Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bucs-Cowboys

December 23rd, 2018

The Sage is hitting hard


“On the road again. I just can’t wait to get on the road again.”

Not these guys.

The Bucs kept it close away from home for the second consecutive week, but let’s be honest — did you ever at any point in this game think the Bucs were going to shock the Cowboys?

Didn’t think so.

The Bucs trailed at the half, which has basically told the tale for the past two seasons. Since 2017, Tampa Bay is 1-20 when behind after two quarters.

The Comeback Kids, they are not.

After appearing to solve their turnover woes in the past month, the Bucs gave this one away. Jameis Winston was crushed from behind, Bobo Wilson mishandled a handoff and the football ended up in enemy hands as Jerry Jones put down his glass of pinot noir and high-fived anyone in the vicinity.

The Bucs now need a victory against Atlanta in the season finale to avoid a last-place finish in the NFC South for the seventh time in eight years. Think of it like this — the Panthers could end the season on an 8-game losing streak and still finish ahead of the Bucs.

You can’t be serious.

By the way, Sunday’s game was poorly played on both sides. The teams combined for 19 penalties, including 7 flags that gave Tampa Bay a first down. The 2018 road slate is in the books and once again, the Bucs ended up 1-7 away from Raymond James Stadium.

Even if the Bucs win in London or Mexico City next year, that will count as a home game.

Here’s how the Bucs won the statistical battle against the Cowboys, only to lose the war and guarantee themselves another double-digit loss season:

* Winston has now dropped his last 12 starts on the road. He was more productive than in the previous two games, but his fumble proved disastrous. He dropped back to pass 51 times, which is a losing formula for this club. Since Winston came aboard in 2015, the Bucs are 2-16 when attempting more than 40 passes.

* On the flip side, Dak Prescott continues to torment the Bucs. In his two starts against Tampa Bay, Prescott has hit on 52-of-61 throws, an astonishing 85 percent completion rate. Who is this guy … a fledgling Peyton Manning?

* Brent Grimes just played his final road game for the Bucs and it wasn’t a keeper. The wear of 12 NFL seasons is showing up week after week for a proud corner. Grimes was exploited repeatedly in coverage and his run support was subpar. Still, he should hold his head high when he walks off the field after Sunday’s finale.

* The Bucs came up short in Dallas, despite doing a solid job on defense against Jason Garrett’s main weapons. Ezekiel Elliott, the NFL’s leading rusher, was limited to 85 yards while Amari Cooper was no factor with 4 catches for 20 yards.

* I said it Sunday morning on the Bucs Tailgate Show on Fox and Troy Aikman said it four hours later: if Adam Humphries signs with the Patriots as a free agent next year, he might catch 100 passes from Tom Brady. Bill Belichick craves reliability. Humphries, who grabbed 10 of the 12 balls sent his way on Sunday, is reliability personified.

* Leighton Vander Esch was the third linebacker off the board in the 2018 draft and Buc fans are now wondering why he lasted that long. The former Boise State standout registered 15 tackles for the Cowboys, including 11 solo stops. It didn’t take long this spring before Rod Marinelli realized he had a stud on his hands.

* The Bucs moved the ball up and down the field, posting 27 first downs, but this offense is suddenly struggling to score points. Since Winston replaced Ryan Fitzpatrick Nov. 25, Tampa Bay has averaged only 19 points. Yards are nice, points are crucial.

* You want stats? I’ll give you stats. The Bucs had more penalty yards (72) than rushing yards (63). Dirk Koetter said Tampa Bay’s offensive line played a heck of a game. Really, coach?

* I’ve seen enough of Carlton Davis to consider him a potential standout. The lanky cornerback played well against the Cowboys and has a bright future — if he’s developed properly. That’s been an issue with young defensive backs in this town for quite a while.

* The Glazers canned Jose Mourinho last week and Manchester United responded with a 5-1 victory on Saturday, playing loose and having fun. Yes, coaching matters.

Bucs legend Derrick Brooks and Sage of Tampa Bay sports Ira Kaufman dive into the Cowboys-Buccaneers match-up and the state of the Bucs on this episode of TAMPA TWO, a production of The Identity Tampa Bay and As always, TAMPA TWO is presented by Caldeco Air Conditioning & Heating.

