Revolting Pass Defense Numbers

October 2nd, 2021

“Can’t blame me.”

In 2018, Bucs fans were horrified when the defense posted the worst completion percentage in all the NFL, allowing opponents a revolting 72.47 success rate.

Well, it’s back to the future. The Bucs’ pass defense through three games is equally as rotten.

It is hard to fathom that a defense that so thoroughly choked out Pat Mahomes and the Chiefs last February is getting roasted this bad. Alas, it is true.

Through three game the Bucs defense is getting skewered by opposing quarterbacks with a completion percentage of 72.22 percent. That is simply unacceptable for a defending Super Bowl champion that brought everyone back and has legitimate plans on going for two.

Joe is guessing this is what happens when your secondary is riddled with injuries and pass rushers cannot breathe on a quarterback. You know, like the good ol’ days with Mike Smith?

Joe thinks it is high time for someone to buy the gravediggers some new shovels.

33 Responses to “Revolting Pass Defense Numbers”

  1. Lets Roll Says:

    So we are going from Grave Diggers to Maximum Destruction on Defense??? I will take a Big Foot up New England’s Ass this weekend

  2. Tackleblockwin Says:

    Yes Joe the injuries are part of it but we have played against 3 solid, experienced QBs too. If we get shredded by a rookie Sunday night then I will start to worry a little.

  3. TommyLikeWingy Says:

    You can thank Gump for this debacle. He chose not to fortify are most glaring weakness in the defensive backfield. Joe Tryon is already looking like a bust. Even Tom Brady can’t paper over the mess on the carpet this GM has made.

  4. Coburn Says:

    Until they earn that grave diggers title back they are tr dumpster divers.

    Tommy. Not sure how you can say Tyron is a bust after 3 games. Whole defense has issues and he’s the only defensive end that has shown some life out there (ok Gholston too)

  5. Buc4evr Says:

    It’s hard to say Tryon is a bust at this point because the whole defense is playing so poorly, but he hasn’t really done anything. It pretty telling that we have to play a very raw rookie in place of JPP because our depth is so bad. Our starting CB’s were always questionable and our backup’s are just plain awful.

  6. Defense Rules Says:

    Impressive. Good to see such detailed analysis (‘Bucs defense is getting skewered by opposing QBs’) and proposed solutions (‘buy the gravediggers some new shovels’). Not sure, but I’m guessing that’s a lesson in the use of hyperbole?

    Yes we’ve been hit hard by the injury bug early-on, especially on defense (SMB, Dean, JPP). Yes we’ve played 3 excellent veteran QBs (Prescott, Ryan, Stafford), each with some solid weapons in the passing game. And yet here we are 2-1, same record as last season after 3 games. We lost to an excellent (now 3-0) Rams team that’s a bonafide SB contender, in their house because, oh ya, they beat the crap out of us.

    Opposing QBs completed 69% of their passes against our defense last season (as opposed to 72.2% thus far this year). NOT a gigantic difference, especially considering Secondary injuries & the quality of opposing QBs we’ve faced. So what’s really changed?

    Our pass rush hasn’t been getting home yet this season for one thing (we’ve generated 3 sacks & 21 total QB pressures in our first 3 games; last year we had 12 sacks & 32 total QB pressures by this point). BIG difference.

    Last season we were 17-for-44 (38.6%) in 3rd & 4th down conversions allowed in our first 3 games. This season we’ve allowed 26-for-51 (51.0%). Another BIG difference.

    Thus far this season opponents are rushing against us even less than they did last season (29.6% run-pass ratio this year vs 36.7% run-pass after 3 games). Smart strategy, staying away from our strength & attacking our weakness. Whodathunkit?

    I think our defensive problems are two-fold. One, we’re not making the big plays we did last year & guys need to step up or it’s gonna be a very long season. Two, our short pass defense has been exposed for the weakness that it’s historically been when we blitz excessively. Todd Bowles is holding onto a coverage scheme that simply isn’t working & that’s leaving gaping holes in our coverage. Maybe the old saying ‘If you can’t run with the big dogs, get back on the porch’ applies to our current pass defense?

  7. AKicknTheBucNuts Says:

    Seems we suck after the DC gets an extended contract.

  8. alton d green Says:

    I said last year that if Todd is a good DC, i’m a rocket scientist. I’m not a rocket scientist

  9. Jason Says:

    It’s all about the pass rush.

  10. jiminPH Says:

    The Jets got rid of Bowles for a reason! If something is not working, adjustments must be made.

  11. Leighroy Says:

    Bunch of chicken littles. 2-1 start, about to be 3-1, after winning the Super Bowl 8 months ago and y’all crying about some stats.

    They just getting warmed up. We don’t need the 2002 defense when scoring 30+ pts per game

  12. Infidel Says:


  13. Casual Observer Says:

    I agree with Defense Rules. “Holding on to a coverage scheme that simply isn’t working.” Try something new – more often. Be less predictable in coverage, perhaps.

  14. BuccoBDub Says:

    Damn scrate Leighroy

  15. carzyBucs_CL Says:

    it was clear that Lovie S 2.0 aka Mr Magoo,s coaching staff was not a big improvement. Specially DC Todd from Smith. We just ignore the facts…
    is good to see this percentages compared, is going to help this analysis? No.
    as long as TV 🤡 HC is there, he will never see it as a problem. Simply cause he just can’t see no more, his time as HC is gone.
    was painful last year, is even more this year when other team offence gets the ball. Sad

  16. Jaymiss Pick6 Again Says:

    Gonna be pretty funny is Sherman is the answer…seeing as how he was just sitting out there and 31 teams ignored him.

