43 or 34? Bowles Doesn’t Know

January 11th, 2019

Bucs DC Todd Bowles.

Less than two weeks after he was removed from his position as head coach of the Jets, Todd Bowles made his first appearance in Tampa as the Bucs’ new defensive coordinator.

When he served in that role for Bucco Bruce Arians’ in Arizona, Bowles ran a three-man from. That has led to speculation that Gerald McCoy and maybe Jason Pierre-Paul are endangered species because those guys are four-man front defensive linemen.

Naturally, Bowles has had no time to study in depth his defenders with the Bucs yet. So when he was hit with the expected question about what kind of defense he plans to run, Bowles confessed he doesn’t know. But he did say the players he will have on the roster this fall will dictate the style of defense.

“I’ve coached half of my career in a 4-3, the other half in a 3-4,” Bowles said. “I think you coach according to what kind of players you have and what kind of guys you can put where.

“We’re going to be versatile, regardless. As I watch the tape and watch the film, we’ll morph into one of those things, if not both of them, but we need to be versatile, regardless.”

So it seems as if the door is open for GMC to return and perhaps, defensive end Noah Spence will get new life as well. He has a background as an outside linebacker.

It certainly is refreshing to hear Bowles say he will put his players in position to make plays based on their talents.

Additionally, Bowles said he and Arians have yet to decide on a defensive line coach. Current Bucs defensive line coach Brentson Buckner is still under contract. And despite rumors Kody Rodgers, Bowles’ defensive coordinator in New Jersey, is following Bowles to Tampa, that is hardly a done deal.

20 Responses to “43 or 34? Bowles Doesn’t Know”

  1. pick6 Says:

    Mike Smith said similar stuff, we will see if this coaching staff walks the walk. I think there’s plenty to work with in the front 7, even if you move on from a guy or two to play a certain style of defense. As was often discussed in past offseasons, there’s a way to fit a Lavonte, Kwon, GMC or even a Vinny Curry into a 3-4 Under scheme

    No matter the scheme, Tyrann Mathieu would look good in the Tampa Bay secondary and allow the bucs to be less desperate on draft day.

  2. TexBuc Says:

    Call it whatever as long as you play your corners in press coverage and blitz from all directions.

    Texas Bucs Fan Association

  3. Greg Says:

    I’ll never understand why so many fans care about what base defense we’re going to play in when 70 percent of the game is played in nickel…

  4. TexBuc Says:

    Mike Smith defenses historically played 2-gap read and react. Bowles has a history as a aggressive blitzing defenses.

  5. JimmyJack Says:

    Get Bowles a piece for his defense with that 5th pick. It’s a no brainer.

    Our roster pieces will be like a jigsaw puzzle for him. Get him a entire edge piece for his puzzle for his D with that top pick. I’m sure he’ll want a Lineman or LB.

  6. BigMacAttack Says:

    I love this hire. He should thrive here. I think the time to trade Gerald has past. Last draft was the time. They need to restructure his contract to benefit the team and motivate him to win. Gerald still has the skills and this was his best season as a Buc. I’ve been hard on him but really want him to finish his career as a Buc.

  7. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Joe – I think you meant to say, Kacy Rodgers vs. Kody Rodgers

  8. DBS Says:

    Noah who?

  9. Broy34 Says:

    This was.most definitely not McCoy’s best season

  10. Stanglassman Says:

    Kacy Rogers is deciding between the Bucs and Gaints. Guess we will go with Buckner (if he’s still willing and available) if he chooses the Gaints.

  11. sandwichman Says:

    Where the F is the super haters at? U know tmaxcon and the other jerkoff whose name I forget. Hate tamxcon! I waiting for your punk arse reasoning why this is a bad hire!

  12. TOM Says:

    I probably would have stuck with Buckner anyway. But that’s just me. Plus he’s already under contract for 2019.

  13. __TGH__ Says:

    No trade leverage if you come out and say you have no use for certain guys. He knows what he is going to run, just playing coy with the media.

  14. WillieG Says:

    Why are 3/4 and 4/3 the only options? Why not a 5/1/5?

    5 big strong lineman rushing, 1 linebacker to attack the ball carrier in whichever gap he goes, 2 cornerbacks to shadow the top 2 receivers and, most importantly, 3 safety/linebacker hybrids who are smart and fast. The 3 safeties would go where their intelligence guides them, run support or in coverage.

    Today’s game is all about passing. It’s time for the defenses to get innovative.

  15. TexBuc Says:


    5 DL front would limit and restrict defenses ability to disguise who is coming on a blitz package. Blitz heavy defenses such as the one T. Bowles use is really not an all out blitz every play, but different players coming and some DL or OLB dropping out into coverage with many times just 4 or sometime 5 coming. The point is hurry the QB by giving the illusion of defenders coming from all direction.

  16. TexBuc Says:

    A 5/1/5 defense covering a 2 WR, 2 TE, and 1 RB set essentially leaves the defense having to play zone or man to man with zero free safety coverage.

  17. Anonymous Says:

    Why does it have to be one or the other? We can do both… ill tell ya sometimes common sense escapes people!!

  18. rrsrq Says:

    If we are aggressive with blitzes than you have to get the CB who lock down a receiver in those short burst. Greedy if available is the man, let’s create our own LOB. We know JPP, Vea, GMC, LVD, Kwon, Minter Taylor, Nassib and Spence can or have gotten to the QB. Hargreaves and MJ can be probably be decent blitzers

  19. Locked In Says:

    I am a Buckner fan for sure, but I can’t help feeling like it might be best not to hold anyone over from the last coaching staff. Fresh start, fresh philosophy, culture change. Maybe Buckner would be an exception since he has been with Arians before?

  20. TexBuc Says:

    Big disconnect between Licht and defensive coaches. Licht has said it does no good to draft players a coach does not want because they would not play them or use them properly. 2016 draft VHII a press corner and then asked to zone. 2018 draft C. Davis and M.J. Stewart both were press corners in college and then asked to zone predominently.

    My opinion is let them play to their strengths next year playing press man and lets spend draft capital on the best pass rusher which would make the secondaries job easier.