Five Things

September 26th, 2023

It’s closer to sunrise than it is midnight so Joe will keep this brief. Besides, why torture innocent readers?

Reality Check

Simply put, the Eagles are not the Bears. Or the Vikings. There is a reason Minnesota, the Bucs’ Week 1 opponent, and Chicago, the Bucs’ Week 2 foe, are a combined 0-6. They stink.

And there was a reason why the Bucs got steamrolled last night. The Eagles are damn good. And the Bucs, well, not as good.

Look, the season is not lost. The Bucs are still in first place with a 2-1 record in the NFC South. The Bucs still control their own postseason destiny.

A lot has to be cleaned up, though.

Hopefully, the Bucs’ got a wake-up call and realized, at least on the line of scrimmage, and learned the hard way what it will take to hang with the best the NFL has to offer.

The first day of the rest of the season begins this morning. Now is the time to figure out what needs improvement and how to fix it. Or, adjust blocking schemes, adjust personnel or change things up.

The Bucs, as evidenced by last night’s game, have little margin for error if they want to make noise in the playoffs.

Finding A Running Back

After last night, Joe is done with Rachaad White. No, Joe’s not ready to cut him. But White has had plenty of chances to show he’s The Guy. Way too many. Twelve career starts.

If the Bucs are bound and determined to keep White as an RB1, then something needs to be adjusted in a hurry. It is White’s running style? His vision? How he is used? Does the offensive line need new blocking schemes? Something has to change or the Bucs will be lucky to score 20 points in a game.

The Bucs want to run the ball. The Bucs don’t have anyone to run the ball. Maybe philosophies need to change. Be open-minded. There are other weapons on offense.

As Mick Jagger once sang, “You can’t always get what you want.”

Walking Wounded

Man, the Bucs defense is in shambles.

Here is the laundry list: Carlton Davis (toe), Calijah Kancey (calf), Vita Vea (pec), Devin White (groin — or as former Bucs commander Greg Schiano would say, “Devin has a groin.”), Jamel Dean (shoulder).

Those are critical players on every level of the defense to lose going against any team, forget the bruising defending NFC champs.

Bucs coach Todd Bowles likes to do all sorts of exotic stuff on defense. But if he is handcuffed by all of these injuries, that limits what he can do on defense and thus limits just how good the defense can be.

The Bucs really need to get healthy on defense and unfortunately, that takes time.

The Joe Tryon-Shoyinka Factor

It isn’t just Rachaad White who Joe is fed up with today. It’s time to start working in more and more YaYa Diaby and less snaps on third downs for Joe Tryon-Shoyinka.

The way he got absolutely owned last night by Lane Johnson on a critical third down that let Jalen Hurts have enough time to get an oil change, which resulted in an Eagles touchdown, fully revolted Joe.

It’s like JTS had zero counter-move. Johnson looked like he was playing Patty Cake with JTS. He wasn’t even hitting him hard. Almost like love taps.

And JTS was fully taken out on the play. C’mon!

Joe thought JTS was turning a corner when he had two sacks against the Bears. Now Joe has to reassess. And so should Bowles.

More YaYa and less JTS. It’s not like JTS hasn’t had opportunities to demonstrate he deserves to be an every-down outside linebacker in the NFL.

Props to Devin White

White was questionable to play with a bad groin. Yet he gutted it out. And the proof he was far from 100 percent came when White picked off a Hurts pass late in the first half at the Bucs-17.

White had a path to the opposite end zone. Given how White is one of the fastest linebackers in the game, Joe thought this was a pick-six.

But no! White only jogged about 23 yards when he voluntarily stepped out of bounds. His groin must have been killing him so badly, he couldn’t move any more.

Joe was a bit rough on White this past winter when he demanded a trade. But man, the way White went out there and busted his tail while clearly being hampered and slowed by his bad groin, well, that impressed Joe.

Much respect, Devin!

