Mike Smith, Drew Brees, 71.9% & NFL History

December 31st, 2017

“Jason, watch me keep Brees out of the history books and do a great job with your defense next year.

A motivated Drew Brees, with plenty to play for, is in Tampa today flaunting an incredible 2017 mark.

Take a deep breath on this one, knowing the Bucs defense as you do; Brees is completing 71.9 percent of his passes this season.

That’s the NFL single-season record, if Brees can hold that mark today — or improve upon it. You better believe he wants another notch in the NFL record books. Sam Bradford (71.6 percent in 2016) has the record. Brees finished at 71.2 percent in 2011, and was at 70.6 percent in 2009, which tied him Bengals great Ken Anderson (1982).

So what is defensive coordinator Mike Smith going to do? His defense is fourth-worst in the NFL when it comes to completion percentage. Brees completed a whopping 81.5 percent against the Bucs in November.

Smith made plenty of great adjustments at Carolina last Sunday. The Bucs defense was excellent. Now Smith has to do it in back-to-back games. Find a way to get that blitz through and be effectively aggressive in man coverage.

Would that be enough to earn Smith another Bucs season? Let Joe say this now. Dirk Koetter is not going to fire Smith unless someone orders him to. And that seems highly unlikely.

59 Responses to “Mike Smith, Drew Brees, 71.9% & NFL History”

  1. BigHogHaynes Says:

    Drew will get Smith run out of town today! I don’t even know why are we waiting! This Defense ain’t had nothing on LOVIE ….NOTHING…TAKE A KNEE…KEEP AMERICA FREE!!

  2. BucEmUp Says:

    Well than thats complete bull crap. If its takes a DC and former head coach 30 games to finally realize he needs to make adjustments he has no business remaining on the staff. This guy has proven to be just like Lovie Smith inside and out when it comes to the defense and in game adjustments.

    He’s going to come out next season with the same bullcrap 12 yards cushions with our DB’s. IT’s a damn shame if Koetter’s head coaching career gets wasted because he wants to stay loyal to his buddy who aint getting the job done. I hope to god that Drew Brees throws for 500 yards today….but he and Sean Payton are probably smart enough to know that if they let off the gas toward the end and don’t blow us out that the Bucs will be too stupid to fire him so they can keep rolling over us next season.


  3. Roy T. Buford Says:

    I expect a good close game today. In fact, the players know they are playing for next year’s HC, probably others, so they will want to look going out, especiall given so many backups are in. I’ve not been thrilled with the DC or HC body of work this season, just as I haven’t most of the team, and the attitudes of many of the players. But professionals can recognize and correct. Smith did well last year, and I expect Koetter will have some directed changes (such as play calling) coming his way. I’m expecting the Glazers had that talk (the outbrief) earlier this year than later…We’ll see.

  4. BucEmUp Says:




  5. The Buc Realist Says:

    Fix the line and Coach Smitty will do just fine!!!! We have seen what his defense can do with a healthy RA jr and a rookie NS57!!!! Give the man a real DE to fix the “real” problem!!!!!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. BuccLuck Says:

    Jay Hayes can’t motivate the 7 or 8 D Linemen he works with on a daily basis. What makes you think he could turn around the entire defense as the coordinator?

  7. BucEmUp Says:

    Roy Smith did not do well last year. He had five very opportunistic games where his defense capitalized on turnovers from bad throws and tipped passes by teams who were really bad or loaded with injuries. Weeks 15 and 16 were the exact same results as the beginning of the season. Day Prescott destroyed them and Brandin Cooks did what Julio did to us in our first game this season. The only thing that kept them in the dallas game was the offense and that will be the only way they win games going forward if this guy remains on the staff.

    Who were those five games last season?

    Bears – HORRIBLE TEAM!

    Seattle – Not good last year

    San Diego – Injuries across the board

    Saints and Kansas City were clearly sleeping on them evidenced by the second game against New Orleans. The last game against Carolina I’m not even looking at as Cam had a horrible offense last season.

