Five Things

November 7th, 2022

(Photo courtesy of

Welcome to Victory Monday! It’s been too, too long. Joe has a plane to catch to Munich this morning. Three flights and nearly 24 hours later, Joe will be eating sauerbraten or schnitzel with dumplings or spätzle with a liter stein of Augustiner Lagerbier Hell to wash it down.

Much Better Mentality For Munich Game

Prost! That’s the German word for “cheers” when one lifts a liter in a German beer hall (they don’t drink pints over there).

That’s what went through Joe’s mind as the Bucs prepare to make history in Munich on Sunday for the first NFL regular season game in Germany. The Bucs will be doing so on the heels of a win, 16-13 against the Rams.


Hopefully, there is more of this to come. It will be tough against the NFC West-leading Seahawks and their hot rookie runner, Kenneth Walker III (570 yards and 7 touchdowns on just 111 carries.)

Had the Bucs lost last night, Joe would have bet the Bucs would lose against the Seahawks. Imagine traveling eight hours by plane after another depressing loss; the Bucs were “this close” to losing their sixth out of their last seven games last night.

The offense finally woke up when someone (Todd Bowles, Byron Leftwich, Tom Brady?) decided they might as well throw if they can’t run.

Joe also found it interesting the bulk of the targets on the final two drives went to guys not expected to start when the season began: veteran backup Scotty Miller and rookie tight end Cade Otton.

Any NFL person will tell you playing in Europe is draining physically from the travel. Joe cannot imagine how tough that would be if the Bucs were still on a losing streak. Both their hearts and heads would be out of it.

Yes, it was an ugly win. Yeah, you could argue the Bucs should have lost. But damn if Joe can find anyone who didn’t want the outcome to be a win.

Even a busty German girl in a Dirndl might not have been able to snap the Bucs out of it if they lost last night.

A win is a win. Never apologize for winning.

“Baby Gronk” Keeps Getting Better

Just like in training camp, Otton improves by the week. With Cam Brate out who knows how much longer (Brate told Joe recently he would be back in a “couple” of weeks), Otton has been thrust into a bigger role.

It’s not like Otton hasn’t made mistakes. He dropped a touchdown on third down on the second-last Bucs drive, for example.

After the game, CBS play-by-play man Jim Nantz referred to Otton as “Baby Gronk.” Joe’s not going there but that touchdown catch Otton had sort of reminded Joe of foot-rubbing Rob Gronkowski’s first of two touchdown catches when the Bucs beat the Chiefs in the Super Bowl.

Gronk lined up off the line, tight to Tristan Wirfs, and at the snap he ran nearly parallel to the line to the left. Brady faked a handoff to Playoff Lenny and he fired to Gronk coming around the left corner for the score.

Last night Otton lined up nearly the same way, but instead of running across the field like Gronk, Otton faked a block then spun outside to break free. Brady too faked a handoff to Playoff Lenny and fired to the right for Otton.

So yeah, Otton did look a little like Gronk on that touchdown catch. It wasn’t the same play, but close. Same result though!

Vita Vea Was Beastly

Damn if Vita Vea didn’t raise all sorts of hell last night on the Bucs’ defensive front. It led to one of the funniest damn things Joe has seen in a while.

In sort of a throwback to Garrett “Whoops” Gilkey or Oniel Cousins, Vea absolutely left Rams center Brian Allen in his dust on Vea’s first sack of the night.

It was hilarious.

Vea did a swim move on Allen and Joe swears Allen didn’t budge an inch. Vea pulled this off so smoothly he looked more like Lavonte David than a big ol’ 360-pound nose tackle.

Vea went around Allen like he was a mailbox. It was one of the best/worst matador blocks Joe has ever seen. Vea was the charging bull.

Vea now has 6.5 sacks through nine games. That is nuts for a nose tackle. That Warren Sapp-like production.

Vea now has eight games to rack up 3.5 sacks to reach double-digits. Folks, any time a nose tackle hits 10 sacks, that is All-Pro stuff.

Joe would personally like to see Todd Bowles use Vea more at right or left end like Raheem Morris did with Aaron Donald. Rah’s move worked last night, too.

