Five Things

October 5th, 2020

(Photo courtesy of

So much to write about from a fun win by the Bucs. So let’s get rolling with five on this Victory Monday!

Brady still has “it.”

The way park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring Bucs quarterback Tom Brady is playing, he’s going to make a mint from his anti-aging elixirs.

Brady yesterday became the first 43-year old quarterback to throw five touchdowns in a game. And the way he was winging that ball all over the place, it is clear he hasn’t lost any arm strength.

It seems Brady (and maybe foot-rubbing, car-littering Bucs tight end Rob Gronkowski, too) has infused something in the Bucs they haven’t had in years: confidence, character, leadership and perhaps swagger, too.

Former Bucs tight end Dave Moore, now an analyst on the Buccaneers Radio Network, said after the game that he sees the confidence growing with the Bucs. Wins like yesterday can only boost it, knowing they can come back from a 17-point deficit as long as they have Brady.

And Moore said that is vitally important.

Arians said after the game if the Bucs were trailing by 17 in the first half last year, they would have “had their @ss beat by 20.” Could that be in part, because they were crapping in their pants?

Brady, who has seen a lot of football and been part of a lot of historic comebacks, was cool as ice yesterday. No panic. Just surgically sliced up the Chargers’ defense.

After Ndamukong Suh forced a fumble which recovered by Devin White late in the first half deep in Chargers territory, here is how each Bucs’ possession ended the rest of the game:

Field goal
Kneel down

Joe is all about production and that, friends, is production.

Maybe the Bucs’ defense got caught napping thinking they were all that? Maybe they underestimated rookie quarterback Justin Herbert — this dude is the real deal. Maybe the Bucs defense just had a bad day — take away his fumble recovery, and Joe isn’t sure if White’s name was called all game, for example.

Joe is thinking the defense needed this uppercut to get themselves straight. Don’t look for the Bucs defense to be this vulnerable for Nick Foles on Thursday night.

Joe has a hunch we may look back at this game and consider it the point when the Bucs turned their losing fortunes into a playoff team.

Play of the Game

Joe understands a lot of folks will point to one of the big throws that park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring Bucs quarterback Tom Brady tossed yesterday as the play of the game. But Joe would point to an overlooked play by the Bucs’ best defensive player, Lavonte David, in the fourth quarter.

Best defensive player? Yeah, Joe wrote that. The Bucs have excellent players on defense but week in and week out, who produces like clockwork? David. He had 10 solo tackles yesterday and the guy was all over the field.

That’s not an exaggeration.

David’s biggest play may have won the game for the Bucs.

With just under 10 minutes remaining and the Bucs leading 35-31, the game was still nip-and-tuck and the Bucs defense was bending quite a bit for the Chargers’ offense.

On third down with the ball at the Chargers-22, Los Angeles needed 13 yards for a first down. Rookie quarterback Justin Herbert hit running back Joshua Kelley, who was rumbling to the left to try to outrace Sean Murphy-Bunting and David for the first down.

SMB tripped Kelley a couple of yards short of the first down but Kelley had enough presence to try to leap with his forward motion to move the sticks. It would have been damn close.

But no, David blasted Kelley in midair preventing the running back from stretching out for a first down, landing just short of the sticks. Los Angeles punted.

Had the Chargers gotten a first down, Los Angeles had plenty of clock for a chance to take the lead. They never had another shot. On the next Los Angeles drive, Carlton Davis picked off Herbert to seal the win.

Who knows how that game would have turned out if David wasn’t there to chase down Kelley and blow him up in midair to force a punt.

O.J.’s ugly injury

Joe hates to type the following, but Joe has a gnawing feeling that tight end O.J. Howard may not be the same player, at least for a year or two, after suffering a ruptured Achilles in yesterday’s win.

Why does Joe say that? Well, postgame chatter about Howard on the Buccaneers Radio Network was hushed as if Howard had played his last game — of his career.

(Joe will have more later but it might be premature to conclude Howard’s days with the Bucs are over.)

