Will Gholston: Bucs Defense Let Up Against The Falcons

October 11th, 2022

“Ira, you’ve surely seen this in your 59-year career covering the NFL.”

Joe sure hopes a valuable lesson was learned Sunday against the Falcons, though Joe finds it troubling that a defense loaded with guys who have Super Bowl rings would have to learn such a lesson.

The Bucs led the Falcons 21-0 late in the third quarter, and then Atlanta started moving the ball. It was no fluke. Atlanta lined up and began punching the Bucs in the mouth on the ground, determined to play their game and chip away at the the Bucs’ big lead.

Buccaneers savior linebacker Devin White said playing with a big lead can get a little boring. Tenth-year defensive tackle Will Gholston had a different analogy for the Bucs coughing up their big lead late.

“So you know, when you’re in a fight and you’re just punching, punching and punching, you’re not looking up, you’re just punching. And then when you look up, that little bit of hesitation can cost you a knockout blow. So, I think that’s what really happened [Sunday against the Falcons],” Gholston told the Buccaneers Radio Network.

“Like we were just head down punching, punching, punching, hesitate just that little instance and … they scored.”

Well, the first thing Joe learned here is to never get in a fight with Gholston. Second, Joe learned that the Bucs might have a leadership issue, especially if this kind of mental lapse is seen again.

The Bucs defense easing up is a little odd in general, but especially strange considering they were gunning for a shutout. A shot at a shutout typically fires up defenses.

Enjoy The Ira Kaufman Podcast, presented by Bill Currie Ford. Ira Dives Into The Win Over The Falcons And What It All Means.

39 Responses to “Will Gholston: Bucs Defense Let Up Against The Falcons”

  1. Upstate NY BUC Says:

    Come on Man!! How much are these players paid. Pittsburgh has nothing to lose Sunday! I hope we are prepared mentally. Go Bucs.

  2. Davenport Says:

    Further evidence of the way Bowles has let the chsmpionship fire go out. Nstural killer instinct would push the team to be more aggressive and beat the opponent down. This team has no problem telling the coach they are hesitant or even board. Somewhere, Sapp, Brooks, Lynch and Rice are silently weeping.

  3. Redeemer Says:

    I don’t understand. No lead is safe in the modern NFL. These guys should know that. Glad that it happened again a bad team. Teachable moment

  4. Defense Rules Says:

    ‘Joe learned that the Bucs might have a leadership issue, especially if this kind of mental lapse is seen again.’

    Eliminate the word MIGHT in that sentence, and I’m onboard 100% Joe. Without Suh & JPP they’re rudderless.

  5. LVMYBUCS Says:

    I agrre we are missing JPP and Suh not for just the game play but need some real adults in the locker room.

  6. Pryda...Sec147 Says:

    Leadership problem doubt it. More like we melt under the hot sun ☀️ and offense 3 three n outs in a row with this heat forget about it defense was gassed.

  7. Richbucsfan Says:

    Something is wrong with this team. It’s a locker room issue. I doubt we’ll find out during the season. But, when they go home having missed the playoffs we’ll find out.
    It’s really too bad, but ‘It’s a Bucs life’

  8. Pelsbuc61 Says:

    Bowles doesn’t hold players accountable and there’s no fire to the defense.

  9. LVMYBUCS Says:

    Bowles sucks as a head coach hence the reason he was fired in NY

  10. #8 Says:

    The is not a #8 level mentality.

  11. teacherman777 Says:

    John Harbaugh on JPP

    “ Very impressed. He hadn’t played at all in training camp or in the season. I thought he looked good the first week, and now just a little bit better this week. To get his hands on those balls, and to pressure the quarterback, strong against the run. He plays super hard, he’s a hard playing guy. You can tell he loves the game, so he’s a big plus for us. I’m very happy that we have him.”

  12. LVMYBUCS Says:

    If I was Brady I wouldnt come back to play under Bowles

  13. geno711 Says:

    Bucs defense clearly shut out Dallas and New Orleans in the 4th quarter.

    Not sure the team is leaderless. I just think it is a less good version of our defense when guys like Carlton Davis and Logan Ryan are missing.