    Smith never has and never will produce as a DC. The only time he has was under Jack Del Rio running a defense influenced by Del Rio. He was the head coach for an Atlanta team with a phenomenal offense (dirk Koetter) and had a leagues worst defense along with the bucs year in year out. If you were a head coach and on the hot seat, wouldn’t you step in and make some changes on defense to save your own job if you could?

    Koetter knows Smiths defense sucks but he remaining loyal to Smith is not going to make him miraculously decide to change his ways. He hasn’t shown to date he can coach a defense constantly. Sure he has had a game here and there that look good on paper, very few over the last two seasons….maybe 7 out of 32 games. Even a bind squirrel finds a nut every now and then.

    I guarantee if this guy is here next season it’s another season of 12 yard cushions and a league worst secondary. Add all the pass rush and talent you want but when there is always someone open there will never be a pass rush.

  8. Conte Piscatelli Says:

    Are we really saying that because Cam Newton had a typical or throwing Cam Newton he she last week, magically that means we will be successful against Drew Brees? That’s like saying I haven’t died yet today, I must be invincible.

  9. BucEmUp Says:

    Buck luck my comment is awaiting moderation for some reason. So in short, how do you expect a line coach to produce when the corners are playing twelve yards off the war’s every 90% of the snaps? There is always someone open. Jay Hayes has over a decade of producing as a Dline coach in this league. He didn’t just suddenly come here and forget how to do it.

    Go back and look at how cinch’s Db’s played during all of his successful years as the d-line coach. You can’t get to the qb when someone is always open its a simple equation to work out.

  10. Zwak Says:

    Keep it close then choke at the end and get beat by 3 points today! It’s a Bucs life..

  11. BFFL Says:

    Memo to Defensive players

    Kwon, VH3, Noah, Evans, Beckwith you are all part of the future on D. Time to go to work in the offseason and prepare.

    Kwon: watch how Kuechly diagnosis offenses..can you do that?

    VH3: cut the silly hairdo and become a man. Stop celebrating when QB overthrows your wide open receiver. I think you can be a fine slot corner I hope..Bucs need something out of you.

    Noah: put on about 20 pounds of muscle and toughen up that shoulder. Don’t worry about speed. You got the technique to beat guys.

    Grimes: Nice cover corner but if you don’t like coming up in run support then retire please.

    Evans: you got potential bro..keep working on your craft

    Beckwith: get that knee 100% and become an angry ray lewis type

    GMC: you’ll get 12.25 million next year if you stay or Bucs will have 500K dead money if they cut you. I wonder what else Bucs can do with that 11.75 mil??

    LVD: you played better this year and looked in better shape physically. Is that who you will be from now on or are you just playing for more guaranteed money??

    Licht: hire some help evaluating defensive players and stay out of the way. What the hell were you thinking trading up for and drafting a kicker. Was that Glazer’s demand really? Next time they demand something that stupid just go Sonny Weaver Jr on them

  12. Ndog Says:

    This season is not even over yet and I have zero hope for next year! I just don’t see why a staff and management that has made some many poor choices would suddenly make better chioces. I mean dang the stuff the screwed up wwrestling things that almost everyone on this website knew yet they igored it. We need a runningback and pass rush nothing was done. Then during the season Doug Martin and Baker should have been benched /cut not done.

  13. mark2001 Says:

    Other than soon to be FA Grimes, who is going to “stop” Brees after 10 or 15 yards down field?

  14. mark2001 Says:

    BFFL… don’t worry about Grimes…he is a FA and unless we throw the “kitchen sink” at him, will probably be gone next year.

  15. mark2001 Says:

    BucEm…Koetters coaching careers? Who cares about his “coaching career”.. how about the players that are watching years burn off their careers with inferior coaching. Those are the guys that will suffer for it…other than the fans, of course.

