Will Blitzing Work?

October 16th, 2020

Enjoys slicing up blitzes.

So Joe was doing some hunting and pecking on the keyboard and it seems what Bucs defensive coordinator Todd Bowles likes to do is the same kind of defense Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers just feasts on.

We all know Bowles likes to blitz. One team that played the Packers this year decided to blitz Rodgers heavily. And Rodgers ate that defense up.

Bob McGinn has been covering the Packers since before Brett Farve was throwing pick-sixes to Deion Sanders in college. McGinn was one of the very first NFL writers to go heavy into film study and break down X’s and O’s and consult with coaches.

(Let’s just say Joe will trust McGinn’s grades far, far, far more than any of the digital litter the Cris Collinsworth-owned PFF tribe pumps out.)

Based on McGinn’s notes and study from the Saints-Packers game in September, whatever the Saints did on defense wasn’t working so Saints defensive coordinator Dennis Allen just threw his hands up and decided to bring the house.

And Rodgers sliced the Saints defense apart, as McGinn details in The Athletic.

Of the Packers’ 33 gradable passing plays, the Saints rushed four men 18 times, five eight times, six six times and seven once. Their blitz rate of five men or more was 42.4 percent, but more telling was their blitz rate involving six or more.

It was 21.2 percent. How extreme was that? The Packers haven’t encountered that much all-out pressure since the opener in 2011 when the defending Super Bowl champions defeated the Saints at Lambeau Field.

Rodgers finished the 37-30 win over New Orleans completing 21 of 32 passes for three touchdowns and no picks. Vintage Rodgers.

The Bucs, per Pro Football Reference, blitz third-most in the NFL behind the Steelers, Crows and tied with the Bills — 40.6 percent of the time.

Unless you believe the Bucs secondary is better than the Saints — it may be — and will force Rodgers to hold onto the ball longer, it’s hard to believe Bowles blitzing as much as he usually does won’t blow up in his face.

IMPORTANT ANALYSIS FROM BUCCANEERS legend Derrick Brooks WITH Sage JoeBucsFan.com columnist Ira Kaufman, talking about getting humbled in Chicago and what the Bucs must do to improve. It’s a new TAMPA TWO, from The Identity Tampa Bay and JoeBucsFan.com.

11 Responses to “Will Blitzing Work?”

  1. El Buco Realisto Says:

    “Word on the street” is that toilet Bowles is panicked that he defense will be exposed!!!!!!!! And that is why they went soft zone last Thursday as to get practice reps for the secondary for the Packers, as toilet bowles knows that Rodgers will shred his secondary in man to man!!!!!!!!!!! But toilet bowles is finding out what the last defensive coordinators already knew, that the secondary that licht bulb threw together cannot play zone!!!!!!!!!!

    go bucs!!!!!!!!! And by “go” hopefully the Packers put up 40 on the toilet bowles defense!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. chris L Says:

    let’s hope we do some adjustments. too many times we just go in with our scheme and hope that gets it done. these coaches have developed players but enough is enough we need to win. part of why we havent been as successful last couple weeks is the rush. we need our 4 man pass rush to get home and what the hell are JPP and devin white doing? need to get home and put pressure without having to blitz. football is won on the line of scrimmage. my worry isnt so much rodgers but wathcing the packers play they do not have any negative plays. they run well and always move forward so you have 2nd and 4, 3rd and 2 etc. they never get in long distance conversions (unlike the buccaneers with the stupid penalties and frequent runs for loss).

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Winfield will get his first and second picks of his career this week. Just saw it in a vision!!!

  4. Mike Says:

    The Bucs can get to the QB with a 4 man rush, but like to stunt their LB’s on blitzes and also loop their DE’s inside to cause confusion and help get pressure on the QB. They don’t blitz out of desperation I don’t think. You have to try and hurry the clock inside the QB’s head. Whether you can do that with a few blitzes or whether it takes a lot, it’s all about shortening the time the QB has to deliver the football.

  5. Defense Rules Says:

    Man I love it Joe when you get all analytical like that. My favorite stat in there though was the Bucs blitzing 40.6% of the time. Since we’ve had 320 defensive snaps, I guess that’s supposed to mean that we’ve blitzed on 130 defensive plays, or 26 times/game average. And since we’ve generated 17 sacks (about 3.5 sacks/game average), that’d mean we’re only getting there about 13 % of the time IF all the sacks occurred on blitzes.

    But wait, we’ve also got 33 QB hits, so if those happened on blitzes then maybe we’re not doing that bad (that’s get our success rate up to 38% on the blitzes). And we have gotten 31 TFLs in those 5 games … nah, we can’t count those against blitzes; that’s stretching it too far.

    The strange thing Joe, is that I have no idea whether the Bucs’ blitzing is a good thing or a bad thing. I feel confident in saying though that our short pass coverage sucks. And if that’s the cost of blitzing so much, maybe our coaching staff needs to rethink a few things.

  6. Darin Says:

    Press boys. Blitz and play tight. Force turnovers. The Bucs own the Pack in Tampa.

  7. PSL Bob Says:

    Blitzes will work if they’re occasionally successful. Our blitzes against the Bolts didn’t work too well. Chicago’s blitzes against the Bucs did. Just a sack here, a QB hit there and it gets the QB a little antsy so he’s throwing more check downs and incompletions. That’s as good as sacks. But, as Joe noted, the success of blitzes will be totally dependent on how well our D-backs are able to cover the receivers, and in particular take away the deep threats (as well as avoiding DPI penalties).

  8. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    If they’re going to blitz so much need to start playing press man because they’re getting ate up with all this soft coverage they’ve been playing! Gotta give the linemen an extra second to get to the qb

  9. orlbucfan Says:

    The finest defense in the league in 2001-2002 did a boatload of blitzing. It was very simple, basic and intelligent. Bowles’ defense is very young but showing some of the early signs. I am hoping to hear them put on a great defensive show Sunday. I have been waiting on the Bucs to play a complete game for several years.

  10. Brandon Says:

    Farve… Favre. There’s my pet peeve. C’mon, Joe. You can do better.

  11. lambchop Says:

    The Packers can neutralize the blitz with more run, which makes sense since they know Vita is done and controlling the clock will keep Tom on the sidelines.

    You have to put pressure on Rodgers and contain the outlets. He will slice you up with all the time in the world, too.