    Arthur Smith and Atlanta are the 3rd best running team in the NFL and they still got under 20 points against our defense.

  14. Bucsfan13 Says:

    I’ve been hesitant to criticize Bowles, but it’s obvious his leadership skills are lacking. This lackadaisical attitude. I’ve seen Evans speak up a little more. BA says Brady is still lighting guys up in practice. We don’t have a championship mentality and Brady knows it. On his latest podcast, he waxed poetic about his days with the Patriots and noted their tough, physical presence. Brady won’t ever throw anyone under the bus, but he sure does a lot of hinting on his podcast. Read between the lines.

  15. Redeemer Says:

    Both Bowles and BL aren’t head coach material. Usually with the success the team has had, these guys would be shoe in’s for other jobs. It didn’t happen, and now we know why. They suck!

  16. Hondo Says:

    Defense also let up last game of season last year. Basically there is no leadership on O and D

  17. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I agree that lack of leadership on the field is a problem….but this is an issue for Bowels to fix…

    I believe he should publicly chastise the defense for it’s complacency.

    I would also point out that our offense was impotent as well at that point in the game.

  18. BucsFanSince76 Says:

    When you lose your most experienced defensive players in Suh and JPP-you are absolutely correct Joe that leadership is sorely lacking. SIGN SUH!!!!

  19. Pewter Power Says:

    That’s 100% on Todd Bowles, as if we didn’t get blown out the week before. You come out the very next week and still won’t play a full 4 quarters. This is not a championship team or mentality. If your not trying to dominate the ENTIRE game every week what makes them think they can just turn it on or off when they want to. This is not our year not with this type of attitude

  20. Goatfarmer Says:

    Todd – What are you prepared to do about it other than words?

    This has been an issue your whole Bucs tenure. All your guys acknowledge it. First step is admitting there’s a problem. Check that box.

    Now, what are you prepared to do about it?

  21. rsjcheapseats Says:

    That Brady did come back says everything.
    And that most of the usual complaints about the coaching are nonsense.

  22. David Says:

    He is now the second defensive player to say this. Hopefully it’s a wake up call. The troubling part is this happened after they took a pounding by KC. You would think that would have been enough of a wake up call

  23. Defense Rules Says:

    Tending to think that a lot of commenters are blowing this whole thing out of proportion & using it as an excuse to rag on Todd Bowles. FIELD LEADERSHIP (like locker room leadership?) is a big deal on every team in every sport. Certain personalities (like Hardy Nickerson & Warren Sapp?) have a tremendous influence on other players. That has nothing to do with Bowles & everything to do with the Bucs’ GM.

    Seems quite obvious to me that JPP & Suh were those types of fiery, aggressive personalities on the field. Look at the HUGE change in the performance of the Bucs’ defense that started in 2019 when Suh joined JPP, and continued through 2020 with a much-improved defense that won the Super Bowl that year. Neither of them were treated very respectfully by Bucs’ management this past off-season.

    And for those wondering, JPP signed with the Ravens for $1.35 mil on a 1-year contract. He obviously worked really hard to overcome some very significant injuries. Bucs play the 3-2 Ravens here on Thursday night, Oct 27th (short week after we play the Panthers on Sunday). Their 2 losses were to the 3-2 Dolphins & the 4-1 Bills. Ravens have the #4 offense in the league and LOVE TO RUN. Their defense isn’t that shabby either. Sure hope that JPP doesn’t hold a grudge against his old team.

  24. Tom in MadCity Says:

    Playing with a big lead can get a little boring??? Hello!!! Let’s get really bored!!!

    I can’t believe what I’m hearing. The notion of shutting out another team doesn’t excite you and get your juices flowing? Come on! He needs to spend more time with Mr. Brooks!

    It is rare for an NFL team to get shut out in this day and age. We’ve seen 80 games played so far this season and there have been TWO, just TWO shutouts!! You had a chance to accomplish this feat and got bored? Where’s the defensive leadership! Sapp, Brooks, Lynch and their crew would salivate at the chance to shut an opponent out. Let’s learn to finish a game!

