Trouble With YAC

January 4th, 2018

Missing YAC.

Want to know where the Bucs offense went wrong this year?

Yes, the Bucs had a strong passing game, fourth in the NFL with 272.9 yards through the air per game. Of the teams in the top five of passing, only the Bucs had a losing record, which should tell you all you need to know about the defense.

But still, the Bucs could have been so much better in the passing game, even if only three teams had more passing yards per game.

Of all the stud receivers on the team, two backups led the Bucs in YAC (yards after catch). Charles Sims and Adam Humphries. But that was actually very bad.

First, reserves should not be leading a team in anything. But to give one an idea of how awful the Bucs were at advancing the ball after a catch, Sims and Humphries are Nos. 74 and 75, respectively, in the NFL, in YAC.

On face value, how the hell can receivers like Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson not be in the top-75 in the NFL in YAC? That is almost impossible for Joe to believe. In fact, the Bucs finished second-worst in the NFL in YAC per reception.

If offensive coordinator Todd Monken has one goal for 2018, it’s to squeeze more YAC out of his starting receivers. This may be one key why the Bucs, despite such a vaunted passing game, were No. 18 in offensive touchdowns.

33 Responses to “Trouble With YAC”

  1. Dewey Selmon Says:

    vertical offense. Ball travels in the air longer giving DB’s more time to react and tackle the WR when the ball arrives. Shorter passes equal more YAC. but less explosive plays.

  2. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    I put that squarely on Magoo. He never leads the receivers and most of the time is throwing behind them or when he does lead them, it is going to get them killed by the LB over the middle or a safety.

  3. Dooshlarue Says:

    Scotty, you beat me to it.
    I’ve been saying the same thing all last season.
    Hell, he almost got Brate killed a few games back.

  4. darin Says:

    Well then you two are way off. Its the offense. The routes. Nothing to do with jameis inaccuracy. Comebacks, curls, outs. Its the main reason i hate the offense. I wana see djax take more slants 41 yards. Instead we get doug martin for negative 4.1 yards. Tighten up dirkle

  5. passthebuc Says:

    Everyone that watches football knows where the problem is. Its molasses Winston. By the time he sees the open man, so has the linebacker, 2 d backs, a safety and the water boy.

    Joe you can write all you want about JW, but the tale is in the tape.

  6. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “Of the teams in the top five of passing, only the Bucs had a losing record, which should tell you all you need to know about the defense.” Nice dig on the defense Joe. Thanks for not mentioning upfront how this super-productive, high-flying offense kept finding a way to convert TD opportunities into FGs. Convert just ONE FG to a TD per game, and our record might have been 9-7 instead of 5-11. Convert TWO per game and it might have been 12-4. Damned defense.

  7. AlteredEgo Says:


  8. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    I think there are a lot of factors that contribute to our lack of YAC. Mike Evans is decently fast but not in any way quick, more a slow twitch strider. Problem is with no respect for our run game there is almost always over the top help so even if a WR beats their man there is someone waiting.
    Give this offense a run game (a stud RB) and watch the YAC go up. Vertical attacks work a lot better when they respect your running game and bring help into the box.
    I agree also the routes like comebacks and hooks aren’t going to get much YAC and Dirk loves him some curls.
    Jameis is the freaking man but he needs to have better ball placement sometimes. Mostly on slants or crossing routes. I dont think he is terrible just average in that department.

  9. The Buc Realist Says:

    Wow, is Joe trying to blame the Defense for the lack of scoring on the offense????? While the defense has its issues, we expect more out of the offense as it has been built up the last 4 years with most of the Bucs resources!!!!!!!! Can’t wait for an upcoming article of how the defense made the offense was the real cause of all the turnovers!!!!!!!!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!!!!!

  10. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Gotta give it up for Humphries, he does create a lot of yards with his feet. As for Sims, I’ve times seen times where the pats main offense was numerous passes
    to a RB.There could still be a place for him on this team as a situational back.
    Ball placement is an important aspect of YAC yards and Jameis can improve in this area,as he has inthe last 3 or 4 games. If your offense relies on a lot of tight window throws then YAC yards will be lower due to the number of defensive players surrounding the ball.

