Even Champions Must Improve

March 18th, 2021

Bucs coach Bucco Bruce Arians.

Joe had additional help waking up this morning, a boost to the normal daily ration of Black Rifle Fit Fuel.

It was what the Bucs need to repeat.

Now this may seem simple: re-sign your free agents. But longtime NFL scribe Dan Pompei of The Athletic noted something extra. The Bucs, the defending Super Bowl champs, need to improve!

Repeating without Barrett, David, and Godwin would have been very difficult. But it’s going to be difficult to repeat with them. Just being as efficient as they were in 2020 might not enable the Bucs to win a second straight Lombardi. What they really need is to find ways to improve. Perhaps that happens if players like Godwin produce more like they did in previous years than they did last year.

This makes so much sense. Look, Joe is just getting used to the fact the Bucs are winners — forget Super Bowl champs, just winners! Joe tends to forget where the Bucs are on the NFL totem pole. The Bucs are the hunted, not the hunters.

Every team is going to be gunning for them. It’s a far, far, far different cry from trying to turn around a 6-10 team, which the Bucs were (or worse) for the most of the Lost Decade, a totally different animal than defending champions.

If a team isn’t improving, then what’s happening?

This will be the great challenge for Bucs Super Bowl-winning coach Bucco Bruce Arians and his staff. Where can the Bucs improve? How does he keep his players focused and motivated to improve? Are the Bucs that good that they just need to keep the status quo? Doubtful.

For if the Bucs don’t improve, several teams will be nipping at their ankles ready to take them down.

Joe has a hunch park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring, down-forgetting, handshake-stiffing, jet-ski-losing, biscuit-baking, tequila-shooting, waffle-grilling, trophy-throwing, Bucs-Super-Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady won’t just be happy and content.

38 Responses to “Even Champions Must Improve”

  1. Coburn Says:

    Generally either get better or you get worse. Rarely stay the same. Let’s hope it’s the later. Hopefully the old vets don’t lose too much, hopefully the young guys improve, nail the draft picks, offense gets a real offseason and build off last year. If we can somehow fit another free agent like White then great. Maybe add some depth.

  2. PassingThru Says:

    It’ll take improvement plus good health to win another Super Bowl.

    I’d like to see some improvements in the defensive secondary. They looked good during the postseason, but some of that is due to the pressure mounted by the defensive front.

  3. yar Says:

    Punt returns.

  4. 123urout Says:

    BUCS cannot be complacent. If they play 100% of their effort last season, this season needs to be 110%.

  5. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Brady will be on everyone’s a$$ so he can get #8

  6. Pickgrin Says:

    The exciting part about this team moving into 2021 – is that there are so many young players starting and playing key roles.

    We have a really great coaching staff – and have seen marked improvement already from young players like Rojo and Davis and Cappa and Whitehead.

    There is lots of room for growth among about half our starting roster. And some of these guys are about as talented as they come – guys like Vea and Devin White and Wirfs and Winfield. These guys are A+ level talents and they are just going to get better and better with more experience and guidance.

  7. Colin in Canada Says:

    They won with some hungry vets on prove it deals. Rather than sign those guys we should find some new hungry vets on prove it deals.

  8. Cainishere Says:

    This is a perfect example of all of the WRONG statements made about how the Bucs would not even make it to the playoff last season, or How if they made it to the playoffs they would lose, or any of the millions of negative comments made in regards to the Buccaneers only to find out they were way off or just completely wrong. These “experts” today are real trash. Nobody is getting it right and they all sound like jackasses.

  9. Paul Murphy Says:

    It always comes to down health and injuries. If you’re going to get better as a team start with the backups. Look how many starters were hurt last year and look at how many games they missed. I’m sure Jason spent just as much time during these past few weeks figuring a way to keep all the backups he deemed worthy to bring back in 2021.


    Sign AB, Suh & James White offense improved

  11. PSL Bob Says:

    I can’t help but believe that attitude alone will make them better. Having just won the SB, they believe in themselves. They’re going to bring lots of swagger to every game now, regardless of opponent. And on top of that, Brady won’t let them slide into complacency. No reason to believe their performance will drop off. At least for the offense, it’s only going to improve, as Brady and his weapons get more comfortable with one another. The defense is going to want to establish itself as the No. 1 defense in the league. That motivation won’t result in a regression. It’s all good!

  12. SlyPirate Says:

    Improvement is Baked In …
    1. Evans was hurt all year. He’ll return healthy.
    2. Wirfs, Winfield, Johnson are sophomores.
    3. The offense start the season knowing how to use TB12.
    4. The defense start the season knowing how to use White.
    5. Saints are taking major steps backwards.
    6. New rookies.

  13. Jerry Jones Says:

    Christiansen or someone else mentioned that the offense still hadn’t peaked. They believed in 8 or more games we’d be hitting on all cylinders, so I believe they are already of that mindset.

  14. Robert Says:

    he called out Godwin……….sign AB already!!!

  15. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    I think the offense has a chance to be better.

  16. mark2001 Says:

    Nacho’s back.

  17. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    But Joe….they all have rings….so far…every single one of them!!!

