Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bills-Bucs

December 13th, 2021

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!


Had it all the way. Just kidding.

Style points don’t count in this league, especially when you’re hunting the NFC’s No. 1 playoff seed. The final scoreboard read 33-27, Bucs, in overtime as Tampa Bay held off a desperate, talented opponent.

The Bills needed this game badly but they were outclassed through 30 minutes as the Bucs built a 24-3 advantage. Josh Allen looked like Patrick Mahomes in the Super Bowl, on the lam all over Raymond James Stadium to get away from a ferocious pass rush led by Shaq Barrett.

But Allen wouldn’t allow Buffalo to be stampeded.

In becoming only the third QB in NFL history to throw for at least 300 yards and run for at least 100 in the same game, Allen played with grit and guts. He ran the Buc defense dizzy and it took a third-down stop at the Bucs 7-yard line in the final seconds of regulation to force Buffalo to settle for a game-tying FG.

Tom Brady did the rest, completing all four of his throws in overtime.

The winning 58-yard TD dart to Breshad Perriman came on third down against one of the league’s premier pass defenses.

Now Bruce Arians gets to chew out his players after a win. That’s the best of both worlds for a head coach. The Bucs were outworked badly in the second half, but they extended their winning streak to four games and the rest of the regular-season schedule looks quite favorable.

Here’s how the Bucs took another step toward an NFC South title and damaged Buffalo’s fading wild-card hopes:

* Brady cooled off in the second half, but he set an ornery, aggressive tone for the Bucs from the start. He ran with abandon, giving Arians agita in the process, and guided an attack that converted 8-of-16 on third down against a formidable defense. The TD strike to Perriman was vintage Brady, looking off the secondary before delivering an accurate ball on time.

* Barrett tormented Allen all day, finishing with 1 1/2 sacks and 5 of Tampa Bay’s 11 QB hits. It took every bit of Allen’s athleticism to avoid more takedowns. He kept hobbling to the sidelines, only to victimize the Bucs time and again in the second half. Barrett is tuning up for a huge January.

* Awful game plan by the Bills in the opening half, with zero carries by Buffalo running backs. Sure it’s really hard to run on the Bucs, but we just saw Devin Singletary and Matt Breida combine for 64 yards on seven second-half carries. Do you want Allen dropping back 57 times against this pass rush?

* Chris Godwin and Mike Evans combined for 16 catches and 196 yards against an elite pass defense. That’s 25 receptions in the past two weeks for Godwin, who is unstoppable at the moment in the middle of the field.

* Buffalo’s second-half production shouldn’t obscure the positives for the home team Sunday. The Bucs didn’t turn the ball over and committed only four penalties for 24 yards. Allen almost willed his team to a dramatic victory with 19 first downs after halftime, but in the end it wasn’t enough because the Buc defense finally made a play in the red zone and Perriman — of all people — came up big.

* Tampa Bay’s tackling showed improvement from the Atlanta game and Devin White made more of an impact with 10 stops and 1 1/2 sacks. Still, on a rather sultry afternoon at RayJay, 81 degrees and 69 percent humidity, it was the Buc defense that wore down rather than the visitors from up north.

* At the moment, Leonard Fournette is one of the five best backs in the league. There, I said it.

* Tampa Bay’s ground game was disappointing after a dynamic opening half. Buffalo’s defensive line kept shutting down the running lanes while the Bucs were trying to work the clock with a lead. Except for a 21-yard scamper by Fournette early in the fourth quarter, Tampa Bay’s run game went nowhere in the final 34 minutes.

* Now you know why Allen finished second to Aaron Rodgers in league MVP voting last season. The respect for him within the Tampa Bay locker room just went up exponentially. He absorbed such a beating, Allen needed a walking boot after the game. Even Buc fans had to admire his toughness.

* Bring on the Saints, another desperate club clinging to wild-card aspirations. Wouldn’t it be lovely to officially dethrone New Orleans as division champ in person, ending Sean Payton’s 4-year stranglehold on the NFC South crown? Alvin Kamara is back — but so is Tampa Bay’s home-field dominance after a lengthy leave of absence.

23 Responses to “Ira Kaufman’s 10 Takeaways From Bills-Bucs”

  1. PassingThru Says:

    The Bucs have a tendency to try bleeding the clock early when they go up by multiple scores in the second half, and this time it early bit them. As I mentioned elsewhere, Buffalo knew that the Bucs would try going run-heavy early in the second half:

    1. Past tendencies; the Bucs bleed the clock early.
    2. Buffalo was gutted by the Pats running attack.
    3. RoJo is a poker tell, he’s not a satisfactory pass option and he’s not a good pass blocker.

    They tried running on first downs, Buffalo was counting on that. The plays went nowhere. Brady appeared to lose his passing rhythm with those run plays, and wasn’t as sharp. A few drops on some tough pass plays didn’t help either.

    The Bills made the obvious second-half adjustment: More designed run plays for Josh Allen. Allen’s legs were the only source of offensive consistency for them during the first half.

  2. Mike C Says:

    Took my son to his first game yesterday, absolutely Fantastic! Hopefully the bucs don’t get comfortable thinking they can half arse it and still win.

  3. Bojim Says:

    You said it all!

