Learning The Offense

September 28th, 2023

Bucs OC Dave Canales.

You likely have read and heard how the Bucs offense is not close to being a finished product. Bucs coach Todd Bowles has spoken about this and so has offensive coordinator Dave Canales.

Joe doesn’t think they are blowing smoke. Again, Joe remembers when Tom Brady arrived, then-coach Bucco Bruce Arians stated it wasn’t until after Thanksgiving that Brady had a full and complete knowledge of Arians’ offense.

So Joe asked Canales today if he has any ballpark date or point on the schedule for when his offense will be fully grasped by Bucs players. Canales said he doesn’t have a timeline but next week’s bye week will be a key date for him in the transition of his players learning the offense.

“I think the guys know what to do,” Canales said. “Just the full-speed reps of playing together as a unit is the thing that is going to help us grow and learn from the film.

“But I don’t really have a timeline. I just know that normally you would like your bye week to be halfway through the season or even later so you can rest yourself up for the run.

“This year [the early bye], it is kind of a gift where we can look at four games and say, ‘What are our best runs averaged? What are our best pass concepts where the quarterback looks rhythmic and where we are putting Mike [Evans] and Chris [Godwin] in the best possible situations?'”

And only if Canales believes everyone fully understands his concepts would he even consider changing starters or making major changes in the offense.

In other words, no changes this week, for sure.

“We have another opportunity to put some more things on film to really hone in on that identity,” Canales said. “I don’t want to rush anything.

“I don’t want to make any wholesale changes schematically or from a personnel standpoint at this point while we are still gathering information and really trying to learn the offense.”

Does this mean struggling running back Rachaad White is safe for the time being? Yes it does.

19 Responses to “Learning The Offense”

  1. Rod Munch Says:

    If you think White is the reason the run game isn’t working, that he’s somehow missing giant holes and making bad cuts, you don’t know what you’re watching.

    Maybe Barry Sanders could do something, but unless Canales has a time machine, he’s going to need to stop listening to Bowles and his 1972 coaches handbook run quota if he wants to still be employed this time next year.

    Running just to run, and wasting those downs, is how you average 17 points a game.

  2. Rod Munch Says:

    A look inside the Bucs locker room before the game, Todd Bowles addresses the players….


    Dear my fellow Buccaneers, I stand before you today, not merely as a coach, but as a shepherd leading his flock through the storm of modern delusions, towards the sacred endzone of tradition. I am often accused of being out of touch with today’s game, yet I say unto you, it is today’s game that has lost touch with the essence of football. The football field is not merely turf, it’s holy ground, and the game we play upon it is not a mere sport, but a divine test of wills.

    In the book of Gridiron Genesis, it was written, “And the Lord said, ‘Let there be Football’, and there was Football. And with it, came the sacred act of running the ball. Through the storm of adversary’s defense, every yard gained was a testament to one’s faith in the timeless truths of the game.” It is through the act of running the ball that we honor the age-old traditions, laid down by the almighty playbook from above.

    We are inundated with the cacophony of modern tactics, the passing game, a temptation that veers us away from the sacred act of ground and pound. They say the forward pass is the future, yet I say unto you, it’s a path of ephemeral glory. I bear witness to the truth every Sunday on the field of valor, where the righteous run the ball, and in doing so, run towards salvation.

    Oh, brethren of the gridiron, let us not be seduced by the flashy allure of the aerial game. The pigskin was not meant to soar through the heavens, but to be cradled in the arms of the steadfast, charging through the gauntlet of heathen defenses, each yard a step closer to the promised land, the end zone.

    Let us not forget, the root of our game is in the holy trinity of football – blocking, tackling, and running the ball. When the modern world shouts, “Pass!” We shall humbly and boldly respond, “No, we shall run!” For in running, we find purity, in running we honor the game’s noble heritage, in running, we forge our path to victory, one holy yard at a time.

    In the name of Lombardi, the Bear, and the holy spirit of the game, let us march forth with the ball tucked close to our hearts, and our faith unshaken in the timeless essence of football. The path of righteousness is not through the air, but on the sacred soil of the gridiron.

    Let us all say, “Run the ball!”

  3. D-Rok Says:

    ^^^ Good stuff, Rod. Is you a poet and I didn’t even know it? LOL

  4. D-Rok Says:

    But, please cite references on this eloquent speech, sir, whether you are the author or not. Good stuff, man.

  5. Hodad Says:

    The O line has been far from perfect. There were some well blocked plays in that game tho where the back has to make someone miss. Tucker could not beat one man, the safety for what would’ve been a long run, probably a TD. White is not the guy, sorry, I’ve seen enough. Look at his catch fumble before the half. Why does he turn into traffic instead of keep running straight up field? He got smashed spinning inside, he is not an instinctive runner. Bucs should look into trading for J.T. during the bye. He’s 24, he’ll play out the year, and we’ll see if we can resign him. If you could get him for a second round pick, I’d throw in White, I’d do it. He’d make this offense go.

  6. Bucnjim Says:

    Rod, was going to say Knute Rockne but that’s probably going too far back

  7. Bucs 95 Says:

    Its crazy that mac jones threw 3tds and 300yds passing against the eagles defense and was driving them too win the game at the end , And we got spanked at home 🤔

  8. Bucfan37 Says:

    Hey Rod that wqa pretty good. Better than go jump off the Skyway bridge.

  9. Jack Clark Says:

    When are they gonna learn how to run block??? Isn’t that what the coaches are supposed to be teaching them? Run first offense my as

  10. BucU Says:

    This offense is a mess. Let’s be honest.

  11. HC Grover Says:

    Learn fast Stainks game is a MUST win.

