a club scene, if you want to call it that, but it is no worse then any other large American City, and not anywhere near the club or drug scene of some other Florida cities, like Orlando or Miami.

  14. Defense Rules Says:

    Very simply, the Bucs don’t have the horses to play a 4-3 defense right now. A 3-4 might help some, but against the type of game the Cards threw at us SundayI doubt the result would’ve been much different. Palmer was masterful Sunday at using the quick, short throw, and blitzing LBs probably wouldn’t impact that. And a secondary (and LBs) that can’t effectively cover won’t be much help.

    AP’s rushing set the tone for what was to come. Cards rushing was almost exactly the same as in 2016 … some over the Center; zero over the Guards; a LOT over the Tackles & around the ends. Different RBs in the 2 years (AP vs Johnson) but similar results. And guess what … SAME Center & Tackles both yrs, but different Guards. Bucs didn’t match up personnel-wise (Cards OLine was better than our DLine). Cards put up 40 pts on 66 offensive plays in 2016 (over 45% rushing). They put up 38 pts on 65 offensive plays in 2017 (over 53% rushing). Their OLine set the tone for both games. And oh ya, Palmer threw 3 TDs in both games so our secondary didn’t exactly light the world on fire either game. Give them credit … Cardinals showed that they are the better T-E-A-M 2 yrs in a row.

  15. Bucsfanman Says:

    Oh, and don’t forget the awesome signing of Robert Ayers last year, the guy who was supposed to bring DAWG to the line. More like a poodle, if you go by his play.
    The only way I think you’ll motivate Chris Baker is to line a donut up on the other side of the ball!
    Ah, but alas, it surely is the fault of our aging DT. Only HE can be responsible for the turnstile of coaches and pathetic draft choices and free-agent signings. Yep, that’s it.

  16. tmaxcon Says:


    It does not matter what Free agents or draft picks bucs bring in…. It only takes a week under cancer93 toolage and their desire to win is gone….

  17. LakeLand Says:

    Rashaan Melvin has 28 tackles, 2 INTs, 11 PD in 5 games for the Colts.

  18. Bucsfanman Says:

    @tmax- SMH, you’re too much dude!

  19. I'm a Tandyman Bucs Fan Says:

    One last thing here. If Licht, Kotter and Smith think Ward, Evans and Conte are the best thing since Peanut 🥜 Butter. Tell them to make one of them a cornerback and sit VH III’s ass down cause he has had his ass lit up all season. I’m tired of trying to help these guys keep their jobs. Can you get this messsage to Dirk, Mike and Jason for me Joe? Thank you.

  20. grafikdetail Says:

    sure doing a nice job of getting over that puke job of an offense though joe-ski

  21. Conte Piscateli Says:

    I’ve been playing for 3-4 for months, it certainly can’t hurt. As for VH3 I never watched much Gator football, was he in zone schemes, or a man cover corner? I ask because corners always struggle if used in a different scheme. He appears awful in this zone scheme though. Stay bringing in guys off the street, and find a cb that can play your system, may not find a future hall of fame, but teams find serviceable corners on the street because of injuries all the time. Heck Leonard Johnson comes to mind, no he wasn’t great but if play him right now.

  22. Warrenfb12 Says:

    HEs not going to change anything

  23. Kobe Faker Says:

    poster Doctor Shroud and Kobe Faker MD

    spent all day performing a intense physiological analysis on Milli VH3 Vinilli

    we reviewed the results of the blood test and we have diagnosed his strange uncontrollable condition of smiling, laughing, dancing by himself with no apparent reason as…Schizophrenia

    joint recommendation…

    Sit his Fake A$$

  24. FortMyersDave Says:

    How the heck did this Smith defense click so well for 6 weeks last season but was so abysmal early last year and putrid so far this year? Last season Smith claimed that the team finally figured out the scheme, so did the unit regress due to age or did offenses figure out schemes to beat the Bucs and Coach Smith has been unable and/or unwilling to make adjustment???? Its hard to believe that same nucleus of players could be a team that throttle the likes of Seattle and KC last season but let the Cards look like the ’99 Rams and let Case Keenum look like Joe Montana or Elway in their prime???? Other teams make adjustments and this team seems to just let the embarrassments pile up. Someone posted about the Bucs being “Cleveland or Chicago South” or east San Francisco….. After games like that AZ puke job, it is hard to argue with that though the Bucs might already have missed out on a first overall pick as Cleveland has a legit shot at 0-16 again…. I guess we will see if the team has any fight left and find out if Koetter’s 9-7 was smoke and mirror like the 2010 squad or perhaps it is simply a team that was a bit overhyped but will still fight and claw to get somewhere around 8 wins against a tough schedule and bad factors thrown in starting with Hurricane Irma and then the rash of injuries….

