Flying To The Ball

September 15th, 2019

Bruce Arians explains.

The one fun thing about watching the Bucs practice in training camp this past summer was how defenders were coming from seemingly nowhere to get their hands on thrown footballs.

This was strange, given what had transpired the past couple of years. Also what was strange was a remark a Bucs fan twittered Joe Thursday night.

When the FOX production crew had to get rid of cameramen due to lightning and forced NFL Network to use feeds from the unmanned cable cameras, a reader of Joe’s twittered that the angle was so weird, he saw Bucs defensive backs defending receivers.


So in Bucco Bruce Arians’ day-after presser on Friday, he was asked why the defense is playing so stout. One can go back to training to see the genesis.

“It starts in the middle with really the front four, attacking, penetrating and freeing up those linebackers,” Arians said. “But it’s really hustle. It’s just everybody getting to the ball. I thought we played extremely hard on defense.”

So the Bucs defense is strong because guys are racing to the ball? Joe’s seen that before.

It was happening often in training camp and preseason. And apparently that has carried over.

34 Responses to “Flying To The Ball”

  1. AlteredEgo Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    Yep !….the D is arriving !

  2. Conte Piscatelli Says:

    Several times I big V chasing down plays, when the big names are playing to the whistle, and at least 8 guys are busting butt to get to the ball, heaven help the couple guys that aren’t. The film doesn’t like, and I’m sure the 2000 coaches on this staff, someone is going to call out a loaf

  3. StonedBuc Says:

    I dont know why everyone is hating on the canera angles? Thought it was a fresh style. Was cool to see the plays develop from behind the quarterback.

  4. Jean Lafitte Says:

    That’s what youth gives you. They may be raw but they’re fresh and quick. Our safety play has been pretty good too. Whitehead is everywhere.

  5. DooshLaRue Says:

    It’s starting to feel like the good old days when our Defense set the tone, when you could almost predict a big play or turnover with reasonable certainty.

    Hell yeah!

    Don’t F it up Jaboo.

    Go Bucs!!

  6. Buc50 Says:

    The camera angle was terrible. It makes me dizzy and I don’t enjoy it. It’s an expensive gimmick that’s unnecessary.

  7. Rayjay1122 Says:

    The Superbowl that Tampa hosts will be a Bucs home game. I say that actually with it being possible if this defense continues to improve so drastically and if we can consistently run the ball with success which has really surprised me because I honestly did not think our OL could run block to save their lives.

  8. Slugglife Says:


    I love that angle. I believe it was CBS all access that had multiple choices on viewing angles available for the game during the National Championship.

    The traditional view limits your ability to see WR battles and defensive back flow.

  9. Slugglife Says:

    Now if Bruce could just defer to the 2nd half and let our defense start the game, we could really set the defensive tone.

    We rarely put together a successful opening drive.

  10. NOSBOS Says:

    It all starts with the samoan mountain in the middle pushing the pocket. It goes without saying making opponents one dimensional plays into the hands of a defense. Early signs prove my off season beliefs that we would be able to accomplish this. And contrary to popular belief our O line is playing quite well to my eye. Check the rushing totals people. This is the NFL, no O line is totally impenetrable. The best O line in the league (whoever that may be) will squander some sacks and allow some tackle for loss every now and then. For years I’ve felt our O line is a better run block O line than pass pro. I’ve read quotes,O linemen prefer run blocking over pass pro because it allows them to hit first rather than waiting to be hit by defenders. # Run the dam football”.

  11. NOSBOS Says:

    They can call this a passing league all they want. The teams that make it they’re business to run the rock around 400 times thru out the course of a season set themselves up to appear in the superbowl. See pats/rams team rush totals from last season. Both over 400.

  12. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    The only reason I didn’t like it was because they focused only on offense. If defense was on camera it was only because offense was. I wanted to see how the defense was positioned and that sort of thing. But it was only because of the lightning.


    It felt like home.

    I was thinking about Shaq. 3-4 defenses tend to rack up a lot of sacks every year often having multiple players with more than 10. Could we be seeing that? As offenses turn their focus to stopping Shaq, other guys will get their sacks.

  13. Tackleblockwin Says:

    The D is playing smarter too. One example would be that I can’t count the number of times last year when our outside defenders did not force the runner inside or fail to push the runner out of bounds. We are doing that now. Not giving the sideline up is huge. Not going to say this is a great defense yet. But they are fun to watch. Without question they are playing smarter and more physical than last year.

  14. Jonathan Limpchimpi Says:

    Bowles is back in the defensive coordinator driver’s seat. He didn’t stand a chance with the Jets long term…who may be the next occupants of the den of depression/malaise in the Meadowlands.

    *I seems to recall a fella who we will not name downplaying the Shaq Barrett signing only to now take credit for his performance. I must be trolling.

  15. teacherman777 Says:

    I hated the camera angles too.

    Made me dizzy too.

  16. Edge of red Says:

    All, for Pete’s sake! The camera angles were not an experiment, they were a necessity as the FOX camera crew that mans the outdoor cameras were called in to take shelter from the nearby lightning strikes(FOX union safety rule) If not for the 2 remote controlled cameras there would have been a large delay in the broadcast time or audio only. The 2 remote cameras (and angles) are used on all broadcasts just sparingly or when helpful. Move on!

  17. adam from ny Says:

    as buc fans see this transformation on the defense…the media and pundits have yet to recognize what’s happening…

    if we shut down the giants offensively, the media will open an eye…especially with the rams and saints on deck after that…and if we shut down those type of high powered offenses, everyone will jump on the jock

  18. Jean Lafitte Says:

    No matter how you slice it the defensive scheme has made the biggest difference. Just us not consistently giving 10 yard cushions has made an meant more tackles nearer the line of scrimmage.