48 Responses to “Five Things”

  1. Rod Munch Says:

    Unless you find the next Barry Sanders, there’s no running back that was going to be successful tonight.

    But, again, this was the top rush defense in the NFL – and the Bucs won’t be facing the #1 rush defense every week. Also, here’s an idea, use the pass to open up the run — you know, like teams do in the 21st century.

    But the biggest take away, the top reason for hope, is that by losing this game, the 5-12 curse is lifted. BAD Bucs teams always win this game, then promptly go on an 8-game losing streak. Since the Bucs lost, that means they have hope, and aren’t doomed to losing 8 in a row.

  2. Kenny Says:

    As for your last point. Whtie could hardly jog 20 yards after the pick when he should have had an easy TD….

    Why was he in the game?

    No wonder Swift had holes you could drive a UPS truck through.

  3. HC Grover Says:

    No runner and QB throwing floaters.

  4. Buc'n Enough Says:


    You always defend Jason Licht, fact is, he has missed on more premium picks then he has hit on. That is why we do not have any depth on this team. Joe has ridden a roller coaster with Jason Licht, but he’s done a good job. There are 3 undefeated teams in the NFL. Breathe easy. All is not lost and certainly Goedeke is not a fringe bust. JTS is, but that’s why YaYa was drafted, Joe believes. Nobody hits on every pick. Licht has strengths and weaknesses like any other GM. Remember, he’s not dropping passes, calling plays or creating injuries. –Joe
    JTS is ANOTHER first round disappoint
    ment under his watch. Goedeke is fringe bust at this point as well, through in Rashad White and there are three premium picks that are not performing up to their draft status. The list is long on first thru third round busts under his GM-ship that have not contributed.

  5. Canadian Bucs Fan Says:

    Baker hasn’t looked very accurate through 3 games.

  6. lunchmeat Says:

    You know, I did not see Philly run a single RPO play all night.
    They figured they could just line up and smash our mouths in all game.
    And they were right. They did. Both on offense and defense.
    The Bucs are 2-3 years away from being able to stay on the field with the Eagles or the Niners.
    That said, there will be better mornings after. Plenty of mere mortals on the schedule.
    Go Bucs!

  7. Bucschamp Says:

    Lane Johnson is All-pro RT. JTS is easy work for him.

  8. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    They’re pretty thin at a few positions, knew that with so many late round rookies and UDFAs making the team. Get a manageable salary cap and a lot of issues get resolved, had to let too much talent walk this year. But they can still compete in NFC south.

  9. Bucs13 Says:

    Baker was throwing hospital balls. Yeah, Mike had some drops, but Baker was over throwing a receiver who’s 6’5! Baker also missed a wide open Thompkins on the first series.

  10. Aaron Says:

    Love this sentence

    Hopefully, the Bucs’ got a wake-up call and realized, at least on the line of scrimmage, and learned the hard way what it will take to hang with the best the NFL has to offer.
    Why do the Bucs pay 2 corners (that struggle to stay healthy) over $15m only to play zone or 10yards off? I still think the Bucs should have tanked this year and reset with a new coaching staff and salary cap – oh well, I guess mediocre will have to do…

    Go Bucs!!!

  11. MiamiBuc Says:

    6. Mayfield stunk for for three quarters until the Eagles were up by 3 touchdowns in the 4th and went into prevent mode.

  12. rrsrq Says:

    I would say even with Devin’s groin, he has done what is asked of him, he has probably played more spy with Hurts and Fields and neither of them hurt the Bucs with their legs. The problem with Hurts, was couldn’t get to the QB and 20 yard cushions by the DBs

  13. Bucsfanman Says:

    We need a north/south runner that doesn’t hesitate/stutter-step EVERY single time they get the ball.

    It was going to be a long night with all the injuries to our defense, especially DB.

    JTS was a no-show, AGAIN! The play Joe references was embarrassing.

    Is this team allergic to adjustments in-game?! No screen game or slants?

