November 28th, 2017

“Riddle me this… “

Just about any sober Bucs fan knew this season was toast.

A 4-6 record at Thanksgiving, your young star quarterback hurt, no running game, a defense that inexplicably never shows up on the road and injuries to an already paper-thin defensive end troupe sure didn’t add up to a playoff team.

Yes, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter seemed to rally the Bucs when they appeared to be circling the drain with a pair of wins over NFL roadkill, but given the aforementioned potholes on the 2017 Bucs, making a wild card run after such a disappointing start to the season was going to be more than a swim upstream.

There are questions throughout this team, expected when a squad narrowly missed a playoff berth the previous season and added a star player to the roster and key cogs in the draft but faceplanted so badly the following season.

Jenna Laine of ESPN has several key questions. One was why the Bucs never addressed such a critical area like defensive end in the offseason.

For the front office, why weren’t more resources devoted to bolstering the pass rush — particularly at edge rusher — knowing that Noah Spence and Jacquies Smith were coming off surgeries and missed the entire offseason program? In a division featuring arguably the best quarterbacks in the league, pass rush is imperative, yet the Bucs went sackless for the fourth time Sunday. Does it cost a lot? Sure. But sometimes it works. Look what’s happening in Jacksonville right now.

That’s a fair point and something Joe touched upon several times in the offseason and in the many quality podcasts from Ira Kaufman.

It was a dangerous roll of the dice to bank on two guys coming off surgery — oft-injured Jacquies Smith, who had major knee surgery, and Noah Spence, who was entering his second season. It was the perfect storm as the gamble blew up in the Bucs’ face before September had even come to a close.

It was not unlike the 2016 offseason, when the Bucs banked on two receivers with bum knees to be productive for the full season. Just like this past offseason with defensive ends, kaboom! And that 2016 philosophy very likely cost the Bucs a playoff berth.

Before the free agency dinner bell rang this past March, Joe was screaming for the Bucs to go after Calais Campbell.

One Florida NFL team apparently didn’t think Campbell would be of much value. Another Florida NFL team thought he would be a difference-maker. The latter team is now in the thick of a division title chase as December approaches. The former team is out of the playoffs in November with an uncertain future.

38 Responses to “Questions”

  1. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    Replace the Aguayo Pick with Yannick Ngakoue. And replace Darrel Tapp/ Will Clarke with Calais Campbell, and Mike Smith with Jim Schwartz, and this team is likely contending for 1st place in the Division right now.

  2. Mike Johnson Says:

    And now..we want to talk about our Defense.? Something we should have never ever lost concentration on. But..we wanted the highlight films of glorius arial attacks. Bucs should have stuck with what got us there..A bad A.s Defense. it was our calling card. Its what won us a championship. Maybe now..Our Bucs will truly concentrate on its Defense for the next couple of years. That is IF..we ever want to contend again.

  3. BucFanFromOH Says:

    Frankly I don’t even see them being a contender until the 2019 season. Too many needs/holes to fill. I don’t see Grimes coming back, so we need 2 corners, a safety, 2 DE’s, an OT, and a RB. Those are all STARTERS we need, plus all the developmental talent (specifically on the O/D lines), there’s no way we hit on that many positions in the draft/FA.

  4. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    Too bad Dirk had to hire his best Bud instead of the best available candidate.

    Too bad we didn’t have $17 Million laying around for Calais Campbell.

    Dirk’s seat would probably be comfortably warm right now instead of volcanic lava hot.

    Honestly, I think the only way you can retain Dirk Koetter, is if he is willing to relinquish his role of OC/Play-caller, go out and hire a legitimate Offensive Coordinator to run his (Not Dirk’s) offense. And if he is willing to fire his buddy Mike Smith and replace him with someone competent/ not teddy bear soft.

    Otherwise Dirk is through.

