Smiling At The Carnage

July 30th, 2021

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All along the watchtower, Buc rivals are tripping all over themselves.

In what may be the most encouraging offseason since the 1974 Steelers drafted four future Hall of Famers, the Bucs are safely observing the carnage while key opponents can’t get out of their own way.

Yes, sometimes you can win big by standing pat on 12 and waiting for the blackjack dealer to bust.

Since trouncing KC in the Super Bowl, the Bucs have visited the White House, brandished their unique rings and reported basically intact for training camp. And while Bruce Arians vents about a few sloppy practices, other NFL head coaches are burdened by legitimate concerns.

“Quacking” is forthcoming from Aaron Rodgers, explains The Sage of Tampa Bay Sports.

At the moment, It’s a Bucs Life.

Look at the the debacle unfolding in Green Bay, the NFC’s No. 1 playoff seed in 2020. The good news for Packer fans? Aaron Rodgers will be under the center this fall. The bad news? He doesn’t really want to be there.

There’s enough bad blood between the league MVP and the organization to melt the snow at Lambeau in December. While Rodgers fumes, the Bucs are sitting around the campfire, toasting marshmallows.

This has the look of Rodgers’ final season with Green Bay, so he figures to be a loud lame duck, quacking about the roster, the head coach and perhaps even the community. In all likelihood, it’s not going to end well before Rodgers moves on.

Rams coach Sean McVay has lost some of his smile

The Rams won a road game against the Bucs last season and upgraded at quarterback with Matt Stafford, who is still looking for his first postseason victory.

Just when everything was looking up for Sean McVay’s group, the ground game encountered a significant blow when Cam Akers suffered a torn Achilles. The second-year pro from FSU came on strong in the playoffs, running for 221 yards in 46 carries as the Rams upset Seattle before losing at Green Bay.

The running load falls to Darrell Henderson, a former third-round pick who shows some promise. Suddenly, the Rams look thin in the backfield while the Bucs boast an impressive quartet of backs to choose from.

The Saints have ruled the NFC South since 2017, averaging 12 wins, but life without Drew Brees is about to get real.

Brees and Sean Payton have been a potent offensive tandem since 2006, but Brees is now in the broadcast booth and Payton may be up the creek. Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill are duking it out in camp and Alvin Kamara remains a versatile force, but these receivers won’t keep Carlton Davis up at night.

The Bucs have struggled to contain Michael Thomas, but he’s injured for the second consecutive year. Even Payton wants to know why Thomas waited until last month to undergo ankle surgery.

Thomas once represented bad news for Buc Nation. Now, he’s giving off bad vibes.

Tampa Bay’s Week 1 opponent is also rocked by a fresh health scare. The Cowboys were elated with Dak Prescott’s progress from the October ankle injury that required surgery. Early in training camp, however, Prescott has been hampered by a strained right shoulder.

“Obviously, we’re going to err on the side of caution every step of the way with somebody like Dak,” says Cowboys VP Stephen Jones.

Have you seen the inexperienced depth behind Prescott? Every Dallas fan is holding their breath.

The Bucs will welcome Julio Jones to town in a few weeks when the Titans scrimmage Tampa Bay prior to a preseason meeting. The noted Buc-killer has moved on from Atlanta and the only way Jones can torment Todd Bowles would be in a Super Bowl matchup. Calvin Ridley now assumes the No. 1 receiver role in Atlanta. Ridley’s good, but Jones is a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

Even the odds-on favorites to win the Super Bowl are facing major adversity.

One of Kansas City’s two main pass rushers is in trouble. Defensive end Frank Clark faces up to three years in prison for felony possession of an assault weapon. Clark has 11 sacks in 11 career postseason games and his absence would be a considerable blow to the Chiefs.

Add it all up and Buc fans couldn’t ask for a better offseason. NFL fortunes can change in a hurry, but the football gods appear to be smiling down on One Buc Place.

Ain’t that a kick in the helmet?

Enjoy The Ira Kaufman Podcast, Episode 2 of this week.

20 Responses to “Smiling At The Carnage”

  1. DoooshLaRue Says:

    Wow Ira.
    That is a boatload of feel good knowledge.
    Thank you sir!

  2. AtlBuc Says:

    What Rogers said was a bunch of hogwash! Does Lebron need permission from management to recruit players to wherever he is. If Aaron wanted free agents to come to green Bay why didn’t he pick up his phone and call the free agent? If players wanted to play with Rodgers, not come to a city that’s not a vacation destination, what prevented those players from telling their agents that they wanted to play in Green Bay with the mighty Aaron Rodgers.
    We heard plenty of reports that players were telling their agents they wanted to come to Tampa to play with Brady.
    The truth is, nobody wants to play for a cry-baby quarterback. By saying that players come to Green Bay only because of him, what is he saying about his team mates? How will his team mates feel about being thrown under the bus like that? Time will tell.

  3. firethecannons Says:

    I like it Ira!

  4. Jason Says:

    I know this sounds like hyperbole, but I believe the legit ceiling for this year’s team is “Best Football Team in the History of the Sport!”
    I don’t know if we get there, but just having that as an actual achievable goal is mind-blowing to me. LFG Bucs!!!

