After Further Review

September 20th, 2021

Notes after a second look

The Bucs hammered the Falcons yesterday and, like many fans, Joe takes a deep second look after each game (before a third look).

A few observations in no particular order:

*Donovan Smith had his struggles with Dante Fowler, Jr. Smith was lucky not to have a couple more holding calls against him but he did right his ship extremely well later in the game.

*At 6:55 in the 2nd quarter, Joe Tryon-Shoyinka beats Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews cleanly off the right edge. If Vita Vea didn’t run Tyron over, he likely would have sacked (or at least hit) Matt Ryan.

*At 11:50 of 2nd quarter, Atlanta runs right at Tryon-Shoyinka’s position in the red zone. The rookie was blocked out of the play but Antoine Winfield, Jr., eventually whiffs on the tackle and Atlanta gets an easy touchdown. Not Winfield’s best day yesterday.

*Punishing, A+ work from Leonard Fournette — blocking and running — in the final drive of the first half. Special stuff.

*Immediatley following Shaq Barrett’s interception early in the third quarter, Tom Brady channeled his inner Jameis and on 1st-and 10- from the Falcons 18 yard line nearly was picked by Falcons cornerback Fabian Moreau. What a hidden break there.

*All day Bucco Bruce Arians was kicking away from dangerous returner/receiver/running back Cordarelle Patterson and sacrificing field position. Joe still doesn’t understand why the Bucs didn’t sign the guy in free agency. He’s on a one-year deal with the Falcons for $3 million and was a favorite of Tom Brady for a year in New England.

*1st-and-goal from the 9 and the Bucs send a three-man rush at Matt Ryan — Steve McLendon, Rakeem Nuñez-Roches and Will Gholston with a load of guys in coverage. Ryan had plenty of time and had an eight-yard completion to Russell Gage. Not Joe’s favorite look from Todd Bowles in a tight game.

*Tristan Wirfs is excellent but doesn’t look quite like the same 2020 player through two games.

*Line of the broadcast from FOX color man Greg Olsen: “[Ronald] Jones is praying they get this first down.” It was the snap after RoJo walked out of bounds after catching a Tom Brady pass instead of fighting for first-down yardage.

*On the same set of downs, the right guard Alex Cappa with a beastly block on 4th-and-1 as the Bucs went for it in their own territory leading Atlanta 28-25 with seconds left in the third quarter. It sprung RoJo for redemption, and Joe finds it telling the Bucs relied on Cappa with the game very much on the line.

*Shaq Barrett’s spin move off the left edge was a thing of beauty in the first half. He could have had a hit on Ryan but wisely pulled up. Wasn’t worth the risk with the way the refs were blowing calls.

*Joe found just one egregious loaf. Tryon-Shoyinka at 13:35 mark of 2nd quarter. Hustle, please!

45 Responses to “After Further Review”

  1. Casual Observer Says:

    Good comments. Sophomore slump for Wirfs and Winfield? Hope not. Agree that Fournette looked very good. Tough runner and blocker.

  2. HomerSimpsonRocks Says:

    Agree we should have signed Patterson.

  3. WillieG Says:

    “*Punishing, A+ work from Leonard Fournette — blocking and running — in the final drive of the first half. Special stuff.“

    Is it just me or does anyone else think Fournette should be THE guy until he proves he can’t handle it (which will probably be never).

    RoJo seems too inconsistent and his blocking leaves much to be desired, IMO.

  4. ModHairKen Says:

    This is excellent information, Joe! Well done.

  5. PassingThru Says:

    Very good observations Joe.

    Concur on Wirfs. He’s playing well, but a step down from otherworldly which is what we saw last season.

    Fournette earned starting RB honors. Between that brain fart in pass protection and skipping out of bounds rather than fighting for first down, RoJo just doesn’t have the awareness to play situational football.

    Yes, Vita Vea taking out Tryon-Shoyinka was both sad and a bit funny at the same time.

    Why no Patterson in Tampa Bay? No money left. Patterson is a very dangerous return man. He wasted away in Minne and Oakland as the Vikings and Raiders never figured out how to use him. He’s limited as a WR, but outstanding as that gadget player on very short passes, reverses or just outside runs as a RB.

    Though I never thought the Bucs would lose, the officiating helped Atlanta, particularly with that obvious Ryan fumble. That happens, things even out over the course of the season.

    I like Greg Olsen as a color man.

  6. D-Rome Says:

    I’ve always expressed support for Donovan Smith even while the knuckle-dragging mouth breathers blamed him every time Jay-Miss ate a sack. That said, he did not have a very good game yesterday.