Joe’s research last night revealed a ruptured Achilles has doomed several star athletes. Generally, Howard might expect to be in a boot for some six weeks and then there is rehab. And that would be normal for folks who are just trying to learn how to walk again without the aid of a boot or crutches or a walker, not an NFL player.

A player trying to recover from a ruptured Achilles has a big hill to climb. Many are never the same.

The same injury ended Isaiah Thomas’ great basketball career at 33. Kobe Bryant, then 35, had the same injury and he returned and played only one more season. Internationally-famed soccer star David Beckham also ruptured his Achilles at 35 and after rehab, he thrived and was wanted back in England but a deal was blocked while he finished up playing in the two-bit MLS.

More recently, St. Louis Cardinals All-Star pitcher Adam Wainwright ruptured his Achilles when he was 34 very early in the 2015 baseball season. He resumed pitching in 2016 and is still in the game, but just this summer did he start to remotely look like the pitcher he once was.

The difference between Howard and Beckham, Bryant, Thomas and Wainwright? All were in their 30s when they had the injury. Howard is 25.

Bucs fans may remember running back Earnest Graham tore his Achilles (there are different classifications of Achilles injuries, “ruptured” being one) in one of those horrible London games against the Bears. Graham, 31 at the time, never played again.

Joe guesses there is the slimmest of chances Howard may come back at the end of the season, perhaps if the Bucs make the playoffs. But what kind of condition would Howard be in?

It’s a very bad injury. There was a reason why the guys on the Buccaneers Radio Network seemed so scared.

Brady takes over Den of Depression

Joe has written several times why the stadium on Dale Mabry Highway is the “Den of Depression.” Simply put, the Bucs suck at home (except this year). The Bucs have not had a winning record at home since 2007, the last year the Bucs made the playoffs.

That’s shameful how long it has been. Heck in 2014, the Bucs went winless at home. Gross!

Well, times are a changin.’

It seems park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-invading Bucs quarterback Tom Brady is turning the tables. Brady is now 2-0 in the Den of Depression. In fact, going back to his days with the Belicheats, Brady has never lost in the Den of Depression. He’s 4-0.

Could the Brady Magic finally snap this ugly Bucs streak of losing records at home?

Not telling it like it is

CBS Evening News icon Walter Cronkite would sign off each of his broadcasts with the line, “And that’s the way it is… “

A guy under the employ of the very same network paid to provide information to viewers did just the opposite yesterday and somewhere, ol’ “Uncle Walter” likely rolled in his grave.

What is up with CBS play-by-play man Ian Eagle? The sports voice of reason, Phil Mushnick of the New York Post, often grouses about how network announcers sometimes try to sound too slick for their own good.

Mushnick isn’t wrong.

And Eagle did just that yesterday in the CBS broadcast of the Chargers-Bucs game. Referencing Leonard Fournette not being in uniform, Eagle said of Fournette, “He is sitting this one out.”

LOL, What the hell does that mean?! Eagle made it sound like Fournette didn’t show up because he had to do his quarterly taxes or he had to fill out a mail-in ballot or was too hungover, or he had a baby shower to attend.

Why not just say, “Fournette is inactive with a bad ankle?” To say “sitting this one out” implies Fournette chose not to play, that he preferred to watch the game prone on his leather couch in the air conditioning and not work up a sweat.

Eagle trying to be hip almost came across like he was an unethical huckster, shaming a top Bucs running back. Eagle is better than that.

Who cares?

Joe does. And Joe suspects so too did Fournette and his family if they heard that line on a broadcast beamed from coast-to-coast and watched (and heard) by millions.

48 Responses to “Five Things”

  1. Bruce Blahak Says:

    One more thing…Vaughn will be THE man very shortly. He can catch, imagine that lol

  2. Bucsfanman Says:

    That wasn’t the only bad broadcasting this weekend. There were some college games that were actually worse. Trying to be too witty or cute!

    LVD was a monster in this game. I thought our defense was playing on its heels most of the time, otherwise.

    Too bad about OJ. He looked to have one of his best games. Get well.