And since Joe is on the subject of defense:

Defense Put The Clamp On The Rams

Joe doesn’t whine about the Bucs not being able to stop Cooper Kupp. This guy has played like a Hall of Famer for the past year and a half. Nobody can stop him.

And trust Joe, defenses other than the Bucs key on Kupp and fail. Sometimes you have to doff your cap to the studs. And Kupp is that. Kupp came into the game responsible for 34 percent of the Rams’ total offensive yards since the beginning of the 2021 season.

Aside from Kupp’s 69-yard touchdown last night, the Bucs held the Rams to 137 yards of offense. That is like the glory days of the Bucs with Derrick Brooks, Simeon Rice, Rondé Barber, John Lynch and Sapp.

Holding any NFL team to 137 yards (sans one play) is dominant. Absolutely dominant. If not for the Bucs defense, the Bucs lose last night, that’s all there is too it.

Whose Job Did Tom Brady Save?

How ugly was the game for the Bucs’ offense yesterday besides the last two drives? Joe was convinced someone would not be able to use his access card to enter One Buc Palace this morning.

Even Stevie Wonder could see how awful this offense is despite being so loaded. It was like Greg Schiano was in charge of the offense and Mike Glennon was calling plays.

And it doesn’t take a guy with a degree from Eastern Illinois University like Tony Romo of CBS to see how awful this offense is (was?). He said of the Bucs offense, “Every play, someone makes a mistake.”

Go rewatch the game. Romo is absolutely right. A dropped pass here, a bad run there, a missed block here, a penalty there, a wrong route here… it goes on and on, play after play.

That absolutely should not be happening in November. Maybe in August, maybe.

There is a mountain of evidence that Bucs failing offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich is so far over his head that his nickname is “Nemo.”

Joe is convinced Leftwich reacted to the win last night by running up to and bear-hugging Brady because he likely knew he got a last-minute stay of execution. Steve Wyche of NFL Network reported yesterday morning there was tension among the Bucs coaching staff with Leftwich’s playcalls and that this issue wasn’t fixed.

(Mindnumbingly, despite the worst rushing attack since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, the issue with coaches was that Leftwich wasn’t running more, yes more! WHAT??? That right there calls into question the common sense of coaches who were questioning Leftwich.)

Prior to yesterday, the Bucs were on pace for a top-10 draft pick. With Brady likely gone next season, a juice draft slot like that almost should force the Bucs to draft a quarterback. But Joe wondered, “Do you really trust this staff to develop a rookie quarterback when they can’t figure out a way to move the ball now?”

For one night at least, this is now on the back burner. The Bucs are back in first place. All is right with the world. And off to Munich Joe goes.

Ein kurzer Abschied für den Moment!

Watch the Bucs-Seahawks game Sunday with Joe, Ira Kaufman and fired up Bucs fans at Big Storm Brewery in Clearwater. …. Great breakfast menu and bloody mary bar, mimosas and Florida’s best craft beer. (Lunch starts at 11 a.m.) … Giveaways and more.

The taproom is at 12707 49th St. North in Clearwater

SUNDAY, Nov. 13, Bucs-Seahawks in Germany!

Join Joe and Ira Kaufman and Bucs fans! 

34 Responses to “Five Things”

  1. Leopold Stotch Says:

    I’m a little worried about the run defense against the seachickens… This will be tough to manage. Hopefully they come out sharp. Seattle has to fly further than the Bucs, hope that helps us.

  2. Randall Says:

    THANK GOD FOR THE LAST SECOND WIN!!! Great to see the GOAT finally do what he’s famous for!!!

    But let’s be honest, the Bucs had another terrible game overall. Tons of blunders, dropped passes, horrible play calling, Evans worst game in memory, Godwin MIA, Julio injured again. Not to mention tons of 3-and-outs and failures to convert 3rd/4th downs, even with very short yardage. Run game continues to be abysmal.

    The bright spots were the punts, VV, and Cade Otton emerging as the badass Gronk-like TE a lot of us thought be could become!!!

    Hopefully that final game-winning drive sparks some life into the Bucs and they FINALLY turn things around and start consistently playing like in that final drive.

    And Leftwich needs to fired, for sure. Or at minimum, demoted, and relieved of play calling duties. He continues to be the Bucs worst enemy.