    Lastly, we need our “big time” players to make plays. ME13 dropping critical passes may not have lost the game but it sure didn’t help.

  14. Crowned 2 Early Says:

    Y’all crowned this team as the greatest thing since sliced bread the last two weeks. Now the vibe is like we’re all at a funeral.

    The Bucs are who some thought they were- just an average (at best) football team and that’s being generous.

    You thought Bowles magically did a 180 this year? His losing record as a head coach speaks for itself. We don’t do anything about our running game from last season and magically we’re gonna be able to run the ball this year?? The offensive like continues to be trash except TW obviously. Rachaad White is a #3 back at best.
    The D continues to be paper tigers with all their injuries. Oh but the new OC, right. He’s trash too. We should have rebuilt this year and traded most of our stud players for draft picks. Now the pain will last multiple years because we didn’t. Dumb move by the Glaziers….really dumb

  15. Calogero Says:

    I fault the loss to the offensive coordinator. If something is not working, you change it to make it work. Too many wasted run attempts. Like Joe said, they needed to use the passing game to open up the running game. Also, if the long term goal is to be and win in the playofffs, and you are playing a powerhouse team, why not play your healthy alternates for those starters that are injured. All Bucs players and coaches have their jobs on the line. If management and owners were smart, they would consider my suggestion and let the whole organization in on the strategy. We would still be trying to win, but with the long term goal in mind. A lot of times in the Superbowl, the determining factor is the team’s injury list. The Bucs would have to endure the ire of the fans, but in the long run, it’ll be worth it.

  16. Larry Edwards Says:

    Fournette at 28 would be a better north south guy than White. Of course did you see the holes that Swifty had? I could get yardage with those holes! The Lions didn’t give up on him for no reason.

  17. Durango 95 Says:

    Watching R White and J Tryon last night made me want to vomit. Horrendous.i’m not sure either one belong in this league.

  18. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We run the ball entirely too much on 2nd and long…..if that fails, and it usually does, we are looking at 3rd and long.

    Camarda does outkick the coverage at times…..but wow,,,,,can he punt!!!

  19. Zoocomics Says:

    @Rod Munch…thank you and correct on the running game, “Joe’s” definitive that he’s done with what’s at RB, because somehow we expected this Oline to light up this fantastic Eagles Dline… Jesus, what an over reaction… news flash, it’s not going to get better against a stout Saints Def. Our Oline is the problem, period end of story, everyone got exposed last night. Feiler was not good, Wirfs struggled, Hainsey … might be our biggest liability. I have to re watch but Goedeke might have had his best game. I’d rather see us trade for a lineman than a RB… and no, there aren’t any FA sitting on the couch that are better at RB than what we have now, so just stop it.

  20. D-Rome Says:

    JTS looked bad last night but let’s not forget that Lane Johnson is one of the best RT in the game and will probably be in the Hall of Fame one day. Still, JTS does not have the moves or power to beat guys like Lane Johnson.

  21. ChrisBuc23 Says:

    Trash offensive game plan and very boring. Our running back 🗑️🗑️ dances more than a ballerina out there we need someone to hit the hole and get running. Oline of course needs to play better we need to get Chris Godwin more involved. On the defensive side, not enough pressure on hurts, our cbs playing over 10 yards off the whole game giving up easy yardage, poor tackling to start the game as usual and throughout the game. Tryon is trash not enough noise from vita tonight either. And we are paying these corners all of this money and they are softer than tissue and always hurt. Toilet Bowles still looking clueless and zoned out on the sideline. It’s one game but hopefully they can bounce back somehow and get it together.

  22. T. McGee Says:

    Mayfield was terrible.

    Evans is washed.

    Godwin is underused.

    Devin White needed to make Jalen Hurts hit him, not run out of bounds. Injury or not.

