Analysis: Bucs Corners Better Than You May Think

September 2nd, 2022

Cornerback Jamel Dean.

Now we all remember how Cooper Kupp helped the Rams end the Bucs’ season last year. It was a real kick in the nuts.

A lot of fans have not gotten over it, not forgiven the Bucs players and not forgiven Bucs coach Todd Bowles for setting his secondary up for failure.

Joe didn’t get too bent about it because, well, it was Cooper Kupp. He deserved to be the MVP last year (yes, so too did Tom Brady). Kupp burned a lot of teams. That’s what he does.

Sometimes you just have to doff your cap to the other guy. He gets paid to win, too.

As a result of that vomit-inducing loss, Bucs cornerbacks aren’t trusted by a lot of fans, short of maybe Carlton Davis. Well, Warren Sharp’s staff at his football thinktank “Sharp Football Analysis” brings word that the Bucs may be better than some fans think in the defensive backfield.

Ryan McCrystal documents that Sharp’s outfit ranks the Bucs’ secondary sixth-best in the league. And the Bucs corners, McCrystal thinks, are damn good.

6. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jamel Dean and Carlton Davis have become one of the league’s best duos at cornerback. In 2021, Dean allowed a 28% catch rate when targeted at least 10 yards downfield, the league’s fifth-lowest rate.

Last year when Carlton Davis and Sean Murphy-Bunting went down with injuries, that secondary damn near collapsed. Dean helped hold it together.

Since Todd Bowles came to town, Davis leads the league in passes defensed. You have to be doing something right to accomplish that.

And Dean has been progressing. This is a big contract year for Dean. If he has a solid season, he’ll make bank in March.

19 Responses to “Analysis: Bucs Corners Better Than You May Think”

  1. Leopold Stotch Says:

    They just need to stay on the field, especially Dean. If Davis can actually come up with some picks, it’s gonna be game over for opposing offenses. I’m 100% with Bowles on the whole were not getting burned. We just can’t tackle and then they get YAC and that kills us. I think the tackling with Ryan and AWJr will alleviate that issue.

  2. Bob in valrico Says:

    I would agree that Dean had a solid season. Also think putting Winfield and Edwards in the slot when SMB got injured improved the all round corner play.

  3. PassingThru Says:

    I think Kupp deserved the MVP over Brady and Rodgers, in that order.

    And Kupp was the MVP of that Divisional round loss to the Rams, though Bowles was a close second.

  4. Bob in valrico Says:

    Dean was also pretty good in run support. Considering JPP injury and effectiveness due to it, he held his own and had the most tackles of any corner.

  5. J Ghotier Says:

    I know Todd alluded to saying that he wasn’t technically naming a starter at CB opposite CDIII and that both Dean and SMB will play, but SMB ain’t rolling into the nickel or at Safety (that’s AWJ and Ryan for starters whether in base D or not….of course he could get in w/ a Dime or 6 man DB package for sure)

    He also said that he doesn’t like to rotate in fresh Corners as he prefers to leave them in all game, unlike the D-Line rotation. So if both will play as he says, where is the non-starter out of SMB and Dean gonna line up then? Besides Special Teams….

    It’ll be interesting to see how he deploys those 2 this year and I wonder if it’ll change by game or week to week depending on team and opposing personnel and whatnot.

    Although, if they do end up somewhat splitting the reps in some way by end of year that does lessen their chance at more production and “stat dollars” as I call them. More snaps = greater chance at more production. So it could potentially lessen their value on the market in a contract year, which would be a benefit to us in many ways. Of course Todd and staff don’t care about that currently though (and nor do I) but it’s still true.

    Tbh, I was kinda confused though when I saw SMB lineup as a starter the first day of TC this year in place of Dean (who had held it down for us last year as Joe alluded to). I knew there would be a battle, but I just assumed Dean and CDIII would line up as Starters…for starters!

  6. Show Me the TDs Says:

    Ever notice how you can skip the first half of almost every JBF article, because it’s basically a regurgitation of previous articles. One or two different words, but basically the same thing, over and over, and over again.

  7. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Hypothetical scenario:
    If you have a 1 point lead with 30 sec left and opponent has 0 timeouts.
    You’re offense has the ball 4th and 1 on opponents’ 35 yard line.
    Do you: a) attempt a FG
    b) attempt a run or short pass fpr 1st down
    c) throw a bomb to end zone
    Bucs’ decision to blitz vs Rams was equivalent to choosing c).
    It was a dumb decision.