  25. BucEmUp Says:

    Its not talent its scheme. Listen to the commentators they point it out….the wrs find the seam between the corner and the safety and run slant routes and posts all day. The qb always has someone to get the ball to. Thats why we have no pass rush. Qbs are not standing back there all day against them….they know a wr is open as soon as the ball is snapped because smith has our corners playing 12 yards back. I have been screaming for the corners to move up and jam he wrs at the line for years. It throws off the timing and buys your pass rush an extra second make a play. Common sense. I called it the offseason this unit would be a embarrassment under smitty. Nice guy but Jay Hayes needs to be promoted if this season is to be saved

  26. ndog Says:

    They need to move McClain to the outside and put VH3 in the slot where his skills are better (?) served. He does have some short area quickness to him so let him cover the shifty two way go routes and that way his guy is closer to middle of the field where he has more help from the linebackers and safeties. Then on the front go 3-4 and use McCoy and Ayers as ends and Swaggy as the nose. You play Spence and LVD as your outside backers and Beckwith and Kwon as your inside backers. That way can you rotate in Goldston to spell Ayers and McCoy when they need a blow and we can use Glanton and Bond to spell any of the LB’s when they are winded. Not only would this be something different to the opposing offense (I know crazy right) but it gets our best players on the field which is something we are sorely lacking.

  27. BucEmUp Says:

    Fort ….last season was five games. One against a bad bears team one against a bad chargers team. New orleans was sleeping on us the first fame and I will give the D credit for the game in KC. Remember how bad dallas and saints scorched them? Its the same defesne as lovie withe ame issues and same breakdowns. Its a failed system. Last year was false hope.

    I will bet a weeks pay that if Mike Smith is ever let go he will not find another coordinator job in the league….or head coach. Ever.

  28. D-Rome Says:

    In short, as much as Joe likes and respects Mike Smith, he literally has to go back to square-one and he may very well have to totally remake this defense from scratch. On the fly. In the middle of the season.

    Lovie Smith: Coach-My-Scheme

    Mike Smith: Build-My-Scheme

    I’ll be interested to find out if Mike Smith is a stubborn as Lovie Smith.

  29. 813bucboi Says:

    VHG just needs to play at the LOS….simple as that….when he did so in the second half he played way better…he actually looked like an nfl caliber player….

    playing at the LOS and jamming will fix his problem and half of the defense…the other half is the pass rush or lack their of….without a pass rush, everybody’s toast….GO BUCS!!!

  30. JonBuc Says:

    Dear Smitty:

    Knowing how coveted you’ll be for head coaching vacancies in 2018…we are giving you a head start and releasing you from your contract.


    Buc Nation

    P.S. We didn’t really like you as the smarmy head coach of the Falcons.

  31. tmaxcon Says:


    vh3 needs to go coach pop warner and stay the hell off a big boy football field. worthless clown with his pathetic selfish celebrations after getting torched all game. he’s a joke just another local failure… local feel good stories never work out…

  32. Jeffbuc Says:

    I think are coaching is just that bad. Every team game plans for us and changes there offensive game plan to quick passing against us. And I think our coach still gameplans for there regular offense they use against the other 30 teams. Every other team changes there game plan we seem to have the same exact offensive and defensive game plan every week. Run up the middle on 1st throw and incomplete pass on 2and 9. And on third down have jameis scramble for 8 seconds than throw to a heavily guarded Evans or brate who more times than not the ball gets batted down down or it’s over thrown. Then punt. Defense give up 6 yard run on first. Then on second tackle a wr screen for no gain get up celebrate like you won the Super Bowl. Then on third down give up a 15 yard completion to a wide open slant.

  33. Evolvingbucfan Says:

    Personally I want to hear Coach Smith himself talk about what happened, i think he owes us some face time, all i see is players and Koeter talking??!

  34. Jeffbuc Says:

    I’m sick of watching all the other nfl games and seeing rookies and qbs who have been on the team for a month. Having the offense changed to fit them and watch them dominate. I think the coaches put to much on jameis plate he is still young. I think koetter needs to dumb down the offense for jameis. Where he doesn’t have to make 5 reads. Everyone keeps saying he can handle the whole playbook he is so football smart. I’m not seeing it on the field. Maybe on the first drive when a guy is amped and always plays bad how about some wide receiver screens. Some running back screens. Quick slants. But no let’s throw it deep first play where he overthrows everyone by 20 yards. You ever notice that he overthrows the deep ball so bad you don’t even see the football on the tv screen as they are zoomed out following players. But most people round here just get sold on his stats. And those are so inflated most of those yards come in garbage time. So maybe we need to run no huddle the whole game. cause that’s where he excels in no huddle quick reads but I do t understand why coaches do t see that and give him 5 reads when he hasn’t looked off a safety since he picked up a football.

