In Duff We Trust

December 2nd, 2018

Hats off to the oldest guy on the Buccaneers, the defensive coordinator who inherited a steaming pile of %^&# in October and has managed to turn it into something edible and worthy of Bucs fans hard-earned cash.

Joe can’t undervalue what Mark Duffner has accomplished in his new role. The 65-year-old has led a transformation of the Bucs’ greatest weakness.

As Joe wrote earlier today, Bucs sack totals have been second-best in the NFL since mid-October. And they added four more to that today against Cam Newton, plus four interceptions.

Scoring against the Bucs has fallen significantly since Duffer grabbed the reins after Mike Smith left following a five-game horror show — on the heels of last year’s 32nd-ranked defense.

Injuries? No problem.

Duffner has barreled ahead with guys a lot of Bucs fans barely know. Today’s interceptions go to Javien Elliott and Andrew Adams.

The defense has not been great overall, but it’s certainly been good enough to complement this high-powered offense. Heck, if the Bucs didn’t drop a ridiculous three points despite 500+ yards of offense on the Redskins, Tampa Bay would be 6-6 right now and in the playoff chase.

Joe gives Duffner a ton of credit. You can see subtle changes in the defense and guys playing more aggressively.

Ironically, if this continues, it sure puts an powerful microscope on the decision to bring back Mike Smith this season.

48 Responses to “In Duff We Trust”

  1. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    I agree

    Hulluva job by him

  2. Bucs Fan #7423 Says:

    F U CAM NEWTON!!!!

  3. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Duffman yeah!

  4. Easy Says:

    You had some backup, practice squad, straight off the street and bench DBs playing their a$$ off today!!

  5. cw_buc_crazy Says:

    Kudos to defense, they saved JW $ss. Duffner M great respect to you.
    Go Bucs.

  6. From76 Says:

    Great improvement on defense. Offense rolls! Good game!

  7. WC Says:

    Coaches don’t play… but you can’t deny the results since Smith hit the golf course. Should we be worried that its happening without our starters at LB and DB?

  8. AfrikaThaRapper Says:

    I live in Washington DC area and my son has the nerve to be a Carolina Cat fan. Feels soooooooo good to see him walking around here like his favorite pet died…….in his jersey. Go Bucs !!!

  9. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    I gotta a bunch of buddies who are panthers fans too……….

    time to text them…….:)

  10. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    It’s almost as though all the Bucs needed to do to make their defense semi respectable was fire the wrongheaded and terribly informed leading mindset that was Mike Smith.

    Oh wait that’s exactly what they needed to do after last season. Defend him some more Realisto. Please expose yourself as that much of an ignorant rube.

    It’s really too bad our HC doesn’t know anything about defense or what a rotten, poorly coached one looks like, or you know, he may have seen that firing Mike Smith was a must if he wanted to save his own skin. Too bad nepotism reigned supreme. What a joke.

    Mad Props to Jameis for playing the 2nd straight week of highly effecient/ mistake free football. I look forward to watching you do this every week next year in a better, more QB friendly scheme.

  11. JimmyJack Says:

    This Defensive line is quickly becoming the heart and soul of this team. When the game was on the line JPP took over and made a game winning sack…….Next week it’s on somebody else!!!! I expect results.

  12. PSLBob Says:

    We’ve said all along- average defense and fewer turnovers = Bucs win.!

  13. Waterboy Says:

    Was Mike Smith that incompetent? This looks like a totally different defense. Koetter couldn’t see this?

  14. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    Keep Duff as D-man.

    Release the Kracken Kotter.

  15. PSLBob Says:

    Koetter is Mr Comservative – when we ran the ball 3 times on our last possession, who couldn’t help believe the Panthers were going to drive down the field and score. I’m still stuck with old defense in my mind.

  16. Dewey Selmon Says:

    We were up 24-10 and the Panthers had the ball on their own 8 yard line. Instead of continuing to blitz Duff went prevent and let the Panthers back into the game. Whenever we blitzed Cam was off target. When we went turtle they continued to have success.

  17. Wausa Says:

    saved JW?

    What the heck?

    Jamies played very well. Running game was not good again(including a fumble into the endzone.

  18. El_Buc941 Says:

    I’m starting to think if we stay the way we’re playing and win out that the Glazer’s won’t fire anyone.hell they might promote duffman to DC!I would be all on board!let’s just hope other teams in the wild card chase lose today!

  19. Fire Light Says:

    The runs on the last 3 plays had to happen to get the timeouts and 2 minute warning out of the way. The punt was unfortunate.

  20. aj Says:

    They are moving JPP and Nassib around a lot now, and it is giving teams fits. Which is opening up a lot of gaps to the QB.

    Vea pulled a lot of doubles today, which let the ends go to work.

    They beat Cam down today, and the back seven made the plays the d line created.

  21. TampabayAllDay Says:

    Mike Smith…

  22. TheBucsAnthem Says:


    First off:

    * Cam Newton played horrible today

    * Mike Smith ran a complex defense and the players never bought into it…..

    Duff took over and basically simplified the play calling and then the players became more aggressive and played to the players strengths……..he wasn’t trying to make them do something they can’t do unlike Mike Smith

  23. TampabayAllDay Says:

    Lol Mike Smith sucked. Period

  24. stpetebucsfan Says:

    I’m certainly no Mike Smith supporter but Duff has better players right now. Nassib has blossomed…Vea is playing well…JPP is JPP and nobody here wants to admit it but GMC had a great effort as well. I certainly concede that Duff does a better job with the new players.

