Communication Breakdown?

December 18th, 2022

Butchered key play.

One of the non-Tom Brady gaffes that led to the Colts-like collapse of the Bucs tonight came on special teams.

In his postgame remarks, Bucs coach Todd Bowles made it clear that punt team upback Giovani Bernard knew the Bucs had called for a fake punt. It was 4th-and-1 from the Bucs-26.

Bowles, speaking of Bernard on the play, said the veteran running back “knew it was coming.”

The Bengals showed the defensive front the Bucs expected. “He would have run for five yards,” Bowles said of Bernard.

Except the direct snap to Bernard sure seemed to catch him by surprise. The rest of the Bucs reacted and blocked as if they expected the fake punt. Instead, the ball was a turnover on downs, Bengals ball.

A feisty Bernard, mobbed by reporters in the locker room after Bowles and Tom Brady spoke, seemed to try to make like a baby and head out before reporters arrived. He was a bit tardy.

Bernard claimed it was “miscommunication.” But Bernard repeatedly said the blame is on him. So which was it? Did Bernard know the play was called or did he not hear correctly? It cannot be both.

Quibble if you want about the decision to call a fake punt at that time and at the space of real estate. At the end of the day, the fact is it appears Bernard wasn’t on the same page as the rest of the punt team. Well, that’s on the coaching staff. They need to be sure Bernard was not confused or didn’t have  a bout of “miscommunication.”

48 Responses to “Communication Breakdown?”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    A terrible call…even if it worked

  2. Redeemer Says:

    No reason to run a fake there. The Bengals were doing squat.

  3. Tbbuc81385 Says:

    What a jerk! Liked this guy on the field last year and a complete jerk to the reporters. Had he mad the play of the game he would be ready to talk and all smiles. Please, good luck finding another team next year

  4. LVMYBUCS Says:

    FIRE THOSE CANNONS, I MEAN COACHES! 💣💥

  5. D-Rok Says:

    Not sure why, but Bernard was super surprised the ball was snapped to him. It’s obvious. Maybe later someone will tell us why he was surprised, but he was.

    Huge momentum changer in the game. And then Brady had a melt-down I’ve never seen before, and the rest of the Bucs were abhorrent in 2nd half.

    Just shaking my head, on so many levels. First half, super dominant. Were the Bengals just waiting it out?

    Biggest problem was ONLY 17 points in first half. The way the Bucs were playing, we should have had 28 in first half, essentially icing the game.

    And then the 2nd half implosion. Yep, I will say most of the blame is on Brady, but dang, nobody else on the O rose up and bailed Brady out for a super bad game.

    The D did their job most of the game. Hard to stop the talent of the Bengals, and Cincy showed why they are a front-runner to be in the SB this year.

  6. BuxfaninTX Says:

    Gio seems pretty salty these days…maybe he and Kyle Rudolph should have retired

  7. Winny Testaverde Says:

    Not sure who the fake tough guy from Fox was…and boy was Jenna Lame more tolerable when she was just a hard trying USF butterface coed. Insufferable.

  8. LVMYBUCS Says:

    I’m telling u guys they don’t want to play for Bowles and Leftwitch.

  9. JimmyfromNY Says:

    Season changing call. Zero reason for it just like the Moron coach who said after the game that he went for FG on 4th and 1 was to make it a 2 score game!! What the hell was three points gonna do when the score was 10 to nothing Todd!! Holy Moron it’s already a 2 score game.

  10. Bucobill999 Says:

    F jenna nancy drew laine mustve been a clown with makeup like that

  11. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Maybe it’s time for the fossil to call it quits. I just turned 63 and I would bet $1,000.00 that I can beat Brady in a 40 yard dash. Again, if we can get the “5 Mississippi” rule implemented, Brady would still be great.

  12. tbbucs3 Says:

    My word the Bucs media is gross….if a player doesnt want to talk then dont chase him down and force him too.

