Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bucs-Washington

November 14th, 2021

Yes, that warranty includes USED vehicles!
Ira drives a 2020 Ford Escape (cherry red).
Enjoy Ira’s signature postgame column and shop now at


Let’s dispense with the highlights, shall we?

Devin White showed up in the nation’s capital and looked like the game-wrecker who keyed a late-season defensive surge in 2020. While White was all over the joint, most of his teammates took a dirt nap at FedEx Field.

Bruce Arians summed it up rather nicely after the 29-19 setback, apologizing to Buc Nation for an embarrassing performance. Arians also acknowledged that Tampa Bay played passionate football for only eight minutes. The other 52, he said, were “godawful.”

Despite an extra week to prepare for the NFL’s most inept pass defense, Tom Brady and company had no answers. Don’t blame an offensive line that allowed Brady to be touched only once all afternoon.

The culprit was a rigid, conservative game plan that looked more appropriate for Trent Dilfer rather than the league’s No. 1 passing attack. Leonard Fournette averaged 5.7 yards on his eight catches, so Captain Checkdown was clearly in the house.

The Bucs started terribly and finished even worse in dropping to 6-3.

They have allowed the Saints to stay close in the NFC South by playing dumb, uninspired football since trouncing the Bears.

While the players bear the most responsibility for this 2-game tailspin, Arians and his staff are far from blameless. Todd Bowles just made Trevor Siemian and Taylor Heinicke look like Brett Favre while Byron Leftwich refused to test Washington’s wretched defense with some deep downfield throws.

The Bucs played from behind Sunday. More distressingly, they played scared. Here’s how Tampa Bay fell to 2-3 on the road:

* Brady’s reliance on short, quick passes would be justified if he was under siege, but protection was solid. He had ample time to go through his progressions, but he kept taking the safe route. As former Lightning coach John Tortorella used to preach at Amalie Arena: safe is death.

*  Any credit the defense gets for holding Washington to some early field goals was overshadowed by Tampa Bay’s devastating failures on third down. Washington converted 11-of-19 on the money down and succeeded twice on fourth down. On the final game-sealing drive, the Bucs failed to stop Washington four times on third down before yielding a fourth-down rushing TD.

* Bowles decided to give White more freedom to make plays and the results were spectacular. He finished with 18 tackles, two sacks, three tackles for loss and three QB hits. He was in Heinicke’s grill all day, making it even more shocking that the Bucs allowed 26 completions in 32 pass attempts.

* Memo to Ryan Succop — get your act together. Your missed extra point after Mike Evans scored was a real downer.

* The Bucs talk about complementary football, but they didn’t practice it very well on Sunday. Washington answered Cameron Brate’s score with an 8-play, 71-yard TD drive. After Evans scored from 40 yards out, Washington marched 80 yards in a ridiculous 19-play drive that chewed up 10:26.

* Speaking of possession time, the Bucs barely had the ball for 20 minutes. Washington boasted 24 more snaps. New Orleans had 14 more snaps two weeks ago. That’s a trend that needs to be reversed … now.

* Ronald Jones made an appearance on the field, but he left without a touch. Is he playing that poorly?

* The coaching staff would have been wise to give Jason Pierre-Paul an additional week to rest before facing the Giants on a Monday night matchup. JPP is playing hurt and he was no factor against Washington.

* Brady tried to cut off his post-game remarks after approximately 70 seconds. Sure, Brady’s pissed, but the Tampa Bay media deserves more respect.

* Washington’s safeties played deep and Leftwich decided to play it safe. Arians should have reminded his offensive coordinator that Evans and Chris Godwin can beat any defense. Before Evans caught his fourth-quarter TD, Brady had only two completions of more than 15 yards. That’s unacceptable. Did I miss Ronnie Lott strolling the Washington secondary? The Bucs didn’t give their best players a chance Sunday. Arians had it right — godawful.

Click on through to shop at Bill Currie Ford GM Sean Sullivan is ready to help you PERSONALLY and give you the Ira Kaufman discount. Just ask!

35 Responses to “Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bucs-Washington”

  1. Medicated Pete Says:

    I think the Bucs are great & Mike Evans football IQ is genius level

  2. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    I think we got outcoached in that game, big time.

  3. Rich 12 Says:

    Spot on Ira!

  4. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Quick, what do the Saints and The Washington Football Team have in common ?
    The answer is, they both play 2 deep safeties, and have a good defensive line.
    Same with the LA Rams.
    The Washington Football Team turned Tom Brady into a Checkdown Charlie, it was terrible!

  5. Francisco Guzman Says:

    The chiefs gave up 13 points to this same team. Man this defense is awful and we haven’t seen any improvements. Getting back our corners won’t mean jack until these guys can stick with the wideouts. The scheme sucks right now by bowles.

  6. NPRSageBoy Says:

    The immortal Alfred E Newman said it best:

    What? Me worry?

