Bruce Arians Explains Aaron Donald Lockdown

November 24th, 2020

Rookie beast

The research is complete and Joe can comfortably note that until yesterday, Rams monster DT Aaron Donald has never been kept off the stat sheet in his storied seven-year career — and the Bucs still lost.

Joe still can’t believe it.

(And it’s a great lesson for not diving into exotic wagers. Wacky history is made every other week.)

Joe also is in a happy disbelief that Donald spent a lot of time lined up over Bucs rookie right tackle Tristan Wirfs. And Wirfs did what Wirfs does. It was so damn impressive that Joe had to ask Bucco Bruce Arians about it today. Coach, it seemed that the Rams’ plan was to come out and have Aaron Donald take on Tristan Wirfs. Did that surprise you, and can you talk about how well Wirfs did against him and the line overall against Donald?

Bucco Bruce Arians: I don’t think he had a tackle, so I think they did a pretty good job. And you know Tristan’s been playing really well all year. Yeah, [Donald] has played end. He played 3-technique, 1-technique, he’s played all over. So yeah, we were anticipating it. I thought he might have been over the center more. I thought our guys were very well aware of where he was. We just didn’t block a couple of other guys too good a couple of times.

Well, you can’t pass block perfectly on every play when you drop back 49 times with an immobile quarterback. But the Bucs’ offensive line did a damn good job in that area against what might be the NFL’s second best defense.

Joe finds it interesting that Arians expected Donald to square off a healthy share against Wirfs and spend more time over center. The pregame blubberers on BSPN kept talking about how Donald would be over Ryan Jensen at left guard nearly all game.

Regardless, Joe is very impressed by the line’s historic night against a future Hall of Famer — on a night that another future Hall of Famer came up short.

17 Responses to “Bruce Arians Explains Aaron Donald Lockdown”

  1. Buc50 Says:

    Wirfs handled his business. Rarely heard or saw Aaron Donald all game.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We will have to save a lot of money on the cap…..a good start would be to draft a RT & move Wirfs to LT……Draft a replacement for Shaq if he won’t accept the $7 mil we should offer…

    I know no one likes to talk about comp picks….but with all our FAs & some obviously not staying…..well….maybe we will receive 1 or 2……Fournette, Shaq,Suh,AB……possibilities….

  3. Anonymous Says:

    All Pro

  4. unbelievable Says:

    Wirfs is an absolute stud.

    All-pro indeed.

  5. unbelievable Says:

    Him, Evans, Godwin and Brate all did their job. AB too.

    Everyone else: meh.

  6. rrsrq Says:

    He did not come out as the same fanfare as a Quentin Nelson, but I would say his rookie year has been as impressive if not better – let’s see if he makes All-pro – because of one play in the national spotlight against Khalil Mack, maybe more than one play, he will get Buc shunned

  7. BradentuckeyBuc Says:

    Maybe, but double teaming Donald was directly responsible for 42 yards rushing, a sack, 5 hits, 2 interceptions and hurried inaccurate throws all night IMO.

  8. 2020 Year of the GOAT Says:


  9. Fernando Diaz Says:

    The Oline did their job.
    Even Smith after hurting himself.
    Offensive coordinator and Brady get the blame.

  10. Mike Johnson Says:

    Am I missing something? We lost, didn’t we?

  11. SlyPirate Says:

    We’re way past the question of is Wirfs good.

    The NEW Questions about Wirfs:
    1. Is he the best RT in the league?
    2. Is he the best player on the team?

    If not, who’s playing better? Not White. Not Evans. Not Marpet. Not Shaq or JPP. Maybe David? Has David dominated multiple Pro Bowlers this year? Donald isn’t the first. Just the latest.

  12. Admiral Redbeard Says:

    We need to draft another tackle with our first round pick to play opposite Wirfs (I think Wirfs would be awesome at left or right tackle). Otherwise, just start running the ball 75% of the time. Smith is a good run blocker, but his pass blocking is just not NFL starting caliber.

  13. Bellingham Bucs Fan Says:

    Yes, Wirfs is the best player on the team. I loved the pick, but I honestly didn’t expect this right out of the gate.

  14. Bucboy Says:

    Surprisingly this is Donald’s second straight week without a tackle. Seattle was able to keep him off the stat sheet as well.
    He had 2 official QB hits against Seattle in about 15 fewer snaps. –Joe

  15. Bill M Says:

    Brady has looked rattled. when facing heavy rush pressure. SAINTS Aand Rams games were very similar that way. He is not a mobile qb. No roll outs, etc. The defenses always know where he will be and swarm there. Rarely do we run on second down except for short yardage situations. Hard qb rush and tight pass coverage really get to Brady. He looked grim all game. We kick ass against second tier. Not so good. against physically tough teams. Goff and Rams passing attack were really eating up our defense.

  16. UKBuccaneer Says:

    Those saying the o-line did their job – did you see a clean pocket? Because I didn’t.

  17. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Mike Johnson: Yes, you’re missing something. The point of the article is that Wirfs did a good job when blocking on Donald.