Blame The Defenses!

October 7th, 2022

Bucs OC Byron Leftwich.

So yesterday at One Buc Palace, with Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich performing his weekly dance routine for the local pen and mic club, Leftwich had an interesting scapegoat for the Bucs’ struggling run game.

Since opening night, the Bucs run game has been stuck in the mud. The apex came against the Chiefs when the Bucs mustered three yards rushing on six attempts. The positive yardage all came from rookie backup running back Rachaad White.

Of course, the Bucs had to go pass-happy because they were chasing the scoreboard after falling behind 21-3 early against an explosive offense.

Asked for his take on what the offense might be doing wrong that can or should be corrected to ensure a better running attack, Leftwich said, in so many words, blame give credit to the defenses.

“It’s just [that] there are some great defenders on the opposite side, you know?” Leftwich said. “It’s [not] easy to push the big guys around.

“We’re working on it, we’ll get there – we’ll get to where we need to be to be effective the way we need to be.”

Well, to be fair, Leftwich isn’t wrong. The Bucs have faced damn good defensive linemen and linebackers. But here’s the catch: Joe was under the assumption the Bucs lured Tom Brady and other free agents to return in order to make at least one more run at a Super Bowl.

Playing in January and February means facing a defense or two with a good run-stopping defensive lineman or a run-stuffing linebacker.

Yes, doffing your cap to a warrior on the other side of the line is a noble thing. But the goal requires the offense to either get better than those defenders or to find a way to negate them.

Just a hunch the Bucs don’t want Leftwich to wave a white flag against a good defense before kickoff and go 100 percent passing. It would be cool to watch but that’s probably not the approved method.

18 Responses to “Blame The Defenses!”

  1. AbucAway Says:

    Well, he ain’t lying. Smh

  2. Crickett Baker Says:

    Excellent opinion, Joe. I am kinda tired of these coaches’ excuses, to be honest.

  3. PassingThru Says:

    “It’s just [that] there are some great defenders on the opposite side, you know?” Leftwich said. “It’s [not] easy to push the big guys around.”

    Translation from losing coach-speak: The O Line sucks

  4. CrackWise Says:

    This game is easy. Its playing it that is hard.

    I think we did what was expected through the first four games. NOW it’s time to establish yourself.

    I was hoping for 4-0 with a run heavy SMASHMOUTH approach. With the exception of Evans going off with 4-5 TDs and 4-500 yards. Clearly, Mike being out hurt that approach in the Packers game. Then, the hurricane became an issue in the Chiefs game. Regardless, 2-2 was always the LEAST that we needed. The 2-0 start made this a bittersweet accomplishment!!!

    Even as someone who has Cracked Wise. No one could have predicted the circumstances that CAUSED us to drop the last two.

    Now that we are on the other side of the early season “storm” of games. I think we will all be pleasantly surprised to see what a well refined TEAM looks like.

    I will be SHOCKED if we do not go 4-0 in the next quarter of the season!!!

  5. CrackWise Says:

    In regard to everyone that continues to bash the COACHES.


    MORONS!!! All of “You’s guys”. I wish I could meet you just so I could give you 5 across the eyes.

  6. captivajim Says:

    just hope he dosen’t call for running play when its 1st & 20yrds……..

  7. Carl L Says:

    His playbook telling him to open every drive with Lenny off the right side, Lenny up the middle? Every drive? The first game of the season, he tried to burn Lenny out. Never would substitute …..kept running him, same plays over and over , even when we had a good lead. I thought he was trying to make him quit. I think Lenny faked a minor injury just to get a rest. Our O-line is 100 focused on protecting Brady….and they are doing a good job. Brady should take over play calling like he’s done many times the past 2 plus years. Brady can carry the weak coaching staff, if he is allowed to.

  8. Defense Rules Says:

    Thoughtful response by BL; sometimes the other guy really does have the hungrier, meaner dog in the fight. Still, Bryon doesn’t help the cause any with some of his playcalls. Making guys ‘do it until they get it right’ is supposed to be done in practice, not in the games.

    Crackwise, I too was HOPING for 4-0 to start the season, but going 2-2 against some tough opponents is acceptable, especially given our injuries & other issues to date. BUT … now it’s time to crack down & pull away in the NFC South. Six games until our BYE week, and Bucs SHOULD be favored in each one of those. Minimum goal should be 7-3 by the BYE; preferably 8-2.

  9. HC Grover Says:

    Easy as ABC ‘anything but coaching’.

  10. Hodad Says:

    We’ve been trying to get all our rushing numbers from one guy, Lenny. The Chiefs use three backs every game. The Packers have a two headed monster, and Atlanta is coming in handing the ball off 30 times a game to whoever. Lefty needs to get more players involved in the offense, and get more creative on how he uses them. Other teams rushing numbers also factor in the QB. We don’t get much from Brady, and the none threat he is to run makes Tampa one of the few teams that can’t run some kind of RPO. That hurts our running ability also.

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    OK….lets try some runs….after we are up 14…..

  12. orlbucfan Says:

    The Bucs lost to a healthy Chiefs team by 10. They gave KC 14 points in turnovers. The Defense did not have a good game. Well, the area just missed getting pulverized by a very strong cat 4 hurricane. A lot of Bucs staff and players live in the Tampa Bay area. That distraction and offensive injuries helped KC.

  13. Vegasbuccaneer Says:

    We brought the team back together for another championship defense should be kicking ass and taking names often should be unstoppable no excuses fire the trainers hamstring hamstring hamstring

  14. Goatfarmer Says:

    This dude should not be allowed in front of a microphone. I know he’s not an idiot, he just sounds like one on TV.

  15. Ed Says:

    I’m with all the others in agreement, running back by committee is the way most good NFL offenses operate. I understand that there is the trust with Fournette but the Bucs have other backs that should be able to spell him and keep the defenses not expecting the same thing game after game.

    If there is one thing about Leftwich I don’t like is that he doesn’t do a good job mixing up his run/pass ratio on first down. Its his job to coach up the offensive lineman to be able to create some space for RB’s. If they can’t and continue to do a good job pass protecting then keep throwing slants, screens and quick hitters to Godwin and Gage.

    He has to adapt or he will not survive as an offensive coordinator in the NFL.

  16. Texas Buc 1976 Says:

    Excuses, find a way!

  17. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Crackpot, I agree Crackhead to harsh. BL’s game plan is extremely predictable. Every DC knows when the Bucs are running. They have to because we all do when we watch the game. They cheat up flood the box and on occasion run blitz. If he’s blaming his line then that’s on Licht & Bowels, big someone in. BL would not be calling plays for any team if not for an old senile drunkard BA.

  18. DungyDance Says:

    When was the last time you saw BL show one ounce of humility? It’s always someone else’s fault when something goes wrong. Losers make excuses.