  12. Old School Bucs Says:

    The Bucs should handle the Saints pretty easily. With our Stout run defense, our secondary that just refuses to give up big plays, our Oline that can’t be matched, the sniper Mayfield, getting rid of Brady (dead weight who new nothing about winning- thank goodness canales and Mayfield figured it out), this should be an entertaining game for Bucs fans. Go Bucs!!!!!

  13. unbelievable Says:

    I watched Canales entire press conference today and man, what a breath of fresh air. He’s quite earnest about what works, what doesn’t, and where he thinks the team is at. Such a nice change from listening to Leftwich.

    I think our offense is about where I expected it do be right now. We see the potential, but it’s not there yet. There’s been mistakes from every position- missed blocks, dropped passes, poor throws, wrong routes, etc.

    As for the run game- the interior of the line has to block better. Simple as that. I don’t care if you have Barry Sanders in his prime- he’s not going to do much when there are 2 – 3 Eagles defenders behind our own o-lineman tackling him behind the LOS.

    Now that doesn’t excuse R White from dancing too much at times either. He needs to know when to be patient, and when to just hit the hole. It’s not 100% of just one or just the other. I think that’s what Canales was referring to when we spoke about our guys getting more reps and getting into a rhythm with each other.

    It’s almost like, maybe they should have all played together during the preseason or something….

  14. JimBobBuc Says:

    This is the first thing Canales has done or said that I am upset about. He and his staff need to learn after every first half, every game, and games to date, about what/who is working. Waiting until the bye doesn’t cut it with me. We have three games of plays to look at and figure out which plays are working, what our RB’s can do, and what our OL can do. We have played against two below-average teams and one excellent team. We need to learn and change now.

    Canales and Bowles want balance, I guess run/pass balance. They need to change words, forget “balance” in play calling, and think ‘unpredictable’ in play calling. They think that runs are safe plays that run down the clock. Well, our runs are safely getting about 2.1 yds and running down the clock while we are behind in the score. Maybe we need some passes to our RB’s and they safely get 4 yards and we still control the ball. Maybe our screens can get 5 yards per play, still better than a 2.1 yard rush. Maybe we run more end-arounds or fake end-arounds. Maybe running different types of plays will open up the run a little IF we learn which types of runs work the best.

  15. Rod Munch Says:

    I wrote that – and by that I mean I told AI to write a speech given by an out of touch football coach who has a religious conviction that you must run the football, that there is no other way.

    I did some edits, but it came out fantastic.

    Just accept our AI overlords are here, and it’s useless to resist.


    Here’s a bonus… I told it to redo the speech in the voice of Todd Bowles, just red it in Bowles voice and enjoy…

    Folks, I stand before you, not just as your coach, but as a proponent of the timeless grind that defines our game – running the ball. The world’s caught up in the dazzle of passes flying high, yet, I see the essence in that hard-earned yard on the ground.

    Now, they say I’m dialed back in time, not adapting to the flashy playbook of today. But football, to me, is a testament of wills, fought in the trenches, not in the skies.

    The true spirit of football is in the grit of a running back powering through, pushing against the odds, yard by yard. It’s a game won on the ground, amidst the clash of helmets and the test of resolve.

    So, when the calls for the glamour of a passing game grow loud, remember the ageless rhythm of a strong run game. It’s about holding true to that core, the essence that has stood the test of time.

    As we step onto that field, let’s honor the legacy of the gridiron, by embracing the run, staying true to the grind, and remembering the roots of the game we hold dear.

    In the relentless pursuit of the end zone, let’s chant in unison, “Run the ball!” And let each yard gained be a tribute to the timeless tradition of our beloved game.

  16. Greg Says:

    @ Rod That was a masterpiece! Well done and hopefully that does not have to be cut and pasted too often.

  17. Crickett Baker Says:

    I am beginning to lose some faith in Canales. He said, “I don’t them to make any wholesale changes schematically or from a personnel standpoint at this point while we are still gathering information and really trying to learn the offense.” This means we are going to see this same runup-the-gut Rachaad plays because White is still trying to learn how to do them? Does this seem

    like a continuous few passes to our receivers? No cool adjustments because none have been practiced? It seems like a strange philosophy to me, at this point and it also seems like he is being WAY too easy on our offensive players. Not demanding enough “learning” from them, if nothing else. He, himself seems to be learning a bit slow.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    LMAO Rod

  19. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    I’m not sure I understand the purpose of training camp and pre-season games if by the time nearly a third of the season is gone and guys are still “growing and learning” and the coaches need to be 4 games in to have enough “things on film to really hone in on that identity,” Canales said. “I don’t want to rush anything”

    Yeah Dave, no rush. I get that it takes time to gel as a team with a new system and players but it sounds like (and looks like) he’s blind to what he’s seen so far. I know we got off to a slow start in 2020 and still won the SB after going on a tear after the late bye but we weren’t seeing the same bone-headed plays over and over again without making adjustments. We saw plenty of that last year.

    For a guy who claims to take responsibility and not make excuses, I sure heard a lot of carefully-worded “reasons and justifications” from the full presser that sure sounded a lot like excuses to me.

    In a copy-cat league like the NFL, he seems stuck with his own little playbook and oblivious to what other teams do that work. I know he can’t put “stick-um” on ME13’s fingers, turn R. White into Bo Jackson or wave a magic wand to turn our o-line into 5 Ryan Jensens or Wirfs but c’mon dude. Give us at least 2 or 3 plays per game where you’re at least trying to be creative.

    He’s talked about being excited to have a fairly mobile QB and all of the creativity he can employ in a balanced offense with creative packages, play action, pre-snap movement, etc, etc. All hot air so far.

    We need to hit the bye with a strong win against the Saints. Limping into the bye with a close, low-scoring win or worse…a loss… won’t help morale even tho a 2-2 record is kind of what most of us expected.