Punchless Offense

July 9th, 2023

Ex-Bucs OC Byron Leftwich.

This makes Joe want to barf all over his keyboard.

When Bucs coach Todd Bowles said he wanted to get away from Super Bowl-winning Bucco Bruce Arians’ no-risk-it; no-biscuit offense, he wasn’t lying.

And Joe has to be frank; Joe isn’t sure if the following results were because of something done intentionally or if it was flat out incompetence by the guy running the offense. When it came to plays of 30 yards or more, only two teams had fewer than the Bucs. And they were dreadful clubs: Los Angeles and Arizona.

(Yes, Baker Mayfield was part of this in Los Angeles.)

On an offense that featured Tom Brady, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Playoff Lenny, this is absolutely inexcusable.

Tell you what, everyone will learn a whole lot about Byron Leftwich this year.

45 Responses to “Punchless Offense”

  1. Lt. Dan Says:

    The NFL is a pretty smart league. I’m sure that the problem was the weekly scheme and play calling of Byron Leftwich. Exhibit #1: Lefty is still unemployed.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    This be a old story that be beaten like a dead horse….

    We does what we does……

  3. Buc4evr Says:

    An OC that would not change the offense, an old immobile QB that was in a divorce and lost $30mil with FTX, a pathetic OLine, bad TEs, RBs that couldn’t make a 3rd or 4th and a foot. WR issues on and off all season. It all adds up.

  4. Tap-Out Says:

    Title : 3rd Time A Charm:The Beating Of A Dead Horse. Just let it go …The offense was “punchless” due to a punch drunk QB …I as a fan watched every game and I never saw Coach Leftwitch put on pads and a uniform!

  5. Curse of Gruden Says:

    And where is Leftwich coaching now?

  6. Larrd Says:

    It doesn’t matter how bad Leftwich was. He is gone. I am much more concerned with the thought process that leads to a conclusion like “let’s move away from our league leading offense. We are scoring too much and too quickly.”

  7. WillieG Says:

    They practically could’ve been in the top 5 if Bowles insisted they take advantage of the matchups in just ONE game. They should’ve had several long plays against Pittsburgh since they were missing all of their starting secondary. But Leftwhich kept calling running plays. Why? If his game plan sucked, it’s up to the HC to order changes. If his in game adjustments sucked, it’s up to the HC to intervene.

  8. Voice of Truth Says:

    Quit blaming the OC – it all falls on Todd!!!!!

    He sat by all season and did nothing to spark this team

    He allowed Lefty to be an idiot week after week

    He mandated the conservatism and paid for it on the scoreboard and in the win column

    By the time the playoffs came the team just shut down on him completely

    He is a joke of a head coach and we will suck until he is gone

  9. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    People have short memories.
    Last year we lost da gronk.
    We lost all pro center,
    We lost all pro marpet,
    We lost a good starting right guard.
    Lenny had a bad foot.
    Brady was going thru divorce.
    Godwin was coming off torn acl.
    I could go on, but I won’t…
    This cannot all be put on leftwich.

  10. Tap-Out Says:

    ….but you didn’t tell …so I’ll ask ..and where is Tom Brady now?

  11. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    I may be wrong here, but when the Bucs brass failed to sign suh last year, it was foreboding indeed. That was the final straw….the brass gave up.
    But the sun also rises, this year is a new year; with new faces. And new optimism!

  12. Bucswin Says:

    Yup. Just run it up the middle.

  13. Infomeplease Says:

    Larrd said. “It doesn’t matter how bad Leftwich was. He is gone. I am much more concerned with the thought process that leads to a conclusion like “let’s move away from our league leading offense. We are scoring too much and too quickly.” ”

    I couldn’t have said it better!!!!!!!!!! That thought process put BA back into the hospital.

    This season should conclude with a changing of the HC!!!!!!

  14. confido75 Says:

    Its done and over with. Too many bad things happened last year that resulted in an offense that was a shell of itself. Time to move on and lets hope the new OC can turn it around with the players we have. If not, Bowles and his crew are done!

  15. AnonymousBuc76 Says:

    @Bring back the lawn chairs…

    You’re 100% right on all of those variables that led to an underwhelming season and ultimately an early playoff exit…

    Todd has to take the blame though; he’s the HC, he could have and should have forced Byron to make some adjustments to the play calling to compensate for the changes in personnel…
    Meaning the “no riskit no biscuit strategy” should have been scrapped last year and replaced with a more run heavy approach with the play calling instead of asking a 45 year old sack magnet to drop back 40 or 50 times a game behind a makeshift offensive line…

    What really did it for me in the case of Bowles was the losers mentality he displayed by laying down for a Falcons and accepting an L going into the playoffs; instead of playing to win and building a little momentum…

    As for Byron, I had to stop one of my buddies from playing the race card as to why he still doesn’t have a job…(Mind you I’m black)…My response was to look at his work before he got to Tampa; he honestly didn’t earn this OC job imo, he was gifted it…He was horrible in Arizona, Brady bought him some time but last season his flaws were glaring…And if he’s so great, why is he still unemployed….Not even a College or High School gig…