  16. Gambelero Says:

    It’s somewhere in the archives here, but Joe (or more likely one of his underlings) quoted Mike Smith saying, “This style of defense only works if you get pressure rushing 4” and “Our defense doesn’t have a chance without a pass rush.”

  17. Ndog Says:

    Please anyone give me one reason besides Jameis we should be excited about next year? I am disgusted that we will see this same crap show again next year. I didn’t even want Gruden back with all the power but I certainly did not want status quo. Realist you say fix the d line but who is picking these players, the same guys that chose Swaggy Baker, kept Doug Martin, signed Sweezy and drafted Aguyao think about that.

  18. 2Anglican1609 Says:

    Forhis job preservation Coach K better get rid of Smitty after today

  19. ManzielMadness Says:

    What top notch Defensive coordinator is gonna come to Tampa when they know they’re immediately gonna be on the hot seat next year? Get better players on the DLine and let’s see what happens

  20. Tbbucs3 Says:

    “This defense ain’t had nothing on Lovie”

    LOL what a joke. Obviously don’t remember how bad Lovie Smith’s pass defense was. At least Mike Smith’s defense decides to show up once every other week.

  21. D-Rome Says:

    Bucs pass rush wasn’t good last year and was terrible this year. Not sure why anyone thinks it’ll be different next year with this (cough) leadership.

  22. D-Rome Says:

    At least Mike Smith’s defense decides to show up once every other week.

    What nonsense! The equivalent of verbal diarrhea. Look at the road vs. home defensive statistics and try again.

  23. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    BigHog, this is too funny! If Smith gets fired will you say that Dirk/Licht stabbed him in the back? Seems to be the same situation. Smith’s D sucks, Lovie’s D sucks. Would it be backstabbing, or does that only count when the white guy fires the black guy? I hope Brees goes 40-40 for 600 yards and 7 TDs so we all can find out how you feel about some “white on white backstabbing”! Let’s be consistent, now. Call it what it is! I want to see you get just as mad when the white guy gets fired for his bad D as you did when the black guy got fired for the same thing! White or black, just be consistent and I’ll never call you out on the “backstabbing” issue again.

  24. bucfan999 Says:

    Mike Smith has to go but what can we get that would be better with a lame duck Head Coach???? The Glazer boys really screwed to pooch this year, they either wouldn’t pony up the money or power for Gruden and it looks like he’s off to Oakland (Las Vegas) next year with Rex Ryan in tow. What could have been :(.
    So we are either stuck with Mike Smith, some cast off who couldn’t get it done on the team they are with now or an unproven coach as DC next year.

    Gus Bradley, Marvin Lewis, Chuck Pagano, Rex Ryan hell even Rob Ryan wouldn’t want to come in here with only 1 year to turn around this mess of a defense.

    They need to GUT the D-Line, GUT the Secondary and decide on a 4-3
    or 3-4 defense for next year. No one of any caliber would come with Koetter on the hot seat already for next year. It looks like another 4 – 6 win season next year. :((((((((( SAD GLAZER BOYS YOUR FATHER WOULD BE DISAPPOINTED IN YOU!!!!!

  25. NFLNut Says:


    BREES is one of the most under-rated QBs in the history of the NFL … I can not believe we live in a world where Matt Ryan, who is nothing special at all, has an MVP and Drew Brees does not … crazy!


  26. Tbbucs3 Says:

    D Rome, Mike Smith has put up way more good defensive performances throughout his 2 years than Lovie ever did. It’s not even close. It’s no secret that the defense stinks but what else is Mike Smith supposed to do with the crap he has to work with out there. We NFL backup talent at D end and safety and corner depth is atrocious.

  27. Lakeland Says:

    167 of Drew Brees 498 targets has went to his RBs.

    88 of the Bucs 546 targets has went to their RBs

    That’s the difference in the two offenses

  28. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Bucfan999, I think the only reason the Glazers didn’t make an offer to Gruden was because it would be seen as a move out of a position of weakness. You can’t give the guru a big head. Keep him in his place! Maybe next year.

