“That’s How They Want To Make Their Living”

September 13th, 2021

Friends weigh in

On Thursday morning before our beloved Buccaneers kicked off Week 1 against the Cowboys, a couple of Bucco Bruce Arians friends were laughing at the Tampa Bay head coach on Arizona sports radio.

Joe’s referring to former Bucs quarterback Drew Stanton, the veteran emergency QB added to the Bucs’ practice squad last December, and former Pro Bowl fullback Ron Wolfley.

They were on 98.7 FM talking about Arians’ philosophy and Wolfley called out the exact run play Arians would choose to start the game. And Stanton replied (with the knowledge Arizona approved sports gambling) that he would bet good money on Arians calling a run.

“We’re lining up and were coming right at you; that’s how they want to make their living,” Stanton explained.

He noted Arians surely wanted to pound the rock against the Cowboys because that’s the team’s desired philosophy, in addition to the reality of the Cowboys’ questionable run defense.

So, what happened?

Yes, Leonard Fournette ran the ball up the gut on the Bucs’ first two snaps, and Tom Brady missed Chris Godwin on the subsequent 3rd-and-short. The Bucs rushed just 12 more times for 44 yards and had only 1 rushing first down.

Noted Vegas handicapper and analytics guru Warren Sharp was suggesting a drinking game on Twitter during the Bucs-Cowboys game — throwing one back every time the Bucs run on first down. He often rails against the Bucs’ first-down predictability.

Results are what really matter and the Bucs continue to ring up 30 or more points per game. But it is interesting and worth nothing how much Arians apparently wants to pound the rock despite a rare and historic collection of receiving weapons.

18 Responses to ““That’s How They Want To Make Their Living””

  1. PassingThru Says:

    Eyeball test: The Buc OLine is better at pass protection than run blocking. I don’t see much in the way of running lanes. Even during Fournette’s romp during the postseason, some of the best runs were Fournette creating for himself rather than a gap created by design.

  2. PassingThru Says:

    I’m not including that really fine play where Marpet mowed down a KC outside CB during the Super Bowl. That was a satisfying exception to the rule.

  3. SlyPirate Says:

    When was the last time we saw a Draw play? Go 2TE Set and let them get downfield.

    How about a Reverse? An AB-Miller Reverse could be electric.

  4. AL121976 Says:

    I couldn’t believe how many times they ran on first down, it was so predictable, Reminded me of the Gruden days.

  5. cover deuce Says:

    A rare collection of weapons yes, but there’s only one 44 year old QB arm to carry them and it’s not a knock to say he’ll probably need a decent run game to make it thru 17 games and still be primed for a deep playoff run.

  6. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    This is pure stubbornness……it’s sort of like always taking a first pitch strike in baseball……pitchers know that’s what you are going to do so they simply throw it down the middle.

    The reason we have little success on first down runs the predictability……burn teams constantly with play action on 1st down and watch it runs start to work.

  7. Mike Says:

    You guys are looking at this all wrong. Arians wants to be predictable. He lures you in with the “oh, look, they’re running on 1st down again” stuff, then bam, no risk it no biscuit downfield when you least expect it… 🙂

  8. Jerry Says:

    The issue is predictability. You can still run the ball and not be predictable with it. Running the ball opens up the play-action pass where Brady has always been the most deadly. If the defense bites on a PA play with these receivers we have, the only way that isn’t a big play is if the receiver drops the pass.

    But they do need the run game to at least be moderately effective. We don’t need to lead the lead the league in rushing. We don’t need RoJo to hit 2,000 yards. We just have to be efficient and not predictable with it.

  9. Dubcity6 Says:

    People in the comments are so doom and gloom. Its an easy answer. You do what works more often. You run to keep them honest, but passing is this teams bread and butter.

  10. Bucking Says:

    You have to run the ball to keep the defense guessing and our Def healthy…it also allows are o line to get aggressive and tire out the other teams defense. The play action also me effective when we’ll you run the ball for more then 3yrd a play.

    Are we to vanilla I would say yes.. also we need to get Mike involved to create 1v1 that we want to pass to Godwin brown gronk or oj…possibly Scotty when he feels like showing up

  11. Buc king Says:

    You have to run the ball to keep the defense guessing and our Def healthy…it also allows are o line to get aggressive and tire out the other teams defense. The play action also me effective when we’ll you run the ball for more then 3yrd a play.

    Are we to vanilla I would say yes.. also we need to get Mike involved to create 1v1 that we want to pass to Godwin brown gronk or oj…possibly Scotty when he feels like showing up

  12. Pewter Power Says:

    I’m fine with the approach now that Brady is the quarterback. They seem to turn it on once they figure how teams close to defend their offense

    It is a bad run scheme if we stuck running the ball but teams don’t stack the box because of what we do in the passing game. We should have a more dynamic run scheme especially if you won’t spend high draft picks on the position

  13. sasquatch Says:

    When you can pound the ball, you usually win. Getting the team into the physical mindframe matters over the course of the season, especially in the playoffs.

  14. Chris Flores Says:

    Blocking o-lines can be running o-lines, it’s about the will of the team

  15. Brad Says:

    I kinda wish they would just hand the keys to Vaughn. Get rid of the predictability by having someone who can catch and run.

  16. geno711 Says:

    Looks like 12 runs on 1st downs and 18 passes on 1st down for the Bucs in the Dallas game. Including the wide run by AB.

    Looks like NO was 16 runs and 9 passes on 1st down.
    Looks like GB was 10 runs and 13 passes on 1st down.

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    BA obviously stands for ‘Bombs Away’ in Arians’ world, but I think there’s more to it like Drew Stanton said. He seems to try the run UNTIL he thinks it’s not working.

    In Thurs game, Bucs ran on 1st down the first 5 drives, but we got less & less productive on each one. RoJo & Fournette ran it 9 total times on those 5 drives, but didn’t run again until there were only 6 secs left in the 3rd qtr. It was obvious that the pass was being a lot more effective, so BA stuck with it. Smart move.

    The problem with passing the ball a whole bunch like we do is that we typically don’t eat up much clock. The TOP favored the Cowboys Thurs might 34:27 to 25:33 … meaning that our defense was on the field for almost 9 minutes more than the Cowboys’ defense. I think it took its’ toll in the 4th qtr on Dallas’ go-ahead drive. Fortunately there was just enough time left for Tom Brady to lead us to that last FG & a win.

  18. Brandon Says:

    SlyPirate Says:
    September 13th, 2021 at 2:43 pm
    When was the last time we saw a Draw play? Go 2TE Set and let them get downfield.

    How about a Reverse? An AB-Miller Reverse could be electric.
    —————————–

    Brown ran a reverse against the Cowboys. Maybe try paying attention. Draw play out of 2TE…. here’s why that’s stupid. 2TE is a running formation. A draw play is used best when the defense thinks the offense is going to pass and is in a passing formation. Draw plays work best when the box isn’t full of defenders and 2TE would mean the defense would definitely not be in a nickle formation and would have no less than seven, maybe eight, in the box.

 

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