72 Responses to “Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bucs-Cowboys”

  1. Bird Says:

    Lost last 12 road games.

    Not his fault. Lol

  2. Buc believer Says:

    That’s because the Glazers care MUCH more about soccer the fake “sport”than football! Anyone doubt me?? Why for 5 plus years when they first bought the team did they consistently NOT aspens money on the Bucs but put loads of cash into that stupid over glamorized kids Saturday league?

  3. Troy Says:

    Amen coaching matters. We have a terrible staff from top to bottom.

  4. DB55 Says:

    the Bucs are 2-16 when attempting more than 40 passes.
    You know this and I know this but apparently Koetter does not.

  5. BucLover727 Says:

    Thanks for another great article, Ira.

    Bucs org has a lot of work to do, starting necessarily, by looking in the mirror.

    Go Bucs!

  6. TheNorm Says:

    Soccer is the flea market of sports.

  7. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Nothing about Jason Gump from Ira?

    Looks like team glazers told ira the teflon gump is coming back”

    Kobe Faker

  8. LifeOfABucFan Says:

    I was waiting for Ira’s take..yep..exactly what I sum it up for the masses…

    We need a QB…a real QB..

  9. Rick Says:

    Go Red Devils! Finally a good, convincing win by Man U. So much talent by so underutilized. Must be a Glazer trademark. 😂👹

  10. Ndog Says:

    I’ll ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll wait….

  11. BrianBucs Says:

    Winston is just Not a winning QB in the NFL. Sorry guys, he just isnt and thats the truth.

  12. Ndog Says:

    I’ll ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll wait….

  13. LakeLand Says:


    The Bucs are in urgent need of a RT,OG,LT

    I would like to see the Bucs draft a QB and put him behind this line
    It will be a sight to see

  14. Buc believer Says:

    @Ndog… you will be waiting a LOOOONG time!! The fans on here expect Jameis too though.

  15. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Desparate times calls for desparate measures…

    Jason Gump stays, Kobe Faker goes…

    8 days , 2 hours and change”

    Kobe Faker

  16. LakeLand Says:

    Look at all of the solid O-Linemen the Bucs has passed on during the past 3 drafts. A patched up O-Line don’t work in the NFL.

    It’s too funny

  17. LakeLand Says:


    In 5 years the Lakeland Dreadnaughts will have a larger fan base than the Bucs.

    11 years without a playoff appearance
    High draft picks every year
    And you still have gigantic holes to fill

    Something is wrong with this picture

  18. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    What’s sad is watching GOOD football games the rest of the day after yet another Bucs debacle. It really is hard to stomach.

  19. Boo Says:

    Just how bad must Ronald Jones be?

  20. Mikiebucsfan76 Says:

    I am not down on the Glazers as of now. Remember Jameis was making great strides with Koetter as OC and when Koetter went 9-7 as HC that was better than the Bucs had done in a long time. I don’t think its a owner out there that wouldn’t have given Koetter a chance. The only thing I think many other owners would have done different is, stepped in and force Koetter to fire M Smith much earlier

  21. Ndog Says:

    See what people don’t understand is things like this. Last week against this same Dallas team at home the great Andrew Luck went 16 for 27 which is 59% with zero TDs zero INTs and a fumble yet his team won 23-0. Jameis out performed him in every way vs this same defense on the road yet loses and people want to blame him. SMDH!!!!

  22. Hodad Says:

    Grimes doesn’t deserve to walk on the field next Sunday. I knew he was washed up before Licht begged him to come back for 10 million! Couple that with the 20 million he gave Jensen, that’s 30 million of Glazer loot flushed. No way such a tool keeps his job.

  23. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    @ Boo

    Ronald Jones (ROJO) may go down as one of worst draft picks in bucs history

  24. Anonymous Says:

    It’s time. Bye to Licht, Koetter and Winston.
    Please make the changes necessary. We should
    Definitely start griffin next week. Get kris Richards
    To coach and draft the qb from Oregon

  25. Jean Lafitte Says:

    Damn that Mahomes is something special

  26. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Ndog they also held the Saints to 10.
    Brees was 18-28 127 yds 1td 1int
    Jameis was 34-48 336 1td 0int 1 fmbl today
    Take away the name and who had a better game?