  29. Lakeland Says:

    The big differences in their PASSING offenses

  30. bucfan999 Says:

    BuccaneEric75, Not if he’s in Oakland

  31. Lakeland Says:

    The Glazers were begging Jon Gruden to coach the Bucs ( according to Michael Silver) Gruden turned them down.

  32. Lakeland Says:

    The Tampa Bay Buccaneers may be bringing head coach Dirk Koetter back in 2018, but that decision wasn’t made until Friday—and only after they made an “unsuccessful run” at Dirk Koetter, according to NFL Network’s Michael Silver.

  33. Sydney Says:



  34. mark2001 Says:

    Sydney…who would step on the one year DC coaching thin ice with DK? No one that we would likely want or consider an upgrade. Your Season ticket choice is yours and yours alone.

  35. BigMacAttack Says:

    I’m not 100% sold on Koetter’s return. I think a lot depends on what happens today. Every Coach has a price too and when that is met, Chucky will return. I think $15mil per season would bring him back. Rick Stroud is a moron btw.

  36. Perimeter Blocker Says:

    What D coordinator would want to come here risking 1 season and done?

  37. mark2001 Says:

    BigMac…can’t disagree about Stroud. He has a job? And as far a Gruden is concerned, let’s see if he really comes back this year. Honestly, I don’t know why he would garner much more than Belichick money. In other words, if he wants more than 8 to 10, I’ll let him pass.

  38. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Bucfan999, you missed my key word at the end : maybe. Personally I’m not a fan of Gruden coming back. He won 3 playoff games in a row then, well, you know. I also wouldn’t have been upset if Dirk got fired. I’d take Marvin Lewis over Dirk and not look back. I’d take McDaniels as OC, but not HC. I think our entire staff needs to go so we can reboot. I don’t have a preference. If Dirk can lead us to the playoffs next season, then I’ll roll with Dirk. If he doesn’t, he can kick rocks. I’m not going to be like BigHog and fight for Dirk just becuause he has my skin color. Results rule, baby.

  39. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “Dirk Koetter is not going to fire Smith unless someone orders him to. And that seems highly unlikely.” Agree 100% Joe. Smitty MAY NOT be the answer at DC, but there’s no way we can know that given the horrible talent he was given to work with. No pass rush. Questionable secondary. Run defense mediocre.

    As Realist said “Fix the line and Coach Smitty will do just fine!!!! ” Of course, if Licht isn’t going to significantly improve the talent on defense this off-season, then we might as well bring in another DC. With this level of talent, he’d be fired too … along with Dirk Koetter … for another terrible season.

  40. Kyle Says:

    Im so frustrated im reposting my morning rant…
    I know i am just an idiot fan that doesnt know anything but how in the hell was koetter not fired? Dirk has been here 3 years and if we are to belive hes here because of offense, why cant we score points? His offense has ranked inthe bottom third of the league in points scored all 3 years. If he didnt have jameis to save his azz, dont get me started… his in game blundering is mind boggling. Totally mishandled jameis’ injury and kind of threw him.under the bus. Dirk continues to be pathetic in the red zone and there is no creativity in the playcalling except the mind numbing running doug over the hill martin up the gut. This guy screams mediocrity. Can you honestly see this guy holding the lombardi trophy? To all the fans saying coaching turnover every 2 years is bad, wake the f up! The idiot glazers havent made the correct coaching hire since they fired gruden. If i was average or unproductive at my.job, i would be let.go, end of sentence. I love the bucs and am thankful we have jameis but god damnit glazers, pull your head out of your azzes, hire a football guy to run the organization and get the hell out of the way. This whole coaching thing has been a shiz show. Im done, love you joes! The podcasts rock, i dont miss one!

  41. cmurda Says:

    Assuming we lose to the Saints, are we pulling for Indy today? Do we get 4th spot if Indy wins?

