“X” Marks Antonio Brown

January 13th, 2021

She doesn’t look like a stat geek.

One of these days, Joe would love to see NFL Network’s resident stat geek Cynthia Frelund do a breakdown of a game without using a friggin’ number or have to refer to her “models.”

Just once. Once!

Short of that, Joe is guessing this is about as close as she will ever come to breaking down a game with scant use of numbers (Hey Cynthia, some free advice: Just because the NFL wants you to use quarterback ratings doesn’t means it is smart. There is no more useless, misleading stat in football. Not everyone is Joe Buck. Let your mind be open and free.).

Frelund is convinced if the Bucs are to pull an upset Sunday, Antonio Brown will have to have a huge game.

Frelund spelled out why the Bucs need Brown to blow up. In the past four seasons, Marcus Lattimore has owned Mike Evans, sad as that is for Joe to write. Since Lattimore came into the league, Frelund notes, Lattimore had held Evans to one touchdown on nine catches in 20 targets. That’s in four seasons of play.

So as Frelund expects Evans’ bad trend against Lattimore to continue, this should open deep routes for the Bucs’ furniture-tossing, bicycle-throwing receiver Brown, who Frelund says is the “X-factor” for the Bucs Sunday.

And that’s why I’m spotlighting Antonio Brown, who didn’t do much in that Week 9 blowout with 31 yards on three grabs. He must be more impactful on Sunday. Brady, who attempted the most passes of 20-plus yards in the NFL during the regular season, needs to hit Brown on some downfield gashes. The future Hall of Fame quarterback had a roller-coaster ride with the deep ball in 2020, but he finished with a flurry, leading the NFL in deep-passing completions (17), yards (594) and touchdowns (7) in Weeks 12 through 17. Then he completed four of seven deep attempts for 118 yards and two touchdowns in the wild-card win over Washington. If Brady wants to avoid losing to the same team three times in a season for the first time ever, he’ll need some downfield help from Brown.

This is why Joe thinks for the Bucs to win, it has to be in a shootout, not unlike how the Bucs opened the 2018 season in New Orleans.

If the Bucs couldn’t slow down a two-bit backup XFL quarterback, just how in the world and why in the world should we expect the Bucs’ defense to slow down the most loaded NFC team on offense west of the Mississippi?

(Yes, the Superdome is a few blocks west of the Mississippi River.)

45 Responses to ““X” Marks Antonio Brown”

  1. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    GOOD LORD ALMIGHTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    This is spot-on……….I don’t think they can cover AB while paying adequate attention to Evans & Godwin……

  3. gp Says:

    Someones gonna be open

  4. BucEmUp Says:

    To date , I cannot recall a game against the Saints where Mike Evans wasn’t bottled up by Lattimore. I would like to see Brate ( more productive than Gronk, let Gronk Block against this dominant Saints D) more Miller, More Godwin and Antonio Brown should be a focal point this week. He has really showed up of late and they need to outplay the Saints. They need to keep Brees off the field to win. Long drives, eat up the clock 9-10 minutes at a time. AB is going to need to ball out.

    I’m also sure the Saints are going to see that the Bucs have been running a lot of playaction on first downs of late and will adjust to the change. More pre snap motions more quick passes getting our speed guys into space. I would really like to see Miller get some looks but its a crowded room. Just please dont force Mike Evans into the game. It’s not worth the L trying to prove something. Lattimore is a damn good corner and this isn’t worth losing trying to prove Evans can get 100 yards on him

  5. Dano Says:

    [Wrong. Just to play it safe even though the state of Louisiana is west of the Mississippi, Joe checked a map. Knew there would be some smartarse claiming otherwise before Joe wrote this. — Joe]

  6. Infomeplease Says:

    Key in this game is winning the coin flip!!! If we’re having a shootout the BUCS have the ball first!! Go Bucs!! 52 to 48 WIN!!

    My observation:TB is up for it… CG needs to find some stickers!!

  7. Infomeplease Says:

    Stickem,. Darn spell correct.

  8. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Bucemup. 2 years ago with Fitz. Bucs 48 Taints 40. Evans blew up lattimore

  9. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Kobe wants some of that camel toe”

    Kobe Faker

  10. Jmarkbuc Says:

    I’d use Brate more… while they are trying to cover everyone else.. and a RB who could catch would be very helpful.

    Did she say downfield gash?

  11. Robert Says:

    I think the D steps up. No way bowles does not game plan better this time. jump the routes….let them go over the top. I’ll take a few TD’s given up in exchange for giving the safeties room to play and maybe get a TO…. and more time for Brady

  12. Bojim Says:

    Mike will take him Sunday. Agreed. We’re going to have to put up some points.

  13. DavidBigBucFan99 Says:

    To be fair to Brady Gronk dropped a td pass that was right in his hands the last time we played NO, just like Brate did and Godwin dropped 4 passes this past week. This week they have to be perfect leave the hot buttered popcorn until after the game. No dropsies! Offense has to score on every possession. Defense and special teams won’t be of much help. No RoJo is really going to hurt just hope Vaughn does better.

  14. Jmarkbuc Says:

    I actually think it’s all about the D.

    Doesn’t the law of averages indicate we should have 1 shut down game against the Saints, or just in general? Come on Bowles… for one game show something!!!!

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    It looks like the investment of Brady taking care of AB instead of Rojo might pay off……Rojo hasn’t & may not play…..AB may be the key to victory…..

  16. Jerry Jones Says:

    Her body awesome, her face, dumpster fire.

  17. Conte Piscateli Says:

    That last game was Browns first game back. The shutting down Mike has more to do with pass rush and a good number of double teams that allow Latimore to play more aggressively.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    Dewey is correct.