  17. Defense Rules Says:

    @crazyBucs_CL … “it was clear that Lovie S 2.0 aka Mr Magoo,s coaching staff was not a big improvement.”

    You mean the staff that won the Super Bowl last year? That staff? Every year presents new challenges & teams need to adjust or they’ll get their shorts handed to them. We’re 2-1 but still figuring out those adjustments it appears.

  18. WillieG Says:

    I think that comparison is misleading. Maybe. Teams are now using short passes instead of runs and that will definitely increase the completion percentage. I’d like to see a breakdown of the type of passes, short, medium, and long. (When I say I’d like to see it, I mean I’d like for Joe to provide the information because I’m too busy (lazy) to find it myself.)

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Tryon not a bust but he is a 1st round pick…..time to start seeing something.

    Yes, 31 teams passed on Sherman as they also passed on our PS cornerbacks.

    If Dean makes that easy interception, that game could look a whole lot different.

    I agree, we faced 3 very good QBs…..

    I’d tighten up on Mac Jones & force him to go deep……

  20. First Down Tampa Bay Says:

    Nothing like overreactions 3 games into the season against 2 of the best offenses in the NFL, and even another solid offense in the Falcons. Not to mention our best pass rusher has been hurt, and we are starting practice squad CBs.

    Don’t doubt the staff and defense that won the Super Bowl. Don’t doubt Tom Brady. We have 14 games to go…

  21. HC Grover Says:

    Tron not cutting the mustard so far. Can’t seem to get around the edge of Pro Tackles yet. Too small to push them back.

  22. Jerry Says:

    Not returning to the super bowl with the defense playing like this. There’s no way.

  23. Bojim Says:

    The defense has no excuses for this game. Mac better not look good.

  24. LongSeason Says:

    The Grave Diggers may be digging their own graves.
    If this ensures Brady throws for 10,000 yards and 100 TD’s (half to Gronkenstein), then I guess it would be okay.
    Realistically, even with Brady we will be hard pressed to make the playoffs with this defense. Brady is good but he ain’t God.
    I’m quite surprised that our pass rush is more like a pass snail.

  25. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Who can forget the Mike Smith days ?
    Dirk Koetter had so much loyalty to him, it cost him his job.

  26. Cobraboy Says:

    If the D does not rise up significantly and elevate their play to just *average*, this will be a long, frustrating season that does not end well.

    One hopes that the two ILB’s decide to show up for a game.

    IMO, three games in and not one player on defense has played worth a crap.

    “Pass Snail”…good description.

  27. crazyBucs_CL Says:

    @Defense Rules Says:
    “…You mean the staff that won the Super Bowl last year? That staff?…”
    yeah THAT staff, cause they DID not win the SB; TB12 DID.
    Take TB12 out, and put ANY QB from other 31 teams, and Bucs are going to compete for the first 5 picks on first round draft 2022.
    It is insulting to pretend (with D numbers today) that we have a champion team, what we have is a superman QB, and his draft that are kicking a$$. For how long?? Will see.

  28. Winny Testaverde Says:

    Not sure Koetter was NFL head coach material anyhow. In fairness, Smitty was a better head coach than Koetter…but stunk out loud as a D-Coordinator…especially his final season or so. He was given a tidy severance from The Glazers so there’s that.

  29. BucsFanSince1976 Says:

    Hey Joe?
    Exactly how many corners did the Bucs bring in and workout? Please tell me it was more than one.

  30. Joe in Michigan Says:

    There are actually people dumb enough to label a rookie a bust AFTER HIS FIRST 3 GAMES IN THE NFL?

  31. Defense Rules Says:

    @crazyBucs_CL … “yeah THAT staff, cause they DID not win the SB; TB12 DID.”

    Interesting take CrazyBucs. I assume that we’re talking about the same Super Bowl that we won 31-9. As in Bucs’ defense allowed KC & Mahomes to score THREE FGs TOTAL in 60 minutes? That defense? The same one that chased Mahomes all over the field with 21 pressures (including 3 sacks) in a single game? That defense?

    I applaud Tom Brady for everything he’s brought to the Bucs, including his SB performance last year … 21-for-29 for 3 TDs & 200 yds with 0 INTs impresses me. So did our rushing performance of 33 runs for 145 yds (very ‘un-Bucs-like’?).

    Bottom line is that it took a TEAM effort, just like our 8-game win streak to close out the season did. But hey, you obviously see it differently so run with that.

  32. Jerry Says:

    If the defense makes Mac Jones look like the next Tom Brady, we have a very big problem.

    The thing is, we know they can play better. We’ve seen them play better. It’s not for lack of talent.

  33. Defense Rules Says:

    Cobraboy … “One hopes that the two ILB’s decide to show up for a game. IMO, three games in and not one player on defense has played worth a crap.”

    Agree with you on both observations Cobraboy. If I had to pick 3 defensive players who’ve completely boggles my mind it’d be (1) White; (2) Shaq; and (3) Winfield. Thus far this season all 3 have looked like totally different players. White & Shaq in particular rely on others (interior pass rush?) to REALLY shine in terms of getting pressure on the QB, but for the most part it’s looked like our interior guys have been performing close to the same as last year (at season start that is).

    Our blitzing has been very ineffective, and it’s hurting our pass coverage IMO. Interestingly though, we’ve blitzed less & less each game (blitzed 60 times against the Cowboys, 40 times against the Falcons, but only 15 times against the Rams. Looks like Todd Bowles has really cut down on the blitzes, and yet pass coverage really hasn’t improved as a consequence.

    Roughly half of our blitzes have come from only 2 guys: Shaq (29 blitzes) & White (25 blitzes). And yet between them, they have only 1 sack in our first 3 games. Still don’t understand it.