  35. Rrsrq Says:

    I with giving Ryan Smith a chance, can’t be any worse. VH3 is a solid tackler, let him blitz out of the slot

  36. Pickgrin Says:

    Joe – VH3 was the #11 overall pick in 2016. Why do you keep saying 12th pick??

    ndog – McClain (except for the 1 big play – an INT) has been burned or lets receivers run free just about every time he is out there playing nickle. Hargreaves has struggled this year for sure – but Ryan Smith and McClain would be worse than Vernon -not better.

    tmax – Oh never mind – why bother…

  37. Mike Johnson Says:

    And now Y’all knows why ATL owner Arthur Blanks rode Mr Smith out of town on a rail!! Betcha he’s smilin from ear to ear….

  38. LakeLand Says:

    Atlanta Falcons went to the Super Bowl..2 seasons after Mike Smith and Dirk Koetter was Tarred and Feathered, and driven to Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport.

  39. tmaxcon Says:


    come on. i truly love all the excuses and sugar coating you come up with to justify losing and mediocrity. you are a true talent and optimist.

    you are truly one of my favorites so please don’t keep me from your sugary sweat justification of why I am wrong and why it’s ok your favorite players decided to crap themselves versus showing up prepared and intense.

  40. Joe Says:

    Personally I want to hear Coach Smith himself talk about what happened, i think he owes us some face time

    Mike Smith will talk tomorrow as he does each week during the regular season. He’s not ducking.

  41. Pickgrin Says:

    tmax – yes I am an optimist. You should try it sometime. Life is a lot sweeter and more enjoyable when you expect good things to come into your experience.

    Makes shrugging off the so called “bad” experiences much easier as well.

    Life is not about what “happens”. Your thoughts and reaction to what “happens” is that which shapes your experience.

    Show me a direct quote of even ONE employee of the National Football League that agrees with your ludacris notion that #93 is a cancer to this team and the Buccaneers are better off without GMC than with him – and I will never again mock you for your silliness. That promise is better than Kobe Liars I assure you. Good Luck maxi.

  42. g720 Says:

    Until Mike Smith realizes his defensive front 4 can’t put enough pressure on the opposing QB’s and start blitzing, this season is lost!! What in the hell do you have to lose when you rush 4 guys and they still move up and down the field on you like you aren’t even out there. It can only get better because our defense is as low and bad as a team can get,.

  43. 813bucboi Says:

    tmax…the kid is in his second year….blame his play on the coaches….those same coaches are the reason why our franchise qb has regressed….GO BUCS!!!

  44. BigHogHaynes Says:

    Ohh it can’t be the coaching, for we got rid of lazy LOVIE and his Friends & Family coaching staff two (2) years ago! No this is what happens when you got a Back-Stabber leading the way!! T-Max …Realist …don’t look up for the sky is falling…. The scheme sucks, the coaching sucks, your GM wants to be the Big Cheese…well you got what you wanted, but you forgot one thing, being a BACK-STABBER comes with consequences!! That Morphing Mike Smith Defense, has already been figured out by the rest of the league, now I’m wondering who will get the lazy tag….who will be ran out of town…the problem remains the same as when LOVIE was here…a lack of talent and that points directly at the BACK-STABBING GM!!

  45. Jeffbuc Says:

    Big hog lovie cant even get it done at Illinois. Get over it he is a horrible coach. Yeah some times people backstab people to get ahead it’s the way of life. If I’m trying to get a promotion of course I will be cordial to there face all the while I’m telling my boss why I’m the better candidate to get said job. He was getting fired regardless. He was awful but I’m sure there some alternative motive to you why he was fired not his horrible record not his horrible decisions. Not starting a 35 year old journeyman over a 24 year old qb. Not because his hiring under qualified family members. It was because the agenda of America right now why he was fired. Poor lovie I hope his 4.5 million dollar Tampa home sells quickly so he doesn’t have to shop at the local save a lot. Damn the opression.

  46. Jeffbuc Says:

    Why wasn’t lovie the great offered even a coordinator job by another nfl team. Do you think the backstabber also called all the other teams and backstabbed him. I’m dirk koetter a career offensive coordinator do not hire lovie or else. He sucked your point of implying something else happened besides a bad coach getting fired sucks. Go spew your hate somewhere else pro football talk is good at bringing politics and political agendas in over there. So be gone please and don’t ruin my one safe haven from all this oppression kneeling political crap. So talk present bucs big hog or piss off. Truly yours a bucs fan. And I will be the first to tell you I’m ready for the koetter experiment to be over if he fails this year only because he failed same reason as lovie.

  47. BigHogHaynes Says:

    Jeffbuc: There are no implications, and I totally agree with the last line of your post at 9:49 pm. And one other thing, even when you ask politely…you don’t get to tell me where to post my thoughts! Yet there are those out here that don’t believe there is such a thing as oppression!! GTFOH!?