    Joe, I also agree with you on Wirfs through two games.

  7. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Joe, the near interception Brady threw was a miscommunication with Evan’s. I am pretty sure Brady was expecting Evan’s to run a curl out. I was keying on Shoyinka and to be honest the majority of the game he wasn’t good. Not sure how Patterson fits on the Bucs other than return man.

  8. Defense Rules Says:

    Agree Casual; those are the types of insights that I love. Focused on Donovan on several plays (and one where his guy sacked Brady), and he looked ‘slow’ on the plays I was watching. Don’t like seeing Brady get sacked 3 times in any game, and especially like the one in which he fumbled (good way to get your QB hurt).

    Atlanta wisely used several hurry-ups to prevent the Bucs from rotating DLine guys. Don’t know if the play you referenced Joe was one of those (McLendon, Nacho & Gholston left in), but Bucs might see more of that in the future.

    Fournette’s looking better than RoJo through 2 games IMO. Couldn’t believe it when RoJo intentionally ran out of bounds 1 yd prior to getting the 1st down. Could’ve really screwed us.

    Don’t know what you thought about the Bucs’ tackling yesterday Joe, but Carlton Davis having EIGHT solo tackles isn’t a good look.

  9. ClodHopper Says:

    Is it me or has Vita lining up at FB never worked? It worked in this game when he was a decoy and we threw it, but have we ever gotten our yardage when we run with him blocking as a FB?

  10. Medicated Pete Says:

    Bucs didn’t sign Cordarelle b/c they’re trying to win another Superbowl dead last in the return game again. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it

  11. DBS Says:

    Fournette should be the #1. Rojo can’t pick up a blitz and his mind is in the clouds. Fournette just looks better all around so far.

  12. Hodad Says:

    Didn’t understand the short kick offs when Pinion kicks the ball out of the endzone 90% of the time. Arains is going to give his ST’s less confidence if he doesn’t think they can stop a 105 yard return. I also think that should’ve been the ST’s coach decision, not Arains. He should have the pulse of his unit, and it’s his job to make sure they don’t allow long returns If he can’t do that we need a new ST’s coach, and much better players.

  13. Tony D Says:

    I’m with B.A. on this game, they’ve yet to play a “complete” game and with the a trip to L.A. to face off with the Rams they’ll have to bring their “A” game for the full 60 minutes if they want a chance to beat the Rams.

  14. Wild Bill Says:

    Tryon who thinks pass rush first got trap blocked big time. He took an inside rush from the left end, got trap blocked totally, left a big hole for Atlanta to run thru. Fournette looked his best running so far this year. And he caught passes. I thought Brady looked off at times in the middle of the game. Missed open receivers sometimes badly. Got back on track after the game got close. He also got smacked pretty good a couple of times. Too often actually. Falcons qb is no spring chicken either but he escaped from the pocket several times and was much more mobile than Brady. Extended plays often with his movement, avoided sacks and hit receivers for nice gains. Still has game for an “old guy”. Looks like the real Jamess showed up this week. He has brain farts under duress.

  15. Joe in Michigan Says:

    When Rojo went out of bounds before getting a 1st Down, it became very clear in my mind that he’s not a very good football player.

  16. Natural Selection Says:

    Did RoJo get back into the game after he blew his block and got Brady hit/sacked? I didn’t notice him get another snap.

  17. SKBucsFan Says:

    Was thinking the same thing about Cordarrell Patterson all game. I wouod have liked to have him in our lineup.

  18. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Everybody’s trashing RoJo this week.
    Last week it was Dean.
    Before that it was D Smith.
    The season is young, Bucs are 2-0.
    Do you honestly think RoJo won’t have a few big games this year?
    Fournette was better yesterday. Ok. No need to hate.

  19. HC Grover Says:

    I am no football expert but, I do not think ROJO is better than average myself. He lacks ‘the edge’ in all parts of his game it appears. Just not quite excellent in any part. I think…below average.

  20. Mike Says:

    After watching that game, it would be a travesty if Fournette is not the starter at the Rams. You CAN’T miss blocks!

  21. JA Says:

    I don’t have an issue with RoJo running out of bounds on his first down carry, especially with one yard to go for the next first down. Second and one presents itself with far more options than first and ten.
    I’d rather have seven chances to get the eleven yards needed for the next first down than four chances for ten.
    There’s a previous era coach named Vince who wholeheartedly agrees with this mathematical scenario. Sure, todays game bears little resemblance to the game he coached, but math is math in any era.
    To paraphrase, Vince’s quote went something like this: “If my team can’t get a single yard in three attempts they deserve to lose the football game.”