    I’ll give Bowles a little credit for showing Byron the door; that being said, if we miss the playoffs this year he’ll be pounding the pavement come January looking for his next stop…

  16. Nprbuc Says:

    Joe- stop wondering what was wrong last year! I don’t care how many players left the team, how many were dinged up, blah, blah, blah. The bottom line was a zero OC and a HC that refused to get involved. For every injured player or guy that left, another professional football player took their place. Drop off? Sure but should never be a complete implosion! When 90% of the fans could call the plays accurately from the comfort of their couch or favorite bar stool, that is a coaching problem, not personnel issue. Let’s not forget the infamous direct snap where everyone on the team knew the play except the one guy who was supposed to take the snap! A high school OC would have shined with the guys that we put on the field. No mystery.

  17. Jeff Says:

    Leftwhich just doesn’t have a top football mind. Only the very best succeed at this level.

  18. TampaBayBucsFanSince1976 Says:

    It is too FREAKING FUNNY that Licht usually escapes blameless amongst the crowd. Licht drafted Goedeke when Ingram was still on the board , yes the same Ingram that started all of the Vikings games and by the way the Vikes were in the playoffs. Licht did not address the lack of a Center after the injury to Jensen by signing JC Tretter who was one of the most highly ranked in the league and he wanted to play. All too often it is easy to use Leftwich and Bowles as whipping posts , but alot of the blame should be shared by Jason Licht.

  19. fwfan Says:

    The majority of fans here expecting a super bowl. Very foolish but predictable. There are a few smart ones that do see reality though. It will be interesting to see how the season unfolds. The reality is the same majority will be calling for the coach to be fired all season due to the team falling way short of the fans expectations.

  20. bucsfaninOregon Says:

    I think the biggest bungle last year (a year of bungles) was not signing help for the OL. That is squarely in Licht’s lap.

  21. kgh4life Says:

    If the Bucs wanted to run the “no risk it no biscuit” offense I doubt it would even work. The oline was in transition, Gronk retired, AB went awol and Goodwin was working his way back off the acl injury and Gage and Julio was hurt the majority of the time. BL wasn’t able to adjust to the personal he had. Adjustment, among other things makes competent coach.

  22. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    You know 76, these days for teams do do really well, there’s a degree of luck involved to what personnel get hurt, which ones decide to simply retire out of the blue, and so forth. Last year was not serendipitous to the Bucs for sure…
    Last year in my mind the Bucs had far too many significant holes to fill at the end of the day…

  23. TampaBayBucsFanSince1976 Says:

    The holes could have been plugged is the area where Licht fell short. Hicks goes down-Sign Suh. Jensen goes down sign Tretter.

  24. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    Going out on a limb here Todd Bowles reminds me of one Tom Landry. I’ll probably get skewered for saying that but both seem to carry the same mannerisms and philosophical football acumen on the sidelines. Both show little emotions, both conservative, and both believe in a big pass rush.
    This year will tell if Bowles takes that next step….
    That Mr. Landry took 50-60 years ago…

  25. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    76. Agree 1000%

  26. catcard202 Says:

    IMO, you can’t put all that on Lefty!!!

    Weren’t Bowles & Brady they guys pushing the move away from the No Risk It – No Biscuit, in favor of the NE style Dink & Dunk???

    Brady even admitted to having WR’s cut their routes earlier (shorter) to get the ball out faster. Hard to get chunk explosives, when you shooting a cap gun…

  27. kgh4life Says:


    “Brady even admitted to having WR’s cut their routes earlier (shorter) to get the ball out faster. Hard to get chunk explosives, when you shooting a cap gun…” The wr’s had to cut their routes shorter because the oline was not holding up. Everyone in the building knew this was the case. BL couldn’t adjust and was exposed.

  28. Jack Clark Says:

    Todd Bowels defrocked Byron Leftwich

  29. Citrus County Says:

    Hey Joe, some time back I posted (likely under a different name) that my suspicions are that Leftwich sunk the offense on purpose because he was mad about not getting the head coach job. The “dim bulb” thought he could disguise his sabotage because Bowles “wanted to go in a different direction”. Arians has been SILENT about his beloved protege and Leftnut will likely never be heard from again. I’m glad to see that you are beginning to sniff out an intentional act.

  30. catcard202 Says:

    4life….Fact is, TB12 wasn’t willing to take the heat (hits) from the pocket anymore.

    He was the one sped up, even on shorter routes…He was 1/2 sec ahead of everyone else on the field…Threw a ton of balls into the feet of WR’s on bread & butter plays, at the 1st inkling of pressure…& settled into the “we’ll get’em next time” mindset for long stretches of games…. Pretty sure that played a HUGE part in Bucs lack of explosives.