  13. SPARKY Says:

    I’m waiting for the pessimist to get done crying
    Did the rest of you see what I saw? Man the defense was best they played all year. That offense in the first half was what we have thought it was going to be all year. Things just went to shat in a hurry in the second half. But that first half man, decent running game, man in motion, play action, guys finally open 10- 15 yards down field. I am very hyped from what I saw. We win our last 3 games and beat Dallas first round playoffs and we see from there.

  14. Richard Dickson Says:

    Maybe he knew it was a fake, but wasn’t expecting the snap when it came?

  15. Jason Says:

    If you’re gonna call that fake you better make it. If not blame goes on head coach. Plain and simple.

  16. Lakeland Says:

    Why was the play design for Bernard?

  17. Joe Says:

    dont chase him down

    No one chased anyone down. Joe was right there.

  18. alton d green Says:

    i saw a comment that said the loss is on Brady. Really? Let me ask Vince Lombardi. When there is a turnover, does that mean the other team automaticly gets 7 points. No it’s the defense that allows them to score. I think the defense should wear boxing gloves so they can’t get a holding penalty these last 3 games. That first half we were clicking on both sides of the ball. And then her water broke and the party was over. Defense just imploded. we had a 26 freaking sack wiped out on ,what else, a holding penalty. Stopped the again and you guessed it, a penalty. Tom Brady’s fault? As Jeff Foxworthy would say “here’s your sign”

  19. D-Rok Says:

    alton,

    As I see it, and I watched the whole game. I’d say 45% blame on Brady personally for his performance in 2nd half, 3rd quarter especially. Other 55% of loss goes on rest of team, from coaches to players, in 2nd half.

    Brady had at minimum 2 very crucial turnovers which hurt his team. Some would say 4 TO’s, but I won’t go there.

    It was a total TEAM meltdown in 2nd half. Total.

  20. 99.97.92.55.47.40.28.20.7 Says:

    On the stadium feed after the play you could see Bernard telling the long snapper basically “hey bro why did you snap it to me, I had called the fake off!”

    That was the miscommunication. Bernard called the fake off. To run a real punt. They still snapped it to him.

  21. steele Says:

    Alton D, I agree that the defense also broke down and wore down, simultaneous with the turnovers and weak playcalling in the second half. OL didn’t hold up against ramped up pressure, Brady rattled.

    Yes, this was a coaching loss. They should have expected and had adjstments ready for Bengals to come out much more aggressive after halftime, and more adjustments after momentum swinging turnovers. Stop the bleeding early, and good teams don’t collapse. This team isn’t good.

  22. Oddball Says:

    Communication breakdown, it’s always the same
    Havin’ a nervous breakdown, drive me insane, ow, suck

  23. Joe Says:

    Communication breakdown, it’s always the same
    Havin’ a nervous breakdown, drive me insane, ow, suck

    The lyrics so fit the Bucs.

  24. orlbucfan Says:

    Man, Joes, you really are scraping for anything to get the blame off Barfo senile Brady. I oughta say: I told you so but I won’t. My heart goes out to the defense and the offense. They played their hearts out like the pros they are. The first half proved it. That skeleton of a QB killed them. I almost didn’t listen to this one, but after watching Jax beat the “almighty” Cowboys in OT, I thought differently. Bowles needs to bench the skeleton but he won’t. Bucs don’t deserve to win the NFC Slimeballs. But they may by default. Talk about ironic.

  25. ChiBuc Says:

    Yep 4 turnovers, FOUR vs 1 botched fake punt (equivalent to ONE Brady turnover) and 1, ONE, defensive holding call. 4 > 2, but I guess all of Tommy’s turnovers were the fault of his peers and all of their mistakes were individuals letting poor Tommy down. Why oh why would anyone ever think that a qb should be held accountable for a loss, especially 4(FOUR) turnover Tom? I guess the Adderall wore off in the 2nd half and we saw sleepy Tom.

  26. CrackWise Says:

    99.97.92.55.47.40.28.20.7

    I saw the same thing in Gio’s eye’s. Problem is, he miscommunicated the call.

