Suffocating Run Defense

September 25th, 2023

Eye popping data on yards-before-contact.

Now this is what Joe calls swarming to the football.

Or, in more vivid terms, “gang-tackling.”

Joe was looking over defensive run stats and one really jumped out. Of course, the Bucs have the second-best run defense after two weeks, allowing just 108 yards on the ground.

That’s second only to the Eagles (104). But here is the thing that really caught Joe’s eyes:

In yards before contact, opposing running backs are averaging less than a foot a carry. Yes, you read that right, less than a foot a carry before contact. A foot is one-third of a yard. The Bucs are limiting opposing running backs to an average of .21 yards a carry before contact.

That’s just insane. Even wilder, the Bucs rank only third in the NFL in yards allowed before contract after two games. Cleveland and Indianapolis are allowing fewer inches per run before contact.

The Eagles are not in the top five.

If Joe’s math is correct (if it is not, Joe is confident the very first commenter to this post will correct Joe) this works out to the Bucs defense allowing 7.56 inches before contact per run.

That, friends, is swarming to the ball.

Yes, Joe loves gang-tackling.

22 Responses to “Suffocating Run Defense”

  1. Smashsquatch Says:

    Math checks out Joe, bravo. Bucs can make a statement tonight. Stay in you lanes on D and swarm to the ball. LFG!!

  2. Joe Says:

    Math checks out Joe, bravo.

    Muchas gracias! 🙂

  3. BillyBucco Says:

    Freaking pumped already for tonight.
    I feel good about it I don’t know why.
    I think it’s because I know this team still has so much to prove, and if you tead any Eagles commentary, they are all cocky as Shict!!!
    It’s like their fans know they will win just by showing up.
    Remember they had to fly last night, stay in a foreign place, it’s way different already weather wise, and after playing 2 teams in the North they are in South Eastern territory. On the road baby.
    I hope the stadium is rocking. We shut down the Chiefs there so hopefully the veterans are thinking like that.
    LFG Bucs!!!!!!

  4. Aceofaerospace Says:

    Contender or pretender game tonight. LFG Bucs!

  5. BillyBucco Says:

    Dang just looked at the weather.
    I will say if it rains, this game could be sloppy.
    You might think it doesn’t matter, but hand size in the rain is real, just ask Joe Burrow in week 1. It looked like he was throwing the shot put at times.
    Jalen Hurts has the biggest hands in the league.
    Baker, not so much, bottom 1/5 Id say.

  6. orlbucfan Says:

    Glad we signed Will Gholston this year. He’s making his usual lunch pail impact, and helping out depth-wise.

  7. JBBUCS_06 Says:

    will we have VV#50 and DW#45 tonight? That’s key to the swarming run D. We need them, but not at the risk of not having them on Sunday in NOLA.

    Sunday’s division game counts as 1.5 games. We NEED to win that game especially w/ AK#41 coming back. I’m ok w/ 3-1 and 1-0 in the NFC if they can’t go tonight w/o risk of injury. Much rather be 3-0 into Sunday w/ real chance at 4-0 before the bye week. BUT don’t risk players’ long term health tonight.

  8. DJB Says:

    Yeah, Joe, but you could have also provided the square root. . .

  9. SlyPirate Says:

    BillyBucco Says: “if you read any Eagles commentary, they are cocky AS”


    FR. Eagles fans are blowing us off like we’re the Panthers. Truthfully, most everyone else is, too.

    BUCS FANS: You’re the only people that believe in this team … Until after tonight. Let’s win and force everyone to change their minds.

  10. Hammerhead Says:

    I don’t know. This is going to be tough to pull out a victory. Injuries to key starters and others not at full strength. The Eagles are not our last two opponents. Our lack of depth behind those injured. A potentially sloppy field…..

  11. DS Says:

    Would love a win!! I want to see execution and urgency. I actually don’t think Siriani is a great coach tbh

  12. garro Says:

    Wow that is some low numbers.

    Go Bucs!

  13. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Yeah….if Vita and Devin is out tonight…that will be BAD and I mean really BAD for run defense…

    …..cause Lord knows all JTS does is run around people and has a hard time getting runners down on the ground!

    JTS is awful

  14. BigMacAttack Says:

    As I’ve said before the season started “I like our chances.” I like our chances tonight too. Baker is on a mission. He has that no fear refuse to lose mentality. Our defense has been making great adjustments and very quickly. I think our team is much better that most NFL mouths think or give them credit for, but they will know after tonight when the Bucs put them on notice lol.

  15. Craig Says:

    Tonight is the night where the defense has to stay in their lanes. It will be okay for them to swarm after the ball is contained, but not before.

    Jalen Hurts will hurt them if they don’t keep outside contain also. It will not mean as many sacks or TFLs, but it might mean the game, Hurts is a master escape artist if there is an open lane for him to run.

  16. Miller5252 Says:

    Joe, we getting a podcast before the game tonight?

  17. Cobraboy Says:

    Hinge game.

    This will determine where the Bucs stand.

    Good news is the ONLY coordinator consistency for both teams is Bowles on the Buc’s D.

    I hope the Bucs have been holding back on the O for this game and run stuff the Iggles have not seen before.

    I suspect a lot of screens tonite.

    I also suspect more Hurts spies.

  18. Cobraboy Says:

    Remember when the Iggles were supposed to run the Bucs out of the old Vet stadium in the NFC title game?

    This has the same Iggle arrogance vibe…

  19. ModHairKen Says:

    Bucs are young. Guys been wanting MNF all their life. Baker wants to prove people wrong. So does Big Balls.


  20. Baking with Canales Says:

    It doesn’t matter the outcome. Respect from outside media will stay the same. If we win they will talk about Philly will not go back to the Super Bowl but SanFrNcisco will.

    I’m old enough to know and I don’t care what they think. We just need to bring the hammer and win!


  21. 1#bucsfan Says:

    So hyped for this game tonight. JOE any word on the injury front ? Who’s not playing tonight besides CK and SVD ?

  22. Hunter's Crack Pipe Says:

    1#bucsfan Says:
    “Who’s not playing tonight besides CK and SVD ?”

    Teams are required to publish their inactive list 90 minutes prior to kick-off. Sometimes news leaks earlier, but I don’t expect anything until late in the afternoon at the earliest.

    Go Bucs!!!