    At least two of our picks were due to the DL getting to Cam. Play well on the DL and the back seven suddenly look better too.

    Ironically Duff may help Koetter keep his job. I know folks here hate Tom Jones but his piece this morning was different…he claims if the Bucs play well the remainder of the season Koetter and Jameis return. It’s become an offensive league and guess what…Koetter has the best offense in the league.

    If the Glazers have comfort in the DC they may just roll it for another year. I think Duff gives them that confidence and the beauty of all of this is if we don’t have to make a wholesale change all systems are in place and ready to roll.

    Provided of course none of our stars get suspended to start next year as well.

  25. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    But what about that horrible QB of ours Anthem? Lot of crickets from the haters like you today on that front.

  26. Fire Light Says:

    Oh yeah, and good game to GMC… His hate club was quiet today too.

  27. Geno Says:

    I give credit to all the coaching at this time of the year. Certainly some teams give up at the end of the year. Two years in a row, this team has continued to play for themselves, other players and the coaches when they could have packed it in.

    Give credit where it is due. The coaching on the offense has been solid and now the defense is improving also.

  28. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Stpete, Duff has better players than Smitty?
    I will respectfully disagree,
    Smitty had a healthy Grimes, JPP, McDougald, Swearinger, VH3, healthy Kwon, Healthy LVD, healthy Curry.
    Duff is doing this with guys nobody else wanted like Adams, Elliot, isiah Johnson, Adarius Taylor, Ryan freakin Smith ( mix drop)

  29. Rod Munch Says:

    Good defensive line play today, and good defensive line play last week.

    Makes a huge difference.

    This was the idea of building the defense from the defensive line backwards, that with a good line even Ryan Smith wouldn’t stand out as the abortion that he is – but that’s asking a ton.

    Anyways for two weeks at least the defensive line is hitting on all cylinders and giving the DB’s a chance, and guys off the streets are in turn having career years in a single game.

  30. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Oh and Harris, whoever that is

  31. Saskbuco Says:

    Hey cw_buc,

    What do you mean the Defense saved JW a$$?


  32. stpetebucsfan Says:


    He didn’t really have VHG this season but even if he did…so what. He did have a healthy Kwon and LVD…outside of those two the others you mentioned…meh.

    JPP has been solid no matter who calls the D…that’s not going to change…but GMC is playing better…Nassib is our diamond in the rough and Vea is not healthy and with some experience beginning to play like a first round draft pick.

    I’d much rather roll JPP…Nassib…GMC and VEA than any of Smitty’s combos. These guys are not only playing better individually they have coalesced into an actual team with chemistry.

  33. Howard Cosell Says:

    Epic job Coach Duff!
    Now on to The Breesus and his apostles.
    If you can best the Breesus you will truly be blessed

  34. Howard Cosell Says:

    I think what we’re seeing on defense can be summed in one sentence:
    We’re seeing the emergence of Vita Vea

  35. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    Anthem you’ve just moved into 1000% un-ironically a joke category.

    Defending effing Mike Smith when every single solitary shred of evidence proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was GARBAGE!\


    That isn’t complex. It’s weak. Just like your mind.

  36. OneBucPerson Says:

    Slowly but surely we’re cutting into that turnover differential, what is it now, +17?

  37. GhostofSchiano Says:

    Ain’t any tougher or rougher than the Duffer.

  38. rrsrq Says:

    Love the fact that these new Bucs: Adams, Nassib, JPP, Curry, Minter haven’t really been a part of this losing culture (emphasis on this)

  39. Frank Pillow Says:

    Scathing indictment of Smitty’s incompetence and Dirk’s blind loyalty.

  40. Cobraboy Says:

    Isn’t it amazing how an effective pass rush makes a DC look like a genius? Not to mention how it fires up an entire roster.

    IMO, back in the Bucs Glory Days, it was that ferocious DL that made Barber, Brooks, Abraham’ Kelly and Lynch look All Pro (although Lynch often played closer to the LoS.)

    Would Kiffin have been Kiffin without guys like Sapp, Rice, Booger, Hovan, White and Jones?

  41. BucEmUp Says:

    Same dline that Mike Smith had….why couldn’t he get this production..


  42. FireMikeSmith_orDie Says:

    Let’s be clear. The defensive calls are still not great. Duff is an improvement over Mike Smith, no doubt, but that isn’t saying much at all. There needs to be a real DC brought in, along with much better player personnel decisions (i.e., new GM), and I still thinks Koetter needs to go if you can find a bona fide proven HC–if you are just going to replace him with someone worse, which has been what the Bucs have done since Tony Dungy, then no.

  43. cw_buc_crazy Says:

    Five interception/turnovers => three of them in red zone = score.
    out of five, JW gave back ONLY three points…

  44. SOEbuc Says:


    “Five interception/turnovers => three of them in red zone = score.
    out of five, JW gave back ONLY three points…

    Jameis had a good game. It’s this BS Koetter playbook that leaves us out of the end zone when we have good oppurtunities

  45. Warthog Says:

    McCoy had two massive plays in the fourth quarter, at least one of which directly lead to Newton throwing a pick.

    I hope all those who have criticized him for disappearing late in games recognize that he came through in the clutch today.

  46. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    I am neutral at this point with Duffner. Let’s see how the rest of the season plays out.

  47. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    JOE says
    “Bucs sack totals have been second-best in the NFL since mid-October.”


    Holy cr@p, just let that sink in for a minute!!

  48. TOM Says:

    Enough with the stupid Smith talk. Thats history. Lets stick with the present & future. GO BUCS!