“They Look Like A Shell Of Themselves”

September 28th, 2021

Sean Murphy-Bunting on the bench in Los Angeles wearing a contraption on his messed up elbow.

The 26th-ranked Buccaneers defense has caught the attention of a Bucs-friendly former superstar running back.

Tiki Barber, whose former babysitter was Bucco Bruce Arians, was in a little bit of disbelief watching Tampa Bay get pounded by the Rams on Sunday. And yeah, Barber believes the game wasn’t as close as the score.

Barber is well aware of the injuries in the Bucs’ secondary but he said on CBS Sports Radio yesterday that the bigger picture is more concerning.

“They’re compromised, but they can’t get home. So as much as this was about, you know, ‘What can the Bucs do, how good are they going to be on defense because they returned all 22 starters?’ They look like a shell of themselves from what they did last year as it pertains defensively,” Barber said.

“They tried everything [against the Rams], right. They tried blitzing. They tried sitting back, playing zone. They tried everything. It didn’t work.”

It’s one loss. Joe is not crying. But that ranking of 26th in the league on defense is real and deserved.

Lots of time to fix it, but not lots of time if the goal is the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

36 Responses to ““They Look Like A Shell Of Themselves””

  1. Drebucsfan Says:

    They crucified me for saying this in the preseason…the secondary just isn’t that good and hide’s really well behind a good pass rush. THATS HOW YOU HIDE A WEAK SECONDARY blitz blitz blitz…Todd Bowles knew this already

  2. Lets Roll Says:

    Its the football equivalent of the Rope a Dope,

    Todd knows what he is doing. NO REASON FOR CONCERN.

    Todd waited to expose KC and boom now KC is meh.

  3. crazyBucs_CL Says:

    @”….And yeah, Barber believes the game wasn’t as close as the score….”
    so true. if rams didn’t chewing up the clock (end of third Q and fourth Q combine) ~ 13 minutes, easy they could have score 2 TD.
    I wish that was the case, cause will show the true state of Bucs.
    BA and DC Todd are creating a false narrative to most of fans…
    We were NOT even close.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I’m more concerned about the pass rush than i am the secondary……we simply aren’t putting pressure on the QB……rushers need to get their hands up and bat some balls if they can’t get there…..

  5. August 1976 Buc Says:

    It all starts with the D line, they were not winning the line of Scrimmage. And with Suh and Vita being off the field so much it just made it worse. You do not win the line of Scrimmage and you get beat. Fundemendals. The Bucs D line has been stout for a couple of years now, that is proven by no one running on them. But they were physically beaten by the Rams. And the O line did not win either, could not run, and on top of that, they let Brady get roughed up and sacked. They have to get back to winning the line of Scrimmage. It all starts right there. The Rams whooped the D line and the O lines azz. It is really simple, control the line of scrimmage or get beat.

    GO BUCS!!!!!!

  6. crazyBucs_CL Says:

    ..and BTW, we can play them tomorrow, next Sunday, or the other week, still is going to be the same outcome:
    Embarrassedly Beaten.

  7. Bucamania Says:

    He’s right. The D had zero answers for the Rams. They couldn’t rush, cover, or tackle. Four long TD drives in a row! I don’t get it. Gotta be guys reading their press clippings and not focused on getting better because many of these guys have really regressed.

  8. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Bucs didn’t come to play, penalties, players running into their teammates, drop balls. McVay has his team ready did you see the excitement by him and team at the half? They came out flat and only Bernard, Brady and most of the oline came out to play. Who is BA going to blame this week, it won’t be him?

  9. DBS Says:

    Also went for the FG. They did not need to against our defense that close in. That would have been another easy 7.

  10. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Correct, I forgot shank punt

  11. Mike Says:

    Man, it’s really hard to say what is going on. Sometimes the rush was coming fast and furious and they just got rid of the ball really quick. Other times, the rush didn’t get home and they had time to sit back and go through their progressions and roast our secondary. One thing is for sure, the rush is not consistently there right now.

  12. godlovesbucs Says:

    That was a terrible game by Tampa, no doubt. But I got MARKEDLY WORSE when Dean got hurt. 2 of their top 3 cbs out is not good for any team. The injury bug is affecting Tampa much worse than it ever did last year. Look at the qbs we have played against so far. All veteran solid qbs who can recognize a weakness and has the arm talent to consistently exploit it. Let’s push pause on how bad it is based on these 3 games, look who is up next.
    Mac Jones.
    Tua or Brissett
    Fields or Dalton
    Daniel Jones

    That should bode well for this d to get some stuff figured out…

  13. PSL Bob Says:

    It’s sad considering their goal this year was to be a top-ranked defense. Remember Shaq saying he wanted to be the sack king this year and MVP? They’ve got a lot of time to turn things around, but it has to happen PDQ!

  14. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    At least we have a great offense & it’s healthy for now.

    We weren’t really at our best on Sunday……out of sync…..but I’m expecting a huge bounce-back in NE…..

  15. Listnfrmafar Says:

    If this team loses to Belichick, Brady may retire sooner than Bucs think.

  16. Miller5252 Says:

    I don’t think they look like a shell of their former self. They look like the defense that got beat by the Rams, Saints,KC and every other team that threw for 300+ yards last year on them. What the Bucs did on their Super Bowl run was better then they played at any point last year. With injuries they’ve just fallen back further then that. They’ve got the talent in the front end, but until they can cover the short routes, the line is never gonna get home on a consistent basis.

  17. DBS Says:

    What is sad is when you hope we play lesser QB’s and Offense competition so our defense can get the job done. Is that what we expect now? Because that will not work in the playoffs . That will not be there.