    Prolly cause he is a part time player and really should not be on the team in the first place

  27. T REX Says:

    Bowels said they practiced it all week?

    BUWAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    He is the worst head coach I have ever seen on a Bucs sideline.

  28. steele Says:

    Agree completely, D-Rok. But let’s not give the OL any kind of pass here. Look at the film. Pressure was what rattled Brady into the two picks, and some of his bad throws. Lenny bears great responsbility for the handoff turnover.

    Overarching issue is coaching. Bowles not having a sense for momentum flow, not adjusting. Second half, a coaching disaster.

  29. DBS Says:

    Anybody with any brains knew after they ran the up tempo down the defenses throat to get the quick 3 before the half what was coming. They made the adjustments at half time the Bucs did not counter. And when Winfield got hurt it looked like they could stop nobody. Could not hold them to field goals. SMB was SMB. Pick in his hands and dropped it. The offensive line fell apart along with Brady and his trouble. Along with the penalties and game over. Typical Bucs this year.

    Anybody seen Rodney Labrecque? Thought he might want to help celebrate our win and tell us Bandwagon Fans off again.

  30. DBS Says:

    Bowles must have seen this play on TV back around Thanks Giving. I forgot who ran it but it worked. Except it was in the other teams end of the field!!!

  31. NEfan Says:

    This team showed their potential with a LOT of injured players. Sorry the fake punt whether it worked or not was an awful call. All the haters b#$ched about Brady hanging in to take the hit, well there is your results. The first int the lb basically pushed Brate out of the way, get him off the field. Otton is the real deal yet he used sparingly. D is close just need to be more discipline. The oline was manhandled the second half. So what do Bucs do at the first sign of adversity? Revert back to their old selves.

  32. Frank Pillow Says:

    Cut 25 tomorrow. Fire Todd as soon as the season is over. They both deserve it.

  33. Old School Bucs Says:

    Sparky I hear you! You can’t talk to losers! These ask holes quit after the first loss. They hate this coaching staff, period! This team will go to the Super Bowl. These asks will still be crying for a coaching change!

    To the play….you know it is possible GIO knew the play was coming but his eyes were looking down field to see the D and missed the snap. That maybe the communication gaff, he missed the snap count.

  34. D-Rok Says:

    steele,

    I haven’t even addressed the O-line failures in the 2nd half. The group was HORRIBLE! Which led to Brady mistakes. Make no mistake, Brady made mistakes, a few ON HIS OWN, a few the result of his team coming out in 2nd half and sleeping.

    Brady made ONE horrific mistake resulting in an INT. The fumbled handoff was him and Lenny both, both of which should never happen in December. A few of his INT’s were either extreme pressure or the D making a great play. Brady had ONE bonehead play by my count.

    But still, Brady did account for 4 TO’s in 2nd half, and that’s on the offense as a whole. As a whole, they DIED in the 2nd half – and that’s on the coaches and the players.

    None of us really expected a win this game, let’s be real. But for the Bucs to come out SO sharp in all 3 phases in first half, then to completely meltdown in 2nd half, that’s unacceptable.

  35. Rich1 Says:

    I’ve said it before and will again…
    I hate this team… I’ve been a Bucs fan since 1980 and I’ve seen more fight in a 3-13 Leeman Bennett team.
    Overpaid, half/assed play… blow up this team
    Can’t wait until Kyle takes over

  36. Bucsfan13 Says:

    @Steele. The OL couldn’t handle simple stunts in the second half.

  37. Shovel Says:

    Bengals fan here. I don’t agree with the guys bashing the Bucs defense. I think at 1 point in the 2nd half, the Bengals had 4 straight scoring drives but only 90 yards combined in those drives. That defense seems stout in spite of the injuries. The Bucs offense is garbage for the most part. The Bengals D was down their top 2 DBs and DE. Then they lost their other DE and another DB during the game. It’s the worst I’ve seen them play since Halloween. The Bucs should have curb stomped them.

