It’s Still A Simple Game

October 5th, 2022

Bucs coach Todd Bowles.

Folks could call Joe a new school football guy in that Joe likes passing and fully understands without a quarterback, an NFL team has no shot.

That’s all there is to it.

But Joe is also rooted in old-school football fundamentals. Regular readers know how much Joe salivates over sacks and rails incessantly about defenders not wrapping up and sloppy tackling.

At the end of the day, no matter how shiny and cool your Star Wars offense may be, the game comes down to blocking and tackling. It always will so long as the NFL doesn’t turn into flag football.

To hear Bucs coach Todd Bowles speak in a sitdown with Dan Lucas of WFLA-TV Channel 8, the Bucs may not have been blown out like they were against the Chiefs (the game wasn’t as close as the score indicated) if Bucs’ defense did one simple thing.


The most glaring example came early in the second quarter when Kansas City took a 21-3 lead. Pat Mahomes did one of his Houdini acts and had a short jump shot along the right sideline to Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

That play may never have happened if Devin White didn’t pull a Kwon Alexander and whiff badly on a tackle at the 6 yard line that allowed Mahomes to escape along the right sideline.

“We’ve got to get him to the ground,” Bowles told Lucas of how you defend Mahomes. “If you can’t get him to the ground and a guy misses a tackle on him, you should expect some fireworks for that.

“But we have to get get more people to him to get him to the ground.”

In Joe’s mind, “more people” means gang-tackling. It’s a beautiful thing and a hallmark of a good defense.

It is not fair to single out White. Joe’s just pointing to that play because of Mahomes’ wizardry; that play likely will be shown in his highlights when the guy makes the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Tackling seemed to have been an issue all game, Bowles pointed out to Lucas.

One reason the Bucs struggled to slow down the Chiefs, Bowles said, was because the Chiefs have too many third-and-shorts. That was set up, Bowles said, by bad tackling and defenders being out of position.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve had our butts kicked like that on defense,” Bowles said. “I think everything went wrong.”

As far as the run game that seems stuck in the mud, Bowles thinks with the passing game now clicking with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin back, that may help open up the run game.

51 Responses to “It’s Still A Simple Game”

  1. Leopold Stotch Says:

    That play drove me nuts. I just threw my hands up and shook my head.

  2. Rob In Land O Lakes Says:

    KC is good but they lost to the Colts. SF is good but they lost to the Bears. Geniuses who will tell you that they are far smarter than us, told us that the Bucs would start 0-4. We are 2-2 in a weak division and a wide open NFC. The key is not who the best team is on October 2… it’s who is healthy and playing the best football in late December and January.

  3. Bucsfanman Says:

    Yeah, there were a LOT of missed tackles in that game. I mentioned this previously that speed is great provided you finish. Too many times Buc defenders overran plays and missed tackles.

  4. Kody Says:

    So many missed tackles and weak sloppy tackles this year. Are these guys afraid of getting hurt? It’s like watching little kids out there playing pop warner.

    All goes back to the lack of FIRE. For some reason the Bucs are never FIRED UP at the start of games. They never come out guns blazing ready to go to war. Instead, it’s a soft D, lackadaisical tackling, weak run it up the middle plays, no aggression, no ballsiness, not in the play or play calling. Everything is play it safe. And then MAYBE, if they’re behind enough by half time, they’ll decide to actually start playing in the second half. Or not.

    The Bucs should hire Marine Drill Instructors to scream at the players before each game to fire them the FUG UP!!! Cuz Bowles and the coaches sure the hell aren’t doing it.

  5. CrackWise Says:

    Wait, this is an excuse, NO EXCUSES for losing right? I mean let’s keep the ball rolling posers.

    A CAT 5 Hurrican is no exception so why should this be. Come on you rejects. Let’s hear your crying ALL Fing day AGAIN.

    Lets hear it!!!

  6. HC Grover Says:

    Bad tackling and bad coaching.

  7. Bob in valrico Says:

    Devin has a relationship with Brooks. I think it would help his game if he would work with him to break down more on his tackles and wrap. His hesitation is what allowed Mahomes to juke him and make a play. The fact that the two running backs gashed us for 5.7 yards a carry and over 150 yards just added another wrinkle to their offense and kept the defense guessing.