  8. Christos Says:

    The thing that is missing from our Secondary is fearlessness IMO. They need to play more tight coverage and not be afraid. We need more INTs sure but we need more PBUs. Play closer coverage and contest some of the passes dont be 10 yards off most of the time. I dont mind if the opponent makes a constested catch but i cant watch too many passes get caught when the defender is 5 yards off the receiver. You will get beat these things happen but be there and contest. We played like that in the playoffs vs Saints, Packers and Chiefs. SMB was picking INTs and breaking passes and then last year always 5 yards off from the catch. Be aggressive in coverage, not all the time but get in there and fight.
    Go Bucs

  9. geno711 Says:

    We had a solidly good pass defense last year. Every team gets beat sometimes.

    Good: Allowed only 5 passes over 40 yards. 3rd best in league
    Good: Allowed a 1st down on only 31.5 percent of passing plays. 4th best.
    Good: 17 interceptions. Tied for 7th best in the league.
    Good: Allowed 6.4 yards per pass attempt. Tied for 2nd best in League.
    Good: Passer Rating: 85.6. 8th best in the league.

    I think we will be better this year.

  10. August 1976 Buc Says:

    So now we will see if Dean is picked on by Dak again this year like last, or Dean steps up, very simple.

    GO BUCS!!!!

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Our entire secondary is better…..another year’s experience for all our young DBs…..Davis, Dean, SMB, Winfield, Edwards, Delaney…..and we’ve added Logan Ryan & Keano Neal…….and down the road, Zion.

  12. Wild Bill Says:

    Cupp was a blown play. Defense was confused and disorganized on that play. Bucs should have called a time out even if they didn’t have one left. 5 yd penalty would have been better than a confused defense.

  13. Goatfarmer Says:

    When they know what they are supposed to do, they usually do it. Kupp ran open because nobody thought they were supposed to cover him. No one was assigned on that play. Now that is outstanding coaching!

    Logan Ryan will make sure everyone knows what to do. That is if he’s decoded Todd’s chaos theory defense and doesn’t mind being cut. What a dis. It can’t sit well with a proud veteran.

  14. Dooley Says:

    A lot of people apparently forgot SMB beat down out Dean last off/preseason for the outside CB job last season. Wouldn’t rule out Dean being the outside CB in the nickel pkg and sliding SMB inside to NB. The goal is to get back to playing more cover 3 with the centerfield FS and allowing that SS to protect the middle of the field and last year we couldn’t do that with SMB out at the nickel and having to provide shade for the 2-3 players we saw as substitutes.

  15. Sorryjackchuckiesback Says:

    And the way this defense is designed these corners are often left on an island and have to beat their man one on one with little safety help (the call that ended their playoff run last year was a horrible call!! That wasn’t the right time to leave Winfield as the lone safety) … But yes I think Davis and Dean are EXTREMELY underrated!! You watch film of these guys and they’re doing their jobs and when it looks like they got beat it’s usually Devin White fault or the system they play in that gives them no help … But as long as the pass rush is getting there it’s very effective!! But nobody can guard an NFL receiver for more than 6 seconds when they blitz 7 and don’t get anywhere close to the QB … They’re not very good at disguising blitzes! … It’s more of a “we’re coming for you, try to stop us” if it works then the corners MORE THAN hold their own!! But it makes them look bad when the blitz isn’t getting there

  16. Trey Long Says:

    That fiasco against Rams was a COACHING ERROR and normally a mistake that egregious w a championship on the line gets somebody fired. Let’s hope it doesn’t happen again. You think Belichick would let Kupp run down the field in single coverage???

  17. Buczilla Says:

    Lol, if we don’t get nuked in the first four games by these killer qb’s that we are going to face and our corners hold their own, then I’ll drink the kool aid.

  18. PassingThru Says:

    Let’s hope the CBs stay healthy this season. That is far from a given with this group.

  19. Lakeland Steve Says:

    I could buy the top 5 corner thing but Davis still gets torched too much. Some of it may not be his fault depending on coverage but some of it is. You can do a lot with numbers and make someone look better than they are. My hope is the Bucs defense is better this year at getting off the field on third down. Maybe tackling better will help if this team can improve on that then the defense may be pretty good this year.