August 3rd, 2020

Bucs DC Todd Bowles.

There is just one question a major media player in the NFL has of the Bucs this season.

As the Bucs seemingly are going for the Super Bowl or bust, prickly Pete Prisco of CBS Sports crafted one question for each NFL team as training camps opened.

Prisco wonders if the hyped defense can play strong enough to earn a trip to the Super Bowl in Tampa in February?

With all the talent on offense, and a lot on defense, is the secondary good enough to get this team to a Super Bowl?

We know Tom Brady and the loaded offense will score a lot of points for Bruce Arians. We also know the front seven on defense will be good. But what about the secondary? There are a lot of young players back there, and many took their turn getting torched last season. Tampa Bay finished 30th in the league in pass defense. Some young players flashed as the season went along – players like corner Jamel Dean – but this is the unit that will ultimately decide how far the Bucs go in 2020. Can they improve into the mid-teens in the passing rankings?

Well, this is a question the two Joes have wrestled with and there is a split decision at world headquarters among the empty beer cans thrown at each other between the half-eaten bags of Doritos and Cheetos.

One Joe thinks the corners will be fine but is concerned about the safeties, especially with the abbreviated offseason and how that may slow rookie safety Antoine Winfield. The other Joe just didn’t see it with the corners last year and cannot understand why Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht hasn’t manipulated the budget to bring in durable ballhawk corner Ryan Logan.

Regardless, the key to decent pass coverage is quarterback pressure.

So the Bucs need to do whatever they can to make sure Jason Pierre-Paul does not run out of steam come November and December (and hopefully, January too).

19 Responses to “Question”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I’m expecting a steady performance from the front 7 with major improvement from Devin White.

    As far as the secondary goes…..we have everyone back and they all have a year more experience…..they’ve got great speed…..looking for at least slight improvement there…including he safeties.

  2. gp Says:

    Offenses will definitely have the early advantage, league wide, this season. Our secondary was coming on strong at the end of the season but now needs to re-establish themselves on the field.
    It’s on Tom and the offense to keep the advantage out of reach for our opponents until the defense gets up to game speed.
    I anticipate (optimistically) that it will start to click by game three, sooner would be much better.

  3. Casual Observer Says:

    I suspect Winfield will shine as a starter. May just take a couple of games though.

  4. Ron says Says:

    We have invested a lot in our secondary and have good depth and a good defensive coaching staff. Success is always determined by pressure which we have a good front but lack depth, it would nice to pick up a Bennett out of retirement or Matthews for the edges and good rotational player for Vita and Suh. Hopefully someone will shine in camp and rise up to that challenge, as we need a little more security in those areas for the pressure needs to be there. I believe Brady will control the offense and methodically move the ball down the field giving the defense the rest it needs this in itself will add pressure to opposing teams which as we know from Winston leads to mistakes and short fields or defensive scores. Our division has a lot of great receivers in it, so not allowing the time for plays to develop is crucial as we probably have one of the faster secondary in the league.

  5. Erik Hesson - Fine Artist - City of St Pete Says:

    One of the Joes is being a real Nancy boy about our DB’s….

    Carlton Davis was top-5 is Pass Deflections in the NFL.

    Jamel Dean was Top-5 in Pass Deflections in the NFL.

    Jordan Whitehead is a verified stud (why people are not giving him his dues, Idk).

    And Antoine Winfield should be a stud, based on all indicators…

    We are Ballin with Studs at literally every position… Seriously, we have (Potential and established) Pro bowlers, All-pro’s, NFL MVP’s, and HOF’ers at every position basically…. Bucs are Superbowl bound.

    *We just don’t have a ton of depth if guys start going down… (Fingers-crossed) **

    Bet the ‘Over’, trust that.

  6. Ndog Says:

    But Erik I thought individual stats didn’t matter only results?

  7. Roy T. Buford Says:

    I come down that the answer is somewhere in between what each Joe takes on it. That is, the pass D definitely improved down the stretch last year, even with #3 QB continuing to put them in bad positions and short fields with his poor decisions/INTs. Are they there yet? That is TBD. But the short offseason is not as bad as it could be given it’s the same coach/scheme, and mostly the same players. I expect this pass D will be average compared across the league, and even made slightly above average with the continued pretty good pass rush. Meanwhile, the run D will be top 5, easily. With those things, and absent America’s Turnover Machine #3 QB Winston, all arrows point up.

