“Our Issue Has Not Been Lack Of Playing Hard”

December 16th, 2017

Even though former Bucs guard Ian Beckles says starting defensive tackle Chris Baker is “stealing” money from Team Glazer, head coach Dirk Koetter has a much different take. 

Koetter spoke to Atlanta media this week and D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution typed it up.

One nugget was about effort.

On playing hard on Monday Night Football: “I believe that’s still a factor, but you are dealing with pros and every time they go out there…we haven’t had an issue with playing hard. We’ve had an issue with getting the lead and holding the lead. We’ve played several close games. Our issue has not been lack of playing hard. That was evidence in our first game (against the Falcons) when we were down by three scores in the second half and got back into it. Our guys have been fighting this whole time. I would expect them to do the same on Monday night.”

Yes, the Bucs have not rolled over. They’re battling. But is the effort exceptional? Are the Bucs a team you watch every week that make you say, damn, they play 60 minutes of smashmouth football? No, they’re not.

Koetter’s Bucs have shown great resolve and fight late in games, but where is that urgency earlier in most games.

As offensive coordinator Todd Monken said eloquently a month or so ago, “We are consistently inconsistent.”

25 Responses to ““Our Issue Has Not Been Lack Of Playing Hard””

  1. Dewey Selmon Says:

    We have had 1 100 yard WR this year. I just want one game where the offense explodes on someone and everything falls into place. Without the defense giving up the lead. for once.

  2. DB55 Says:

    Idk I think they showed some heart and effort last week from the 2nd qrt thru the 4th. If we could keep contain it might have been a different story.

    I’m completely confident in Baker, Ayers and McDonald securing that Dline. But wtfdik? Wish we had Leonard willliams on the team.

  3. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    The simple fact that they have not quit on the coach (even though many in the media and in fandom claimed that they had) is why the Glazers need to keep Koetter.

    The simple truth is this: Gruden isn’t coaching this year and there is no one better to replace Koetter.

    Give the man his third year.

  4. BUC MAN Says:


  5. BigMacAttack Says:

    Dirk is in complete denial

  6. ShutTheBucUp Says:

    I agree big Mac, he’s delusional. This team will never meet its full potential with Koetter at the helm.

  7. Big Stinky Says:

    How come we were saying this team has NO heart just a few games ago? They quit on Dirk or Jameis earlier this year. We need a new GM to evaluate the talent on this team, starting with the OL and DL. Licht has focused on offense 3 of 4 years in the first round of the Draft and we are STILL only averaging 20 points a game. When is he EVER going to address the trenches? This TEAM gets pushed around EVERY week. Not sure I would even give him one more year. He has given us a TEAM full of LOSERS. This team underachieving is killing me!

  8. SOEbuc Says:

    These coach’s and GMs never going to dis players and say they’re not playing hard and trying because they’re the one’s that brought them onto the team. If Jason and Dirk say, “oh well he is a lazy piece of $hite that doesn’t play well” (which is what Baker has very much looked like since he stepped into OBP day one), that doesn’t look too good on their record’s.

  9. Pickgrin Says:

    “Our issue has not been lack of playing hard” – Its been more like a surplus of hardly playing…

    Bu-dump – tschhhh

  10. Bucnjim Says:

    With the camera angles now in the NFL you can’t escape. It’s not only on tape it is out there for every fan to see. You don’t need to be an NFL scout or expert to see guys standing around or jogging. If you can honestly watch a complete Bucs game from start to finish and tell me no one is loafing around the field I don’t know what to tell you.

  11. Conte Piscateli Says:

    Really, really? If that team has been playing with an effort level that coach thinks has been acceptable I think we may have found the reason this team has underperformed. I’m sorry, I’ve been pulling for Dirk, but that statement tells me it’s to me he starts packing his bags. Black Monday can’t come soon enough.