  42. SOEbuc Says:

    Only took Smith till Week 16 to figure out his original defense was straight up monkey butt. And if Mike Smith gets to keep his job just because him and DK are a couple than that’s straight up BS. Koetter knows nothing about defense so he gives entirely all the defensive decisions to Smith and his terrible scheme.

  43. SOEbuc Says:


    And they didn’t even wait till the end of the season to see what happened with other coaches. MY GOD THESE GLAZER KIDS HAVE NO CLUE HOW TO RUN AN AMERICAN FOOTBALL TEAM AND IT MAKES ME WANT TO RIP OUT MY HAIR AND WALK INTO ONCOMING TRAFFIC!!!!

  44. SOEbuc Says:


    And yeah I was saying I could NEVER see this guy win us a SB or even deep in the playoffs.

  45. Kyle Says:

    Soebuc… agreed buddy, what a life being a bucs fan…haha

  46. cmurda Says:

    I think I got it backwards. I believe we want Hou to win today.

  47. SOEbuc Says:

    And so many fans were so hyped about this season before the beginning with Hard Knocks and DJax signing. They were selling a lot of season tickets. I’ve already heard so many of those season ticket holders and long time season ticket holders saying they are going to cancel. If it does end up being Koetter and Mike Smith, this stadium is going to be hearing mad crickets unless we start about 4-0.

  48. Lakeland Says:

    Cleveland offense has two 50+ plays against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Bucs offense only has 2 in 15 games.

  49. Rod Munch Says:

    Ryan Smith was out last week, that was a huge part of why the defense was better. But not to worry, he’ll be back this week to help secure a top 5 draft pick!

  50. not there yet Says:

    They aren’t going to win with dirk koetter anyway so might as well bring Mike Smith back, there’s no point paying him and a new coach to come in when we all know they will be in the same position next as they are now, they aren’t going to suddenly wake up and win because they get another year to coach.

  51. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    “Dirk Koetter is not going to fire Smith unless someone orders him to. And that seems highly unlikely.” – Joe

    That’s one of the main reason’s why I wanted Dirk gone. Mike Smith is a hack.

  52. Rod Munch Says:

    Again, make Mike Smith the “assistant” head coach or whatever the title is, hire a real defensive coordinator, and heaven forbid I write this, run a scheme like Jersey Trash ™ Schiano ran, and let Dirk deal exclusively with the offense while Mike Smith takes over the general day to day head coaching duties. It’s a win/win for everyone since everyone is getting paid anyways and it puts everyone in the correct spot. Mike Smith is a very good head coach, Dirk is a very good OC, but neither are in the correct spot and it shows.

  53. JonBuc Says:

    Mike Smiley Smith is safe…The Dirk is safe…4-12 with multiple in-game/game management lapses is more than enough to secure employment. The bar is so low they had to bury it underground.

  54. USFBUC Says:

    Alright the Texans are doing their job right now, we just need to help Drew Brees set that record today and we will have the fourth pick in the draft

  55. THETRUTH Says:

    275+ yrd for brees and leaves in 4tg quarter
    70% completion for game

    RB 95yrds rushing

    34-13. Saints.

    Of Bucs get killed 45–6 does that change mind of glazers ??

  56. mark2001 Says:

    USF…Texans are losing…number 5…unless the Bucs win a meaningless game regarding anything for them but the draft.

  57. Mike Johnson Says:

    This whole situation got me depressed. Buc fans deserve better. Koetter and Smitty ain’t takin the Bucs nowheres but last place in the division again. Its past sad guys. I’m gonna watch the 1st half then take the wife out for Sunday dinner and a movie.

  58. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    Please anyone give me one reason besides Jameis we should be excited about next year?

    For the very reason we have players as good as Jameis at their positions..ME13…OJ…several linebackers…lots of rookies with promise…Evans might be the real deal…Chris is clearly a stud as is Beckwith.

    We need that kind of draft with four great trench players. The team turns around instantly.

  59. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Mark2001, the Browns have the Texans first round pick.