  19. Son of Kobe Faker Says:

    “Run the Rock?

    We were 2-12 on 3rd downs…WE STILL CANT RUN THE ROCK

    The top running attacks ala pats and rams convert and closeout games by converting 3rd downs running…we cant

    our running stats look good but are deceiving

    My Dad and I sees things

    What Barber did was run behind Marpet. Defenses starting next week is going to cheat the fronts and linebackers towart the leftside

    The quicker we start calling sort passing plays and runningback screens, the quicker we lock the division”

    Son of Kobe Faker

  20. Cobraboy Says:

    The one camera angle I liked during the two-camera stint was the field camera on wires up high so you could see the entire O and D from above.

  21. MadMax Says:

    I wish the camera angles were always like that! Its nice to see those views kind of like when i used to play madden on the computer. When i went to hockey games back in the day, I always sat behind the opposing teams goalie just to be able to see the finesse certain players had while moving that puck.

  22. Defense Rules Says:

    How many JBFers would’ve bet money that our 2019 defense would be such a dramatic improvement over our 2018 defense? My guess is NONE. BA & Todd Bowles (and mostly Todd I have a feeling) did a masterful job of evaluating who we had under contract, adding some needed pieces via free agency, then drafting remaining key pieces to make TB’s defensive concepts work.

    There’s been a significant turnover on the defensive side of the ball to get us where we are at this point. But even more importantly, the COACHING has energized it and brought it all together. And not just the defensive coaches. All of the Conditioning coaches have also gotten some superb results. Guys like Vea & LVD made it back in record time. Overall our defense has stayed relatively healthy, a far cry from past years. Personally I think a lot of that (as well as their ‘flying to the ball’) has to do with better conditioning.

    Personally love what BA said about ‘It starts in the middle’. Shutting down the run is a critical element, and that certainly ‘starts in the middle’. But we’re also getting significant pressure on the QB up the middle, and that’s paying dividends also. We’ve also got MUCH better defensive depth this year than we’ve had in many, many years. All of that bodes very well for the future … HOPEFULLY.

  23. BA FAN Says:

    This is going to be a Top Ten Defense or better as long as we have BA! As I have continually said to the multiple Haters: Trust BA he will find a way!

  24. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Defense is definitely better, but let’s remember we were 1.5 yards from losing the game 21-20. I wonder what the comments would be had VH3 not made that big stop.

  25. Defense Rules Says:

    Yes Alvin, we were 1.5 yards away from losing. But guess what, the NEW Bucs defense held firm. And guess what else, WE WON. Defense wins championships.

  26. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Defense Rules. I agree with you. Defense does win championships. However, we beat a one dimensional Panthers team that has McCaffrey. Newton has no arm left at all and can’t run either. Giants are one dimensional as well with a great RB and little else. Let’s see how that defense does against Brees, Goff and the other good QBs with balanced offenses in a few weeks.

  27. orlbucfan Says:

    If the D doesn’t get cursed by Buc Luck aka injuries the secondary and LBs will give Brees fits. Drew is getting a bit aged and football is a young dude’s game.

  28. BigMacAttack Says:

    In other news Derp Koetter is walking around with s big stick up his …..

  29. donuts Says:

    This is all about the BOWLES coaching affect and scheme and attitude. Arians has little to do with this side of ball. The front 4 energy reminds me of the days of Sapp and Rice. Vea and Shaq. The Giants will be game planning against Shaq so lets see how he responds next game to the double team etc.

  30. Defense Rules Says:

    Alvin … Let’s cross the Saints’ bridge when we come to it, not now. Same with the Rams. Watching the Rams-Saints game right now and guess what … BOTH teams look beatable. BOTH will mostly likely be hard-fought requiring some good, old-fashioned smash-mouth football, BUT … this Bucs’ defense has shown a lot of grit. IF they can stay healthy, they’ll give us a chance in probably every game we play this season. It’d be a LOT easier though if the Bucs’ offense was putting up 30-35 PPG. And perhaps that day will come (actually I’d be satisfied with 25-30 PPG; no sense in getting greedy).

  31. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Defense Rules – the path may be a lot easier with the Brees injury. They didn’t take him in for x-rays, which tells me it’s probable ligament damage that could keep him out several weeks. Even if it doesn’t, it’s gonna be an injury that can be re-aggravated easily. This could be a game changer for the NFC South.

  32. WestChap Says:

    What is so exciting about the strong D play is the number of plays that the O left on the field. Yes, we were 1/2 yard from being 0-2… but we were also only an errant or dropped pass from 2-0. Our mistakes kept these 2 games close. We could easily have won both by 2 score margins. Just in case we think the D is a mirage… look at how Jimmy G went off for 3 TDs against Cincy and how McCaffrey went off for 200 yards against the Rams.

    These guys are for real and it all starts with Vita and Suh. Suh was key on the first 3rd and 1 stop… he literally used the poor slob blocking him like a snowplow and cleared out the whole OL for Vita and Minter to register the TFL. Vita didn’t get a sack but several times practically threw the center into Cam’s face. I like speed on the perimeter and back end, but there is no substitute for raw power in trenches.

  33. No Risk It No Biscuit Says:

    Coaching, coaching, coaching.

    Go Bucs!!!

    Btw Koetter is again having trouble scoring from inside the 20.

  34. Jmarkbuc Says:


    You are probably right re: conditioning, or it could be having a coach who actually expects you to hustle back to work. Dirk didn’t seem to have a problem with a huge floppy hat posse.