    Finally, Tom Brady. One knucklehead poster will claim he’s “lucky” to which the only retort should be, “no, he’s the GOAT!”

  3. Roy T. Buford Says:

    So we know what Joe thinks it takes to shed the “Den of Depression” while everyone in the free world calls it the RayJay. Fair enough!

    What will it take from Bucs QB, team captain, GOAT, six-time SB champion Tom Brady to get Joe off of the shameful thug-description he overuses on probably the best player ever to wear to a Bucs uniform, if not an NFL uniform?

  4. TampaBay AllDay Says:

    Joe we love your site. But literally all of us hate when u call Brady and Gronk those silly names. Its disrespectful af

  5. Roy T. Buford Says:

    Article says: “Referencing Leonard Fournette not being in uniform, Eagle said of Fournette, “He is sitting this one out.” Why not just say, “Fournette is inactive with a bad ankle?” To say “sitting this one out” implies Fournette chose not to play, that he preferred to watch the game prone on his leather couch in the air conditioning and not work up a sweat. Eagle trying to be hip almost came across like he was an unethical huckster, shaming a top Bucs running back. Eagle is better than that.”

    Seriously, a hometown blogger in JBF takes issue with this when several times a day JBF describes Bucs QB GOAT 6-time SB champ and come-from-behind master Tom Brady as all things that would be “unethical.”

    Joe’s glass house has three stories!

  6. Colonel_mp Says:

    McCoy going down will open up 3rd down for Vaughn. At first look, he appears to be a good pass catcher, now he needs to learn to hit the holes with force. Excited to see young Vaughn grow this year. I predict 6 TDs receiving by the end of the year.

  7. Bobby M. Says:

    IMO….Bowles had very little tape to work with on Herbert. It just seemed like we were a bit vanilla vs emphasizing weaknesses. Herbert being tall and mobile was a huge benefit as well. We try to make the QB react a half second faster then he’d like. But Herbert was able to back peddle and allow plays to develop while delivering some big throws on the money.

    I also think our secondary is still very young and undisciplined. They seem to overly rely on our d-line getting pressure and let their guard down occasionally in coverage. It’s like they’re looking to hop the route instead of play proper technique/coverage. Rest assured this has been noticed by other teams and will be exploited, particularly by guys like Mahomes and Rodgers.

  8. adam from ny Says:

    ian eagle spent many years doing new jersey nets games, so he’s kinda like damaged goods…lol

  9. adam from ny Says:

    maybe bunting wasn’t 100% out there with the groin hammy issue…

    and got treated like refried beans

  10. adam from ny Says:

    that’s right we finally got a quarterback…

    and now confidence is oozing out of everyone’s pores at one buc place…

    #LikeBigMacSauceOozesOutOfTrumpsGrill #WhenYouFaceIsTheColorOfAyeBucsThrowbackJersey

  11. August 1976 Buc Says:

    lol lol Roy T Buford “Bucs QB GOAT 6-time SB champ and come-from-behind master Tom Brady.” Not bad Roy lol GO BUCS!!!

  12. jb Says:

    Okay…..Now Walter Cronkite was Fake News? WTF is wrong you people? You’re even trying politicize football! Just Stop! We get your political leanings….leave it at the door!

  13. Crack3rK Says:

    Double dittos on Roy T. Buford and TampaBay AllDay. Hate those stupid @$$ monikers. Joe, Sr. Mary Martin would crack you in the knuckles for padding your essay with that BS!

  14. Bobby M. Says:

    One more thing…..enough with that sideline pass to Watson. There’s something he’s doing that tips the CBs to jumping the route. He runs and catches well in other areas but we have to let that one go.

  15. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Joe your monikers are serious clickbait lol, blogger chum in the water lol GO BUCS!!!
    This is beyond ridiculous since nobody clicks on anything because Joe uses a nickname. Never have. never will.–Joe

  16. pewter941 Says:

    I’m happy we won, the OJ news bummed me out though, hes finished all of his seasons on IR, safe to say he’s injury prone.

