Takeaway From Todd Bowles

May 25th, 2019

Forcing turnovers.

Until recently, in fact for much of the Lost Decade, the Bucs bucked tradition.

The Bucs had awful seasons prior to the Lost Decade but Bucs always seemed to have a defense fans could be proud of and embrace.

That hasn’t happened in the Lost Decade and the defense has been such a football atrocity in recent years it makes Joe want to stand along U.S. 19 and throw rocks at moving trucks.

Last year the Bucs were so incredibly awful until defensive coordinator Mike Smith was fired, when the defense was hellbent on setting several records for worst defense in the 99-year history of the NFL. It was just mind-boggling.

Incredibly, the Bucs had an awful time forcing turnovers, though the Bucs were not the worst in the league in that category. Scott Smith of Buccaneers.com explains:

… [T]he 2018 Buccaneers didn’t set a very high bar in this category, creating just 17 turnovers. That tied for the sixth-lowest total in the NFL (amazingly, San Francisco was last with just seven takeaways), and was the lowest total the Bucs have ever finished with in a single season. Never before, in 42 previous seasons, had Tampa Bay’s defense produced fewer than 20 turnovers in any given year. That’s remarkable, and it was built on a midseason stretch in which the Buccaneers’ defense went 34 straight quarters without forcing a single turnover.

And as Smith points out, Todd Bowles did a nice job getting his Arizona defenses (2013-2014) to force turnovers when he served at Bruce Arians’ side before taking over the Jets.

Per Smith, Bowles’ Cardinals defense forced 55 turnovers (average of 27.5 per season), which was ninth-best in the NFL in that span. In the four years running the Jets, New York finished third (30), 31st (14), 23rd (20) and 27th (20) in the NFL in takeaways.

So what does this tell Joe? Maybe Bowles was better as a defensive coordinator working hands-on with a defense in order to force turnovers than delegating authority as a head coach.

Also, it could just be that the Cardinals had much better defensive backs. Justin Evans and Carlton Davis are a far cry from Honey Badger and Patrick Peterson.

25 Responses to “Takeaway From Todd Bowles”

  1. Pryda...Sec147 Says:

    I’m so nervous for this defense but again we just have to play average defense not great just average and we will win a bunch of games. This year it’s all on Jameis to cut down his dumb plays play smart football 🏈

  2. '79 Defense Says:

    Damn!… 34 quarters without even one lucky play where the ball ends up in the hands of the defense? That almost seems impossible. However, it is the Bucs we’re talking about.

    Somehow I missed it, but I just looked it up and we now (if Wikipedia is correct) proudly hold the all time NFL record for most consecutive games without a turnover. Man, to be a supporter of this team over the years. Nothing should come as a surprise.

    To think I actually thought we got over the hump in ’97 and would never again see dismal play stretching well beyond a decade.

  3. Todd Says:

    “Maybe Bowles was better as a defensive coordinator working hands-on with a defense in order to force turnovers than delegating authority as a head coach.”

    Ya think, Joe?
    All those words to make THAT point?
    Kind of goes into the no-s**t category, doesn’t it?
    It’s a maybe, Todd. Bowles’ defenses in NY were crap with his friend and handpicked coordinator under him, a guy now the Bucs’ D-line coach who wasn’t exactly in demand as a coordinator around the NFL. Bowles has a lot to prove.–Joe

  4. Defense Rules Says:

    Don’t sell our Secondary short just yet Joe; Bucs have some ball hawks on defense. IF our DLine can force some errant throws, our INT totals could rise significantly. Jaguars in 2016 only had 7 INTs, 14 Fumble Recoveries, 55 Passes Defensed, 33 sacks & 77 QB Hits. But then Jax beefed up their DLine a bunch with Campbell & Dareus etc in 2017. That year they had 21 INTs, 24 Fumble Recoveries, 81 Passes Defensed, 55 Sacks & 105 QB Hits.

    Those are GIGANTIC increases in each category. It would seem logical to conclude that beefing up the DLine (like Jax did in 2017) was a key factor in their defensive improvement, since the coaching staff stayed the same (although Jax did replace 2 Secondary starters … 1 SS & 1 RCB). In any event, it’ll be interesting to see if this year’s Bucs’ defense can show a significant improvement in takeaways because of better talent, speed & coaching.

  5. johnnybuc3 Says:

    If Justin evans is fully healthy he can make a bigger impact than what honey badger did in Arizona. Especially his last few seasons. Kid has elite athleticism and instincts. Also can’t sell davis too short as well. He’s no PP but this scheme should fit his skills perfectly. Just the simple fact that qbs won’t be able to predetermine where they are going with the ball before the snap 90% of the time will make the secondary much better

  6. El Buco Realisto Says:

    How long will be when we can name this defense the toilet bowl defense??? How bad will it be to earn this name????? when it looks like the jets defenses????? When will defense rules learn that the “ball hawks” are not even “chicken hawks” but plump pheasants ready to be targeted!!!!!!! When will the excuses come???? and when will the sheep hold them accountable!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2019 will reveal answers to the sheep, that the “real” fans already know!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. geno711 Says:

    1. This is a league where coaching makes a difference. Unlike the NBA.
    I have not watched Bowles enough to make a decision but for some reason I think he is still evolving as a great defensive mind. I am hoping or guessing that he is going to turn this defense around. I think all the DB’s drafted go right to his strength as a defensive guy.