  8. Allbuccedup Says:

    Tony Jefferson and Tavon Wilson are still out there. Maybe Licht needs to release a couple of players and sign one of them.

  9. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:


    Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is buying the XFL.

    That’s unexpected.

  10. August 1976 Buc Says:

    One thing is for sure prickly Pete Prisco, is spot on. No matter who you are. You are only as strong as your weakest link. So as Joe has said over the years, we need consistant pressure from the front 7. If the secondary is exposed on a regular basis, it will not be fun to watch. Nobody here wants to see 8-8 or 9-7, not going all in like they are this year, but who wants 8-8 or 9-7 any other year for that matter. SB or Bust Baby, thats all that matters now. We can lay a foundation to reload, going forward, not just rebuild. Use the Brady window to get another QB to groom and reload. Again its all in time, Super Bowl or bust. Why not see it that way, I have been a fan since the first preseason game in 1976. So I just want to enjoy the ride, No risk it no bisquit baby, fire them cannons!! Go Bucs

  11. PSL Bob Says:

    Can’t believe I’m agreeing with gp on something, but it’s a football rather than social issue, so I guess that’s ok. Brady and the Bucs offense will dominate defenses, and thus opponents will always be playing catch up. That will unleash our front seven and keep constant pressure on opposing QBs. A great help for our young DBs.

  12. DoooshLaRue Says:

    ⬆️ Every thread

  13. SlyPirate541 Says:

    Our new core of DBs have a bad rep for two reasons:
    1. Young. They matured a lot and they’ll be better to start the season.
    2. Position. Worst starting field position. Swap JW for TB12.
    3. Drops. Our TBs had too many dropped INTs. This needs to improve.

    I’m expecting good things from the DB this season.

  14. stpetebucsfan Says:

    This is an area where the “sickness” and the wiped out training and preseason may play to our advantage.

    Our guys were torched early last year and learned the hard way. But by the end of the season that experience started to show. They not only have that confidence to build on…they learned and grew in Todd Bowles defense and they return to the same D and coaches.

    They have no major new learning ahead and minimal adjustment. They are very familiar with Bowles D and his goals and strategies.

  15. gp Says:

    PSL Bob

    Thank you for that

    If we didn’t have to respond back and forth on those ‘social’ issues, this would be a football blog! Imagine that!

  16. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Pressure from the front 7 will continue to make a big difference in the back 4. We’ll be fine.

  17. Pickgrin Says:

    “young players flashed as the season went along – players like corner Jamel Dean ”

    Flashed??? Really?

    Rookie Dean started like 7 games and tied for 5th in the league at passes defenced…

    Carlton Davis on the other side of the field – in just his 2nd year was 3rd in the league at passes defensed with 19.

    OK – so PDs aren’t as good as INTs – there’s that argument to be made (although Rookie SMB did nab 3)- but isn’t a knocked down pass (that would have been a completed catch) – by a defender in proper position – a damn site better than watching Hargreaves “social distance” his assigned man all afternoon week in and week out??

    A good chunk of that #30 ranking for the secondary last year is on Hargreaves btw. If BA had “seen enough” after the first game or two instead of waiting until game 10 or whatever to jettison the secondary’s “problem” – the 2019 Bucs secondary would have likely ranked 10 spots or better higher –
    starting 2 rookies at CB to boot.

    Barring injury (or “the sickness”) I expect we will see very solid play from all 3 of our young starting CBs.

    And if you ain’t excited about our 2nd round rookie safety – you will be soon enough….

  18. Brandon Short Says:

    It’s Logan Ryan not Ryan Logan and we don’t need him. We have the best young trio of CBs in the league. Both Dean and Davis allowed less than 50% completions on the season and were top 5 in pass breakups. SMB is a playmaker in the slot. Anyone with half a brain for football can easily see these guys are going to be excellent.

  19. RustyRhinos Says:

    LOL! We could have called Mike Smiths defense this Pickgrin.
    “a damn site better than watching Hargreaves {“social distance”} his assigned man all afternoon week in and week out??”

    I am very excited to watch our young DB’s play together again this season. Davis, Dean, Bunting are all long wingspan 6′ tall and fast, that can all play DB well. In their second and third seasons for them in same system. With Davis and Dean playing some together in college. Creating close familiarity, camaraderie, chemistry between them. I think this will be a fun season to watch.
    GO! DDB!