  8. CrackWise Says:

    Bad coaching seems to be a league wide problem. Considering KC is 2-2 with a far superior team. They must have a REALLY badly coached team. Sam with the Ram, the Patriots, the Dolphins and so on.

    Lets keep it real. Only the BUCS have a better Defense so far this year. Oh wait, that no “EXCUSE”?

    LOSERS are the ones who complain about other people doing things that they themselves can’t do.

    It’s a sport for a reason. ONLY ONE TEAM A YEAR GETS TO CLAIM THEY ARE THE BEST.

    Complaining is for the OFFSEASON!

  9. CrackWise Says:

    I know KC is 3-1. I just want to be like everyone else and not let FACTs get in the way of my BS opinion.

  10. Lt. Dan Says:

    “flag football” – like that piece of crap Pro Bowl?

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    White isn’t the first one to miss a tackle on Mahomes…..and he certainly won’t be the last.

  12. Defense Rules Says:

    Chiefs had an awesome game plan that they executed to perfection. Bucs teed it up for them with 2 giveaways and before we realized there was a game going on it was 21-3 early in the 2nd quarter then 28-10 later in the quarter. Those are facts, not speculation.

    We lost. Can’t change it, but we can learn from it. On to play the Falcons & not repeat the same mistakes.

  13. DG060 Says:

    Imagine losing to the Falcons at home on Sunday. That would be 4 home losses in a row for this “elite” football team.

  14. alton green Says:

    excuse me Mr. Bowles. “we’ve got to get more people on him?” It’s too late. In a scary movie the blonde bimbo always looks behind her and what ALWAYS happens? she falls down and gets whacked. BEAT ATLANTA

  15. alton green Says:

    It’s a simple game. Then why in hell can’t you figure it out?

  16. Show Me the TDs Says:

    White drags people to the ground. He has ever since his LSU days. I have a daughter who graduated from LSU and I watched a lot of their games. He should have cut Mahomes in half on that play. He would have blown up the play and also cause Mahomes to hesitate in future similar situations.

  17. Jack Sparrow Says:

    Is the experiment on RAchel White as kick returner done ? He is the guy that put the bucs in the whole in the first place. WHat about Cmarda ? will he be able to kick and punt the ball straight or at least inbounds. He keeps on giving the chiefs field advantage.

  18. Eckwood Says:

    It is fair and so so so overly RELAVENT to point that play out because Keanu Neal prob makes they play and several others on third down that Devin my mouth has convinced everyone I’m better than I am White just simply doesn’t make , over and over and over again !!! It is totally Relavant !! Go Back and watch the film and watch White kinda giving up on plays like a lil premadonna!! Neal must replace White on third down !! You think White looks good on a designed blitz with a free open shot , I assure you Neal will look better and be far better at changing direction ……. It’s totally Relavant because you have the absoulute perfect player to make this defense better on third down but you have a players ego ( Gerald McCoy disease) controlling the coaches ………. It’s Totally F ing because the players know !! No I am not a Gator Fan but Neal is a much better player on third down for this D …….. ask yourself OK replay Neil would you take Lavonte David off the field and put White in his position the answer is hands-down hell no…….. Now you get the point !!!

  19. Hodad Says:

    Devin still over running plays, he was supposed to have worked on that. This guy might never play under control like Jameis can never stop throwing picks. White is going to want to break the bank with a new contract. Buyer beware.

  20. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Crackhead, you seem to be the only crybaby. Once again Bowels comes up with his excuses to avoid accountability. If players were out of position, that’s COACHING. White has been playing like he is in the WWE not NFL since I started following the Bucs. He is a unbelievable athlete lacking the basic fundamentals of tackling. COACHING!!! He rides more RB’s backs than he does his horse. Will Bowels please have Winfield teach tackling g drills? He is the poster boy for great tackling. The corner for KC knows how to tackle, he almost took out Bucs QB. You want to stop Mahomes acrobatics? Breakdown, force him to go the direction you want him to go and use the sideline as an extra man. Open field tackling 101. Davis had him dead to rights for a sack but he chose to what we use to call it titty tackle. Tackling drills!!!! COACHING!!!