    Evans went off for 140+ yards and a TD that game.

    I believe Vincent Jackson had 2 TDs that day as well.

    Of course, the New Orleans defense is much better now than it was then. But we have enough talent to put up some points. Game will come down to 2 things:

    1. Can our o-line pass protect and run block?
    2. Can we get pressure on Brees with 4 – 5 people consistently?

  19. unbelievable Says:

    *Sorry, DeSean Jackson, not Vincent lol

  20. Priscilla Prenner Says:

    Yay Joe! Sexy bits! (Cynthia Frelund) Maybe I could start to dislike you less for all your ridiculous “Belicheat” references. You are teaching me about attractive women that cover football for a living that I did not know existed. This is good.

  21. Beeej Says:

    Well, if we can’t beat the Slimy Saints we don’t deserve a trip to the Show anyhow

  22. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Oh come on now Jerruh…

    Dumpster fire might be a little harsh.

  23. Cobraboy Says:

    Bet the over, could be 90 points scored.

  24. adam from ny Says:

    she looks like my last yogini…

    and i was her yogi bear

  25. mg Says:

    Thanks for the geography lesson!

  26. RioDeJaneiroBucsFan Says:

    1) Lattimore really covered Mike Evans very well a lot of times. But he also made a lot of penalties when he got toasted, including this season. So, the numbers don’t really reflect the match-up. If you add the pass interferences yards and the TDs avoided by those penalties, it would be a way different picture.
    2) To win this game, the Bucs must play aggressively and even nasty sometimes. I would be ok with a couple of roughing the passer penalties. Make Drew Brees fell some pain (not saying to deliberated injury him). He’s clearly trying to protect his ribs, so hit him hard and he’ll feel fear, the worst enemy of accuracy
    3) Try different looks to improve the pass rush, matchup JPP with their backup guard, bring pressure from the interior. The Bucs have to do the unexpected to make Brees uncomfortable in the pocket
    4) Avoid the soft coverage as much as possible, the CBs must press the receivers and be extremely physical in the first 5 yards from scrimmage to avoid those short routes. I prefer to concede some big plays (Brees doesn’t have the arm strength to make deep passes very often anymore) then be dissected by slants and screens all game long.
    5) Ball security is key, the Bucs have to play smart

  27. Mike28277 Says:

    The “O” will score 28 plus. It’s our D that worries me.

  28. Colonel Angus Says:

    Actually Joe Superdome is on the east side of the Mississippi River. West of a bend, but still east.

  29. Casual Joe Says:

    It’s always made me laugh, how insecure the Joe’s are about the stag community. They hate it so much, it’s honestly laughable at this point.

  30. Joe Says:

    It’s always made me laugh, how insecure the Joe’s are about the stag community. They hate it so much, it’s honestly laughable at this point.

    Only “stag community” Joe knows of are those old Germans in Illinois that drink Stag. That has to be the most disgusting swill man ever sold. What exactly is “insecure” about throwing up?

  31. John Herb Says:

    Devin White will be the difference on Sunday…

  32. Scooter Says:

    Where did Cynthia play football at? probably the same place Al Michaels,Jim Nantz , and Joe Buck did.

  33. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Bottom line is protect Brady and they can win IN SPITE of their often exposed secondary. They will hang 500 more yards on the Saints “IF” Brady has time. If Fitz can hang 48 points on them, then so can Brady. GO BUCS!!!!!

  34. Hoss Says:

    All you got to do is watch AB last game as a Steeler against the Saints and u will see that we need to use AB as much as possible Sunday. He torched the Saints that game.

  35. Christian Says:

    No, I believe Brees will be on fire and Brady will have a breakdown and dismal game and AB will be mediocre.

  36. Airmale Says:

    I’d like to mark that downfield gash with a load of X’s

  37. Morgus the Magnificent Says:

    The state of Louisiana is both west and east of the Mississippi River. And the Superdome is west (and east, and north) of the river, but it IS on the “east bank” of the river…..go figure.

  38. 813bucboi Says:

    defense wins championships!!!!

    GO BUCS!!!!

  39. Bucsfanman Says:

    Somebody said it up top best, “someone’s going to be open!”
    This would be a great game to see ALL facets show up for 60 minutes: Offense, defense, and special teams. The Saints should not beat us the way they have in the past.

  40. Steve M. Says:

    Yes. Gronk needs to block and help the O-Line
    and Braite and Miller need to get involved,
    to throw off the saints.

  41. John rodgers Says:

    Why can”t anybody coach up the sieve of a Bucs secondary? They never defend a slant pass to the sidelines.Actually, they have trouble defending any pass! Brady and restof offense can win this one with a miracle but saints not bucs have a hold on miracles! Jonny

  42. Compass man Says:

    OK, try and follow. Even though, as the crow flies, the superdome is West of the Mississippi. The Superdome is located within the land mass that is considered to be on the Eastern side of the Mississippi River. Don’t believe me? As the river flows North to South, follow the Eastern bank of the river with your finger. You will see that the Dome is located in what is known as the area lying East of the Mississippi. If you would like to wager, name your price. I’ll send you my address.

  43. Who Dat Babe Says:

    Who Dat expect another Bucs Beat Down in the Big Easy 3 times is a charm

  44. Juice 12 Says:

    She is not only very knowledgeable, intelligent , and insightful,but rather stunning as well ! A rare combination if you ask me! Total SMOKES HOW! As for the game Saints need to put lots of pressure on Brady! If they do I’ll take the Saints in a Squeaker!

  45. Juice 12 Says:

    SMOKE SHOW !!!!!