    Every area was terrible, and worst of all they looked like they were comfortable at 2-1 and had no expectation to win that game. It is a home Monday Night game… man I wish we’d kept Mike Tomlin all these years.

  23. BucsFanSince76 Says:

    Jason Licht-Get ROJO on your speed dialer and tell him to get on a plane ASAP.

    Devin White had a great opportunity to force Jalen Hurts to make a tackle and legally rough him up in the process , White should have forced Hurts to attempt a tackle.

  24. Jack Clark Says:

    Five Things:

    1. Todd Bowles still hasn’t fixed the run blocking, but wants a run first team
    2. Mike Evans keeps dropping passes
    3. Baker Mayfield drop off came from holding on to the ball longer than 2.7 seconds
    4. Special teams coverage is still trash
    5. All the problems mentioned above can be fixed in our next game

  25. Yucs2BucsLife Says:

    Just think we could of had Cam Akers for a stupid draft pick

  26. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    Rachaad White is not the guy.
    Dean is soft as cotton, his money would have been better spent on the O Line.

  27. CHRISTOS Says:

    To say we dont have a running game is an understatement. Its not only in the RBs for sure but White needs to stop dancing in the backfield espesially inside our endzone, hit the hole even if its not there and get a yard.
    Most importantly the reality check about our Defense. Some of us were saying that the D gives up too many yards and that the coverage is NOT GOOD.
    I did not expect to give up 200 yards on the ground to be honest but what i expected and saw was the awful coverage. Watching the game again i spotted at least 7 to 8 times that a blitz was called and the DBs were 10 yards off the WRs. I mean come on that defeats the purpose of the blitz. You blitz to force the QB to a quick decision and the throws was there ALL THE TIME. I cant watch this over and over. When you blitz cover the receivers closely i mean WTF is that. Hurts has easy throws almost every time we blitzed. This is ridiculous to be honest. Bowles needs to step up and talk to the DBs. When we blitz be closer and tighter, at least do that.

  28. Alanbucsfan Says:

    D White, V Vea and M Evans were not themselves for whatever reason- injuries, mental – There’s no way Eagles run on Bucs like that if White and Vea are healthy and Evans catches the throw in the end zone and sideline throw 9 of 10 times. Even the punter had an off night with the line drive/ long return kick.
    Bucs do need a RB with some power.

  29. RGA Says:

    I see the complaints about Whites hesitation in the backfield as he seeks a running lane, I suppose he should just smash into the line in hopes of overpowering the d-lineman for a one yard gain? The guy has nowhere to run, it’s no different when Tucker is in there.

  30. MelvinJunior Says:

    After that first Evans drop, I KNEW immediately (and said), “well, it’s going to be another one of those nights for Mike, where he’ll drop at least a couple more.” He has to make that play on the ‘would be’ TD. WHY is he falling down AND backwards there, instead of going strong to the ball and grabbing it!? I rewound that play at least five-times, since I’d been noticing him doing that A LOT this year… I don’t get it!? Is it a bad habit… Is it that he’s scared of getting hit (noticed on one of the prior drops… did the same thing anticipating a hit that wasn’t coming)!? He’s Gotta BEAST-IT, Man!!!! He’s not. Started watching JTS in the second half and just more of the SAME… God. Awful. HORRIBLE. No moves. Too weak. Not smart. No purpose. No vision. And STILL, just goes FLYING off the end, way over-pursuing, completely taken out of the play. No factor. I was also, SHOCKED to see Devin White run outta bounds there, with 4.4 speed and A LOT of real estate with seemingly, only Hurts to beat/run over… But then, the announcers reminded me of the injury when explaining the reason, so I give him a pass. The running game is an embarrassment… They’re gonna have to pass to setup the run and I KNEW it was going to be a ‘SAFETY’ there, & said it THEN. That play had absolutely, ZERO CHANCE… LAUGHABLE. And, I don’t know WHY Godwin is not being used… He should at MINIMUM, be getting 10-12 Targets per game!!!! I don’t know if it’s play-calling, overall scheme, or he’s just not getting open, Baker’s not seeing him, or WHAT!? I don’t believe he’s not open… I think Baker can’t see when the pocket gets boggled up. I don’t know why he wants to just stand there sometimes, when he’s not tall enough to see over guys… I think he needs to escape and get outside the pocket more & id like to see some more pace and tempo. I think it could help the run game. We’re NOT gonna just lineup and be able to play smash mouth, man on man, run it down their throats with THIS O-Line. NOT. Gonna. Happen.