  4. Steven007 Says:

    Allen is a true football player. A better version of Lamar Jackson. Better arm and stronger lower half, albeit perhaps not quite as quick. But as with all running quarterbacks, he is one good shot away from being seriously injured. Honestly it’s just a matter of time if he keeps playing the way he does. But yesterday he almost did it single-handedly. Glad for the win and glad that we have more than a great quarterback on our team unlike the Bills. Don’t get me wrong, they have some other good players of course, but they would have lost that game by a ton if he wasn’t behind center for them. We clearly have the more complete team and better players across the roster.

  5. King C Says:

    It’s funny how fans on this site are quiet on how Bucs benefitted from three huge ref decisions: PI call for Evans in OT, no-call on Diggs in the endzone and ofcourse the Fournette gift spot.
    Normally they whine incessantly that refs are against the Bucs

  6. Steven007 Says:

    King, that PI was debatable. And how many BS offensive PI calls has Mike received through the years? As for Fournette, from the replays I saw he got that based on forward motion. Plus it was called a first down on the field and there was clearly no irrefutable evidence to reverse it. We have plenty of bad calls made against us. I won’t cry about a couple going our way.

  7. SB Says:

    @Mike C…… dad took me to see my first Bucs game on Sept 12th 1976.
    I was SO HAPPY!.
    Then many years of disappointment. Still here though! Hopefully your son experiences better years than I had to endure

  8. D-Rome Says:

    I said the same to a friend of mine yesterday afternoon about Leonard Fournette. He is a top 5 RB in the NFL. No question about it.

  9. Rayjay1122 Says:

    Time to focus on the Saints and ending the regular season losing streak to the who dats. 11-3 and put the NFC South title where it belongs here in Tampa.

    GO Bucs!!!

  10. Rayjay1122 Says:

    SB, I am right there with you. In fact, I was so into the Bucs as a kid that I would actually record the radio broadcasts for the home games that were blacked out from TV on audio cassette tapes and would listen to them throughout the week. I was going through tough times as a kid and that helped keep my focus on something positive in my life. Now being a Bucs fan is a blast. Well worth the wait and the dismal years.

  11. Mike C Says:

    Makes it all the sweeter RayJay! As far as the ref calls get out of here, they hit Brady in the head, no call. Gronk was mugged down the sideline and only because the guy was half of his size was the only reason he didn’t get called for PI.

  12. SB Says:

    @ Rayjay……….:)

  13. Anonymous Says:

    With you on that to SB. My dad started taking me to game in ’76 as season ticket holders, and I held on to those tickets after his passing until 2017. Wish I still had them, but with a wife and kids, close to $1000 per game is asking a bit much for 2 club seats. Priorities in life, but I am a die-hard Bucs fan for life. Each game reminds me of my dad and the awesome times we had.

  14. Medicated Pete Says:

    My white parrot looks exactly like Ira

  15. '74 Bucs fan Says:

    Am with you too on that SB. My dad started taking me to games in ’76 as season ticket holders and I held on to those tickets until 2017. Wish I still had them but $1000 per game or 2 club seats was a lot with a wife and kids. Priorities. Each game reminds me of my dad and the great times we had.

  16. Vinny from Vermont Says:

    Others and myself have stated our belief that the predictable runs up the middle on 1st down are hurting this team in so many ways.
    It puts you behind in down and distance
    Wastes a down that is badly needed especially on our end of field….etc, etc. We all know the downsides.
    So…what is the logic of continually doing it? Im mystified!!
    Is BL making these calls? BA? Brady?

    Can someone just explain it? I would just appreciate something to explain the absurdity.

    Count me as a NO vote on BL for a head coaching job. ON THE OTHER HAND…it would get us a new OC!!

  17. Bird Says:

    Just watched game again

    I agree josh allen a stud. Dude will take to many shots though. You can take so many plays where devin white jumps on your back (all his weight). You can understand too why in a boot. He was dragged down from behind with player putting all his weight on him.

    We went turtle in second half. 2 things that were mind blowing to me. Sherman int and stop on fake punt 4th down. I think it was fake. Anyway we get good field position and do nothing really with these turnovers. Got to be better there.

    But what a win. I about had a heart attack leaving the stadium. And bills fans were whining like babies

  18. Duane Says:

    A December win against a good opponent, and there is still room for improvement. A relatively clean game with no turnovers. This team is right where it needs to be. They continue to find ways to win. Style points dont make the record any better. Good teams get the calls. This franchise has paid it forward in spades to recognize the nonsense of the whataboutism of the flag.

  19. orlbucfan Says:

    It’s long past time for the zebs to give the Bucs a few breaks. That comment was BS. Digging out my voodoo doll with Sean Payton’s mug on it and loading it with poison needles. 🙂

  20. Tampabaybuscfan Says:

    Ira, I want to thank you for continually recognizing Raymond James Stadium….that is the name of our stadium and they pay for the rights….
    Joe names other team’s stadiums constantly but not Raymond James…..

  21. Buczilla Says:

    Heart pounding win, but I’ll take it! Great stuff Ia. Allen is one hell of a talent, but he won’t have a long career if they keep running him like that.

  22. unbelievable Says:

    The defense wilted in the 2nd half b/c the offense went into semi-turtle mode once they got the lead, despite having 30 min left. Lots of runs up the gut for minimal gain, with an occasional low percentage shot downfield mixed in. Not a great recipe for moving the chains and chewing clock, so the defense gets left out to dry.

  23. DavidBigBucFan99 Says:

    You want to see what’s going to happen to Allen in 6 years from all these hits? Scam Newton