  18. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Actually, the will probably quite strong…but they need to be challenged…I am quite sure Brady will keep them focused….and as long as they don’t bring in Swaggy to replace Suh…the defense should be dominant

  19. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Players that have a potential to substantially improve:

    CB Sean Murphy-Bunting
    CB Jamel Dean
    G Alex Cappa
    G Aaron Stinnie
    DT Khalil Davis
    DE Anthony Nelson
    DL Patrick O’Connor
    RB Ke’Shawn Vaughn
    LB Cam Gill
    TE Tanner Hudson
    WR Tyler Johnson
    S Mike Edwards

    I left off last years rookies Antoine Winfield and Tristan Wirfs because that are already top of their game.

  20. Stanglassman Says:

    People seem to think that Jameis with all the teams improvements on defense, OL, kicking, Running game wouldn’t have been able to take this current team deep into the playoffs. I don’t believe that but what I do believe is there has never been a better Qb than Brady to keep a team focused on getting better, not being complacent to guard against a post Super Bowl slump. I’m glad he’s are Qb.

  21. 1sparkybuc Says:

    We had a QB learning a new playbook with no training camp and no preseason games last year. Brady knows the playbook and the starters all have a year under their belt. We’re not starting from square one. The Bucs are already a better team than they were last season. We need Suh and a settled backup situation. We will be just fine.

  22. Brad Says:

    I know the Joe’s will hate this, but AB is probably the the person most likely to bring that improvement. He was coming off 1 1/2 years away from the game and started to pick up his game before the knee injury.

    Other areas of improvement could be Vaughn as the receiving back, healthy RoJo in more of a lead back role. A new punter. A new returner (I’m for the Patterson idea)
    Another pass rusher & 4th CB.

    Overall familiarity of Brady with the offense and practice time.

  23. Tom Sumner Says:

    this year… win the nfc south… make the playoffs and get the nfc championship game in ray jay ,, and LFG!!!

  24. Fernando Says:

    They just resigned Nacho

  25. Cobraboy Says:

    Nacho! 2 yrs, $5m, $2.25m guaranteed, good re-up.

  26. BucsBeBack (Artist formally known as: BringBucsBack) Says:

    The Bucs got so much pre-season hype after all of the signings that everyone wanted a piece of them. I think they “snuck-up” on no one & got everyone’s best.

    There was a lot of good fortune that went the Bucs’ way in the playoffs (WFT starts 4th string QB, that almost beat us; Brees couldn’t throw the ball effectively 20+ yards; Rogers had a brain fart) as it does for all Super Bowl winners.

    One of Chucky‘s best quotes was, “you either feel pressure or apply pressure”. Our Bucs should be better next year but, that doesn’t mean that they will be. They still have to execute and I expect that they will!

  27. David Says:

    I think they improve simply by having an off-season with Brady at the helm. The offense took half the year to get an identity. They know their identity now going in from day one.
    I think they can put up 35 points a game.
    The defense should get better because the DBs are a year older and getting better and better. The front six or seven was improving and playing better together as well. Add a couple good rookies… Look out


  28. David Says:

    AlabamaBucFan… I agree with the DBs. Bunting and Dean, especially Dean, I think take big strides this year.
    I also want to see them use Johnson in the slot more. He flashed some serious skill several times last year

  29. RCH Says:

    Sticking to the “status quo” sounds like a Socialist.

  30. Duane Says:

    I think this team will improve. There were many games last season that just never seemed like they were clicking in all aspects of the game. The game plans also seemed to have improved, which I hope like everyone was an indication of having to fix things on the fly. Hell of a job last year. Ok with waiting a bit longer to seeing how the next one shakes out )

  31. Buc4evr Says:

    Speaking of Alabama. Christian Barmore would be a great draft choice to replace Suh at some point. Hope he is still available at 32.

  32. Adrnagy Says:

    We haven’t improve. We are the same. While other teams are adding , to compete and to beat us.
    Add a vet CB, S , olb, DE, OT, KR so far we have added chump change.

  33. m0j0 Says:

    The good news is the Bucs can improve, can be more efficient and can get more in sync. It’s actually pretty scary how good the Bucs can be.

  34. Rod Munch Says:

    Godwin AND Evans were injured for almost all of last year and Gronk took a while to play into shape. On offense I think they can be much better than they were last year.

    On defense I’m more concerned. They were OK for most of the year – then got hot when it mattered. I don’t think they can play at that level they did at the end of the year, but I’d love to be proven wrong. Still, with this offense, they don’t need to be a tippy top defense, just be a good defense and we should be in great shape.

  35. Bucsfanman Says:

    I TOTALLY agree with this. I can’t recall a single regular season game where we played a “COMPLETE” game: Offense/defense/ST. When the offense was clicking, the defense struggled. When the defense played well, the offense couldn’t move the ball. And our kick coverage? Ugh!
    100% yes, we can improve! And THAT is the scary part!!!

  36. G-FUNK Says:

    Fill your roster holes through free agency. Increase talent through the draft. Bucs are doing awesome at both. Go Bucs !

  37. Ontario Mike Says:

    I too feel the OF will be great even without AB. Love to see James White as Brady’s safety valve. Also looking to Tyler Johnson to get more snaps and show off those great moves/hands. He and Scotty/Evans/Gronk/Godwin are more talent than any other team and Brady is lickin’ his chops at the prospect of feeding those guys. I think Vaughan and Rojo will both have good years as well. Let’s use them and play action (as we did in the playoffs and SB) and opponents’ D will have no chance.

  38. Bucsfan951 Says:

    “ so far we have added chump change.”

    Funny! That chump change you talk about won the super bowl last season. Are you even a Bucs fan or just a troll?