  31. The Gunny Says:

    It’s Rashad Whites’s running style. While he is processing holes and cutback lanes, he stops his motion. He is basically standing. The holes and lanes are only there for a millisecond. So his anticipation and vision are behind. Even in open field he stops running to analyze and if not tackled then, he takes to long to get going to top speed.
    How many times have we seen White at full speed, once? On that angry run last year, he should have been blazing into the end zone . Get me a UGA RB!

  32. larrd Says:

    The offensive line is young and new. They looked good on lots of pass plays, and one run play, I thought. They’ll get better, though they will always struggle with big tough lines. The one DT makes Vita Vea look like a shrimp.

  33. MelvinJunior Says:

    Literally, just turned it to “Undisputed” (and I cannot stand the show… it’s unwatchable), & BOTH Skip and Keyshawn were pointing out Mike falling back and down while breaking down all THREE of those drops… Neither, one of them can understand WHY, either. Keyshawn said “IDK why, maybe, it’s a little bit of fatigue!?” The only thing I can figure is he’s developed a bad habit, or just being plain old lazy!!!! And, yeah… All three of them (Sherman) said that it’s a ‘Pick-6’ 💯, IF Devin White is healthy, not hurt!!!!

  34. J Says:

    I pretty sure it was Shaq playing patty cake with the RT, not JTS. That being said, JTS still looked pedestrian.

  35. Bucamania Says:

    Bucs were owned in the trenches on both sides of the ball. Every lineman not named Wirfs got dominated all night. At one point early in the 4th quarter the Eagles had 440+ yards of offense and the Bucs has less than 100. JTS is not good and Logan Hall is hot garbage. Tow terrible picks. Hopefully Kancey is the real deal.

  36. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    Joe’s 5 Things:

    1. Reality check. Very true. Our first big test and we got a D-. Through 3 games Canales has yet to impress to say the least. His approach to the running game looks like a carbon copy of last year. I think our blocking is a little better (very little) but the schemes and designs are Leftwich 2.0. As for the passing game, he didn’t challenge their wesk secondary with designed roll outs or bootlegs, 4 wide out sets and I like Thompkins as a receiver but was surprised Palmer wasn’t our #3 WR last night. Both are fast but Palmer is a bigger target and is more aggressive.

    2.Find a Running Back. One “Angry Run” award for R. White last season shouldn’t be enough for ppl to think he’s a #1 back. He looks slow and weak. Yes the run blocking doesn’t help but even if Canales & Co pulls their heads out of their arses White still won’t be the guy. Unless Licht can pull some cap magic and work a trade for Taylor from Indy, the best available out there is Lenny. At least he runs with power, doesn’t hesitate and NEVER fumbles. For the butt-hurt, cry babies who whine “He didn’t want to play with us…waaaaahh” all I can say is I want the team to win and Lenny does everything better than White or any of our current backs.

    3. Walking wounded. Yup. And not many good adjustments made to compensate for the injuries. I think the only time we loaded the box against the run was on all of those “sneak plays” to try to stop the rugby scrum for short yards.

    4. The JTS Factor. He was out-manned by one of the better o-linemen last night. I’m not rushing to his defense but I didn’t see a lot of stunts last night. The D-line looked like our O-line. Straight ahead, Mano a Mano may the strongest guy win. We made adjustments in the Vikings game. Not so much last night.