  27. Mikiebucsfan76 Says:

    thank you Ndog that’s what I am talking about Stop blaming Jameis and put the blames where it belongs on the whole damn team

  28. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Make that two fumbles for Jameis leading to 14 points for the boys.

  29. DBS Says:

    Quit trying to make excuses. Winston can not get points on the board. Elite QB’s like Brady, win games even when their run game has bad days. The defense held this team basically in check. So Ndog and crew can give it up. No more of the defense has been putting us 2 and 3 scores down. The excuses are over.

  30. Jean Lafitte Says:

    and all those yards were between the 20’s

  31. Wausa Says:

    Dumb fans and dumb people in the media continue to blame the QB, when the team has poor coaching, horrific special teams, a putrid running game and an awful offensive line.

    No QB in the NFL can win with that much awfulness around them.

  32. Wausa Says:

    If Winston had Brady’s stat line today(patriots won easily) the Bucs would’ve lost by 40.

  33. WeAreLost Says:

    Wausa is dead on. Please get a GM and an above average coach. We CAN make the playoffs next year.

  34. BrianBucs Says:


    Exactly. Winston has had 3 close games here where he could have taken the team on his back and won it like the good ones do. But he could not do it. He just doesn’t know how or have it in him.

  35. DBS Says:

    If the Line was that bad he could NOT move it between the 20’s. He is the perfect example of stats are for losers.

  36. Mikiebucsfan76 Says:

    nobody is making excuses they are just telling the truth. don’t just watch the games understand them and speaking of excuses, so many so call bucs fan just wait for anything little thing to blame a player for. today Winston fumble which was his fault he should have at least look back but if his damn OL had blocked like Bradys OL does this wouldn’t have come about. what happens when Bradys OL breaks down. he throw interceptions or some other F…up

  37. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Sure you can blame coaching up to a CERTAIN degree…..

    But the dumb things Jameis did today goes Way beyond coaching……….. That’s on the player and not on coaching for a QB in his fourth year.

    Sorry, but franchise QBs do not take delay of game penalties…….. How can Jameis lead if he cannot even control his offense based on a HUGE clock blinking in front of him.

    All these Dumb things Jameis is doing is crap Rookies do in their rookie season……. NOT IN YEAR FOUR of them being in the NFL.

    Jameis lovers…….. Just admit now, your boy is not a franchise QB.

  38. DB55 Says:

    Ndog Says:
    December 23rd, 2018 at 9:20 pm
    I’ll ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll wait…
    Apparently there is another, Deshuan Watson who lost to the eagles today. apparently he has to make up for a bad secondary and no running game.

    but he’s got a kicker who is 4/6 from 50+ and ranked #1. A defense that’s ranked #12 and the #6 rushing attack. In fairness I think Watson is their leading rusher. The Texans started 0-3 and then they won 10 in a row.

    Bucs def is ranked around 28th and the kicker is ranked #27 or worse after today. The rush is #28 and the passing is tied for 3rd in scoring. (I double checked and even left the link at the bottom)

    Today the Bucs paid around 1.5 mil to two players who combined for 1 tackle and 1 rec for 24 yards. For 20mil+ on the season they got 6 sacks and 750 yards rec with 4tds (that’s 6th best on the team in tds if you include tight ends)

    Thankfully after the Buc’s games you can see games from all over America with teams playing PROFESSIONAL football americano. You know what I’m saying Vern?

  39. Ndog Says:

    I’ll ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll continue to wait….

  40. Troy Says:

    Ndog you can calm yourself. Mahomes blows your nonsense out of the water. Plays with the 28th ranked defense and 23rd ranked rushing attack. He also has the number one passing attack. 11 wins. This nonsense that Winston has all these excuses for his poor record is just that – nonsense. Winners don’t make excuses. They just win.

  41. Ndog Says:

    Quick question what is their record since they cut Hunt? Yeah 2-2 , and that is with Mahomes played ridiculously well. Thanks for helping my argument Troy.