  5. Crickett Baker Says:

    I disagree with u AtlBuc. I have watched his interviews closely. Aaron could not call free agents. He said the team had no desire for him to even recommend good guys he had found. They wanted him to shut up and just play QB, while letting them handle all players and play calls. He only wanted half of what Tom Brady’s experience is joyfully helping Bucs coaches and management. They were treating Aaron as “equipment”, not a seasoned, qualified, veteran who knows a bunch about football that could help improve the Pack. He tried (I think harder) than Brady to get him some respect and say in play calls and receiving personnel. He would have left, but was not a free agent and they wouldn’t even extend his contract for a year OR trade him. He got really screwed. I do not feel he was being a “diva” nor “cry-baby”. His hands were tied and he wanted a bit of freedom nd respect, and only to help make the team better. I am certain, however, he will play his best football with what he has, this year.

  6. Crickett Baker Says:

    ..please xcuse the typos and this was a VERY insightful and well-written article, Joe.

  7. AtlBuc Says:

    Crickett, How could Aaron not be allowed to call other players? But, even if that’s true, if free agents wanted to go to GB to play with Aaron, as he said was the case, what would prevent them, or their agents from contacting the team and expressing the desire to play there?
    I disagree with you. Aaron is a diva crybaby. Tell me, have you ever heard rumors of players being asked to be traded to Green Bay?

  8. Crickett Baker Says:

    Well, I agree you disagree with me. He said he wasn’t asked to call other players nor recommend anyone. And seriously, no one even knew if AR would be playing so why would they especially ask to go to Green Bay? Tell me. If Tom was told he could play here but would have NO input on team management whatsoever, do you think he would have even considered coming to the Bucs for a minute?

  9. Infomeplease Says:

    My take…AR is a sweet qb. Sure! Can he throw a sweet pass way down field? Sure! Can he pout like a baby when things don’t go his way? SURE!!!! He had an opportunity to get out of GB when his contract was up. Instead he signed a big contract. Then blames everyone else for his lack of success.( Except for the one SB ring). Complains about the play calling. Complains about the coach. Gets a good coach fired. Gets a new coach. Complains about the play calling. And he does this in public not behind closed doors. HELLO AR,. Coaches get paid to call plays. Players get paid to execute the calls. Do your job, get more rings. BE LIKE TOM!!!!!

  10. mark2001 Says:

    All Along the Watchtower… Ira…you had me with that.

  11. AtlBuc Says:

    Crickett. No I don’t think Tom would have come here under those conditions. However, Green Bay has no obligation to let AR be a part of personnel decisions. I know there was confusion this year, I was referring to previous years. there have been no free agents lining up to go to Green Bay. That’s why AR was complaining about the roster.
    This year his input was taken and look at what his input was: “45” year old Randall Cobb. Considering that move, how valuable is his personnel input?

  12. Danr Says:

    Whoops. This took some cahones to write and not worry about jingling us with injuries. Knocks on wood.

  13. Danr Says:

    Not whoops.

  14. Danr Says:

    *jinxing. Gdi

  15. Curse of Gruden Says:

    Rodgers is a putz. Will be a long season for the Packers.

  16. stpetebucsfan Says:

    It’s funny how we always take the side of “The man” against the worker.

    Rodgers is a Diva for simply wishing to have a say in where he played. For asking for some R E S P E C T like the Bucs did with Brady before selecting Love.

    You guys can make it personal and diss Rodgers all you wish but this is a total FUBAR by GB’s management/ownership. You do not take a 4th round draft pick and use it to move up four spots in the first round to take a QB unless that QB is clearly your future.

    Love is nowhere near ready and will probably never really replace Rodgers. So Rodgers is the crybaby but the Pack management is not at fault for being brain dead?

  17. Crickett Baker Says:

    Y Stpets. Atlbuc doesn’t get it. Idk about the Randall Cobb thing but I see AR’s need for a little respect. Think of it like this. You’ve worked for a company for 15 years. Every year you have been top in sales, but the company has not really risen to the top. You can clearly see things that could be changed throughout the organization, to make things better.. You go with some suggestions to your boss. He says, “You have no idea how to run a business You are a salesman. Just shut up and do your job like you have been. You want more money? Don’t even think about resigning because you are on a contract. Just get out of here and do what you’ve been doing.” That would really upset most of us, and if it were me, I’d be whining ALOT, too.

  18. dls5492 Says:

    It should be called the “Brady Tsunami”.

  19. Buczilla Says:

    Great article Ira, but I gotta disagree about Julio. There isn’t a universe in existence where Jones should be a first ballot hall of famer and he’s one of the most overrated players in the history of the NFL. 60 touchdowns in 10 years with the rules geared towards the passing game is sad production for a supposed first ballot guy. Mike (a true first ballot hall of famer) already has over 60 touchdowns and he’s played three less years than Julio. I just can’t fathom why a good, not great receiver like Julio gets so much love. 😋

  20. JimbobBucsFan Says:

    I also see Aaron Rogers as somewhat of a prima donna type and a cry baby.

    That said, I do see his situation as unique to GB. The ownership is not mainly one businessperson or a family affair. It is more like a corporation with a board. It has some problems with it’s management style that aren’t necessarily typical of the rest of the NFL.

    I do not feel sorry for him, though, because of his attitude displayed in public.

    Thanks for another great read, Sage!