It Is All About Confidence

December 2nd, 2018

Leading a confident defense.

There was something about the Bucs defense today that Joe hadn’t seen in a while.

There was a fire, a drive. Dare Joe say a level of confidence?

The way Kevin Minter buried Cam Newton early in the game on a blitz. Lavonte David later splashed Newton on another blitz. Then there was Andrew Adams flying to the ball with three picks and Jason Pierre-Paul hounding Newton all day.

What seemed like a passive defense under Mike Smith has turned into an attacking unit under defensive coordinator Mark Duffner. And it seems that is contagious, mentally.

Joe asked Duffner after the game if the word “confidence” was appropriate? He agreed.

“Absolutely, it is No. 1,” Duffner said. “I think our team is playing with more of that right now. There is a kind of consistency in plays being made” because of growing confidence.

There is no question defense won this game for the Bucs today. The offense sputtered in the second half. The two three-and-outs the Bucs had opened the door wide for the Stinking Panthers to rally and win. It was there for the taking.

But both times the defense slammed the door on Cam Newton’s big toe.

Just last month, if Joe wrote how the defense would win a game for the Bucs, you’d swear Joe was on narcotics.

No longer is the defense a laughing stock of the NFL.

20 Responses to “It Is All About Confidence”

  1. Mikey Says:

    Encouraging, keep it up, Bucco’s!

  2. Wesley Says:

    They looked surprisingly decent today.

  3. Philly Buc Fan Says:

    Amen, and jamei didn’t screw up. Sign of redemption on the road too recovery. May this be the beginning of a successful run.

  4. Jeffbuc Says:

    Wow it’s been fun to be a bucs fan the last couple weeks. What a great feeling to be competitive. And making plays on both sides of the ball. And special teams. And no boneheaded turnovers. Even though he almost did in the goaline where he threw it to Godwin and Reid almost picked it. But he has looked great avoided pressure and making plays with his feet and arms. That is when he is at his best.

  5. Not there yet Says:

    Still have to play with common sense. Confidence must be what has lineman trying to go high up high on Newton to get a sack, they could have had 2-3 more sacks if Buckner had been telling them common sense things like don’t go high on a 6’5 250 lb quarterback

  6. Buc407 Says:

    Very impressed with improvement of the defense

  7. RyJo Says:

    @ Not there yet
    I share your skepticism, but c’mon dude – savor the victory! Its been a long, long time since our defense has slapped around an opposing team’s offense. Too long. That being said, yeah…there were waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too many missed tackles and missed opportunities, but I imagine the fact that our defense was manned by second- and third-string guys (and guys that were on the practice squad not too long ago) played a big part in that.

  8. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    I haven’t said this in a while but I AM PROUD OF MY BUCS!!!
    Beat the Aints and maybe we can talk about a run. Tough road ahead, but this shows you can beat anyone.

  9. stpetebucsfan Says:

    How can we not be excited at this point? Again if JW simply plays like he has the past two weeks…he didn’t rally the troops to win today…but he had ZERO turnovers once again and largely made great decisions. He doesn’t have to carry this team and if he’s gotten that clue….he could be golden.

    If JW continues his “solid” play and our DL continues to wreak havoc the rest of this year should at least be entertaining instead of embarrassing.

  10. Bucsfan77 Says:

    McCarthy Ford head coach Maybe?

  11. SOEbuc Says:

    Played a strong press defense that has been needed for years. They drafted Carlton Davis who was known as a great man coverage CB in the second to play back. Ugggghhh

  12. JabooBuc Says:

    Not there yet: really? Don’t go high on Cam is your big complaint on the day? Dude, easier said than done. Don’t you think they know that? You have to beat a 300+ lineman in 2 seconds and then, if you’re lucky enough to get a hand on Cam, you have to deal with the fact that he’s the biggest, most athletic guy on the field. Please just get real.

    Their effort up front this week was outstanding. Not only did they get at least 4 sacks, their pressure led to at least 2 of the INT’s that I can think of off the top of my head.

    Joe, I have to say what they are doing defensively over the past couple of weeks is amazing considering the injuries they are dealing with in the secondary and at LB. Extremely impressed with what Dufner is doing at the moment.

    Also, I have to give kudos to JW. 2 straight weeks with no TO’s. This is the kind of play we expect from him. No coincidence that both games resulted in wins.

    Huge test next week. If they win or even if they are very competitive, then I think you have to keep Dirk. This team is clearly playing hard for this guy.

  13. firethecannons Says:

    Good overall team effort
    We need to replace Benenoch and stop trying to make it work with Rojo–his game sux.

  14. Darin Says:

    Yes we all knew smitty was the problem. Duff is doing great. Next up fire Klueless

  15. Bobby M. Says:

    The players hadn’t gelled under Smith….they look more like a complete unit and seem to be reacting well. The d-line is teeing off and the secondary knows there’s plays to be made

  16. SOEbuc Says:


    “Good overall team effort
    We need to replace Benenoch and stop trying to make it work with Rojo–his game sux.”

    Classic Koetter. I thought Barber got injured but it was just Koetter putting in RoJo when we were rolling.

  17. SOEbuc Says:

    Vita had another good game using his strength and pushing back the o-line. Need to the find the perfect DT to line up next to him in round one.

  18. nick houllis Says:

    There is also a greater commitment to the running game, which lessens the amount of plays, rests defense, I MEAN, HOW MANY TIMES IS THE TOP QB ON A LOSING TEAM

  19. TOM Says:

    Need OL & DB help bad. Even tho the DB”s played pretty good yesterday. I like Barber but they need another RB to compliment him. (Hunt is still out there). Just a thought.

  20. Brandon Says:

    I haven’t see one guy’s name mentioned at all along with the defensive standouts from the day… maybe because he never got on the stat sheet… but this dude deserved a few assists from the INTs thrown and pressures. Carl Nassib didn’t record a sack but was constantly almost sacking or getting close and hitting Newton. I thought he played maybe the greatest game ever for a player that didn’t log a single stat.