  42. Ndog Says:

    And oh by the way Troy the Chiefs have one of the best kickers in the league. So I will ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll continue to wait….

  43. Troy Says:

    LMAO with the kicker excuse. I like Winston but he has to own his poor play. The chiefs having cut Hunt, the leader of their mighty 23rd ranked rush offense proves your point how exactly? Their two loses came against playoff teams, one being on the road. Comical how you’ll back poor play. I’ll wait for your amazing come back about Jameis not really having a chance after 4 freaking years. Yep, nobody’s buying it.

  44. LakeLand Says:


    The Glazers has to do a lot of Soul Searching this offseason

    There’s so many needs on this team

    Front office as well as coaches and players
    I hope they get it right, this time around

  45. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Where did you get 23rd ranked rush offense? Fake News!

  46. tickrdr Says:

    At least America’s QB, ProBowler, Jameis Winston is consistent in one thing. The JW3-led Bucs’ offense averaged only 19.16 points per game in 2017.


  47. Troy Says:

    Alaskan, I pulled the stats from pro football focus.

  48. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Ahh it is 23rd in attempts and 17 in yards, I don’t know if they counted tonight.

    I know when Hunt was released he was the leagues 5th leading rusher

  49. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    In addition to being the 5th leading rusher he is a ridiculously good receiver as well and could take a short throw to the house. We do not have that here.

  50. LakeLand Says:

    The Bucs had it in 2015

    They fired Lovie and kept most of his hires
    And everything went downhill

  51. Troy Says:

    I agree that Hunt was a good player, and I want Winston back, but there has got to start being some tough love on this kid. Telling him that everything else on the team is to blame for the loses isn’t helping and won’t change the culture. His playing like a neutered dog now. Freaking Dirk has made him so apprehensive. He’s not using his instincts at all. The fact is that Jameis has been the starting QB during more loses than wins and that has to change. Is it all his fault? No. Is some of it his fault? Absolutely. He needs to play much better. Better coaching next year will help him.

  52. Jean Lafitte Says:


    If someone went through all the trouble to compile a list you would argue and not believe it anyway, so why bother?

  53. Burton21 Says:

    First and foremost, how can Grimes be exploited and then hold his head up high?!? Second, blame it all on Jameis. He’s not blocking for that crappy D Smith! They lose and you “Sage of Tampa Bay” claims its #3 fault! Shame shame shame. I’ve heard on a recent podcast that King is losing a fastball (which I agree), but you may be as well with this post.

  54. Jean Lafitte Says:


    I mentioned it the other day that Jameis was only averaging 19 ppg and you’d think I shot some ones gran mama. They don’t want to be bothered with stats that show why this offense is struggling. If this is Winston’s team then he needs to step up and tell them boys on the line to step up. Because he was humiliated for his stupid off the field stuff, he’s tryin to get back in their good graces. NO …NO you are the General, the frick’n leader, take charge.

    If a lineman continually slacked off on Brady, Brees, Rivers, Roth, Rogers, etc.. they’d be on them and darn sure let them know about it. A QB is like another coach on the team. Jameis needs to step up. Winston should be all over their @#$% for the performance today, especially Smith

  55. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Troy I agree with everything you said.
    As for this offense, it is a totally difference offense without OJ and MeJax. MeJax might be a turd but he changes how defenses play us and OJ might be our teams best mismatch against any team. Not many TEs taking a 15 yard pass 75 yards for a TD.
    We really need to have a run game and bring some balance back to this offense. Jameis shouldn’t be dropping back 50 something times.

  56. Trench War Says:


    For a run game you need run blockers. We don’t possess good run blockers. They get absolutely no push with their legs and can’t get their pad level low so they are neutralized when they are stood up. They even have the luxury of the snap count but often get beat to the punch.

  57. Defense Rules Says:

    @Mikiebucsfan76 … “Stop blaming Jameis and put the blames where it belongs on the whole damn team.”

    @Alaskan … “We really need to have a run game and bring some balance back to this offense. Jameis shouldn’t be dropping back 50 something times.”

    Lakeland … “The Glazers has to do a lot of Soul Searching this offseason. There’s so many needs on this team.”