    5. Props to Devin White. He balled out with a sore groin. If you’ve ever had a groin strain to any degree, just walking is brutal. Someone posted last week that he “should man up and play” with it. Had to be a female fan

  37. D-Rome Says:

    I agree Jack Clark and I guess that is why I don’t feel too badly about this loss. The team wasn’t going 17-0. It’s a long season. Losses help you identify what is really wrong with the team and I agree with you that everything can be fixed by the Saints game. Whether it will be is a different matter though.

  38. DJB Says:

    JTS has developed a new dance move, “Dancing in the Flats”

  39. SlyPirate Says:

    1. Winfield is arguably the best player on the team. When the lights are bright, he shines.
    2. The game is over. Seriously. A lot on tape to improve upon.
    3. The Evans over-the-top-lovefest has diminished. Hopefully fans can come back to earth about ME. #PayEvans is now #PayEvansLessorTradeHim
    4. Devin White. Unlike Evans, the dude is trying to earn his next paycheck.

  40. Rick Says:

    Mike is a nice guy and fine receiver – but in my opinion, no better than Keenan Allen in LA (in fact I’d take Allen over him).

    He’s ‘fine’ – but I think Godwin is the better overall player.

  41. DJB Says:

    I appreciate the fact that Godwin protects the ball by wrapping both arms around it after every catch. But would think that slows his forward progression.

  42. MelvinJunior Says:

    Rick, I don’t have to justify saying that he is a “nice” guy, blah, blah, blah… That is NOT some kind of “Hot Take,” there, whatsoever. There is NOT a single person living on the planet who would take Mike Evans OVER Keenan Allen, right now!!!! 💯

  43. Rick Says:

    Melvin – why the aggression dude? We all have opinions – and I do know quite a few long-time fans who have my opinion. Relax…it’s OK to have different thoughts. We’re all Buc fans –

  44. Ed Says:

    One of the issues for the Bucs is their lack of aggressiveness on offense. Watching AJ Brown last night was such a huge difference from watching a Bucs receiver. He was so physical after the catch. None of the Buc DB’s wanted to tackle him.

    That is a huge problem for the Bucs, they don’t have any offensive players that are intimidating. The younger Evans was very physical but once the refs started calling offensive interference on him, he toned back into a more polished WR but his after the catch ability to run over or by people is diminished.

    The drops last night were at the worst possible times, a couple that could have been first downs on third down throw and a touchdown that slipped through his hands. No doubt Mayfield needs him to catch everything and maybe Godwin needs to get more targets. Giving White the ball is a waste of a down.

  45. Nope Says:

    “Let’s Bake”?

  46. Tony Says:

    Kind of hard to win a game when the team is on the field for 40 minutes. I wasn’t much of a fan of Tryon & GODONKEY coming out from the beginning & I was on & off on White, too! I can see why. There’s gonna be alot of good players coming out of North Carolina overall soon. Between North Carolina, Duke, North Carolina St. & some others, too! They should look to some of them next year. They should really consider giving Palmer Yaya & Watts more playing time, too!

  47. MelvinJunior Says:

    No, Rick… There is NO “aggression” of any kind. I was agreeing with you. The opening sentence was supposed to begin by saying, “Rick, You Don’t Have To” – instead of, “Rick, I.” It was a typo… Tho, it doesn’t even matter. Again, I was agreeing with YOU 💯!!!! Did YOU not state that YOU would take Allen over Evans!? I did too, but only added that you didn’t have to say that “He’s A Nice Guy” FIRST, before saying so… Because, so would everyone else. It’s not a hot take… it’s only stating the obvious. I’m sure Keenan Allen also, is a very nice guy.

  48. steele Says:

    Joe, it’s about time you have finally acknowledged the smell that many of us have been warning about for a long time. Slow-mo tip-toe Rachaad is not the explosive feature back this team needs. JTS continues to disappoint, manhandled, ridden out of plays.