    2. I am with johnnybuc3 that Justin Evans can be a stud. However, really the fact that he has had a continuing toe injury since November suggests that part of the reason for all the DB choices is that he may have a real long term toe injury and to not expect him much this year.

    3. IMO John Lynch’s neck injury was more severe than JPPs is now as John had nerve issues. No mention of any nerve issues from JPP’s neck so greater likelihood that when he comes back there will be no complications.

    4. Outlandish guess of the day. JPP plays more regular season games than Justin Evans this year. The JPP non displaced fracture heals well and he plays most games this season. Justin Evans toe is a reoccurring weight bearing injury and he misses a lot of games.

  8. stpetebucsfan Says:

    El Buco

    There are rumors of an NFL expansion to other nations. London and Mexico City are prime rumors.

    Perhaps you can hang on long enough to root for whatever Mexico City calls their team.

    You clearly hate the Bucs. You ONLY point out negative facts without ever considering any balance. Since you hate the Bucs so much and have already written them off for ’19 and blast any optimism here does than not simply make you a miserable Troll?

  9. NOSBOS Says:

    Todd,Mike Edward is a demon. A year from now they’ll be saying stuff like “steal of a draft pick”. Mike Edwards seems to be a football savant when it comes to Xs and Os. He is said to be killing the whiteboard. Combine 40 said 4.5,pro day 40 I think I read 4.4. These young thundercats about to get gang of turnovers. Mainly because they’ll the speed and athleticism to be in position to do so.

  10. NOSBOS Says:

    I’ll keep saying it Mike Minter stated this defense is easy to learn. These boys will be doing less thinking come week 1. Thusly they’ll play faster out the gates.

  11. NOSBOS Says:

    We going to Miami.. And we gone win that b%#&@.

  12. Concerned Oneyed buc Says:

    If the bucs “D” is going to be better this year they need to add someone else as an edge rusher via trade or free agency. Suh is a swap for Mccoy, White is a great addition, without JPP you have no experience on one side of the ball. You have Shaq on the otherside. You can’t depend on Noah Spence so that leaves Nassib. Virtually, little or no experience in the defensive backfield.

  13. SteelStudBuc Says:

    Does Justin Evans have a MRSA toe? A broken toe? Turf toe?
    Broken MRSA turf toe?

  14. Joe Says:


    It is believed to be turf toe.

  15. Destinjohnny Says:

    Let’s see how he does with the worst secondary talent in football combined with a below average pass rush

  16. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Kobe Faker thinks TB made 2 big mistakes

    1- taking the Bucs DC job over Bears DC

    2- thinking this Bucs team will turn around and win which in turn will get him the HC gig after BA”

    Kobe “posts it as he sees it” Faker

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    Realist … Wow, I hope you’re not like this in all your endeavors in life. Clearly you’ve lost all HOPE that the Bucs can be resurrected. All I ever see is vague generalities in your comments; actually more like innuendos. No FACTS whatsoever, just pure ‘conjecture’ on your part.

    And always negative conjecture at that. Heck, you’re starting to act like a jilted lover. Now I’m curious though. Did your ‘she-MC’ treat you so badly that YOU’VE become the ‘sheep’ you so mindlessly reference? Or maybe that negative outlook has led you to become one of the ‘goats’, I don’t know. (No, not the GOAT like Brady … the ‘goats’ as in Matthew 25). Perk up, even if the Bucs don’t win the Super Bowl this year it still promises to be an interesting ride.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    Lol I don’t know why anyone still responds to rhealist

  19. Stanglassman Says:

    I was really excited to see Justin Evans in this Defense. I’m not too optimistic he’s going to fully recover now that we hear he’s still got that tuff toe. I got that injury when I was 17 years old and at 50, I still ice down my foot after a long road runs. I could never explosively push off with that foot on hard surfaces since. I only tell you’ll this because so many people don’t realize what a bad injury turf toe can be. Hopefully JE can return to full strength. I loved the potential he showed his rookie year.

  20. TOM Says:

    I’m just not sold on any of this. The defense, offense, coaches. None of it. Making it sound good & doing it is two different things.

  21. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Regarding Defense:

    White is upgrade over Alexander
    Barrett is upgrade over everybody they tried last year
    Vea is healthy
    Suh is upgrade over McCoy
    They have 3 more rookie DB’s plus a couple of free agent DB/linebackers
    It’s nobody’s fault JPP and J Evans are injured.
    Most importantly, they have a huge upgrade in defensive coaching and scheme.

    Defense will be much better this year- probably 4-5 points/game better.
    3 more wins just out of the defensive Improvement.

    Cut the turnovers and create a running game and you might have something…

  22. Darin Says:

    Cmon Joe leave us truck drivers alone. You wont see a truck driver on his cell. Throw them at the cars that the driver is texting or whatever they do on them.

  23. WhatdaBUCisthis Says:

    Yea, this year is about to be a hell of a ride! As stated earlier in the thread…
    NOSBOS Says:
    May 25th, 2019 at 11:31 am
    We going to Miami.. And we gone win that b%#&@.
    Damn cry babies. Rep your TEAM or get out the way. This is TAMPA!!!
    Go BUCS

  24. Cobraboy Says:

    I has turf toe. Very painful and takes a long time to heal because of reduced circulation in the soft tissues of the toes.

    Mine took almost 9 months before I felt no pain.

    That said, you can shoot it up, Not sure if that is still NFL protocol, but it was way back in The Day.

  25. Concerned Oneyed buc Says:

    The way the defense played last year I think the whole defense had turf toe.