    That’s the players mindset; no worries, we’re Super Bowl champs!

    Wake up! The sky is indeed falling.

    Let’s Go Brandon! After all, he’s as clueless as the Bucs coaching staff

    Peace, out

  7. Sean Says:

    It’s going to be another long week. Bad enough they lost before the bye. Now it seems like forever since they played well.

  8. matthew veal Says:

    I don’t watch the games very much any more. I did listen to the radio and heard more about the refs than the game itself.
    I suppose it could be due to things going badly but the bucs were only down by 2 when Dave Moore started.
    Seems like the league should monitor the broadcasts like the nsc monitors phones etc for keywords. If they are getting more than 2 minutes a game or so it’s time to simplify the game. For me we’re past that point

  9. DoooshLaRue Says:

    BL is The MASTERMIND…….

    I’m still working on Bowles’s moniker.
    The GIVER?

  10. DBS Says:

    So what happened? Did BL run out of Magic?

  11. Pelsbuc61 Says:

    Leftwich and Bowles are in a slump and the players are making stupid penalties extending drives. Bad football all around.

  12. steele Says:

    One could be written off as an anomaly. Two becomes a pattern.

    If a defense is as injured and plays as poorly as this one, average QBs and any decent offensive coach can exploit it.

    If this continues with enough injured players back (and who knows when this will be) (losing Vea leaves a huge hole), then it’s Bowles.

  13. ElioT Says:


    We should be very concerned about BL and TB getting HC offers.

    They both ****ing suck.

  14. Francisco Guzman Says:

    If vea is out for a period of time is there anyone out there that this team could sign? A veteran?

  15. steele Says:

    Chris@Apple, great point. The question is, why doesn’t the Bucs BL brain trust know how to address that, now having lost all 3 games to the similar defense scheme?

    In the NE past, Brady offenses could feast on “taking what the defense gives you”, kill teams with the dink-dunk. IF the pass rush is handled. IF the personnel are equipped for it. It was Brady to Edelman/Gronk/White all day.

    What exactly are the issues now? There are many.

  16. adam from ny Says:

    Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:
    November 14th, 2021 at 7:56 pm
    Quick, what do the Saints and The Washington Football Team have in common ?

    they both lost to us in their last meetings in the playoffs…

    they remember that and wanted to kick some azz…

    we played not ready, somewhat lazy and crappy football against 2 teams that had it in for us…

    this is not how a champion plays an opponent who is going to want to thump you…

    the bucs simply look like they don’t care that much…

    a bunch of guys who are content with a ring and nothing more…

    as i watched the game today i kept saying to myself: “what the heck is going on out there?”

    yeah, and this offensive game plan was beyond ridiculous…

    i kept thinking: “wait aren’t we the number one passing offense in the league?”

    my concerns when seeing the schedule after it’s initial release were they would lose to the saint’s as they might “rest” their way into the bye…and they clearly rested their way out if the bye week as well…

    so yeah at this point the 14-3 to 13-4 season i predicted is in jeopardy, because even if they kick azz the rest of the year, i still have them penciled in for one more loss…

    my losses were as follows:

    – lose to a very good team (rams)
    – lose to a divisional opponent (saints)
    – lose to an average team (to be determined..colts?, carolina?, etc)
    – lose to a crappy team in a stunner (wft)

    i think we just saw the stunner


  17. Francisco Guzman Says:

    adam from ny this team could lose to anyone left on the schedule because the defense sucks and the offense is a little inconsistent.

  18. Upstate NY BUC Says:

    Just drove 5 hours home in the snow did not turn on the tunes at all!!! So pissed if you guys saw that game live it was even worse, I think Brady was sick did not look right in warm ups..A lot of Bucs fans showed up!

  19. steele Says:

    We were all hoping they’d wake up and run the table after the bye. Now, who knows. The way they are now, injured even worse and mentally out of it, they are going to lose next week, and perhaps a few more. Where does a 10-6 get them?

    Shouldn’t even talk about “p-p-playoffs!?” when they need to re-learn how to win games.

  20. Francisco Guzman Says:

    steele they need their starting corners back and see what they can do. Also this pass rush needs to be better. Run defense etc. Losing vea is gonna hurt. They need to pick up a body somewhere.

  21. Craig Says:

    So many bad choices.

    Cyril Grayson, the fastest man on that field, should have been sent long half a dozen times. It would have kept the safeties out of the way.

    Shaq Barrett should not be drifting back, into coverage. He did that on about 70% of the snaps he was in for.

    If Lenny had the hot hand, why just 47 yards, especially against the number 29 rated defense.

    Really atrocious, starting with the coaches and running all the way through the players. Of course, with B.A. throwing players under the bus, it might not change.

  22. steele Says:

    I shudder to face another week of noise from the sports mediots. Another week of Shannon Sharpe screaming how “Tom Brady done lost to (insert name of mediocre QB here)!” and Skip Bayless saying Brady is still the GOAT, blah blah, while all of them miss the big picture.

