Bucs Must Grow A Pair

October 8th, 2019

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JoeBucsFan.com columnist

Presented By Bill Currie Ford

Somewhere over the Atlantic, the Buccaneers need to grow a pair.

They were pushed around for most of the afternoon at the Superdome,  one week after outmuscling the Rams in a game that gave Buc Nation hope that this year would be different.

Tampa Bay didn’t match the physicality of the Saints on either side of the ball, overshadowing the zeroes put up by Mike Evans and the struggles of Vernon Hargreaves.

Now the Bucs head across the pond, where London’s Calling and the Panthers are waiting, still hacked off about a Week 2 setback in Charlotte where Hargreaves turned in the play of the year.

Jameis Winston was under constant pressure in New Orleans while Teddy Bridgewater often found himself with an unhindered look downfield. The disparity was both obvious and troubling.

Tampa Bay isn’t good enough to lose the line of scrimmage and win football games. Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs suffered the same fate against the Colts Sunday night.

“I’ve got to get the bigs playing better on both sides, on the offensive and defensive lines,” said Andy Reid. “It starts there. When you win, it starts there. When you lose, it starts there, too.”

That message should be printed on a card and handed out to Buc players on their food trays when they board the flight to London.

Changing Of The Guard

Alex Cappa is out

New starters will be along for the ride.

It appears Tampa Bay’s extraordinary run of stability along the offensive line is over. Right guard Alex Cappa is out with a broken left arm and right tackle Demar Dotson is sidelined with hamstring and calf issues.

Earl Watford steps in for Cappa while Josh Wells starts in Dotson’s place against the Panthers, whose 20 sacks rank second to New England.

Half of those takedowns are credited to the tandem of Mario Addison (6.5) and Brian Burns (3.5), the rookie out of Florida State who has the early look of a first-round steal.

A year ago, Donovan Smith, Ali Marpet, Ryan Jensen and Caleb Benenoch each started all 16 games while Dotson missed only one start. That continuity up front helped the Bucs lead the NFL in passing yards.

Tampa Bay’s offensive line depth is about to be tested and the Panthers do a good job of moving Addison around to create mismatches.

Gerald McCoy, still seeking his first sack as a Panther, would like nothing better than to wave goodbye to the Glazers with the Bucs reeling at 2-4 before the bye week.


On the defensive front, can’t you hear Shaq Barrett pleading for some help?

The NFL’s free-agent find of 2019 has registered 9 of Tampa Bay’s 11 sacks. That’s great news for Barrett, who may cash in as a 2020 free agent, but alarming news for Todd Bowles because offensive coordinators are now building game plans to neutralize No. 58.

Can Carl Nassib return to form?

The Saints prevented Barrett from disrupting their offense and this is a copycat league.

The Panthers are a surprising 3-0 since Kyle Allen replaced Cam Newton under center. The undrafted free agent hasn’t thrown an interception in 90 passes while Christian McCaffrey has returned to Pro Bowl form since the Bucs made him a non-factor in Charlotte.

Evans needs to pick up his game — and so do the officials who jobbed the Bucs on at least two critical plays in New Orleans. But the biggest improvement has to come in the trenches.

If the Bucs can avoid a 2-4 hole, the rest of this schedule appears inviting.

The Titans, Jaguars, Lions, Texans and Colts are mediocre. The Falcons and Cardinals stink. That leaves a road game against Seattle and a rematch against the Saints as daunting matchups the rest of the way.

This up-and-down club needs to step up because there’s a season worth saving. The Bucs can go into the bye week feeling good about themselves or they can let Carolina impose its will in this “home” matchup on foreign soil.

There’s no in-between.

Watch the Bucs-Panthers game at 9:30 a.m. at Buffalo Wild Wings with Ira Kaufman at the South Tampa location, 4015 S. Dale Mabry Highway. ARRIVE EARLY! Ira will be there at 9 a.m. (Another full house enjoyed the game at Buffalo Wild Wings in Ybor City today.)

Ira’s Buffalo Wild Wings world tour. A taste of the scene in Ybor City for the Saints-Bucs game. The tour moves to South Tampa Buffalo Wild Wings on Sunday morning for the 9:30 a.m. England game.

Ira Kaufman will watch every road game at a different Buffalo Wild Wings this season. He’ll be there for special early opening at 9 a.m. Sunday in South Tampa for the Bucs-Panthers game in England.

21 Responses to “Bucs Must Grow A Pair”

  1. 813bucboi Says:


    GO BUCS!!!!!!

  2. widerightandleft Says:

    The season can be saved if they get a little help on the backend.The opposing teams qb whoever they are has no problem finding a wide ass open receiver on Slow as muds side ! No problem getting the ball off under three seconds. No chance for Shaq or anyone else time enough to get pressure.

