The Flying Bucs

July 30th, 2019

Ballhawk sparks celebration.

Joe happened to text someone close to the Bucs last night and stated rotten defensive back play was so common for so long, Joe isn’t sure whether what has been witnessed the past four days or so is a mirage or the real thing.

With the exception of Mike Evans, who may be having his best camp since he was drafted, wide receivers are being tested and contested. Defensive backs are simply flying to the ball. When Joe talks to defensive backs or linebackers after practice, they have smiles on their faces.

Is defense back in Tampa Bay?

Yesterday there were two examples of Bucs defenders flying to the ball and having fun.

One play, receivers were covered downfield and O.J. Howard was trying to sneak out after a block. And he was open when America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston, threw to him. What neither Jameis nor Howard was expecting was safety Isaiah Johnson racing in from seemingly nowhere and nearly decapitating Howard, knocking the ball loose.

Later, backup quarterback Ryan Griffin stared down a receiver and rookie safety Mike Edwards read the play like a book. He picked off Griffin and darted to the end zone for six.

The play didn’t end there. As Edwards neared the goal line, he began waving at his teammates to join him in the end zone. There, the Bucs defenders lined up while sitting on the ground and styled, pretending to ride the curves of a roller coaster.

Joe cannot remember the Bucs defense having so much fun in practice.

And that seems to be a theme with the defense. Nearly all defensive backs and linebackers say they are having fun because defensive coordinator Todd Bowles’ defense lets guy race around and make plays.

If the defense really is the real McCoy and not a figment of Joe’s imagination, Bucs fans will be having fun, too, on Sundays instead of fastballing remotes at the TVs.

27 Responses to “The Flying Bucs”

  1. Easy Says:

    False start lol

  2. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    LOL! Joe manages to get get McCoy in the article.

  3. Defense Rules Says:

    Must’ve been a scripted play because the receiver on the outside was open but instead Jameis threw into traffic.

    Too early to tell how effective this new aggressive defense will be against the likes of Drew Brees, Matt Ryan or Cam Newton, but I’m loving what I’m seeing right now at least. Still think we have a decent chance to have a Top 10-15 (scoring) defense this year. The foundation for longer term success is being set nicely.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Having fun is great…….and “you can’t have fun unless you are winning” Devin White.

    Let the defense attack…..let the players play….

    I think Todd Bowles will make a difference.

  5. Bucsfanman Says:

    Imagine that! Aggressive, attacking defense in Tampa Bay!
    I think we are going to surprise a few folks this season.

  6. sarasota garey Says:

    How is Ryan Smith doing?

  7. BigPoppaBuc Says:

    I think we’re in for a treat this season as far as finally seeing some aggressive “every blade of grass” type of play from the defense. That being said I also foresee us giving up a good amount of big plays. But I’d rather risk giving up big plays at the exchange of making a lot more as well. Our offense should be good enough to overcome some lapses, but games could be turned and won on the heels of some defensive scores and timely turnovers. This kind of aggressive defense is best when played with a lead, too. We’ll see. I’m pumped. GO BUCS.

  8. Joe Says:

    How is Ryan Smith doing?

    Seems OK for a backup. Nothing more, nothing less.

  9. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Doesn’t look good for Ryan Smith. Four game suspension does not help. Wouldn’t be surprised if you was cut before the final 53.

  10. LordCornelius Says:


    Per some other Bucs writers, they said that the coaches have told Jameis to purposefully force some balls to tight coverage to test the young secondary.

    Not sure if true or not, but if true, even better for how camp is going. I now worry more about O-line than overall D.

    However, this same O-line was able to support a top 3 / 12 offense in yards/points last year with what we all think / hope was a lesser coach. If our defense is also top 12-16, and the offense is more efficient in terms of red zone / turnovers, and our O-line is adequate enough to not hold them back, then watch the f*ck out.

