Plenty In Santa’s Stocking For The Bucs

December 24th, 2019

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This is a joyous time of year, or at least it should be, so in that holiday spirit we offer up the following goodies under the tree for members of the Buc organization.

Bruce Arians: Continued good health for a 67-year-old head coach who approaches each game with accumulated wisdom and the passion of men half his age.

Jason Licht: Proper judgment heading into a critical offseason, teeming with difficult decisions about which players to keep, which players to jettison and which players to add.

The Glazers: The honesty to acknowledge that the status quo hasn’t worked for the past dozen years. The NFC’s longest playoff drought has tested the patience of a battered fan base longing for a reason to believe.

Jameis Winston: The realization that leading the league in giveaways is a formula for failure. It’s not about more work on the field — it’s about more film study to hold yourself to a higher standard.

Ronald Jones: Better technique in your blocking assignments, the final missing piece in gaining the full confidence of Arians on critical downs.

O.J. Howard: More grit and determination to complement all that ability. Right now, you are more of an athlete than you are a football player. It’s time to change that dynamic.

Demar Dotson: One more year in pewter, even if it’s as a backup swing tackle at a diminished salary. After 11 years in the trenches, Dotson deserves another shot at the postseason.

Matt Gay: An offseason to raise the height on some of your extra points and FG attempts. Gay was a solid kicker as a rookie, finally ending Tampa Bay’s annual nightmare at the position, but there’s room to grow.

Shaq Barrett: A vow to stay hungry after establishing yourself as one of the NFL’s premier pass rushers. You’re going to be well paid in 2020, so let’s not allow all that cash to sap your drive to be at your relentless best on the money downs.

Jason Pierre-Paul: An acknowledgement that your work is far from done in Tampa. You have earned the respect of everyone in the locker room, now it’s time to lead a Tampa turnaround that will cement your NFL legacy.

Vita Vea: An offseason conditioning program for a force up front who has struggled a bit in December.

Ndamukong Suh: A willingness to negotiate another 1-year deal with the Bucs rather than to move on to a fifth pro franchise. If Suh asks for too much money, he could be the odd man out in 2020.

Lavonte David: League-wide recognition that No. 54 has played at a very high level since entering the NFL in 2012. If David played in New York, they’d name an expressway after him.

Devin White: Less thinking and more reacting for one of the league’s fastest linebackers. He has a chance to be a perennial Pro Bowler, but White’s not there yet.

Jamel Dean: Workshops with Ronde Barber to study techniques and tendencies. No Buccaneer elevated his game throughout the season more than this third-round corner out of Auburn. He just might be special.

Justin Evans: The determination to salvage a once-promising career as ball-hawking safety. A series of injuries has caused Evans to miss half of Tampa Bay’s games since he was the 50th player selected in the 2017 draft. He’ll need a solid camp just to make the 2020 roster.

Buc fans: Faith in the land of hope and dreams. A famous Beatle once said all things must pass. By George, he just might be right.

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Ira Kaufman launched his professional NFL coverage in 1979, back when Earl Campbell was the toast of the league and Lee Roy Selmon was defensive player of the year. After a lifetime at The Tampa Tribune, “The Sage of Tampa Bay Sports” joined in July of 2016. His twice-weekly podcast and three columns per week appear here year-round and are presented by Bill Currie Ford. Tampa Bay’s only Hall of Fame voter is a regular on SiriusXM Mad Dog Radio and a part of the FOX-13 Tailgate Sunday show, in addition to his other appearances. You can hang out with Ira during every Bucs road games at Buffalo Wild Wings. His schedule is linked here.



19 Responses to “Plenty In Santa’s Stocking For The Bucs”

  1. NPRSageBoy Says:

    And to all, a good night….

    The Sage, as always, speaks the truth

    Peace, out

  2. gotbbucs Says:

    Five…..long…..years…..later, and we’re still waiting for this guy to quit throwing INT’s. Who in their right mind thinks he can correct this? It’s unprecedented.
    This is the day and age where defensive backs can barely touch a receiver and this guy still cant keep it out of their reach.

    The NFL is all about selling hope. What hope would this team be selling by bringing this dude back? The hope that we can be just good enough to a stone’s throw away from the playoffs and a stone’s throw away from a top 10 draft pick? That’s a miserable place to be as an organization.

    Pull off the bandaid fast and let these wounds heal.

  3. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I want wish a Merry Christmas to all……and I want to reach out and let a former Buc, Kendall Beckwith, know that he likely would have been a great Buc….have a great Christmas, Kendall….I hope you’re reading this.

  4. bojim Says:

    Happy Kringle.

  5. No Risk It No Biscuit Says:

    Thanks Sage!

    Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    Always the preferred reading on this site.

  6. Wesley Says:

    A healthy Justin Evans would be HUGE.

  7. Evolvingbucsfan Says:

    Merry Christmas to all the Joe’s

  8. bucsince79 aka bumaneer Says:

    Wonderful stocking stuffer…

  9. jimbobbucsfan Says:



  10. MadMax Says:

    And Jordan Love with our 15-18th pick ๐Ÿ™‚

    Have a great Christmas Ira, Love you man, and love your podcasts!

  11. Defense Rules Says:

    Merry Christmas Sage & Joe’s & all JBFers. Dream BIG! The turning point is right around the corner. Playoffs in 2020 & Super Bowl in 2021.

  12. down in the dirt doug Says:

    There is no joy in mudville because might jameis has struck out—–THANK GOD WE HAVE YOU IRA,THE JOES AND ALL OUR QUALITY FANS ON jbf————–MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. Mike Johnson Says:

    Bucs need to beat ATl to finish on a positive note. Sending their fans into the offseason with a little hope for the next one. ATL is playing decent ball winning 5 of their last 7. We are a bit banged up. Go all out Bucs and Win this one somehow.

  14. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Since Suh left Detroit- they stink
    Suh helped Dolphins to playoffs
    Suh left Rams – out of playoffs

    Bucs have a top 5 run Defense
    The OLine has 3 guys making 10 million plus and they canโ€™t run out of the tunnel!!

    Letting Suh go would be a disastrous mistake…

  15. Buczilla Says:

    Awesome list Ira. Santa, if you are listening, could you also please give Jason Licht a wee bit more common sense for 2020? Maybe if he had just a tad more of a clue (he’s starting to grow on me again) he would see fit to draft a running back that is an actual threat to defenses. Plus, if you could push him into drafting a quarterback after round one, that would be awesome as well. I’d ask you to help Jameis pull his head out of his a$$, but I realize that there are some things that even you can’t deliver Santa.

  16. TOM Says:

    Keep the starting defense intact. Merry Christmas & Happy Hanukkah to one & all.

  17. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Gotbucs clearly has Winston Derangement Syndrome. Ira talks about many pieces within the franchise and all Gotbucs can think about is how much he hates Winston. You do realize he is coming back next year in some form or fashion don’t you. Nobody really believes that they are going to let the QB leading the league in yardage and 2nd in TDs walk out the back door. Winston, even with the picks is much better than journeyman like Bridgewater, Foles, Dalton etc. I can also tell you right now that there is a very good chance Burrow will be bust as well as Tua. Both of these guys were surrounded by so much talent that it is anybodies guess as to whether or not they will be good in the NFL.

  18. TouchDownTampaBay Says:


  19. โ€˜79Defense Says:

    If George Harrison was around today and followed the Bucs, Ira, heโ€™d be singing a different tune.