Confidence = Targeting

December 29th, 2019

Bouncing back.

Last week a play not made doomed the Bucs against the Texans, and it was a shocker.

One of the most reliable set of hands on the Bucs dropped a pass that hit him right square in that pair of hands. That was when Mr. Excitement, America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston, tossed a perfect ball to tight end Cam Brate late in the game on fourth down.

The drop all but sealed the loss.

Last week during his weekly presser, Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich was asked how to get Brate to bounce back with his confidence after such a shocking drop.

Leftwich’s answer was simple: Target him again. In so many words, Leftwich said building Brate’s confidence is means showing confidence in him.

“You just design the next one to put him in that position again and he’ll make it,” Leftwich said. “He’s one of our better players. We couldn’t find a better guy to throw that ball to. Sometimes you don’t get the result.

“What you do [is] you come in the next week and you design the same – not the same exact play but the same type of play to put him in position to make those plays. [With] the type of player he is, he’ll make 100 of those plays before he’s ever in a position to [have] what happened last [Saturday].”

Joe wonders if this is Brate’s final game in an ugly Bucs uniform. There isn’t a better guy on the team. And he has Pro Bowl-level talent. But two things are working against Brate. The first is Brate has been sort of shoved aside in Bucco Bruce Arians’ offense. Joe will have more on that from Brate later but this is an offense built around receivers, not tight ends.

Also, Brate has a not-so-cheap contract and the Bucs will need to give lots of guys raises in order to keep them. So every dollar counts. Besides, fellow tight end O.J. Howard is still under his rookie contract.

Brate knows he may be the odd man out. Reporters already have asked Brate if he will return in 2020.

Brate has an Ivy League economics degree. He’s no dummy and knows what contracts are vulnerable when a team has to get under the salary cap.

15 Responses to “Confidence = Targeting”

  1. RTG Bucs Says:

    “Joe wonders if this is Brate’s final game in an ugly Bucs uniform.”
    I hope it is the entire teams last game in those hideous uniforms. I need some new Bucs gear and can’t bring myself to buy that ugly crap.
    But I know what you meany Joe.

  2. RTG Bucs Says:

    *meant Joe*

  3. Jean Lafitte Says:

    Cam Brate will probably end up in NE

  4. Bucs Guy Says:

    Keep Brate and trade OJ. Get a 2nd and 4th for OJ.

    Brate has better performance than OJ. JW has chemistry with Brate, but not with OJ. OJ’s trade value is higher; though I can only guess that’s because he’s younger and on a less expensive contract because he’s not a better player.

  5. Jean Lafitte Says:

    Since T. Brady doesn’t demand 15% of the salary cap they can afford C. Brate.

  6. orlbucfan Says:

    Jameis lost the game last week, not Brate. He’s allowed a drop once in a while.

  7. Tackleblockwin Says:

    We need to get the TEs involved early this game.

  8. geno711 Says:

    Unless he restructures, he should be cut or traded if possible. He has a 6 million salary with no dead cap space. That money is much more valuable to re-sign one of our defensive guys.

  9. Hodad Says:

    Yeah that drop cost us the game, not Jameis’s pick six, and 3 other interceptions. Can’t wait for the Jameis debate to continue next year. As long as there’s 52 other players to point fingers at, Jameis will never be the one blamed for a loss. Speaking of Brate, what happened to his body? He looks skinny in that picture, not what you’d expect from an NFL TE. What a waste of 7 million dollars this year, but not as big of a waste then the 20 million winning lotto ticket they gave Winston.

  10. Couch Fan Says:

    He probably was just in shock the ball was accurately thrown for once.

  11. Ocala Says:

    I like Cam Brate, but Joe is right. The Bucs offense focuses on WR play way more than the TE. I would not cut Cam, but I think the Bucs should explore options of trading him. If they can get a 2nd or high 3rd round pick they probably should make the trade.

  12. Craig Says:

    Brate will still be here. OJ has better trade value.

    If BL is still offensive coordinator next year he will get Brate into the slot more and use Godwin more on the outside. That will cut down on Godwin’s receptions cuz Jameis can’t connect with fast receivers.

  13. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    Time to start the Peter King simile with the ugly, losing, xfl wanna be, vomit inducing, used toilet paper, tenacious skid mark, sh!t stained, filthy, satan’s spawn inspired, dirty, no-good, rotten Bucs uniform.

  14. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    Using Brate on passes would really help reducing a number of Winstons ints. He whole heartedly trusts Brate and has a great chemistry with him. Coach My Scheme I don’t throw to tightends needs to drop his ego and incorporate them.

  15. coverdeuce Says:

    OJ and Brate – 69 catches/105 targets (65%) for 768 yards and 4 TDs
    Perriman and Miller – 44 catches/88 targets (50%) 711 yards and 6 TDs

    The yardage and TDs are marginally different, but that catch rate just makes me shake my head. Imagine how much more efficient this already potent offense could have been if the coaching staff stopped trying to force Perriman and Miller on Jameis.

    Fun fact that pisses me off the most – Ogunbowale had 46 targets on the year. Forty. Six. Almost half of what the TEs saw COMBINED. OJ himself has seen only 52 targets on the year. A guy who should be on the practice squad legitimately took targets from pro bowl talents. I hope the staff can self correct and at least find ways to get OJ more involved, but it’s clear they wasted a year of pro bowl talents to run *their* scheme.