  3. Bobby M. Says:

    Start White at RB, it’s time to be bold. Fournettee tip toes too much for him to be effective on early downs. White hits the hole hard, is much quicker and catches well. Bring Fournettee in later in games and watch him have much greater success as defenses tire.

  4. Darin Says:

    Safe travels and have fun! Appears bowles has a disconnect with common sense too. How in the world he didn’t challenge the punt that landed on the half inch line is beyond me. Fire lefty today tho bowles can be up next

  5. Deeez NATZ Says:

    No you won’t joe because the idiot Germans decided they don’t like fosil fuels anymore so they are starving to death. Good luck and stay out of the bad areas.

  6. Deeez NATZ Says:

    What happened to Cameron’s pornstache?

  7. Bob in valrico Says:

    Agree with Bobby M. ,
    White was rushing for 3.4 yard average and even had a nice block in pass protection. But the ” braintrust” pulled him for “sneak” to get back to their
    near 2 yard average produced by Lenny and a RB who didn’t look like he
    even deserved that nickname.

  8. PassingThru Says:

    Great win engineered by Brady and his never inabilityto accept defeat. But my opinion is unchanged. This offense is poorly coached and poorly constructed. That is why so many drives stall, why pass protection remains unreliable at best, why the running game fails, routes are poorly run, and why untimely penalties get called. Romo is right, a mistake is made on every play.

  9. #8 Says:

    Das Suh.

  10. BucU Says:

    That hug from Leftwich after the ONLY touchdown of the game was very telling. If I heard correctly we had SEVEN 3 and outs in the 2nd half alone?
    Great to win but in no wY shape or form has this fixed anything. These coaches should be fired by seasons end. Take away the last 44 seconds and this offense is straight up awful. Nothing has changed as far as I’m concerned.

  11. Joe Says:

    Great to win but in no wY shape or form has this fixed anything.


  12. Beej Says:

    “Every play, someone makes a mistake.”

    That gets magnified when we practically NEVER get 10 yards on the first two plays

  13. Wild Bill Says:

    The whole nfl world knows LEFTY sucks at play calling. What a dreary season so far! Bucks owners should step in and force a change. Running on every freaking first down is inexcusable! Opposing defensive coaches must be thrilled with the Bucs game planning and play calling. When Arians got kicked upstairs the offense went with him.

  14. SufferingSince76 Says:

    There is no reason to think the Bucs will win in Munich. Brady, yes Oneilbuc, won the game last night. Leftwich and Bowles still suck and the Bucs haven’t won in Europe.

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    How about our punter averaging almost 60 yards a punt on 6 punts…..4 inside the 20 and a punt at the one that should have been challenged….
    Rams had a total of 13 yards on returns.

    It could be said that Jake Camarda kept us in this game.

    This may be the best performance of a Buc punter in history……

    Joe, can you check this out?

  16. Rriddler Says:

    Which Biergarten will the Joebucsfan meet up take place?

  17. Morgus the Magnificent Says:

    6th thing…..anyone noticing Justin Watson with the Chiefs? Why in the he!! did we let him go?

  18. Razor Ramone Says:

    Joe, look for a Bayern Munich shirt with Brady 12 on it. Or a Bucs shirt with Beckenbauer.

  19. GumboIsForWinners Says:

    I’m pretty sure Licht could be arrested for child abuse throwing a rookie QB into this coaching staff’s maw.

  20. Gus Says:

    That’s exactly it, that second to last paragraph. This coaching staff is piss poor with TOM BRADY at the helm. What miracle is ownership expecting in the following years? There’s no good reason this staff still has jobs.
    NO, I’m not relieved about the win yesterday. It was a fun final drive but that’s it. Todd Bowles is soft.

  21. Pewter Power Says:

    I can’t even imagine leftwich ruining a rookie quarterback drafted in the top ten. He would be just as confused as the rest of us when the season starts

  22. The Daily Coroner Says:

    Buc football has always been defense. I love Mike Evans, but I wanted Aaron Donald whom the Bucs passed on. I saw him as the Second Coming of Warren Sapp.
    Both will be first ballot Hall of famers.

  23. Ultra ClodHopper Says:

    Enjoy your trip, Joe!