  21. Greg G Says:

    That’s a joke when Listnfrmafar is calling someone else a crybaby. Easily one of the most overly negative posters on JBF.

  22. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Greg, I’ve changed my medication in order to adjust to the moronic posts on this site. Is that better?

  23. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe, I know this’ll go to The Cooler and never come out, but there was a great article on Pewter Report on Monday morning that did a very nice analysis of the Bucs’ loss to the Chiefs. Took on Vea, the DLine, would Suh have made a difference, value of the running game … stuff like that.

    I’m sure that you read all the competitors’ pieces, but that one’s particularly insightful I think. Also recognize that purpose is a lot different than Pewter Report’s, but it sure would be nice sometimes to take a deeper dive into what’s really happening on the field so that folks stop this ‘Fire Bowles Now’ crap. Sometimes the other team really does have a better plan and better players.

    I included the link to the article, but the whole thing just disappeared into Never Never Land.

  24. Cchead Says:

    Bowles better get his spit together. Thus looks eerily similar to Lovie Smith team.

  25. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    List, keep taking those meds buddy. That was a good post, greatly improved! Can you help out a fellow JBF brother so I too can tolerate these morons?

    DR, thanks for the reading recommendation. Going to check it out. But DR, you know ppl will never stop running their stupid mouths about firing the HC (ppl ignorantly think BA deserved getting forced out), that Brady sucks, etc.

  26. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    “…Thus looks eerily similar to Lovie Smith team…”

    Dude, your memory is failing you badly. Please check yourself in to a neurologist immediately

  27. Listnfrmafar Says:

    DR, if the opponent has a better plan, wouldn’t that mean better coached? It appears to me more like a motivation issue rather than players. Do you really believe KC man for man has better players than the Bucs? Sure I will give Mahomes (yet Brady had better stats) the edge and obviously TE and apparently ST’s but the rest? KC was more prepared period. Sorry Bud, that’s coaching. I agree on Vea, once he got paid he is not the force he was. Is Licht the only person watching the Bucs that don’t realize Suh made a huge difference?

  28. Faspro Says:

    The Bucs were playing flag football against the Chiefs.

  29. Jmarkbuc Says:

    At least White didn’t stand up and flex after over running yet another tackle.

  30. Defense Rules Says:

    Listnfrmafar … ‘if the opponent has a better plan, wouldn’t that mean better coached?’

    In that game, yes. Chiefs had a great game plan, which wouldn’t have meant diddly IF they didn’t have the players to execute it with precision (which they did). Mahomes, CEH, Kelce & the Chiefs’ OLine ate our lunch in that 1st half especially. There are a couple of 1st Round picks in their starting offense, plus four 2nd Round picks and they were top picks for a reason.

    Andy Reid’s been doing this for a looong time, and he’s an outstanding offensive mind. Todd Bowles is an excellent DC, but the DLine personnel are obviously struggling against the run. They miss Hicks, but Vea isn’t the same either. And IMO they definitely miss Suh & JPP’s LEADERSHIP.

  31. SPARKY Says:

    When we did gang tackle, 3 or 4 guys got carried for 5 more yards before they got them on the ground.

  32. Goatfarmer Says:

    Todd, everyone knows your defense sucks at tackling. You know it. You said it was a key area of improvement, and yet, you have done nothing about it. That’s some great coaching right there, Todd.

    Is Logan Ryan the only one with a brain in his head on defense? When he goes out, the rest of the team reverts to Raheem ball?

    Soft ninnies.

  33. Buc1987 Says:

    Listnfrmafar Says:

    “Greg, I’ve changed my medication in order to adjust to the moronic posts on this site. Is that better?”

    Welp considering you’re Patriots fan who doesn’t belong on this site, it’s not better until you’re gone.

  34. Listnfrmafar Says:

    Bucs1987@ that was well thought out and the only post you put out there that actually made me chuckle. Keep expanding your thoughts the old posts were boring. FYI, I lost respect for Belichick when his arrogance cost the Pat’s the Philly SB.

  35. CChead Says:

    Senior, my memory is fine. You on the other hand are clueless. That defense we saw on Sunday night looked EXACTLY like the Lovie defense.