    This team has to collectively get its head on straight and shut everyone up.

  23. Carlos Alvarez Says:

    I agree with Craig , Leftwich is in love with Lenny , every first down ,is a run with Lenny , do some play action on first down, If they play Giants like today they will lose . Open it up on offense , And pray Vita is not done for the season.

  24. adam from ny Says:

    the repetitive plays to godwin and lenny were fairly ridiculous and limiting…

    and they never accumulated much yardage off them either…

    they sorta played offense as if they were playing in a rain or snow storm…

    and they have secretly or quietly switched our all pewter unis for next monday’s game vs the giants to red jerseys and white pants…

    things are getting weird by the bay

  25. Conte Piscateli Says:

    Both coordinators are not running their paychecks. BL only had on first down play on his sheet, the rest is all 9s or a we screen. Bowles hasn’t even considered changing his pay calls with with that sorry excuse for a secondary we roll out there, coaching is putting your players in position to be successful and that isn’t what we are doing. If Bruce is right and the coaches are amazing but the players just aren’t exciting then he needs to grow the balls to start benching/cutting the problem players. We lost to a garbage team because they spent 2 week’s game planning to beat the bus. We spent 2 week’s trying to figure out our injury report and playing golf.

  26. adam from ny Says:

    also BA said both ints were on brady when one was definitely darden’s fault…

    and he tossed oj under the bus, but at this point it is completely feasible…he’s sooo gone and starting to dress like cam newton

  27. Francisco Guzman Says:

    adam from ny mickey mouse coaching staff. Bowles better fix this defense. Scheme sucks.

  28. Lesko_Brandon Says:

    Coaching staffs have no clue. Lack of vision, creativity and solutions. The only thing BA is good at, blame others. Sounds familiar.

  29. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Licht drafting Kyle Trask in the 2d round is becoming more and more puzzling…..

  30. ModHairKen Says:

    All this, and Ira’s panties are in a wad because HE didn’t feel respected? No wonder it took Lynch forever to get in the HOF.

    Focus, Ira! You’re not that important and neither is the rest of the media.

  31. Will Says:

    Again lack of creativity by BL. So those screens I was waiting for the blocker to fake and run a wheel route for a big play. But nope that must take too much imagination.
    Also I love how Ira and Joe write these articles with great questions in them but when they get a chance to ask the coaches these same questions they never do. All fans want to know WHY are the CBs playing so dang far off the ball. If they can’t get physical with a WR and play press some of the time they shouldn’t be on the field EVER. I’m tired of seeing 3rd and 5 and the CB is sitting 10yds off and their 1st step is backwards. Thank you for finally taking the shackles of Devin now take the shackles off the entire defense. Please for the love of all us fans start sitting guys that keep making these bone head neutral zone infractions. Doesn’t seem like anyone cares. Largest staff in the NFL needs to get it together.

    Sorry I know this is all over the place but so is my level of frustration with this team.

  32. lambeau Says:

    My guesses:
    Bowles thinks his CB’s can’t press and play man. Not creative enough to mix it up.
    Evans was doubled, Godwin gimpy, Johnson can’t separate, AB and Gronk out.

  33. Defense Rules Says:

    Excellent analysis Ira; thanks. This loss … like the Rams’ loss & the Saints’ loss … is primarily on coaching. Very unimaginative coaching. And I suspect that the players have figured that out & that’s a key reason why we’re seeing such uninspired play on the field.

    White had a good game stats-wise, but most of those stats were ‘after the fact’. Too many tackles AFTER the 1st down was made or AFTER the catch was made. Heinicke seemed to throw a lot of passes into areas near the center of the field with NO defender; made me wonder where our MLB was on all those. Oh ya, either blitzing or protecting an area with no receivers there?

    This defense concerns me because it now looks ‘old’. They’re not winning the one-on-ones. JPP looks ‘old’ out there. Suh looks ‘old’. Even LVD was looking ‘old’. Shaq just looks like a non-factor; certainly not like a $20 mil impact player.

    Oh, forgot someone else who looked ‘old’ out there. Tom Brady.

  34. Bucsfanman Says:

    White had a “good game” statistically, sure.
    One play, the 4th down TD to seal the game. JPP waves to 45 who is lined up inside the GL formation. JPP is telling him he needs to lineup outside, the play is outside.
    As the ball is snapped, 45 still lined up inside, gets lost in the wash and Gibson strolls into the end zone untouched OUTSIDE.

    They played an undisciplined football game and lost.

  35. Hodad Says:

    Resting JPP isn’t the answer, a resting home is. Stick a fork in him, he’s done. He’ll never be the player he once was no matter how much time off he gets. It’s been a great career, but the rigors of the game have taken their toll. It’s time he retires. Maybe open a fireworks store?