Hunger Issues

April 23rd, 2023

Defensive tackle William Gholston, still a free agent, was hit with a very interesting Tom Brady question during his visit with LaVar Arrington on FOX Sports Radio after this season.

After Gholston raved about Brady’s Super Bowl pregame speech, Arrington asked Gholston to talk about the last Brady speech to the team and why the Bucs lost that game.

Gholston paused and didn’t answer the Brady-related question.

Arrington suggested the Cowboys looked “ready for the game” against the Bucs in playoffs in January and the Bucs did not look as ready. He asked Gholston to explain what happened against Dallas and Gholston made a face that told the audience he wasn’t going to be candid.

“To give you the most realistic and professional answer, that’s what I have to, we didn’t capitalize on our opportunities,” Gholston said. “We had times to make a play; they made their plays. They did come out with some hunger, they did come out with some hunger, and they capitalized.”

Joe was very intrigued by the whole exchange that strongly implied the Bucs, despite being led by Brady, had lost their fire — even in a home playoff game.

Just recently, head coach Todd Bowles told Rock Riley the newness and energy that new offensive coordinator Dave Canales is bringing to the team is a game-changer. “Hunger will drive us,” Bowles said.

Also last month, Bowles praised new QB Baker Mayfield for his fire and for being “a natural born leader.”

What a strange season it was, with the team seemingly losing its fire despite a new head coach, sky-high expectatins and everything on the line, and the greatest quarterback in history possibly playing his last game.

Joe doesn’t think Gholston’s response and the Bucs’ offseason moves are unrelated.

Ira Talks Trading Down & Out Of Round 1, Drafting A Late-Round Quarterback, Management Mindset On Devin White, Tight End Priority & More

27 Responses to “Hunger Issues”

  1. westernbuc Says:

    I think this is going to be a good year. If we have a young Pete Carroll calling plays and Licht has a great staff then lookout

  2. Bucsfan13 Says:

    So is it just Brady’s responsibility to ignite fire in the team? How about the head coach. We’ve left Bowles off the hook all season just because we had Brady. BA was able to light a fire under the team. Bowles needs to own the lackluster performance by the team and coaching staff. I’m Gholston is sick of answering Brady related questions. Brady has never been a big speech guy. He’s not an “eat the W” guy.

  3. Rod Munch Says:

    I really do hope Canales does well, but there is zero evidence to think he’s a young Pete Carroll. He’s a guy who was stuck in the Seahawks coaching depth chart for over a decade and appeared to get demoted this past season as he went from QB coach -> Passing game coordinator -> QB coach. He’s a guy who has never called plays. All he’s done so far is being really super annoying with his cheerleading rah-rah act. He was also like the 117th choice as everyone else turned Bowles down.

    With all that said, all he has to do is better than Leftwich to be an improvement, and there is no bar lowerer in all of sports.

    While I don’t see anything in his history that would make me think he’s going to do a good job, I honestly do hope he was does as I don’t want to sit through another year of being able to call out every play on offense before it happens.

  4. Mort Says:

    Hopefully one day we will get some real candor about this season. Not gonna bet on it though as we still don’t have the dirt on the DeSean Jackson stuff because Licht is still GM. We still don’t have a conclusion to the NFLPA investigation re: freeman’s drug program status that his camp leaked. It’s like we never get real answers about the drama from this club.

  5. RGA Says:

    It’s not rocket science, the offensive line could not protect nor open holes. The Bucs underperformed last year due to poor offensive line play.

  6. RGA Says:

    I understand the Bucs have many holes to fill, if the draft falls where a good Tackle is there like Darnell Wright from Tennessee in the first round and maybe an Andrew Vorhees from USC, Steve Avila from TCU, maybe small school Cody Mauch from North Dakota State in the second would not upset me. In my opinion the offensive line was a disaster last season. I know offensive line is not a glamorous position to draft, not going to help sell tickets. If you want to win football games, it all starts in the trenches.

  7. RGA Says:

    I’m not a Gator, I have seen Kyle Trask and can see he can pick a defense apart at Florida. His only action was behind a ragtag offensive line, the Atlanta game there were lineman playing off the practice squad, some of those guys I’ve never heard of. I would like to see what he can do in an offense with a good first string offensive line that actually gives him a chance to survey the field and not throw out of desperation.

  8. Rod Munch Says:

    RGA – I have almost zero faith in Trask, but completely agree with you on wanting to see him play. I wish the Bucs would have just went full tank mode this year, and handed the ball to him and then just see what happened. If he turned out to be good and show promise, fantastic, you got your QB of the future. If he is a bust, well, fantastic, he just earned you the top pick in the 2024 draft where you can take a franchise QB. Seemed like a no-brainer.