  11. FrankPillow Says:

    Even incremental improvement would represent a significant shift in the Ds trajectory over the past decade. By some miracle, if we end up in the middle of the pack (vs near dead last), this team just might be able to eek out enough wins to make late Oct-Dec football matter again in these parts.

  12. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    AlabamaBucsFan Says:
    July 30th, 2019 at 9:05 am
    Doesn’t look good for Ryan Smith. Four game suspension does not help. Wouldn’t be surprised if you was cut before the final 53.

    I could be wrong but we don’t have to pay Ryan Smith for the 4 games and we get to carry an extra roster spot while he’s suspended……why cut him before the final 53?……we may have some early season injuries that would make him necessary week 5…..if we cut him, cut him then.

  13. Bob in Valrico Says:

    So far there is an attitude change and a willingness to make plays. Its everybody’s responsibilty. Glad none of our DB’s have Brent Grimes selfish attitude.

  14. Says:

    Overhype is going to a new level this year. Facing the same quarterbacks same tendencies same looks but so much hype about instincts. And what’s funny is as soon ans they get in lives games and get targeted by other teams fans will be surprised and shock to see their weaknesses surface.

  15. Diesel Says:

    Only way this was scripted is if it was a 2nd or 3rd and long. OJ was the hot read due to the impending pressure from the interior blitz by the LBs. The safety did what he was supposed to do anticipating the throw. The CB on the outside released off of Breshad Perriman as soon as he saw Jameis release the ball, which is why that receiver looked open to you. Only way that play works is if 3 had got the ball out sooner which is asking a bit much unless he caught and released, or if the receiver in the slot ran a quick slant right behind the blitzing LB to combat the safety shading toward OJ

  16. Don_RyJo(e) Says:

    I share your paranoia, Joe. This entire time, I’ve been wondering if the defense is really kicking arse, or if the offense is slipping and making the defense look better than it really is. Your articles about the o-line and QB weaknesses don’t help with that paranoia.

  17. Diesel Says:

    Agreed LordCornelius.

    Side note: Anticipation and speed by the safety group is critical to a defense like this with the scheme being so blitz heavy. Kudos to the breath of fresh air provided by Bowles and the rest of the defensive staff

  18. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I just read that Jack Cichy is back on the practice field. Great news. I don’t know if he will be great or not, but maybe we can find out now.

    Good to see that injury was not a career ender!

  19. Joe Says:

    Overhype is going to a new level this year. Facing the same quarterbacks same tendencies

    You are going to have to help Joe out here. How would the rookies know? You have a first-year coach with a first-year offensive coordinator installing new elements to a new offense each day while these guys are learning a new defense with a new defensive coordinator and new position coaches in a new league in a new town against guys they have never faced before in pads. How would the rookies know?

  20. Raceto10 Says:

    You’re right Joe lol guess we’ll find out im a couple weeks. I’m a big fan of Edwards and SMB, I’m not saying they don’t have skills but if we’re saying that going against the same receivers and quarterbacks everyday doesn’t play a factor then ok. It seems like Noah Spence blows up donovan Smith every training camp like last year but did nothing in games. Not calling you out just general observation, I’m still in the show me phase and not im training camp but games. That goes for corners and Winston and suh, everybody because I am one who expects now wins than the average fan or columnist

  21. Kalind Says:

    Fine w me! Facing a fast tough defense in camp SHOULD make Sunday’s easier for the offense.

  22. Guinness8 Says:

    You got owned

  23. Anonymous Says:

    How many time has Joe dropped the McCoy line about the defense? Lol

  24. Slugglife Says:

    Yeah, that was an impressive response Joe.

    Had to read it twice to make sure it was impressive.

  25. LordCorn Says:

    Noah Spence wasn’t doing anything impressive in TC last year I thought but maybe I’m wrong

  26. Scurvy Dogs Says:

    Will Bucknick respond???

  27. BigMacAttack Says:

    Is anyone surprised at the false start? If Jameis does a hard count, his tackles fall for it every time. Worst offensive tackles in the league. I wish I could say something good about them.