  24. orlbucfan Says:

    I am absolutely besides myself with this victory. Bucs D showed up, and the ST even with the block…..where did Licht/Bowles find Camarda?? Succop was his usual competent self, even with the block. Camarda is scary good. Brady was the weak point cos he’s too old. My neighbor next door was born in RI, and reared on the Pats. He told me point-blank Brady is senile, and blinded by his ego and hype. He’s one of the weak links in the O. Mighty D showed up even with injuries. Vea had a great game helped by plenty others including JTS. Sure Kupp got loose. So what? What did he have, 2 catches? Am I supposed to be impressed after 43 years of being a loyal, educated, fan? Game balls: Carmuda, Succop, ST (including Darden), the mighty Defense, and the Offense especially #60 who had to deal with a healthy Aaron Daniels. Plus, ME13 was hurt bad and came off the field. He briefly went somewhere, and came back. I’m sure he demanded and “got a shot.” I watched the meds wrap a full chest ace bandage around his ribs. And what’s with Senile Brady throwing those lateral slants to CG14? Senile is trying to get Chris killed? He’s a great WR. Get over the Brady-is-god crap. Hopefully, the whole team will carry him to a winning season. GO MIGHTY BUCS!!

  25. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    That last second win came at a point when I needed it pretty badly. All game we had failed in the redzone, and there was no reason to think that would change.

    I could see the defense was completely wiped out…but to their credit, they were determined to keep at it.

    The defense played like they were one of the best in the league. All game.

    They deserve credit for that.

    On offense, the drops were horrible and inexcusable. I get that most of the offense are young backups. I get that the pressure was on and they have not handled the pressure well.

    But, good lord…they need to start catching better. Has Brady been working with them in free time? He certainly needs to.

    I’m missing Arians so badly.

  26. Vlad The Impaler Says:

    Five Things:
    1) Fire Leftwich
    2) Have Brady call as many plays as he’s comfortable
    3) Fire Leftwich and replace w offensive staff (anyone)
    4) Demote Bowles to DC and make Arians (or Peyton) HC
    5) Keep Hicks healthy….and Fire leftwich

  27. Joe Says:

    Which Biergarten will the Joebucsfan meet up take place?

    Unless the other Joe set something up without “this Joe’s” knowledge there is none. Not that Joe doesn’t want to meet Bucs fans, but it’s still a work trip for Joe.

  28. Rriddler Says:

    “Not that Joe doesn’t want to meet Bucs fans, but it’s still a work trip for Joe”

    Appreciate the work you do. I hope, like Joe, the Bucs show up for work in Munich also.

  29. HomerSimpsonRocks Says:

    OMG what a fantastic picture. I like Otton. He pulled in the game winning TD and acted like Alstott. Very mild celebration with his teammates. Not a me guy, but a team guy. Gave all the credit to the rest of the team. Such a promising likable guy. Really happy for him and the Bucs.

  30. Ultra ClodHopper Says:

    “Any NFL person will tell you playing in Europe is draining physically from the travel. Joe cannot imagine how tough that would be if the Bucs were still on a losing streak.”

    Or how tough it would be if Josh Freeman was quarterbacking and taking weeks to recover.

  31. Brandon Says:

    Speaking of defense, let me remind you guys of the forgotten man. Y’all only remember him when he’s gotten beat the two or three times he’s been beat this season but other than that, you don’t know he’s on the field… why? Because he’s a shutdown corner… that’s Jamel Dean. Teams don’t throw on him hardly ever. You never hear his name called and his receivers don’t even have the QBs look his way. This dude is easily the best CB on our roster, and Davis is very good, and it isn’t even close. He’s been playing this way the past two seasons after being very very good the previous two seasons before that. Dean is about to make a mountain of money.

  32. captivajim Says:

    Vlad’s got it right ……

  33. Buczilla Says:

    Good stuff Joe. I don’t even care about the draft right now and I’m still euphoric with us getting the win last night. 9-8 or 8-9 with all our talent shouldn’t be enough to retain these coaches for 2023, but I have a horrible feeling that it might be.

  34. RustyRhinos Says:

    “NEMO” HAHAHA! Thanks Joe I needed a good laugh.