  5. firethecannons Says:

    we need to tank and get as many picks as possible, it is not easy to see the Bucs lose but honestly I dont think we can win any of the upcoming 5 games–we are done, we need to market a key player, get young on D Line and get options for Defensive coach

    Bucfanohio laid it out–we have many needs hope we get a big bruiser of a running back–love to watch how opposing teams struggle trying to stop Fournette

  6. DBS Says:

    Talk, talk, talk. Was the same with “But all we need is”. # Weapons for Winston,
    we are well stocked at CB or what ever that was and the rest of the garbage. We are who we are and will be until the owners are changed. They do not know how to put a winning organization in place.

  7. Lamarcus Says:

    Wait a minute

    So 2 gm’s and many many pl and coaches, etc . After 5 years no defensive end? I blame something new every year but it’s jus more apparent that none of the elite defensive ends dont want to come here. It Should be a dream to play next gmc right? Or the opposite?

    I’m going with nobody in their right mind wold play next to gmc. When u believe that u will feel better about our pass rush

  8. BUC MAN Says:

    It looks like the only thing we can look forward to every couple of years is a new coach because the Team sucks and can’t draft players !!!

  9. 813bucboi Says:

    yeah licht whiffed big time at not signing a DE in the recent and past years….we had a chance to get chandler jones….kony ealy….freeney….GO BUCS!!!

  10. JimmyJack Says:

    This is what happens when you spend most of your free agent money of a freaking wide receiver. Meanwhile we couldn’t run the ball or rush the passer last year.

    The mind numbing thing is how the front office does know how to scout talent……look at J.Evans and Beckwith……..It’s becoming very obvious that they don’t know how to build a team.

    You guys want to blame personnel and it’s ridicilous……We have 4 pro bowl caliber players on defense. That’s more then enough pieces to work with. They are not getting the most out of what they have, they are getting the least.

  11. Bucsfanman Says:

    I’m not buying that Lamarcus. GMC is way too easy a target. Point to ONE, one decent d-lineman on this team. Now couple that with our ONE legit DB.
    Laine is correct, we went all in for #weapons and didn’t address the 400,000 pound elephant in the room that’s taken residence at One Buc since Moby Dick was a minnow; A freakin’ DE.
    GMC does not make the personnel decisions, though I’m sure he wouldn’t have minded some say-so over the years (hello Michael Bennett!).
    Like MJ said above, we want a Madden-like offense with high-scoring games and endzone dancing but that’s not how you win in the NFL.
    The sad part of this conversation is that it keeps being repeated year after year after year! Is there anyone in this organization that has a hint of how to put together a football team?! Seriously?!!!

  12. Joe Says:

    yeah licht whiffed big time at not signing a DE in the recent and past years…

    He signed Ayers.

  13. JimmyJack Says:

    The fact that they brought in Mike Smith says it all. His defense reply’s strictly upon getting pressure with the front four. It’s really been a slap in the face to the faithful fans of this team because we wanted Lovie gone for the same freaking thing.

    Not only do they hire Smith they don’t give him the linemen to win with. The only time the defense does look good is when they get a team they matchup good against and are able to generate pressure………Of course that doesn’t happen often because it has little to do with our actual line and more to do with the offensive front on the other side.

    Matchups like we got with the Jets and Dolphins will rarely come around. My guess is that Green Bay handles our Dline this week and our defense looks like junk again.

  14. Lamarcus Says:

    The day gmc said he rather be benched then to play next aaron donald I knew we wasn’t getting anyone. The easy target is Licht. But its just too impossible not to get a de. It’s not even heard of so yea Im looking at the bigger picture here. Gmc fanboys are blind to the fact that gmc doesn’t want elite talent next to him and Michael bennett is not that elite either. Gmc wants all the “2 piece” sacks all to himself and he needs to stay relevant that way. Wake up

  15. Bucsfanman Says:

    I had to verify that Lamarcus, he DID say that he would NOT change positions for a rookie. He got some grief for it too. That aside, I don’t know how you make the correlation to having elite talent around him.
    Truthfully, this is just one of those conversations that won’t die. We can all say what we want, but there is no denying that he’s the best d-lineman we have. All things considered, 4-7, that’s not saying much.
    Our woes go beyond a singular DT though Lamarcus. Be real.

