So Who Is Starting?

November 6th, 2020

Bucs CB Sean Murphy-Bunting.

Joe wrote a story earlier this week that snap counts on Monday night revealed Sean Murphy-Bunting may have lost his starting gig to Jamel Dean.

Usually, SMB started outside and would move inside to nickel corner when the Bucs sent with five defensive backs. Jamel Dean would then enter and play outside. The snap counts from Monday suggested something else.

Yesterday, Bucs defensive coordinator Todd Bowles wasn’t ready to say SMB lost his starting job. Bowles claims the snaps that SMB and Dean get are based on a lot of things including the opponent, their particular assignment on a given down-and-distance and the defensive gameplan.

“It changes all the time,” Bowles said. “It depends on the gameplan and how much is on Sean’s plate and how much is on Dean’s plate. Obviously, [it also depends] on matchup and things we’re trying to do.

“It kind of fluctuates. We think we have three starting corners anyway, so they accept their roles fine. They both play the majority of the snaps anyway [and] they’re in the game the same time probably more often than not, so it’s not that big of a deal.”

Now Joe isn’t sure if this is Bowles way of keeping both corners’ minds right and their confidence up, sort of like a two-bit college coach or a high school coach would say in training camp, “We have three quarterbacks.” No you don’t.

Bowles will have his hands full Sunday night as will SMB and Dean. Not only is Alvin Kamara on the other side of the line of scrimmage, so too will be Michael Thomas.

Better bring your “A” game.

16 Responses to “So Who Is Starting?”

  1. Cobraboy Says:

    In today’s situational NFL the term “starter” is functionally meaningless.

    I agree with Bowles: he has three “starting CB’s. And I’ll add three “starting” safeties.

  2. August 1976 Buc Says:

    We all hope J Dean has been coached up about the instant 5 yard separation given up on a simple double move. GO BUCS!!!!

  3. Pablo Says:

    My wife doesn’t know anythig about football but she always screams out number 23 has to go 😂😂😂

  4. Mike Says:

    After last weeks debacle, I would hope they go back to SMB getting more reps because Dean really got schooled.

  5. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Both are good tacklers……and we need to tackle Sunday night……

    I suspect our offense will crank it up a notch…..we’ll need to.

  6. Neal Says:

    Not really a great analogy to Quarterbacks since you never have more than one on the field at any given time. We actually have 3 CBs on the field most of the time so they are in fact all “starters”. Playing one or the other outside 100% of the time just leaves the defense open to match up problems and Bowles knows that, so it seems like he was actually being honest.

  7. Mitch Says:

    I think Dean is just greedy and gets caught looking at the QB sometimes. He thinks he can recover because he is so fast ( even though he looked slow vs Giants), and maybe sometimes that’s the case. However, he really needs to play smarter, and take more calculated risks instead of being so overly aggressive all the time.

  8. Youngbucs Says:

    Joe dean reminds me of talib in first couple of seasons very inconsistent but the talent is there.

  9. Pewter Power Says:

    Come on now giants receivers, Saints receivers??? They will both be playing the majority of snaps unless we struggle to stop the run again

  10. Capt.Tim Says:

    I dunno.
    Its getting to be common knowledge, that Dean always bites on the double move.
    Even the terrible announce team knew about it.
    You dont want a guy on the field, against Drew Brees, who habitually gives up the homerun.

  11. Soggy Says:

    Don’t think we are going to stop them much with bress throwing fast and receivers getting open on quick routes, What we have to do is SCORE SCORE SCORE AND SCORE SOME MORE>>OH YA.. FULL THROTTLE BABY>>AINT’S ARE GOING HOME DOWN IN THE DIVISION…

  12. cmurda Says:

    That’s a great answer by Bowles. I have certainly gained respect for Todd. He impressively has made some very nice adjustments at halftime which have been instrumental to some of our close wins. i think he chose his words wisely as to not hurt any of his DB’s feelings. Truth is Dean is a better shutdown corner than SMB but I think SMB’s future could end up being bright. He’s got to learn how to dominate the mental part of the position and his ballhawk skills can be better utilized. Speed is not his game. That’s Dean’s game.

  13. cmurda Says:

    @Soggy. The thing is that’s all Brees can ddo. Unless a receiver is wiiiddeee open downfield, he can’t get it there with his noodle arm. Todd knows this. I expect coverage disguises, few blitzes and LB and safety help on the flats routes. We’ve already started to see Winfield’s skills and he’s only going to blossom further. He could be a bigtime difference maker in this game.

  14. Brad Says:

    Who’s starting for the saints is more interesting. Brees has missed the past 2 practices with a bad throwing shoulder. He doesn’t miss practices.

  15. Soggy Says:

    @cmurda, That would be icing on the cake, I will pulling for our guys, A little chatter about JW starting, would’nt that be interesting..

  16. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Hope last week was a learning experience and a wake up call for both Jimmy Dean and SMall Buncakes.