  9. DoooshLaRue Says:

    Oh yes, the Dallas Debacle.
    I remember how important it was that we had “home field advantage”
    That kinda thing doesn’t usually work for us though does it?

  10. gp Says:

    I’m thinking Dallas had an easy time preparing for that game because we entered with the same game plan, offense and defense, that we had used game one of the season(Dallas) and every other game of the season.
    We were THE most predictable team in the league last year, on both offense AND defense.
    This is 100% on coaching.
    The surprising thing is we won games after the first three.
    Maybe Canales will make us a little less predictable on offense…..
    It pains me as a fan, knowing that we have talent on the team, to not be expecting a winning season. Especially considering that I have ALWAYS started the season optimistic.
    I hope I’m proven wrong, but it seems to me that we may be dealing with the worst coaching staff this team has ever seen. That’s saying something.

  11. Mikejp Says:

    I have zero faith in Todd Bowles. He was the one who suppressed the offense to help his defense side. He is a good defensive coach but too aggressive, so he needs a big mouth head coach like BA to limit his aggressive tactic.

  12. Rod Munch Says:

    Mikejp Says:
    He is a good defensive coach but too aggressive


    Nope. I read somewhere that last year he ran more zone than anyone in the league. The Bucs got burned in the Rams lost, and he totally lost his nerve. Which is the sign of a really bad coach, to swing from one extreme to another.

    Either that, or it was Arians who actually was pushing not just Leftwich, but also Arians to do better. It was that aggressive play that got the Bucs a SB win, and one play away from winning another SB. It was that passive garbage we saw last year, on offense and defense, as to why the team went 8-10 and got blown out in the playoffs.

  13. David Says:

    Why is this a surprise that they lost their fire in the playoff game? They lost their fire the entire season. Brady was distracted with something new every other week and barely showed up in training camp. Heck, according to the reports he was ready to leave Tampa. So yeah, they lost their fire.
    Then add in an OC that has no idea how to playcall, OL injuries and rookies, and a D line that can’t get pressure with four people anymore… Made for a long, horrible season.

  14. captivajim Says:

    lets not forget the Cleveland game -whens bowleso took the ball Out of brady’s hands !!!! Brady was over ruled by bowleszo . -that time in public..

    remember bowleszo’s comments that when offense scores a lot –his defense gets tired !!!

    BA was HC when Brady made his speech before the superbowl

    bowleszo was HC when Brady made his speech before the Dallas game

    bowleszo didn’t motivate players in NY & he did even worst with the Bucs offense last yr

  15. steele Says:

    This team lacked fire and hunger from the first day of training camp, all the way to the end of the season, for a multitude of reasons that we have discussed ad nauseum in here. Ultimately, all of it has been the responsibility of Bowles, the passive aggressive head coach who failed to head coach, who failed to lead as these problems were not resolved, and then they multiplied.

    Do not blame Brady or his distractions. A good, well-coached professional team with leaders on staff or in the locker room would NOT be derailed by any of it. If Brady did the same things as a Patriot, you can bet the team would continue functioning at a high level.

    Do not blame Brady, who was one of the only ones who tried to get this jaded, lost team fired up. His old school attempt was ignored by too many guys who stopped buying in and lost the fire, some time around Antonio Brown.

    So now Bowles talks about “hunger”. Sure. Let’s see. Let’s see if anything is different, now that he has more power.

  16. Goatfarmer Says:

    Bloweszo is like a diet pill. Everyone he coaches loses their appetite.

  17. garro Says:

    If you want to paint a picture of how to destroy a Superbowl caliber team we did it last year. Starting with Not having any oversight on Bowles as the head coach and Lefty being retained. BA’s only job should have been to call Bowles/Byron on the Bucphone just before they did something to handicap the offense.

    Glazers/Jason could have found a real OC besides BA’s project. Didn’t have to be a package deal.

    BA retiring when he did. Baad timing and had to know he put the team in a bind.

    Injuries/retirements Etc without backups and or replacements. Jensen, Marpet, Cappa, Gronk, JPP. The guys we went out and got or already had did not or could not step up. Marpet and Gronk’s timing sucked.

    Fournette looked like he was running in quick sand and refused to just hit the holes and when he didn’t he danced around trying to be Barry Simms. Should have benched him by the fifth game. That’s on Bowles and Byron.

  18. Steve Says:

    I love Brady. But he looked like he lost his fire. His speech to the bench looked like he no enthusiasm and the bench didn’t seem that interested.

