Steps Needed

October 6th, 2019

Vernon Hargreaves, M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis

Those three cornerbacks in the photo above? There’s a great chance two of them must play really well for the Bucs to win today against the Saints.

Shaq Barrett heroics can’t be relied upon indefinitely, and the Bucs aren’t about to stop blitzing, which puts a ton of pressure on defensive backs.

Vernon Hargreaves, M.J. Stewart and Carlton Davis are going to have to tighten up. Bucco Bruce Arians talked about what a bad day the defensive backfield had against the Giants two weeks ago. After the Rams game he was softer in his criticism but it was still there. An interesting take last week by Arians was that those guys need to breathe and relax so they can play more freely. The message was to trust your talent and coaching — and to stop playing like rookies.

Joe was going to write something long about the Bucs secondary this morning. But you know what, Joe’s just not up for the frustration as the sun thinks about rising on this glorious Sunday.

Consider all the draft capital in that photo above. Playing close to their draft level has to start now, at least for a couple of them. A good season is on the line.

38 Responses to “Steps Needed”

  1. DB55 Says:

    If Bridgewater throws for 300+ I’m spending the rest of the week ripping vh3.

    Gators!, do they even play football?

  2. Fire the fans Says:

    Agreed db. If they get shredded today we need to do something

  3. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    All NFL players have talent physically…

    But then NFL is 90% mental……….

    That’s the difference joe… just gotta play smart football

  4. OneBuc55 Says:

    We definitely need to shore up our coverages in the secondary…

    That being said, we’ve done such a good job of making teams 1 demential by erasing opposing RBs that we’re giving up a sh!t ton of passing yards in the process…Even Cam and rookie QB Daniel Jones threw for over 300 against us…

    Hopefully we can find a happy medium; we still need to stop the run first but we definitely can’t keep giving up 300+ yards every week to opposing QB’s or in last week’s case 500…

  5. Bob in Valrico Says:

    IMO, Stewart is the weakest link in the secondary, he lacks the speed to stay with fast receivers on crossing routes.
    Vh3 has made a great game saving tackle against a very good back and also had a pick 6. You have to take the good with the bad with your corners.

  6. adam from ny Says:

    the 3 stooges…or the 3 musketeers 🙂

  7. kgh4life Says:

    VHIII, MJ Stewart and Carlton Davis are playing hard for the Bucs, however, they just don’t have the athleticism to keep up with good NFL wide receivers. Sooner or later Jamel Dean will be one of the starting DBs.

  8. Cover someone??? What do you mean? Says:

    They look and play like Moe Larry and Curly.

  9. Polk Says:

    Hungover after my senior homecoming but I come straight to joebucsfan no matter the circumstances, never fails. Keep it up bro

  10. Ghost of Darrell Henderson Says:

    “If Bridgewater throws for 300+ I’m spending the rest of the week ripping vh3.

    Gators!, do they even play football?”

    Wow! The Gators are 6-0. 3-0 in the SEC. They just put one on Auburn yesterday. Don’t let hatred of UF destroy your life.

    I don’t want to be the “grammar police” but this is a classic miss spell.

    ” we’ve done such a good job of making teams 1 demential”

  11. OneBuc55 Says:

    Lol Ghost, yeah thats pretty bad…good catch, still early my Buc brother…

    As for the Gators, I’m not a fan (Knights & Noles) but I always give respect when it’s due…They look really good this year, especially on defense…Franks getting hurt may have been a blessing in disguise…

  12. Isaac haggins Says:

    Don’t draft a 5’ 9 corner that is slower than the division filled 6’4 all pro receivers in which you play and face twice a year ( 50 percent of your games) Uh DUH !!! Don’t get enameled with one senior bowl practice session by a db labeled to slow by all draft guruy( no stewert has some instincts and grit but he looks like Michael Pittman playing db and clearly has no business on the field on most 3 rd down pass heavy plays and I mean no business AT ALL !!! I personally think Davis is fine but is more of a good 2nd or third corner being forced to be a number one but he is playing pretty good and just has to play the ball harder , not as much the play . If he plays the ball harder and developed he will be a 10 year plus NFL corner . The other two are GM I drafted ya and I can’t see clearly so the team sale suffer and this is the typical meat head football sports fraternity situation all over the league !!! I mean put Bunting , Dean and Davis on the field and let Vern spell all three and at least you have length, speed and big play ability !!!

  13. Pewter power Says:

    Not everyone CAN play close to their draft status. MJ Stewart could play better yes but that ain’t gonna have it he needs to be able to run faster, dude is slow and ronde wasnt a burner but apparently a bigger competitor and smarter. VH3 is a slot corner always will be, he has no business on the outside he will either get burned or give it underneath

    Dont expect the secondary to suddenly have some kind of anomaly of a game against the saints. We can win but it wont be because of those two guys. Davis is alright I think the long term solution on the outside will end up being Dean.

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

    DB’s will play much better and make plays today…BA encouraged them after last game to take a chance when they sense their ability will let them…it will be fun watching them cut lose today…2 INT’s !

  15. Son of Kobe Faker Says:

    Our 3 burnt biscuits cant cover if their life depended on it

    However they can or they are not scared of tackling

    The Key today is to gang tackle Kamara”

    Son of Kobe Faker

  16. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Davis does have the length to play outside. I believe he needs to stay on track and eliminate the holding and PI penalties.

  17. buccaNEAR DOMINATION Says:

    Isaac haggins,

    Don’t hate, self educate. For real though man, make both your moms proud and go get yourself a GED!

  18. Destinjohnny Says:

    Life with the worst gm

  19. Pa Privateer Says:

    It is a very young secondary.