  36. rrsrq Says:

    I ha no problem with the D. White miss on Mahommes, that was a great play by him. My problem was with their reeceivers and running backs finishing plays going forward 95% of the time. I could not undersatnd that, when we have guys falloing down wher ethey get hit.

  37. Goatfarmer Says:

    Soft. Wah wah hurricane wah wah. Can’t tackle. Not locked in. Not playing together as a unit.

    Some awesome coaching there, Todd. Kelce? Nah, no need to cover him or double him. Let him beat you single-handedly. Stop the run? Nah.

    What an atrocity.


  38. captivajim Says:

    Bowles’s defense lost the Rams playoff, and now lost the chiefs game .. Just hope that they don’t get take the dixie chix lightly ..

  39. Old School Bucs Says:

    Well to have a great passing you must run the ball. Well that is if you want a chance to win the superbowl. To run the ball you must have a good O Line. These back ups are just getting their feet on the ground and that was shown in the pass game. More work on the run game.

    Lastly there is an old saying in football, DEFENSE wins the games!!! Offense scores the points!!! Bowls is right to stress the defense!!!!

  40. captivajim Says:

    So, Bowles went to the movies this wednesday ……

  41. Goatfarmer Says:

    No need for the head coach to be there in Wednesday. Naa. Tackling will fix itself. Run blocking will fix itself. Canards will stop kicking kickoffs out of bounds magically. Rachel Whita will stop fumbling because it’s mean to keep fumbling.

    What next?

    Todd – one and done?

  42. captivajim Says:

    the dixie chix beat Seattle & Browns ,and lost by 1 point to Slimys & 4 pts to Rams .

    They should NOT be taken lightly. !!

  43. Iistnfrmafar Says:

    If the Bucs are lucky Bowles is on a job interview.

  44. orlbucfan Says:

    DR, I have a lot of respect for your comments. That said, you’re overlooking a few things. Bucs only lost this one by 10 points. They gave a healthy KC team 14 in turnover gifts. Brady needs to get off the field. Gisele is divorcing him and that kills his mental concentration along with his age. Plus, Hurricane Ian and a wounded O. Reid and KC didn’t have those problems. I didn’t think the Bucs would win, but give the team a break!

  45. Iistnfrmafar Says:

    Oralbucs is far from a fan. Bucs scored off a KC int so doesn’t that negate one of those TO scores? Or is this not a two way street. Oral, who would you like as QB, one of those who were not the passing leader of the week. If any of you Bucs fans are unfortunately going through a divorce Oralbuc believes you should quit your job tomorrow because you are unable to function at your position. MORON!!!

  46. orlbucfan Says:

    BTW, dipsh1t, it’s orl nor oral. You illiterate?

  47. Iistnfrmafar Says:

    That’s what I wrote oralbuc

  48. Defense Rules Says:

    orlbucfan … I don’t understand your comment ‘Brady needs to get off the field’. He threw for 75% in the Chiefs game (39-of-52 for 385 yards & 3 TDs against 0 INTs). Show me any other QB in the NFL would could put up those kinds of numbers with a relatively new OLine and ineffective running game.

    And you’re right, they ‘only’ lost by 10 points, but it still counts as an ‘L’ in the standings. They made a valiant comeback after being down 21-3 near he beginning of the 2nd quarter, but this isn’t horseshoes or hand grenades. Close doesn’t count. They’ve got some work to do and they know it. Hopefully this sparks them to go on a winning streak.

  49. Oddball Says:

    Tackle, Block, Win…

  50. Old School Bucs Says:

    Oral talks out of his adk! Clearly not a fan just as most of these cliwns on this site. Joe you have a site full of clowns trolls and idiots who know nothing about competing, play sports at a high level, let alone football.

    It will be interesting to see where these idiots will be in november and december.

  51. garro Says:

    Grab Grab Grab nobody tackling

    Vince Lombardi

    Saw alot of bucs defenders grab and ride for 5 or 6 yards.
    Not much tackling. The only form tackles I’ve seen this year are from Lavonte and Winfield Jr.
    Do they even do tackling drills anymore in the NFL.