  11. Bucsfanman Says:

    “Want to know where the Bucs offense went wrong this year?”
    How much time do we have?!
    Man, I cannot believe how many people still think that NONE of this, not one bit, has to do with the QB!
    I’ll pose a very easy question. On one of Jameis interceptions Sunday, he threw the ball into TRIPLE coverage:If there are THREE defenders covering ONE WR, how many defenders are covering the other 2-3 receivers? Yep, must be the route! He has to clean it up, the plays are there to make.
    @Defense Rules- TDs instead of FGs and eliminating turnovers. Oh, but wait, the fumbles are the defense’s fault too!

  12. WyomingBucsFan Says:

    It’s absolutely the design of the offense. It also shows how good Jameis is at putting the ball in tight windows. Now imagine what Gruden could have done with Jameis and his West Coast offense. I like Dirk but man the bucs blew it not bringing back Jon Gruden.

  13. DoNUTS Says:

    YAC is related to QB accuracy and play timing. Winston needs to improve in this area and DEF recognition and things will get better.

  14. MJB Says:

    The Bucs were #1 in air yards (yds pass traveled downfield)…Koetter’s offense is built vertical and naturally will not create as much YAC. The fact they were #1 in air yards and top 10 in most passing categories show it is still effective. The problem with the offense is the running game!

  15. denjoe Says:

    The defense actually played better than I thought considering we had No pass rush in a pass happy league. Thanks to our Gm Licht, it’s amazing that we didn’t get blown out more with the offense struggling and lack of PR and secondary. Also if they would have had a kicker and a running game that would have helped,the special teams giving up big plays towards the end wasn’t helping either.

  16. Buc'd Up Says:

    Evans drops to his knees quicker then a $2 whore. Sofest big receiver I’ve seen in awhile.

  17. Bobby M. Says:

    Evans was hitting the deck quickly…a lot. There’s a part of me that believes he’s protecting himself for his big contract. That approach isn’t helping the YAC stats.

  18. 813bucboi Says:

    its the offense….

    -no check downs….
    -long developing plays…..
    -no double moves…
    -no option routes…..

    NO YAC!!!….GO BUCS!!!!

  19. SB Says:

    which should tell you all you need to know about the defense.
    Also tells you all you need to know about scoring in the Red Zone
    I will bet money that we were top 4 in the league in settling for FGs.

  20. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    No one complained that Keyshawn was a possession receiver.

    That’s what Mike Evans is, at least for now. I’m fine with him not getting a lot of yards after catch. At least he catches the ball.

    DJax, if he stays, might show improvement next year, but Koetter needs to make it clear…he’ll get the ball when is route running is up to snuff.

  21. Bob in Valrico Says:

    And Evans is also protecting himself ,because he is often in tight window situations where he is defenseless. I’ve seen Jameis laying it out for his receivers
    more in the last 3 or 4 games than has before. Lets face it the goal is not only to get the pass in there,but to place the ball and prevent his teammates from getting hurt.

  22. Dooshlarue Says:


    Some of it may be the play calling but if you think JW does a good job with his ball placement you may want to go see the eye doctor…….. just not the one Magoo uses!

  23. briandorry55 Says:

    Not surprising at all. Evans plays so damn soft, it is starting to really bug me. He even went out of his way this season to say he was focusing on getting more YAC and it was same old same old. Godwin is the most dangerous YAC guy on our team, hopefully he’s in for a bigger role next year and maybe Mike can learn something…like idk, don’t slide immediately half the time you catch the ball.

  24. briandorry55 Says:

    @Bob in Valrico…

    If he’s protecting himself, we’ll take all those 15 yard penalties along with the YAC he could pick up. This dude is 6’5 230 pounds….is Julio “protecting himself”?