    They are getting experience everyday.

    Ryan Smith was suspended.

    We are blitzing a lot.

    Good God people! We begged for a pass rusher, dreamed of a good run defense, cried for a good Defensive Coordinator, demanded the release about GMC, Drank ourselves silly about our Offensive line and screamed that we wanted productive blitzing………..we now have those things and you are b-witching about the young secondary.

    Offenses put up big passing numbers now on any given Sunday.

    Let’s just enjoy what we have.

  20. K2 Says:

    A well placed ball is almost impossible to defend. But, we can’t be 5 yards off…like the receiver has force field protection.

  21. Gofortheface30 Says:

    Neat – this is what we drafted Bunting, and Dean for – to adjust for the average physical talents of Stewart and Hargreaves. But wouldn’t you know it, Bunting looks like ass, mmmmmm. Look the fact is, if you’re a real stud, you flash early like the Marcus Lattimores of the world and Jalen Ramsey’s, so as far as I’m concerned that guy will be another JAG. We’re a team full of JAGS (jagoffs that is) in the defensive backfield. Ryan freaking Smith has turned in to their best corner sadly, in my opinion and he needs to be one of the outside guys starting next week after he works himself in to game shape

  22. Syl Says:

    I actually think Davis is playing well.

  23. m0j0 Says:

    Davis is our best cover corner, he just needs to eliminate the dumb penalties. We need VH3 to move inside, as he is our best nickel corner. So, either Smith, Dean or Bunting need to take hold of the reins and man the other side.

  24. Ben real Says:

    Onebuc that’s the main reason we’re #1 rush defense teams pass on us … it’s onvious

  25. buccaNEAR DOMINATION Says:

    Ben real… Get real!

  26. orlbucfan Says:

    It took 4 years for (HOF) Ronde Barber to find his groove. This is a brand new HC regime. It’s the 5th game. JHCOAFC!!!! The complaining on here is unreal…and stupid.

  27. Delawest Says:

    JPP. Nassib. Vea. Suh. Barrett

    Davis White. David. Smith/ Dean

    Whitehead Edwards.

    This Defense can help us get closer to the playoffs.

  28. BigHog Says:

    I will not spill tea on our defensive backs because is QB’s we’re flinging the ball all over the place at will, SHAQ would not have 11 sacks …they are young and learning and coming to make plays today! LETS GET IT ON!!

  29. #1bucsfan Says:

    ANTHEM. Hit the nail on the head bro they gotta play smart an that doesn’t just go for the secondary our offense line has had some bad penalties that have gotten good plays called back sorry rojo keep ballin and forgive your offensive line for getting some great runs called back lol WE NEED TO PLAY GOOD CONSISTENT AN DISCIPLINED FOOTBALL THATS WHAT IM LOOKING FOR AN IM STARING RIGHT AT AT YOU JAMIES

  30. Cobraboy Says:

    Passing yards and scoring are all up the last several years in the NFL. Rule changes dictate those upward trends.

    The NFL is becoming like the old Arena Football League: the last team with the ball wins.

    The key to me is 3rd down stops. A team that can get some of those has a real shot at willing, and compared to the last few seasons in TB, this team is actually getting them.

    This D is playing on a higher plane than those in the past…and they aren’t even gelled yet.

    Very promising, even if giving up some yards.

  31. stpetebucsfan Says:


    Are you a Nole? I went to U Cincinnati so I have no dog in the intrastate fights. I root for whichever of our state teams have a chance to make a big splash nationally. For about a decade that was FSU…but in sports the pendulum tends to swing and now it’s UF!

    Gators!, do they even play football?

    Are you kidding? LMAO I have NO dog in this fight other than rooting for WHICHEVER Florida U is on top at the moment. I cheer for our state not a specific school. IE I have NO conflict of interest.

    I realize you’re probably just riffing and snarking but wow did you see the game yesterday. Florida has a STOUT defense and ask D.R. what win’s championships. Yesterday was a great example with all the turnovers…the D bailed out the Gator O.

    Lot’s of talent on the O side of the ball…I think they have a caretaker QB but on that team it’s OK. Two of their touchdowns came on single LONG plays..passing and running. When you’re that loaded at the skill positions and OL I think even YOU could play QB for the Gators.

    Is that your natural position? (serious question just curious)

  32. stpetebucsfan Says:

    Oops…apologies for the italic runon…must have used the wrong slash.

  33. Billy_45 Says:

    I believe we will see a different defense today.
    Last week was key to this team BELIEVING they WILL win.

    Davis is the best of those 3 by far. I agree we need Dean to step up.

    Dean and David with Hargreaves in the slot and Whitehead and Edwards should be out DBs by year’s end barring no injuries.

    Smith could well be the X factor

  34. Billy_45 Says:


  35. JimmyJack Says:

    Carlton Davis is the one guy I like in coverage so far. He always seems to be on his guy and in position and most everything thrown his way has been contested.

    The pentalties we’re a big negative but I don’t remember any last week so hopefully he has cleaned up his technique.

    I bet he has the most passed defended on the team and has been targeted less times the Vernon and MJ.

    I wanna focus on Devin White today when he is in coverage. If he can take away so e of them passes over the middle it will be a nice boost to the defense.

  36. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Now that’s keeping it simple Cobra, get off the field. Another version of bend but don’t break.

    Jimmy , I’m not sure who the leader is , but I think we only three between all the starting corners.

    And for pete’s sake ,don’t forget the Margarita’s, DR. It may of been the in the Carolina game.

  37. Bob in Valrico Says:

    been a lucky charm in the Carolina game.

  38. unbelievable Says:

    Welp, so far they are playing like stinky dogs(p)it