  16. JimmyJack Says:

    @Lamarcus……..That’s the problem. It’s not about what Gerald wants. They keep trying to build the defense around this guy when it has proven to never work. I agree that McCoy ain’t good enough to be the face of our passrush but it’s not his freaking job to identify that and fix it.

    It really bothers me that we are in the sixth(more?) year of featuring McCoy in a steady four man pressure and it has gotten us nowhere for six(more?) straight seasons.

    What is the malfunction over at One Buc that they think McCoy can lead this defensive front on his own? And they sign freaking Ayers to be a DE……give me a break. That guy was never and never will be a three down DE in this league. Neither is Spence

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    Have come to the conclusion that Bucs media & fans are a bunch of cry babies for the most part. Y’all got EXACTLY what you asked for … Build a ‘high-powered’ offense, draft a ‘franchise QB’ to run it, and hire an offensive mind to direct it. Meanwhile back at the ranch, the defense suffered … BIG TIME. More holes than a chunk of Swiss cheese. Chickens are just coming home to roost as my mama used to say. It’ll take 2-3 years to fix this mess. Buckle up.

  18. Lamarcus Says:



    Koetter and licht was put on blast for “pleasing”too many of its players to keep the locker room adrift in reality they need someone to shake things up. That dline is built for gmc and gmc only. And we complain about a pass rush.

    Ayers never been a true de and spence is too small to make a difference unless u out him in a von miller position. Otherwise if u want gmc u will NOT have a pass rush. Sorry to break it down to the gmc fanboys.

  19. 813bucboi Says:

    Joe Says:
    November 28th, 2017 at 12:11 pm
    yeah licht whiffed big time at not signing a DE in the recent and past years…
    He signed Ayers.

    ayers was on decline in Denver that’s why they let him go….same with the giants….they let ayers go and got o.vernon…and ayers isn’t and never has been a game changer at DE….

    Robert ayers….C’MON MAN!!!!!….GO BUCS!!!!

  20. Tnew Says:

    The way the cards fell, this team begged to morph into a 3-4 team. I won’t be convinced that GMC wouldn’t be highly effective as a 3-4 DE or as a 4-3 DE in running situations. (Look at Cambell, DE on Running downs, 3 tech on passing downs). I don’t know whether or not he would refuse to do it. I will look at the game tape but it seemed we played more of the old base 4-3 than we had in the previous two outings

  21. JimmJack Says:

    It really starting to look obvious with this team. They just do not have the personal to run M.Smith’s defense. Either he sold them a bill of goods saying he could get the pass rush going or they dont know how to build up the personal for him.

    There is a major disconnect here between the way they build the team and what pieces the coaches need to be successful. The whole thing stinks. It was the same thing with Lovie. He true true force his system into a team that wasnt built to run it.

    But the problems with th I team gomuch further then the defense. We have spent 4 years building up the offense and are just Incapable to even mo’ve the ball much of the time. There is no excuse to that. ive seen no evidence suggesting Dirk knows how to build a winner

  22. Tnew Says:

    LVD might give the 10 sack barrier a good run if he was used more as the outside backer in a 3-4, at least on definite passing downs

  23. Bucsfanman Says:

    So Lamarcus, we get rid of GMC. That leaves us with Baker, McDonald, and Siliga at DT. Are you saying that with removing GMC, we are now a better pass-rush team?
    Now, if you’re saying we need to look to the future and find his replacement along with building the trenches, that’s a no-brainer.
    What’s with the “fanboy” moniker? Are you a Bucs fan? McCoy plays for the Bucs, does he not?!
    I’ve got to give to you guys that carry THAT torch. You’re consistent.