  25. Joey Strom Says:

    This defense is highly capable physically and has the talent to produce shutouts. The fact that they are losing focus and are “bored” is a huge problem, and it will backfire on them against a better opponent if they don’t get that mentality corrected now. Start AND finish strong!

  26. Goatfarmer Says:

    Soft bag of clowns. Disgusting.

    The Steelers will make it look like Raheem is back in his 2011 form with a rookie QB.

    These overpaid snowflakes have made me go mental.

  27. Bucamania Says:

    Whatever happened to stepping on the other team’s throat? This is soft talk. smh

  28. Mike Johnson Says:

    Better be ready against them Steelers. They are desperate for a win. And they are gonna fight like warriors at home. You can be guaranteed about that. Their coach said today they need a win any way they can get it. Our offense needs to be clicking.

  29. DoooshLaRue Says:

    This seems to happen every year on both sides of the ball.
    JPP and Suh, while being great players, still let this happen only to a lesser degree.

    You’d think that with the over abundance of coaches that we employ we might want to actually have one who’s sole duty is to make sure this doesn’t happen.

    I mean come on…….. getting paid millions of dollars simply is not enough motivation on its own.


  30. Arn platz Says:

    So how many yards do the Steelers have to get before Licht finally calls Suh?

  31. Smashsquatch Says:

    Like the honesty, despise the truth.

  32. Buccos Says:

    I agree that losing JPP and Suh has caused a void in leadership. There are 2 less men in the room. We can still correct that with Suh. The Ravens definitely aren’t giving JPP back. And he’s playing for peanuts. You know why? Because he loves the game and he’s a fierce competitor. We will probably realize how much we miss him in the playoffs. I have great respect for Licht as a GM but giving up on JPP like that really makes me scratch my head. Maybe there is more to the story. Maybe JPP should have sat out last year while he was injured instead of putting out that bad tape.

  33. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Another poster hit the nail on the head. The Steelers were humiliated last week by the Bills. They are at home and will be anxious to show their fans they are not that bad with a win over us.
    WE had best be ready for them!

  34. Eckwood Says:

    The second part of this is some how the Falcons D seemed to be in better shape than our boys !!!

  35. steele Says:

    Lack of field leadership, lack of killer instinct, lack of the right intensity of attitude. Just way too mellow, relaxed, undisciplined. Many of the factors that lost the playoff game vs. the Rams, carried forward. Made worse by the void left by the two you know whos on defense, hasn’t been replaced.

  36. August 1976 Buc Says:

    The only thing to really comment here is these are not what at all what you want to hear, period.
    Devin White talking about being bored?
    Will saying they basically let up.

    Why would Devin need to have someone stir him up, he is supposed to be a leader, a self starter, self motivated, and play with passion.

    Again, there is no way around it, you just do not want to hear these things come out of the players mouths.

    What else can be said about it by a poster.
    We can criticize or whatever, but it does not change the sad fact of these kinds of comments, from men who are paid very well to keep full attention for at least 3+ hours on game day.

    GO BUCS!!!!

  37. LakelandSteve Says:

    So obviously Devin White, Vita Vea, Lavonte David and Shaq Barrett have not been fiery leaders. Those are supposed to be our stud players, the guys the rest of the defense follows. You see Brady yelling at offensive guys in the huddle and on the sidelines. I see no one putting their foot up someone’s behind on defense. That’s a huge problem. JPP and Suh played with a little mean streak and now that is missing. The Bucs better get this fixed or this might be a really long season.

  38. Bucsfan13 Says:

    I remember Lavonte was yelling and throwing his helmet during the playoffs against the Rams. I loved that emotion. You don’t see that from him often. I know people get triggered when players have outbursts on the sideline. I love it! People are also overreacting to that whole Davante Adams push. He just lost a heartbreaking loss. It’s an emotional game, and the camera guy flopped. Adams should get a fine at the most. No suspension needed

  39. kyle Says:

    if i remember correctly, the bucs won the game guys… what are we doing crying so much? The steelers do not feel sorry for the bucs, I can promise that.