  12. Big Stinky Says:

    You can blame JW and/or the offense for us losing 5 games this year. The Patriots, Bills, Panthers, Packers, and Lions games were ALL winnable. We should be 9-4 and playing for a Playoff berth the next 3 games. Don’t think Dirk is the problem, our QB is at the moment. He has cost us a chance to be in the Playoffs 2 years in a row now. That’s the difference between HOF and AVERAGE! Two years left to prove himself and justify Licht picking him as the No.1 player in the Draft. How can u fire a HC when the QB is the problem?

  13. Big Stinky Says:

    Maybe Winston needs a NEW offense to play better!

  14. not there yet Says:

    Being down there scores against teams in your division whole playing hard makes your regime look worse koetter, I realize you don’t understand that but it’s ok after this run you won’t have to worry about being an NFL head coach again

  15. darin Says:

    He is right. Theyre playing hard within their respective offensive and defensive systems. Tbe systems are whats all effed up. Your coaching sucks Dirk. Cant blame you for taking the head job, but youre no good. Dirk n smitty have been setting them up for failure weekly. Some game plans are better than others but overall just an embarrassment. Adios

  16. Conte Piscateli Says:

    @Big stinky

    Sorry but I have to hold JW and the offense at fault in the Patriots, Panthers, and Packers games. Those teams were all held to less than 20 points each game and yes I’m taking into account the 7 points JW cost us in Green Bay. Fact is this team has failed in every phase of the game throughout the season. Can’t let the head coach off the hook when the failures are that widespread. If the offense was scoring 30 a game and still losing, maybe I see your argument, but that hasn’t been the case.

  17. unbelievable Says:

    DB what gives you any confidence in Baker?

    The guy has made like 5 plays all season. The rest of the time he’s just jogging around watching the other lineman.

  18. Big Stinky Says:

    @Conte Piscateli

    The TEAM just isn’t that good, that’s not Dirk’s fault. I blame Licht telling Koetter how much talent he has given him to work with and Dirk believed him, that’s all. We were one or two plays away from winning 4 of the games I mentioned. The Panthers game would have definitely needed more than just a few plays but was still winnable. Still not sure Dirk should go.

  19. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Chuck Noll – losing record 1st 3 years, Tom Landry – losing record 1st 5 years, Bill Walsh – losing record 1st 3 of 4 years, Tom Coughlin – losing record 4 of 8 years at Jacksonville .

    Give Koetter and Licht 2 more years to develop this team – If they’re not a playoff team by year 4 , then a change is warranted-

    If you change coaches again after 2 years -what message are you sending the locker room? Not to mention the fans…

    Ownership needs to show commitment to current staff

  20. DB55 Says:


    I see him making plays, stuffing the run, holding his gap. He’s a nt what do you expect him to do? He’s better than Akeem Spence that’s for sure.

  21. Conte Piscateli Says:

    @big stinky

    I think you’re right we aren’t a very good team, like I said we have been bad in all three phase. If this team had just one thing they do well to hang their hat on if feel much better going into the offseason. Currently we have no identity and on defense I don’t see the team as a whole playing to the whistle. If Dirk stays, I think there need to be roster and coaching changes made, because this season has been a failure across the board.

  22. Mike Johnson Says:

    Koetter is right. We have played several close games. But we cannot finish. To finish you need Rushers..You need a Defense to stop last minute drives in close games. And what have we had? about 4 close games where a Decent defense makes stops and we win. We..cannot/will not..refuse to..STOP anybody!.

  23. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    LMAO! SURE it’s not they haven’t been playing hard. Who are they trying to kid? Do they we are a bunch of Dems?

  24. BrianBucs Says:

    Just because they are playing hard doesn’t mean they are playing well. Roster is just not as talented as advertised and hyped

  25. B Coburn Says:

    Just because another team sort of takes their foot off your neck and you can make it kind of look competitive doesn’t mean you are playing hard. It shouldn’t take going down two or three scores to make the team wake up. That to me is the epitome of not playing hard..