  3. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Grow a pair of …

    DB’s ?
    OL ?
    Playcallers? Oh wait..

    The card about the trenches should be on Lichts food tray.

    Backup QB, in London? 2-4 here we come.

  4. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “Right guard Alex Cappa is out with a broken left arm and right tackle Demar Dotson is sidelined with hamstring and calf issues.” – Joe

    Do we know Dotson will be out for the game? Could they just be giving him practices off?

    If Cappa was injured, that explains why Winston had no time. They must have pulled him and put in the backup. I wasn’t paying much attention to be honest. I was nursing a migraine Sunday.

  5. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    So far as development of the secondary, I do not see us bringing in anyone new this year. The secondary is young, and we have coaches who teach. The secondary will improve, but it will take some time.

  6. Evolvingbucsfan Says:

    Bonzai, Cappa injured his arm in the 2nd Qtr, played the rest of the game with a broken arm.

  7. Jimmy Says:

    Ira, you have some real balls complaining about a pass rush. Weren’t you screaming at Joe for the Bucs to draft a GD middle linebacker with the No. 5 pick when there were all sorts of pass rushers available at No. 5?

    Now you are complaining the Bucs don’t have a pass rush when you begged the Bucs not to draft a pass rusher?

    You sound like a two-faced hypocrite.

  8. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    Ira says: “I’ve got to get the bigs playing better on both sides, on the offensive and defensive lines,” said Andy Reid. “It starts there. When you win, it starts there. When you lose, it starts there, too.”

    That message should be printed on a card and handed out to Buc players on their food trays when they board the flight to London.

    AKick says: That should be TATOOTED on the A$$ of Licht as a reminder this off season.

  9. #1bucsfan Says:

    I was one of those people advocating for white at #5. I honestly thought between Barrett, vea , suh , nassib , LVD an even white that we could creat enough of a pass rush till jpp came back an we would be fine guess not an I didnt think Barrett would do it all by himself but those guys need to step up big big big time an help this secondary out. What ever happens this season we need to beef up the trenches on both sides of the ball thru the draft an FA

  10. ElBajito43 Says:

    I was one of those people advocating for


  11. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Brian Banks is a steal? No. he is doing what he was drafted to do. Now if he would of been a 5th round pick…

  12. D-Rome Says:

    The knuckle dragging mouth breathers called Gerald McCoy soft for years. Not one coach or player ever said that about Gerald McCoy. Strange that as soon as he is gone the new head coach looks at the team and thinks they are soft.

  13. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The combination of Josh Allen, Dee Ford & Michael Bennett totals 7.5 sacks so far this year……Shaq has 9

    Our problem is that others haven’t stepped up…..where are the sacks from the CB/S blitz….other LBs ……DT, DEs?

    We absolutely lost that game in the trenches.

  14. unbelievable Says:

    @D-Rome- nailed it!

    Bucs have never won a game in London. Does anyone really think that’s about to change against the Panther’s d-line? Oh yeah I’m sure Watford and Wells will step up though…. lol


  15. DalvinCookRules Says:

    This team doesnt have talent at key positions. That is never going to change as long as Licht is in charge. Modern technology and advanced analytics are needed to identify those diamonds in the rough and to avoid reaching for players like Aguayo, Hargreaves, Vea, and others.

  16. Pryda...Sec147 Says:

    Devin white is about to be unleashed !!

  17. Pewter power Says:

    Geraldine is soft. As soon as he left the bigs upfront are stopping the run, stop twisting his words because he was specifically talking about the corners. Hes consistently called guys playing hurt tough like godwin and cappa.

    If you are butthurt that we got beat by the saints then you are a drama queen. Beating them once a year does not change the fact that they are consistently one of the best teams in the NFL year in year out, we just aren’t there yet. Dont jump off a bridge over this lost, should have done that after the giants game, I can accept this one.

  18. Cannon Says:

    I suspect that Cappa playing with a BROKEN ARM may have contributed to some of the pressure that Winston was seeing.

  19. ModHairKen Says:

    The Rams were not that bad, the Saints are not that good. Tampa had a bad day against the Saints. The DBs will get better. Lynch and Barber sucked their first year. Remember the whiff kick tackle by Barber? All we saw was Lynch’s backside in 1993, chasing guys into the end zone. Now, they are both on the cusp of HOF. Rome was not built in a day.

  20. BlogTalkFootball Says:

    Thanks, Ira… give the stinking Panthers some bulletin board material. They really needed that extra motivation!

    Do NOT pick the Bucs this week!

  21. Mike Johnson Says:

    IF..Our Bucs are to reach 8-8 this season. They need to go into the bye at 3-3. Not 2-4. This will be a tough game for the bucs. But then again..Aren’t they all for this team?