  25. Mr. Ed Says:

    @DewerSelmon — has it right. it’s the design of the pass offense.

  26. Lord Cornelius Says:

    You guys are hilarious. The stats paint a pretty clear picture.

    Leading league in air yards per attempt
    Trailing league in yards after catch

    That = an offense that pushes balls down the field in difficult coverage and one that doesn’t put it’s players in space often using quick options. It’s obvious if you watched any of the teams leading the league in YAC.

    Rams – quick passing offense.
    Jags – quick passing offense built off the run.
    Saints – think of all the freaking YAC from Kamara alone on short passes / screens / etc.
    Redskins – quick passing offense (chris thompson in space / crowder in space)
    Chiefs – always been a short passing offense – get the ball to Hill / Kelce / etc in space.

    Cardinals are a deep drop offense like the Bucs. Same with Ravens. Other teams in the bottom.

    Sure Winston could be more accurate – and sure SOME of this could be attributed to it- but if you think that is what is really driving these numbers you’re absolutely misguided.

    Blake Bortles had a lower completion % than Winston for example – and is regarded generally as a less accurate QB; yet had the 2nd best YAC per catch in the league. The accuracy argument is simply not valid here.

  27. LovieBall Says:

    65% completion as the most aggressive passer in the league. Don’t know if any other QB could be more accurate.

  28. Tom Says:

    First off I do not consider Adam H a backup but instead the starting slot receiver. To me he is very underrated

  29. Parnell's Dickinson Says:

    Definitely side more with darin — not enough slants, bubble screens, short passes on first down. Too many out routes and deep curls. I never understood the lack of short passes in space, especially to DJax. We should be trying get DJax and Rudy the ball on slants and short rub/pick routes all day (but still run the deeper stuff with Evans, Godwin, TEs).

  30. loggedontosay Says:

    Predictable offense is the reason for the poor YAC. TOO MANY DEPLORABLES.

  31. orlbucfan Says:

    Maybe the reason ME13 defends himself is that he knows if some combination of DBs rip his head off illegally, it sure as h3ll’s bells won’t be called.

  32. Rod Munch Says:

    Considering Evans is generally being tackled seconds before the ball gets to him on any given play, I’m not sure how he’d be expected to be ranked highly in YAC.

    For D-Jax he should be there, but the bombs were just off a bit and those curl routes that Dirk LOVES don’t really produce much YAC when the offensive player has to stand still with his back to the defender. Dirk gave up on slants early in the year it seemed like and thus those easy YAC yards were not there.

    For Hump he benefited from being way down the depth chart, which is where he should be and is a good thing. Hump as a starter is a terrible awful player, but when he’s on the field with Evans, D-Jax, Brate and OJ, teams have to pick where they spend their defensive resources and Hump was the guy who got a ton of open looks because of that. Which is exactly what you’d hope for when you signed DJ and drafted OJ.

    For Sims it’s obvious, he comes in on every 3rd down and Dirk throws a screen or a short pass to him and defenders are playing back. Sims is an excellent 3rd down back and hopefully the Bucs keep him around since he’s really good at his job even if Dirk devalues his job by super predictable.

  33. Ed Schwartz Says:

    Winston’s best throws are usually on the line throws with lots of zip. The problem I see in his game is that he can’t throw it soft and easy when it needs that touch. That play in the game where Barber ran a go type route, got behind the db who blew his coverage and Jameis threw a jump ball that a beaten db was able to turn around and pick off was gawd awful, as bad as it gets, that was a short pass that he should have easily thrown over the defender and Barber takes it right to the end zone. That is a throw that makes me shake my head because it was easy and he blew it. Then he throws that TD to Godwin, now that was a very difficult throw, Godwin was well covered and the ball was perfectly placed. Winston made a very difficult throw. Have to agree that the Bucs do run an offense that isn’t conducive to YACs because the routes are comebacks or stop and turn around routes. Koetter needs to change his offense and run some fast hitting plays.