  22. Kstoges Says:

    will say this rojo wasent good yesterday minus our tornado toss to him but Lenny did have a bad fumble for loss yards that killed our drive second half when the falcons were mounting a come back Godwin saved it nobody sees to be bringing that up

  23. TOM Says:

    All I can say is lazy ass Smith is going to get TB killed, along with Rojo who can’t block, can’t catch & fumbles to much. And where in the hell is Gio? He’s the best RB for blocking & receiving out of the backfield?

  24. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Awesome info Joe. This “After Further Review” be a routine article the day after the game.

  25. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Honestly it’s amazing how that vaunted running back room of ours keeps almost blowing these games at times.

    Rojo isn’t good. It’s like he just forgets how to play running back half the time and god forbid he pass blocks. Also I saw multiple times at the game that he just wouldn’t cut properly and has awful vision a good chunk of the time.

  26. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Also I have no clue why Cordelle Patterson looked as good as he did yesterday.

    He has been a non factor his entire career.
    The guy is a four-time, first-team All-Pro returner.–Joe

  27. Coburn Says:

    I’ve always thought the same JA. I’m a numbers and probability type guy myself. It’s pretty sad I’d you can’t get 1 yard, 2nd and 1 is so favourablr and your next set of downs will be starting further up the field than that 1 yard

    The problem in rojos case is the mentality I think. He almost looked afraid of contact at a physical position

  28. tampabuscsbro Says:

    Well forgot about that one Joe.

    On the offensive side of the football he has looked average at best. Yesterday in the twilight of his career he looked elite for some god unknown reason.

  29. Rod Munch Says:

    Did anyone ask Rojo what in the world he was thinking when he went out of bounds before the 1st down marker? The guy runs really hard, there’s not really an effort issue with them, but I don’t get it. Watching it live I was literally wondering if since there were only seconds left in the quarter if he thought, somehow, it was the 4th quarter and he was stopping the clock? Even then it makes no sense since the Bucs were leading. I heard someone say he thought he had the 1st down, but the stick was right in front of him, and again, he’s a guy who normally a pretty punishing runner, so it’s not like him to dip out of bounds without contact.

    What a shame with Rojo. Everything I read said he had a great camp, in his very limited action he looked good, obviously last year he had a really nice year… but now, I have no idea if he got on the Josh Freeman train or something else is happening. But if this is what Arians was talking about, that he was literally having a breakdown after his fumble, that he’s not mentally all there, I get it now. But you also can’t have a guy like that on your team. I’m not a Rojo hater in the least, but unless there was something major happening with him, like a close relative passing away and his head wasn’t in the game, I don’t know what you do with him. Well, I do know, said it before, trade to Indy for Marlo Mack, I think Indy does the deal since Mack is now their #3 RB.

  30. Conte Piscateli Says:

    I’m of the belief Lenny should be the guy, he is a much better blocker and keeps teams from loading up on run plays because of his versatility. Teams still see Rojo and play run first. I like the idea of playing Lenny then bring in Rojo as a change of pace against tired teams late

  31. Brad Says:

    Seems to me more TE going out for passes. Makes it impossible for defenses but the line has less help. I think that will change this week because of the attention you need to give Donald. I know we’ve done well against him in the past.

  32. Nano107 Says:

    Wirfs will be alright
    2 games only

  33. gotbbucs Says:

    I think most of us can agree that neither Jones or Fournette are All-Pro running backs.
    So, why do they wait until garbage time and obvious passing downs to bring Bernard into the game? Honestly, with the way this team is playing right now, why not treat every down like an obvious passing down and bring in Jones or Fournette on obvious running situations?
    This is a more dangerous offense with a 3rd down back in the game vs a true ball carrier. Use the short passing game as our running game. There is no possible way that Bernard and Vaughn can be that much less effective as runners than Jones and Fournette, but Bernard and Vaughn to a lesser degree are that much more effective in the passing game.
    They all know we’re going to throw the ball anyway and they still can’t stop it, so what does it hurt?

  34. BuucccNASTY Says:

    Lavonte was loafing a bit on that last play you referenced too Joe lol as much as I don’t like to see that, I’ll take that with a 14 point lead over a bad team then one or both of them sticking their nose in there and getting another injury like Bunting last week…

  35. Bucsfanman Says:

    Did not like those plays by Rojo. First going out of bounds, he’s a RB. The mentality should be to crush anything in your path.
    He missed at least one easy block and looks like a liability in pass protection.
    He made some good runs but, WTH?!