    OL play was not as terrible as it’s been made out to be… 22 sacks allowed to TB12 on 755 drop backs. (The least amount of sacks taken by any QB that played in all 17gms in 2022)

  31. Citrus County Says:

    Bruce Arians showered love and respect all over Leftwich. He praised his experience and “intelligence”. So, incompetence it was not. Leftwich’s ego was so inflated that I suspect he thought he was smart enough to not be discovered.

    Repeated run attempts to the weak left side…failure to fully utilize the HOF talents of Mike Evans…failure to create blocking schemes to give HOF Brady another 1/2 second to find an open receiver…flat out bizarre play calls.
    In my opinion, Tom Brady was having a bad enough year with personal problems and on top of that the sabotage by Leftwich, that is why he decided to say *&!@$! it and go to Kraft’s wedding.
    The NFL protects their own, but if I am right, the loyal fans and season ticket holders deserve the truth.

  32. Citrus County Says:

    Now I am really going to stick my neck out. The fans, the team, the front office, the coaching staff, the many other employees were cheated out of a super bowl run.
    If my thesis about Leftwich is correct, why was it not discovered and dealt with early in the season ? Boy could I speculate about that.

  33. Sly Pirate Says:


    You have to have time for a play to develop for a long pass. D Smith and the OL gave TB12 almost no protection. No protection = no long passes.

    Every OL is different than last year’s because they could pass or run block.

  34. Citrus County Says:

    Dig deep and hang tough Joe. Bring it all out then maybe we can have a Big Storm together.

  35. unbelievable Says:

    @Everyone bringing up all the injuries + players lost on offense + Brady’s personal ish… you’re not wrong…

    BUT –

    Any good – decent offensive coordinator would recognize this, and adjust his scheme and playcalling to make up for those deficiencies.

    Leftwich did not.

    He ran the same exact plays over and over every 1st, 2nd, and 3rd down, every week, no matter who we were playing. The game plan was the same week in and week out. There was no creativity, no exploiting mismatches, no misdirection or surprise… “We do what we do”

  36. coupe1647@icloud.com Says:

    leftwich has his issues –BUT that stategy belongs to Only One guy –Bowles !!

    Bowles cost us 2 SB appearances while we had Tom Brady ..
    —- the defensive genius couldn’t hold LA for 28 seconds
    —–then as HC he stubbornly just wanted to run the ball –it didn’t work with the Jets & it didn’t work for us –but he will do it again in ’23

  37. Citrus County Says:

    It cannot be blamed on Leftwich’s incompetence. Leftnut has been around football and good coaches and good teams for decades. He has lots of knowledge as a result. Most casual fans could have called better plays and made better in game adjustments.

  38. Citrus County Says:

    Todd Bowles does not strike me as a “shrinking violet”. He’s a good hearted man by all accounts, however it doesn’t seem plausible he would fully tolerate incompetence or ineptitude while willfully accepting the responsibilities and authority of the head coach position. Tony Dungy was a kind man. I don’t think he tolerated ineptitude. There must be another explanation.

  39. Rod Munch Says:

    So Joe, you’re trying to convince me being completely predictable and running it up the gut on every 1st down, followed by a 1-yard WR screen, you’re telling me those aren’t big play opportunities? WOW! Clearly your bias and hatred towards Leftwich knows no bounds – if the players had just ran the plays better, they would have worked, and Leftwich was trying to get them to run those plays better by calling them over and over and over again in the same order.

  40. Citrus County Says:

    I do agree that Bowles lost the game against the Rams. So perhaps he is fearful of big courageous decisions. I think “Big Business” and the influence of ownership has ruined not just the NFL, but MLB, NHL, NBA, NASCAR and will ultimately ruin Pickleball as well.

  41. Citrus County Says:

    Good sarcasm Rod

  42. David Says:

    Unfortunately, as time goes on, and we hear more and more, I am starting to think it was Todd Bowles who put the shackles on the O, not bad playcalling by BL. Most likely it’s a combination of the two, but I think Bowles was a major part of the problem.
    So how exactly is it going to change when the O line is a massive question, Wide receiver depth is a massive question, running backs are a massive question, TEs are a question, and the quarterback position has dropped off drastically?

  43. Oddball Says:

    flat out incompetence by the guy running the offense

    ^^ yes that

  44. garro Says:

    “Joe isn’t sure if the following results were because of something done intentionally or if it was flat out incompetence by the guy running the offense.”

    Agreed Joe.

    Ultimately this falls on Bowles as he is the one who signed off on Leftnuts game plans.
    I noticed that after we ditched the “game plans”, Brady and our offense produced first downs and points. Albeit not as many TDs as in the past.
    So yes I blame them both…For the game plans and for sticking with them far to long when we had the GOAT.

    Go Bucs!

  45. Joker's Paradigm Says:

    @Bring back the lawn chairs…BINGO. Look at what was going on with our personnel. Yes, teams have to overcome injuries. Which is why this exposed Lefty’s lack of ability to scheme and adapt. If the personnel issues hadn’t of happened, what kind of year would it have been? Probably better. But then Lefty would probably be a head coach when he has no business being one. Thus, he still does not have a job. Not even as a position coach.