  17. IrishMist Says:

    An Achilles tear also ended the careers of Lawrence Taylor and Dan Marino. But Brent Grimes ruptured his Achilles in 2012 and came back to have a few good years with us, so it can be done. And surgical/rehab techniques are improving all the time. Good luck OJ.

  18. PSL Bob Says:

    Bobby M, completely agree with your analysis of the Bucs not being ready for Herbert. The dude played really well and made some beautiful throws. The secondary is used to having the rush and blitzes but pressure on the QB where is has to make short and intermediate throws. So the DBs don’t have to play deep ball. But the Chargers had max protection on their long throws and the receivers were able to get behind the DBs. I think Bowles will be ready for this next time if other teams try the same thing. Plus, there aren’t a lot of other QBs who have the poise, mobility, and accuracy that Herbert displayed yesterday. Gotta give him his dues!

  19. Bird Says:


    Ryan succup may actually be Ryan Sucbalz instead

  20. Bird Says:

    Unfortunately….I think OJ is done with bucs

  21. Steven007 Says:

    Actually Marino had one of his best games his first game back from the Achilles injury. Torched the Patriots if I remember correctly. Irving fFryar had three touchdown catches that game. It certainly didn’t help and already immobile quarterback. But it didn’t end his career.

  22. Steven007 Says:

    Interestingly, my buddies and I made the cover of the times this morning. I’m the guy in red doing the v for victory sign with the goof y azz look on his face… Haha

  23. Brandon Says:

    Joe, I had my Achilles surgically cut in December to rid myself of a crippling heel spur. I was told it was an 8-12 month recovery. Only thing is is that I’m a gym rat and stayed a week ahead of my rehab exercises the whole way. At three months I was back to leg pressing 1000 pounds, and at four months I got the okay to return to sports. I was 100% recovered at six months and it is stronger now at 10 months than it’s ever been. Brent Grimes and DaQuan Bowers played for the Bucs AFTER Achilles injuries. Terrell Suggs was back to dominating six months after he tore his. Great strides have been made in this procedure. If OJ works hard, he’ll be back to 100% by the time off-season workouts resume.

  24. danr Says:

    he also referred to us as the pewter and orange.

  25. TampaTown Says:

    Great pic on the TB Times cover!

  26. danr Says:

    @joe, people do click on the Peter king nicknames since they have links.
    I have, to see the source of the name.
    Soooo. Cant say never have! Joe was referring to coming to this website. –Joe

  27. Steven007 Says:

    TT, thanks man! Was a surprise. Actually had another buddy of mine let me know. Fun stuff.

  28. Max Vasher Says:

    Great Bucs Win! And yet the moniker-whiners find a way to cry anyway. Speak for yourselves @TampaBay Allday and @Roy T. Buford! And instead, maybe try to get into the spirit of things. Monikers are fun, funny… if someone called Suh “hey! Tiny!” I think he would crack up before he would feel “disrespected”. Maybe some of us read too much MAD Magazine as kids, or watched too much Bugs Bunny, or busted a stitch when Professor Wagstaff and Pinky and Baravelli took the field in a chariot in Horse Feathers! Don’t let the Debby-downers influence your sense of humor, Joe! The monikers still crack this Bucs fan up!

  29. Steven007 Says:

    Brandon, you’re 100% correct. As long as the athlete doesn’t do anything stupid they should be fine. Assuming the procedure went well of course. Glad to hear you’re back at full strength.

  30. Steven007 Says:

    Max, I don’t think it’s the one time use of such monikers, which can be amusing, it’s the incessant use nearly every single time that comes off as annoying and unnecessary. I’m pretty sure those guys have a sense of humor But getting pummeled over the head with the same tired nonsense gets old is all. As I’ve told Joe before I’m not going anywhere even though I’m not a fan of that aspect of the blog.

  31. 813bucboi Says:

    BL continues to develop the run game and get others involved…..

    BL called a great game sunday!!!!!!

    GO BUCS!!!!!!

  32. orlbucfan Says:

    Buc shaming and insulting has been cool with a lot of craporate talking heads since like…..1976. Screw them.

