Red Zone Should Be Green

July 22nd, 2020

As a head coach in the NFL, Bucs coach Bucco Bruce Arians’ red zone offenses usually weren’t very good.

But a little research by a gambler shows there’s ample evidence that changed last year. This should also excite Bucs fans about this season.

Warren Sharp is a noted handicapper often seen on FS1. Fans of the late great Dean of Tampa Bay sports radio, the “Big Dog,” Steve Duemig, remember Sharp as a regular Friday afternoon guest with Duemig to review football betting.

Sharp is a big stats researcher who digs to unearth trends that assist in his wagering. Going through “Warren Sharp’s 2020 Football Preview,” Joe noticed interesting info shared on Arians and the red zone.

A big part of [the Bucs’] overall offensive production was the third-best red zone conversion rate (65%). That ranking was notable, because an issue for Arians in Arizona was a lack of red zone production due to the style of his “no risk-it, no biscuit” offense which featured deeper throws and vertical routes.

His 2012 Colts converted just 51% of red zone trips, which ranked 21st. His first two years in Arizona, his offenses converted 52% and 44%, ranked 20th and 28th, respectively. He managed a couple better years in 2015 and 2016 (10th and sixth respectively) before ranking third-worst in his final year with Carson Palmer and the Cardinals. As such, pushing the third-best red zone rate in year one in Tampa Bay with Jameis Winston indicates Arians and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich worked on the red zone offensive structure and is something to be excited about now that Tom Brady is at the helm.

Not just Tom Brady, but foot-rubbing future Hall of Fame tight end Rob Gronkowski, who the Bucs traded for this offseason, is an absolute nightmare for defenses in the red zone.

The whole Bucs offense should make defenses break out into a cold sweat — with Brady, Gronk, Mike Evans, who skies better than most corners, Chris Godwin, who enjoys outmuscling defenders, physical beast O.J. Howard and Cam Brate, who has a history of red zone success.

There is no reason the Bucs cannot match last year’s success in the red zone, or even improve upon it.

10 Responses to “Red Zone Should Be Green”

  1. Roy T. Buford Says:

    The weapons are there; we had them last year too, with Gronk as an added big bonus. His name alone leads will cause coverage nightmares with Evans and/or Godwin/Brate lined up. I think the biggest RZ difference will be with more experience, including better decision making at QB that we’ve had. Second to that will be seeing how Brady can use RoJo and really (for now) Dare O out of the backfield. Man, this could be something.

    C’mon NFL and players…get the COVID/admin stuff sorted out and turn our attention to football!

  2. Craig Says:

    Part of last year’s problem was that our old QB could play normal offense. It was boom or bust. Once he got within the twenty he came apart. His stats worked better from the 25-30, where the coverage wasn’t as much of a prevent.

    We will still need some sort of run game to make red zone play work well, though Brate will be a touchdown machine, he knows how to get some space in the end zone.

    QB play should be way better in this respect too.

  3. Casual Observer Says:

    Brady in the red zone with a first and ten will be fun to watch, for sure.

  4. Jaymiss Pick6 Again Says:

    With the HUGE upgrade at QB there is no reason the red zone efficiency should go down.

  5. Dapostman Says:

    Craig is Mr Fake News. Jesus man the article said the Bucs were 3rd in 2019 in red zone efficiency.

    Putting your fake spin on every article just shows you are not objective at all or is slow to understand.

    Not a credible poster.

  6. Joe Says:

    Once he got within the twenty he came apart.

    How did the Bucs do so well in the red zone if the quarterback “came apart?”

    If the Bucs were third in red zone efficiency, Joe can only hope Brady comes apart like this as well.

  7. Craig Says:

    The Bucs red zone efficiency was 27.3% last season, that was number 31 in the League. What’s not to understand?

  8. unbelievable Says:

    Craig appears to be confused.

    2019 Bucs red zone efficiency (TDs only) was 64.8%
    That was the 3rd best in the league.

    But please, tell us more about how Jameis ‘came apart’ when inside the 20 lol.

  9. Craig Says:

    Take a look at the stats that the Ringer used to come up with that. It includes all touchdowns, not just touchdowns starting from a first down in the redzone.

    That is what I was talking about and Jameis did not do well on those.

  10. Dapostman Says:

    Craig, All touchdowns?

    The Chiefs, 49’ers and the Titans all scored more offensive TD’s than the Bucs. That’s it. 3 teams.

    But but but Jameis didn’t do well with all touchdowns.

    GTFOH! You can blame Jameis Winston for too many interceptions but not TD’s.

    You are either a biased simpleton or just plain ignorant.