  19. Voice of Truth Says:

    The fire was lost way before Dallas. This team mailed it in most of the season

    We all screamed it last year – lifeless, sleepwalkers, completely flat, unmotivated, lack of emotional buy-in, could care less attitude

    That is what Bowles does for a team as a HC, complete demotivation

  20. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Losing “hunger” is a 1000% failure of coaching…….I am not impressed at all with Todd Bowles…..I hope he surprises me this year & I’ll root for his success…..but the sooner we move on, the better IMO.

  21. TampaBayRudy Says:

    @RGA: people that don’t know football ignore how important OL and FB play is to success. I can tell you with a great deal of certainty and precision that a LT like Steve Hutchinson, who got traded to the Vikings from Seattle in Adrian Peterson’s rookie season, was responsible for AP’s breakout success. Matt Hasselback was no longer putting up stellar numbers when Hutch left, and hos sack numbers expanded. Lorenzo Neal and Tony Richardson both did wonders for LaDanian Tomlinson and Priest Holmes, as well as Larry Johnson. Adrian Murrell (who the hell is that!!???) rushed for over 1k in 1997. Why? Cuz Lorenzo Neal got signed that year. Here’s the deal though: none of those teams that acquired potent offensive chess pieces had lazy, incompetent Offensive Coordinators with obvious mental challenges, like we did with Byron Leftoversandwich. Also, those teams had coaches and GMs that would have canned Lefty in a heartbeat if they would have done what he did to the Bucs. I have never witnessed a more frustrating NFL season than I did watching us run a tired script of hot trash with the most adept QB in NFL history in (arguably) still his prime. Just know: you’re right; and there are some other factors at play. Todd Bowles is going to fail, and you will see his infectious boring tedium exposed and hopefully see him gone after this season.

  22. OLDE pfart Says:

    GP had it right…..there was no fire and the lack of the ability of the offensive line to perform most of the year is what sank them. Hunger??? Let’s see who is drafted and how they will fit….then who wins the QB position. Perhaps a Mayfield/Trask combo could be the answer throwing the defenses off while Trask gets h I s time in to become the qualifying #1 man before the 10th game???

  23. Goatfarmer Says:

    The Bloweszo apologists are huddling, preparing their rebuttal. Excuses galore, a cut-and-paste of irrelevant statistics, and the fog of thousand-word posts. And of course, zero sense of humor.

    The guy might be a great next door neighbor and a hoot to hang out with at a picnic. He’s is the worst head coach in the NFL. And he’s overrated as a defensive coordinator, but that’s another issue and a trigger for the Bloweszo apologists who ignore the fact that against anyone any good at all, he gave up over 30ppg.

    That half pregnant, zero-purpose embarrassment against the Falcons wherein Bloweszo treated it like a preseason game would be Exhibit B. The home humiliation against Dallas in the “playoffs,” is Exhibit A.

    Does Vegas have a line yet on who the Bucs next head coach will be after Bloweszo records his fifth losing season in a row?

  24. mark2001 Says:

    Frankly, I think Tom was almost a basket case last year, going through the divorce and all. He did his best to light the old fire. To be the “old” Tom Brady. But he alone couldn’t swing it. Had Arians been there, a guy that charges players up, Kicks A when necessary, and takes no prisoners, it might have worked. But obviously there wasn’t enough fire to light a fire under this team.

  25. mark2001 Says:

    GFarmer. I don’t know Bowles could light a fire under a gallon of gasoline.

  26. Goatfarmer Says:

    Mark2001 – LOL, not even if he had a lit blowtorch.

  27. stpetebucfan Says:


    Agree 100% with your post.

    There were MANY reasons the Bucs slipped last season. Players still weighted down by their SB rings, moronic coaching decisions, simple bad luck and untimely injuries like Jensen in preseason.

    But TB12 was definitely not the same as his old GOAT self. He could still throw the ball, but arm strength and accuracy didn’t carry the day with his happy feet.

    The mind is a funny thing. During a high school swim season on the first day of training I put up a really good time for the 100 free. 2 months later after training my arsse off I still couldn’t reach that time. The coach told me my body remembered all the pain and suffering from that time and it did suck.

    Brady’s heart and soul may have been willing but his mind simply remembered far too many hits over the two decades. I do not say this in criticism. Nobody else has ever made it as far as Brady but all good things eventually come to an end. Mix in all the off season soap opera and the missed preseason…

    Last season’s futility was truly a team, luck, coaching a total as we used to say in the Army it was FUBAR!