Strength Vs. Strength

September 24th, 2023


Key element for Monday night’s game will be how the Tampa Bay run defense stops the Eagles’ run game.

Last week against the Vikings, D’Andre Swift came off the bench for the Eagles and absolutely dominated the Vikings on the ground — 179 yards with a touchdown.

Maybe just as important, Swift ran for an incredible 10 first downs against Minnesota. Talk about moving the chains!

Now the Bucs suffocated the Vikings in Week 1, holding Minnesota to a meager 41 yards on the ground. The following week the Bucs held Bears runaround quarterback Justin Fields to a career-low three yards rushing.

Fields last year ran for 1,143 yards.

Part of the reason the Bucs corralled Fields was Todd Bowles employed two spies on Fields. Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts is similar to Fields in that he can burn teams with his feet (Bowles noted Hurts is more dangerous throwing outside the pocket, which is true).

So if Bowles uses another double-spy on Hurts to pen him in like he did Fields, will that open up run lanes for Swift or another Eagles back?

Another good chess match for Bowles this week.

19 Responses to “Strength Vs. Strength”

  1. Beej Says:

    Make the Smeagols beat you with the pass, as they have yet to show that ability

  2. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    Chess match indeed. A huge challenge to see just how good our run D is.

    Hurts worries me on 3rd down and medium (4 to 6 yards) with his legs, especially if we get pressure up the middle and flush him out of the pocket. His natural tendency is to roll out to the right and he seems to “flip the switch” to RPO mode so if we have a spy on him to that side and LVD or a safety blankets his TE “safety net”, hopefully we’ll be ok.

    It’s definitely going to take a team effort on D with real discipline from everyone. I think Mr. Bowles will also have a few surprises for them as well. Should be a great, strategic game.

  3. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    This is going to be Defense vs Defense.

    Which defense gets the most turnovers.

    Bubbles are going to burst, I suspect.

    We’re not inducting anyone into the ring of honor this game are we? Because that would slant me toward prediction an Eagles win.

  4. Jack Clark Says:

    Not expecting us to win against the Eagles but don’t embarrass us

  5. PSL Bob Says:

    I won’t be surprised if the Eagles win. I just hope it’s not a blowout. And, should the Bucs win, that’s going to have heads spinning all over the NFL world. It would be spectacular.

    We have two distinct advantages over the Eagles. We’re playing at home (I hope there’s a good turnout), and Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are on our side.

  6. teacherman777 Says:

    We got the best DC in the NFL!

    Todd “Big Balls” Bowles!

    Great nickname Joe!

    Let’s F-in Gooooo!

    Let’s F up the Eagles!

    Underdoggs on top!

  7. Biff Barker Says:

    Evans, Godwin can carry the load. Mayfield needs to protect the football again.
    We can win this game!

  8. Crickett Baker Says:

    Kelce as their center fuels the Eagles QB sneaks. Maybe Vita can mess him up? IDK. I will be very happy with a close and exciting game. Happier for a win 🙂

  9. Marine Buc Says:

    I’m a little nervous about D. White’s and Vea’s injuries… If we are going to stop the Eagles run game we need both of those pistons firing properly or the machine goes kaput…

  10. Smashsquatch Says:

    Vikings had the Eagles bottled up by focusing on Hurts, and the QB obliged early by keeping it on the option. I kept thinking the hole for the RB was there early. Then sure enough, they pounded the running game with Swift. Hurts stopped running, or passing; and viola they gushed them and put the game out of reach. Bucs need to maintain positional integrity all night. The Eagles will stretch you hoping you’ll start chasing options. This will be a great test for our D.

  11. Defense Rules Says:

    Far too many similarities between the Eagles & Bucs to see anything but a close ballgame. Everyone says Eagles have a great run defense so don’t run on them (opponents have only run 31 times versus 98 passes & 4 sacks … 23.3% run-pass). Not hard to be ranked #1 in rushing yards allowed if no one runs on you.

    I say test them early & often with the run. They’ve got 4 of their Front-7 banged up although they apparently will play (DT Fletcher Cox – ribs; DT Jordan Davis – Ankle; DE Josh Sweat – Toe; OLB Zach Cunningham – Ribs). They’ve also got 2 LBs & 2 CBs who they had to stick on IR. Let our big boys put ’em to the test in the run game.

    Beyond that, Baker’s doing pretty good in the passing game (69% completions). Just heard Jimmy Johnson say that Baker was 20-of-23 on 3rd down passing conversions (I’ll take that any day). The secret to beating the Eagles is to ground their offense by controlling the TOP; forcing turnovers doesn’t hurt either. Neither does scoring a bunch of points to force them to play from behind.

  12. Jerseybuc Says:

    Bonzai. Almost positive barber going in tomorrow that was def intentional by the way

  13. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Bowles sucked out Hurts soul last time they met. Doubt he gives it back. Bucs by 6

  14. Cobraboy Says:

    Close game, turnovers are critical. Battle of attrition.

    I hope Monday night is stifling humid.

    I’m not sure either team has shown what they’re really made of.

  15. Cobraboy Says:

    @Bonzai: I doubt any current Iggle was on the field when Barber pulled his dagger, so I suspect it will have minimal impact.

    Except for Buc fans. They will go wild.

    Barber made the most significant play in Buc’s history.

  16. 1#bucsfan Says:

    We were able to beat the eagles in the playoffs before we can beat them again. I know totally diff teams except our defense seems just as good or better then it was the year we did beat them. Bowles is still our DC. Let’s go Bucs

  17. Pickgrin Says:

    1 spy this game. Diva White.

    He’s useless in coverage anyway so if its a pass, White needs to be either blitzing or shadowing Hurts to make sure this dangerous running QB doesn’t see clear paths to take off towards….

  18. garro Says:

    Bowles will get Hurts on the ground or make him beat us with his arm. Spying may not be the only thing he does in this one. I’m guessing some creative blitzes and stunts. The off man, zone coverage has been an issue with our defense though and may limit his options.

    Go Bucs!

  19. Esteban85 Says:

    Can’t wait to watch VV against Kelce. That will be a hell of a matchup as Vita is a one man wrecking crew. Our D-line needs to show up big in this one and our O-line needs to get some push! Can Mauch, Feiler and Bob Hainsey get some push inside and let us find a running game? Mauch looks country farm boy strong, tossing dudes around