  33. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Lol Joe, only refering to your monikers stirring up people enough to comment whether negative or positive not some actual tactic being used by you. Monikers or no monikers whatever, it does not matter to me. I just enjoy this site. GO BUCS!!!

  34. TheBradyBunch Says:

    Would be nice if Joe put the derogatory and boring nicknames in red so that I know what to skip over immediately.

  35. Ftmyersbuc Says:

    When he said sitting this one out im sure most people assume it’s for injury, making mountains out of molehills.

  36. Baby Grace Says:

    “park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring Bucs quarterback” Can you stop this petty child like moniker! This is tiresome and is so juvenile!

  37. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Funny you guys didn’t seem to have a problem with bashing Jameis over the head with insults for the past 5 years and now when Joe jokes about Brady y’all get all defensive?

    Hypocrites. Lighten up.

  38. TheBradyBunch Says:

    Tbbucs I’m sure some are just like me and I find it dumb at this point. It’s Joe’s site and I assume he thinks he’s clever about this. If I was 8 years old I might think it was amusing myself.

  39. Bird Says:


    Funny. You didnt seem to care about beating up jameis’ backside

    Hey. In all fairness. Go noles. I mean. Go bucs

  40. D-Rome Says:

    David’s biggest play may have won the game for the Bucs.

    Agreed Joe. Lavonte David has been the team MVP over the first four games. It’s easy to say Brady is the team MVP but I think it’s Lavonte David.

  41. D-Rome Says:

    Joe guesses there is the slimmest of chances Howard may come back at the end of the season, perhaps if the Bucs make the playoffs. But what kind of condition would Howard be in?

    I have never heard of an athlete coming back from an Achilles tear to being 100% within four months.

  42. Idahobucfan Says:

    I am So tired of the ridiculous moniker JBF has attached to Tom Brady.. seems ironic in an article about being “Too Cute”. Maybe reread this and see if it applies! Go BUCS!

  43. gotbbucs Says:

    We didn’t have a problem making fun of Winston because Joe didn’t have the balls to. Joe continued to treat Winston like a messiah all the way to the end, refusing to lose the “pro bowl” moniker after it was painfully apparent that Winston was a dunce. He still thought Winston was a $30 million QB, when the NFL declared that he was worth less than $1 million.

    I could care less at this point what monikers “Joe” uses to describe these guys. I’ve trained myself to completely skip over them. If he’s cool with making himself look like a tool, who am I to stop him?

    Carry on with the baffoonery, Joe. Full steam ahead.

  44. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    LVD is finally gonna get some national recognition this year.

  45. Buczilla Says:

    Great article. It’s a shame, but I think that Howard is done as a Buccaneer. There were 18 other teams smarter than us in the 2017 draft.

  46. $acbuc$ Says:

    O.J is hurt from too much blocking. Gronk is hurts from blocking. Even Godwin is hurt from blocking. My point you don’t use your mismatch player for blocking. It the backwards approach of a coach. We should have started the season running the ball and using the TEs. We WAS stacked at those positions. Now we are depleted because we didn’t think this thru!

  47. $acbuc$ Says:

    Sac is the New Couch Coach- I have no power at all I wanna start with that statement.

    If I had this team my approach would have been to preserve my receivers by having a heavy load of big sets with Mike or Chris playing slot. Run the linebackers all over the field and then you want have to worry about them popping the running backs hard because they tired. Use Scotty and Jay Mick to run deep and let Tom dink and dunk. That would have the corners and safeties gassed. Then I would bust that power running game out in the 3rd quarter and the unleash a 4 headed monster. Rojo Lenny Shady and Sneak!

  48. $acbuc$ Says:

    Answer This question untalented talent evaluators? How do you expect a single back offense to succeed with one blocking tight end. It’s easier to predict which way the run gonna go. Without a fullback leading the way the running back have to deal with LB coming down hill blasting them. Get a real blocking FB with ability like the niners FB. Or get 2 all around tight ends like Kilttles. If the raider release Jason Witten go get him. We need to figure out a better way to use our talent.