  38. captivajim Says:

    I have said repeatedly on this site that Bernard should have been cut, that he was taking up a valuable roster spot, that he’s not contrbuted much of anything for 2 yrs …
    Brady recruited him last yr , supposedly because he’s got good hands and is a good back for catching the ball .. He hasn’t done squat for us ……

  39. Tom lamphier Says:

    Bernards never was a good player.

  40. Alanbucsfan Says:

    The fake punt call was based on whether the Bucs saw a certain look from the Bengals- as Romo explained in replay, Bucs saw the look, the center saw the look, everyone was ready except Bernard- that’s why it was miscommunication on his part and and the fake punt would’ve worked if Bernard had been ready.

  41. Rudy Says:

    I wish Todd Bowles and Byron Leftwich both suffered a mysterious muscle cramp at the same time and would both be out indefinitely for the remainder of the season. That would be just FAN-tasticfor us, so that maybe we could all witness what has been painfully obvious all year: when someone other than these two fake punt calling goofballs are in charge of calling plays and giving the team directions, we’re looking like the caliber of team that matches the depth of talent on the roster. Just sayin’, and I’ll repeat this message frequently because it’s a fact.

  42. BucU Says:

    Blow this garbage team up.

  43. Jmarkbuc Says:

    Guy gets the opportunity to make one play in a whole season and blows it.

  44. bucfan34 Says:

    On a more positive note.. They looked real sharp in the first half. Maybe. if they can get their sh!t together this train wreck season could be salvaged. Wouldn’t be surprised to see them turn it around and make a run. Would be a lot cooler if they did.

  45. Jimmy G STH Says:

    Among Brady’s shortcomings Sunday, he missed 3 opportunities for 15-20 years completions to WIDE OPEN tight ends. He never looked at them, never looked left, just focused on WRs who weren’t open. I’ve watch Tom a long time and one of his greatest attibutes was the ability to see the whole field. Used to say, if the receiver got open, Tom would find him. Thats not on blocking, its on Tom.

  46. EDogg Says:

    Come on people let’s start the narrative at the beginning. Brady came to Tampa bcuz he saw a easy opportunity for a Superbowl ring. Leftwich was the offensive coach back then. Brady brought his entourage along with him which allegedly led to his personal issues at home. He received all the glory from a team that worked hard to get them as strong as they were. Brady resigned and the returned and disrupted the BUCS organization. Let’s face the truth…Brady can’t scramble or run plays the way leading QBs are playing in today’s NFL. That puts unfair pressure on the line and cuts plays out of the playbook. If Brady was the superstar he once was the New England would’ve trusted him to lead them to a Superbowl. When the Bucs we’re winning it was all Brady
    Now they are looking redicoulos and it’s everyone’s fault except Brady. And Coach Bowles showed up in the middle of it all.

  47. EDogg Says:

    Come on people let’s start the narrative at the beginning. Brady came to Tampa bcuz he saw a easy opportunity for a Superbowl ring. Leftwich was the offensive coach back then. Brady brought his entourage along with him which allegedly led to his personal issues at home. He received all the glory from a team that worked hard to get them as strong as they were. Brady resigned and the returned and disrupted the BUCS organization. Let’s face the truth…Brady can’t scramble or run plays the way leading QBs are playing in today’s NFL. That puts unfair pressure on the line and cuts plays out of the playbook. If Brady was the superstar he once was the New England would’ve trusted him to lead them to a Superbowl. When the Bucs we’re winning it was all Brady
    Now they are looking redicoulos and it’s everyone’s fault except Brady. And Coach Bowles showed up in the middle of it all.

  48. italnsd Says:

    orlbucfan, I feel your pain. Don’t despair though, hold strong. Just a handful of games and the Barfo senile QB will be gone and you will rejoice, back in the full glory you were used to.

    EDogg “Brady came to Tampa bcuz he saw a easy opportunity for a Superbowl ring”. Easy opportunity… ROTFLMAO No need to be a clearvoyant to understand that you obviously have never played the game, let alone at the NFL level