  36. Bucsfanman Says:

    Another player that “came back down to earth” was Winfield. He did not look sharp.

  37. PassingThru Says:


    I said the same thing during the game thread: “Why did they sign Gio Bernard if they won’t use him?” I realize this may be premature in that we’re only two games into the season, but it is still a pertinent question. It seems Gio was consigned to garbage time. Bernard isn’t as good as RoJo or Fournette at running between the tackles, but then that would only be his role from time to time to keep defenses off balance. He’s better at run blocking and he’s that receiver you want for check downs when other receivers are covered or when the pocket is rapidly deteriorating.

    I’d like to see RoJo grounded and more snaps given to Gio.

  38. Alanbucsfan Says:

    You guys underestimate Deion Jones.
    On the play where he sacked Brady, Jones disguised his blitz and RoJo started to go out as receiver and saw the blitz too late- still, RoJo’s responsibility.
    Jones almost got Brady later when he fooled Fournette, but Fournette dove just enough to chip Jones a little to avoid another sack.
    I also saw Pitts beating White and David several plays. And I saw Gronk with a critical holding call in 2nd half.
    Every game is a battle – happy for the win.

  39. Jmarkbuc Says:

    There’s tape on Wirfs now… his opponents are gonna find ways to attack him , he has to counter. Hope he stays motivated.

    The ”Ronald Jones Experience” as Joe so aptly put it, is alarming for Game 2 of a season. There seems to be be discontent, or malcontent in the RB room. Rojo’s gaffes yesterday are completely unacceptable. Straight up trade to ATL for Patterson? 😎

    Speaking of Cordarelle, why not just kick it through the end zone as usual. Armstrong outthinks himself a lot.

    The next two weeks we play top level teams with top level coaching. This sloppy preseason play is over now. Hope the D can pull it together. 👀 D. White.

  40. Stanglassman Says:

    Lining up Vita at FB work this game 2 of 3 times yesterday. One was play action pass and the other was a run to the left side. I can’t wait for them to give him a chance running or pass it to him.

  41. Steven007 Says:

    We will almost certainly see more of Gio moving forward.

  42. Steven G Schassler Says:

    On RoJo running out of bounds after nine yards, why would ANY RB, especially one fighting for starting back, chose to run out of bounds instead of putting his head down and punishing the defender and driving for the first down? Whoever it was above defending that decision doesn’t know football. Sorry, just keeping it real.

    The only unacceptable reason that makes any sense is that RoJo was afraid of getting the ball punched out again.The only OTHER reason for doing what he did would likely mean the end of his professional football career, i.e., that is that he is a running back afraid of taking a hit. But nobody can tell me that such a move would be acceptable under ANY situation other than stopping the clock.

  43. diggler Says:

    @PassingThru great question.

    We have to remember that our QB is a master mind and Bernard was brought it for said master mind.

    If you notice players get their time to shine when 12 needs them. How much Mike Evans did we see against Dallas? Everyone was freaking out when next game 2 tuddies for FHOF 13.

    You’ll see Bernard when 12 wants you to see Bernard.


  44. Rod Munch Says:

    People wondering about Bernard – he’s a 3rd down back. That’s why he was signed. He was not signed as a 1st and 2nd down back.

    Also we don’t need pro-bowlers everywhere. Just having an average back is good enough, and Fournette fits that mold.

    The issue is Ronnie has the talent to be special, but he just flaked out yesterday. I don’t get it, but whatever mind games Arians has been playing with him have obviously backfired – or Rojo is just a nut, in which case you trade him, and failing that, cut him.

    Fournette is an every down back, and he’s the type of guy who will get better with more carries. Again, he’s not as good as Rojo, but if he’s mostly consistent he’s good enough, and he’d likely be more consistent with more reps.

    As for Gino, we haven’t needed him, that’s why he hasn’t been playing. At the end of the Dallas game, they needed a pass catching back out there who had sure hands, and he got 2 catches on the last drive. If we need a 3rd down back, a receiving back on the field, then he should be out there. There’s only so many balls to go around on a team this insanely deep with talent. People who don’t get that are some real turds.

  45. Ne+ bucs fan Says:

    Lenny or rojo isn’t the answer,,need a real nfl running back,, someone who has the capability to bring it to the house every time he touches the ball,, someone who scares the defense,,I thought rojo should of been the starter,,I now stand corrected,, fournette is capable, just think we need someone better,,any of our RB would be backups on other teams,,am I being to harsh,,honest question