  24. Bucsfanman Says:

    What are we saying here people?!!! Are we saying that a DT controls the fate of this franchise?!!! That a DT has power over the owners, GM, and coaches?!!!
    C’mon, lets start having a legitimate discussion about what’s going on here. No ONE player has sway over an entire organization. This isn’t the NBA!

  25. unbelievable Says:

    It’s obviously McCoy’s fault that the Bucs let go of the only productive DE to ever play next to him.

    Just like it’s obviously Martin’s fault that the o-line only decides to actually run block 1 out of every 4 games….

  26. aceinthehole Says:

    I think that we are all saying the same thing. There is no good plan in place to build a team. The genius of Belichick is that he has a flexible system that lets him plug in players, not a system that is built around specific players. Oh, and the Pats also actually construct game plans for their opponents to attack their weaknesses.

  27. unbelievable Says:

    aceinthehole Says:
    November 28th, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Oh, and the Pats also actually construct game plans for their opponents to attack their weaknesses.

    What is this “game planning to attack an opponents weaknesses” you speak of?

  28. Lamarcus Says:


    When gmc is gone we could afford the most beastly defensive front.

  29. unbelievable Says:

    Lamarcus who would be playing on this beastly defensive front that you say we can’t afford because of 1 player?

  30. Bucsfanman Says:

    Lamarcus we had PLENTY of money under the cap. Even STILL have it. It’s not a money issue. It’s an organizational issue.

    Did somebody say “GAME PLAN”?! That includes IN-GAME too, right?! You guys might be onto something there!!!

  31. Joe Says:

    The day gmc said he rather be benched then to play next aaron donald

    When did GMC say this? Do you have a link for this quote?

  32. Bucsfanman Says:

    Joe, he says he would not change positions. Nothing about not playing next to him.

  33. Joe Says:


    Leaving out a key phrase: “a rookie.”

    Pretty damned sure GMC would adjust if he had a chance to play with Donald now that he’s established.

    Honestly don’t have one issue with that quote whatsoever. GMC was already an established DT (even though so many live on the Isle of Denial). Not sure any established NFL stud would want to move for an untested rookie.

  34. Bucsfanman Says:

    Nor do I Joe. It’s just fodder for the irrational distaste some have for our best d-lineman.
    He took a beating for it at the time too.

  35. Lamarcus Says:


    Gmc screwed this franchise with that comment. Me13 makes everyone forget that. Licht and lovie wanted donald badly but didn’t want piss off gmc so they passed. And what mistake it looks like now. U can thank gmc for that. As donald is the Top lineman in th game today and we left with crybaby gmc. Who perhaps is a hit or miss this year. Sour isn’t the word to describe my feeling towards that.

    What pass rush???

  36. DB55 Says:

    I don’t know whether or not he would refuse to do it.
    Not only would he “prefer” to “ONLY” play 3 tech he’d “prefer” NOT to get hit while doing so.

    First and only true diva on the dline I’ve ever seen. Smh

    So to sum it up:

    I will not play anything other than 3 tech
    I will not move position for a rookie even if he’s better than me.
    I’d prefer not to get hit

    I’m a total diva who is really only concerned about myself more so than the team but I’ve got a nice smile though, don’t you love it?

  37. Lamarcus Says:


    Are we and tmaxcon only realist on here??

    I saw ur youtube video and those other guys praising him don’t even know what to say. Gmc is overrated garbage.

    He is definitely the definition of “me guy” and didn’t he say he was gonna be better than ever this year? What happened to that. Gmc is having his worse year.

  38. DB55 Says:

    Idk I think most people have been told he’s good so they go with that. I mean he is good he’s just not a fighter ain’t got no dog in him.

    He should play like he did in Miami every week but what’s the point? He knows if he gets 8 sacks whether in the 1st or 4th qrt he’s getting that pro bowl bonus. And that is really all that matters.