  18. Listnfrmafar Says:

    It is funny, Brady threw the ball 55 times and not one PI call.

  19. Knoxville Bucs Fan Says:

    Relax y’all Always the same
    Comments every year after every loss

  20. godlovesbucs Says:

    DBS- I am saying that these 3 offenses have been known for moving the ball against almost anyone in the league. They are all savvy veteran pro bowl qbs who have set records at one point. Rams and cowboys also have arguably best receiving core in the NFL along with Tampa. In this day and age, it’s not surprising for these offenses to light up any d, let alone one with missing players. I think our d has looked much worse than reality because of competition and injury.

    I will say the lack of discipline is very concerning tho. Too many mental errors and penalties.

  21. Buc4evr Says:

    Wonder if The Bucs will take a look at Jamie Collins?

  22. Cobraboy Says:

    While Brady may be on a pace for 6.159 passing yards and 56 tuddies, this incredible all-return Bucs D is on a pace for 17 sacks…which is better than the league fewest sacks in a season record of 10.

    How many tho8ight this defense was going to be this bad? I sure as hell didn’t.

    Is Todd Bowles channeling Mike Smith?

    Or should we call him Mike Bowles?

    So much for “no SB hangover.” They aren’t hungover. They are still drunk. on SB swill.

  23. Stu Says:

    The defense has a Super Bowl hangover…

  24. SlyPirate Says:

    Stu … I agree.

    You can tell who partied all summer and who put in the work.

    TB12, Gronk, AB put in the work … and that’s it.

  25. 163doubleplay Says:

    Other teams have already figured out how the Bucs defensive schemes work. Especially, the way the Bucs beat the chiefs, plus it is easier to study with the same personnel.

  26. All lives matter Says:

    Looks eerily similar to what KC is going through. Their offense has to score on almost every drive for them to be in it till the end.

  27. Beastmode Says:

    It looks like defenses have learned Barrett now.

  28. PassingThru Says:

    A poor secondary will make any pass rush less effective. That’s not what happened the first two games, the pass rush soiled the sheets all by themselves. But when you play teams with good QBs like the Rams, they’ll get rid of the ball quickly if your secondary is giving away separation to the receivers.

    The Buc schedule is pretty easy for the next few weeks, so the sky isn’t falling. Arians and Licht do need to find some answers at CB, the sooner the better.

  29. Defense Rules Says:

    Cobraboy … Like you I was expecting this defense to be even better than our #8 ranking last year; very likely a Top-5 defense. The one variable in there as we all know is injuries.

    Bucs have an excellent starting defensive lineup (albeit a bit long in the tooth in spots), but (as we’re seeing now) we don’t the adequate depth. As long as I’ve been a Bucs’ fan, our CBs have taken a beating virtually every season. Have long said that you need FOUR starting-caliber CBs to be successful (typically many schemes use 3 CBs & it seems like 1 more will always be injured). Bucs don’t have that, and we’re paying the price.

    I think 2 things ate us alive on Sunday. First, those 2 long passes to DJax in a 6-min span in the 3rd qtr broke our back (the 75 yd TD pass 1 minute into the 3rd qtr AND the 40-yd ‘short’ pass 6 mins later that set up Kupp’s TD on the next play). And second, the plethora of complete short passes that we for some reason couldn’t defend again (Bowles needs to rethink how we’re defending the short middle of the field especially IMO).

    Still, we’re 2-1 and our schedule ‘theoretically’ gets easier over the next 8 games. If our offense can stay healthy, we could still win a lot of ugly games.

  30. Bojim Says:

    Nationally televised. Embarrassing.

  31. Logan Says:

    Pass rush can’t get home if the ball comes out so quick. The CB’s have got to start challenging receivers off the line and quit playing 15 yards off. The dink and dunk is killing this team.

  32. Rod Munch Says:

    They tried everything against the Rams? Did I miss something? Literally every single time I paid attention to the defensive scheme, it was a straight 4-man rush, zero pressure and man to man coverage. It was literally every single time, no joke. I’m not sure what Tiki was watching, or maybe later in the game after it was already over the Bucs tried to mix it up, but that was not happening when the game was meaningful.

  33. Rob In Land O Lakes Says:

    Joe, Cobra and DR… I love the perspective. It’s a long season and Tom Brady is our QB. If they sign Sherman tonight, it’s TB approved.

  34. #1bucsfan Says:

    Drebucsfan you hit the nail on the head bro. I’m not sold on smb or dean. To inconsistent. Now SMB played great in the playoffs. So what happened oh no pass rush. That’s what’s happened. Our defense as a whole has got to play better. Across all 3 levels. MR Devin white. It’s time to stop talking and start playing like you did in the playoffs.

  35. Ron Says:

    I suppose injuries don’t matter anymore.

    They missing cbs, a De a safety and AB……and Tikki talking about they don’t look good?? Wtf. Take away jalen, cupp and Donaldson….then play us at full strength….do the Rams win??

    Ppl are crazy

  36. Pats Fan Says:

    Tom joined an all Madden team last year and then feasted on teams with losing records all year and then caught the Chiefs with an injured Maholmes . You Bucs fans are all funny . Get in Toms face and collapse the pocket and he gets jumpy every single time . Why do you think he didn’t go somewhere else last year or stay in New England ? He saw that Winston threw 30 tds and 5000 yards and figured hell if he can do that I can do that without the pics . And I get to play the falcons saints and panthers six times ? Sign me up that’s like stealing ice cream .