    NOW PUT THEM ALL TOGETHER AND IT SPELLS 5-10 IN 2018 AND DISASTER FOR THE FUTURE WITHOUT MAJOR CHANGES. Jameis is no ‘America’s QB’ at this point but neither is his performance even close to being the only problem the Bucs face week in and week out. Bucs are a poorly-constructed team, and poorly-constructed teams lose for many reasons … poor coaching, poor field leadership, poor talent among them. Bad feeds off bad.

    And yes, you can add ‘poor ownership’ to that list. Glazers, if you truly love this team … and want to protect your investment … HIRE THE ABSOLUTE BEST PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL MAN TO RUN THIS DANGED TEAM FOR YOU, THEN LET HIM RUN IT WITHOUT INTERFERENCE.

  58. Bucsfanman Says:

    “2-16 when Jameis throws 40 times”!
    I’ve heard this before somewhere.
    Grimes was BAD, flat out bad.
    Drive-killing penalties by EVERYONE in this game, we beat ourselves with a little help from the Cowboys!

    BTW apologists, It helps when your 4th year QB doesn’t take senseless penalties like delay of games. 4th year QB that doesn’t even look at the playclock! And it’s right in front of him?!
    I know, I know, it’s not his fault, yadda-yada!

  59. Jim Says:

    Have a Merry Christmas, everyone…

  60. Bucsfanman Says:

    Merry Christmas Jim!

  61. Ndog Says:

    Jean Lafitte Says:
    December 24th, 2018 at 1:47 am

    If someone went through all the trouble to compile a list you would argue and not believe it anyway, so why bother?

    So I will ask again who is the QB that won games with no run game, a crappy defense and a horrible kicker? I’ll continue to wait….

  62. niko Says:

    Hey BUC BELIEVER, thats garbage. Go read any Man U site and you’ll hear the exact opposite. “Glazers only care about their American Football, the Bucs get all the money while we get siphoned off”.

    the two sports have nothing to do with each other. Football in america has a salary cap, the glazers spend plenty of money, just built an indoor practice facility which cost a fortune, so team could practice in bad weather.

    Your argument has been shot down for years, its pointless

  63. AlanBucsfan Says:

    Andrew Luck and Jameis’ stats were very similar yesterday- the difference is the Colts have invested 1st round picks in their O Line that protect Luck while the Bucs OLine is like a 20 year old fence held together by duct tape.

    Koetter once again blamed the loss on crucial mistakes while praising his OLine-
    He really is clueless as a Head Coach.
    The play where Bobo fumbled was just as stupid as using Howard as a decoy so Fitz could throw to a 3rd string rb earlier in season resulting in interception.

  64. Bucsfanman Says:

    Ndog- No one player has more effect on a team’s play than the QB. However, anyone with any football IQ KNOWS that the QB can’t do everything.
    Just for fun though, I will ask what RB has ever won games without a defense, QB, or kicker? I’ll wait….
    What kicker has ever won games without a QB, RB, or defense? I’ll wait….
    What defense has ever won games without a RB, QB, or kicker? You see where this is going…………

  65. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    Troy Says:
    “Winners don’t make excuses. They just win.”


    Jameis would be the first to agree with you, Troy.
    He makes no excuses.

    For all of the things that he did well yesterday, the things that he didn’t do well hurt us, and he knows it.

  66. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    Jim Says:
    “Have a Merry Christmas, everyone…”


    You too sir. Have a very Merry Christmas, Jim!

  67. Bucsfanman Says:

    Demon- I have to commend you for being grounded in your support of Jameis.
    If you’re a true fan, you WANT Jameis to succeed. You also have to accept that he’s not perfect and makes mistakes.

  68. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    @Bucsfanman, I really appreciate that sir, thank you!

    I have no doubt that we all want him to succeed, in spite of our daily battles here on JBF!

    Take care man and Merry Christmas!

  69. Bucsfanman Says:

    You too, Merry Christmas!

  70. Bucsfan951 Says:

    Hey ndogg, are you still waiting?

  71. Buccfan37 Says:

    A Bucs game in Mexico City? Now that’s the ticket, at least it’s in the neighborhood.

  72. NPRSageBoy Says:

    It’s time to stick a fork in this circus