Missing Russell Gage

October 23rd, 2023

Russell Gage

The moment receiver Russell Gage was lost for this season with an ugly knee injury practicing against the Jets in mid-August, rookie Trey Palmer and second-year receiver Deven Thompkins were thrust into the limelight.

If you’re a bottom-of-the-roster fan, throw undrafted rookie Rakim Jarrett into the mix, too.

Through six games, the young trio has combined for 24 catches for 177 yards and 3 touchdowns. That’s a strong touchdown total but the yardage number is awful and Joe isn’t seeing much improvement from the group.

As Todd Bowles and playcaller Dave Canales have said multiple times, the Bucs need to get those guys involved because they will be needed down the road. Well, that road is getting a lot shorter with the Bucs now in second place in the NFC South.

Joe wonders how much better the Bucs might look if veteran Gage were healthy. Yards-per-catch totals are up significantly this season for Chris Godwin and Mike Evans, and Joe suspects they would have been for Gage, too.

Gage absorbed many daggers from fans for catching 51 balls last season, good for 31 first downs and 8.4 yards per catch. As of today, Thompkins, Palmer and Jarrett are on a combined pace for 31 first downs, the same total Gage had last season in 12 games.

Yesterday, a fan barked at Joe about how much the offense sucks (it does) and noted “the Bucs don’t even have any injuries.” Joe countered with the loss of Gage and Ryan Jensen.

The angry fan paused, pondered and then shutup, before moving on to complaining about playcalling.

25 Responses to “Missing Russell Gage”

  1. DS Says:

    Too much Thompkins imo let’s not forget he is 150lbs and more of a specialist

  2. Alanbucsfan Says:

    The title to this post should be “Missing Jordan Whitehead” because that’s who the Bucs let go to sign the always injured receiver.
    Strong safety has been a weakness ever since.

  3. Jack Sparrow Says:

    Even if you have the best receiver out there and no valid Running game, the opposing defense knows what’s coming. The Falcons were just rushing 4 guys last night and Snow white cannot find a freaking hole. Always a loss of yardage…

  4. DBS Says:

    They would look no better. Oline is garbage and Gage would be injured again in his first game back. Neither QB can do anything with the defense in their face all the time. This would not be preseason for Trask against UPS drivers and Baker is already running and ducking.. It all looks and feels like the garbage it was predicted to be.

  5. JN Says:

    Missing RG? Are you kidding me? He has been missing signed we signed him.

    We are missing Ryan Jensen and Ali Marpet. We are missing a run game.

    Hell, at this point I am missing James Wilder.

    We are not any better than we were last season. It’s just a hot mess for the Bucs on offense. Not going to win anything in this league averaging 17 pts/game.

  6. Duane in Sanford Says:

    Gage has been missing in action since 2020. Even if he was playing, he likely isnt going to improve the run game. Once again, if you want to fix what ails this offense, invest in regrowing or replacing Jensen’s knee.

  7. rrsrq Says:

    Not Palmer’s fault that Baker can’t hit him when he is open, speaking of play calling, all we heard about was Palmer’s speed, we have only seen him in the Lions game get down field, are we keeping him a secret or something, because he definitely can get behind the defense.

  8. David H. Says:

    Too many plays with Evans and Godwin on the sidelines.

  9. Mike S Says:

    Its everyone’s fault but Baker’s.

    No Joe – its Baker’s fault.

  10. Jack Sparrow Says:

    This BUCS game is a freaking Sh*t show…… headed both by a Clown HC and OC.

  11. Hodad Says:

    How do you miss something you never had?

  12. JD Still Says:

    I agree, We do need to get Palmer and Thompkins more involved , I would also add Chase Edmunds ,( when he’s ready , he was averaging five yards per carry before he was injured), Sean Tucker, and Jarrett. Cade Otton was used a good bit yesterday , that needs to continue , along with Kyle Trask to deliver the ball without tips, fumbles, and interceptions, the more weapons you have that can stretch the field the less the opposition can concentrate on trying to stop your major weapons and the more overall chance you have for scores, to coin a phrase from a great President, What have you got to lose?

  13. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    Gage would have been injured by now for some reason even if he never took the plane to New Jersey back in August. I thought he was
    a great pickup when we got him. I fully admit I was wrong.

  14. AtlBuc Says:

    Alanbucsfan Says:
    October 23rd, 2023 at 10:52 am
    The title to this post should be “Missing Jordan Whitehead”

    I agree. Neal is personally responsible for the Lion’s loss and partly responsible for the Falcon’s loss. #30 is much better.

  15. HC Grover Says:

    What we are missing is a HC….hire one right now today.

  16. AtlBuc Says:

    Dee Delaney

  17. MelvinJunior Says:

    Everyone was always, screaming about Darden as our Return Man, but Tompkins has been even worse… MUCH Worse.

  18. MelvinJunior Says:

    I guess since everything else has been SO badddd, it’s just gone under the radar. But, it’s true. Basically, the same on kickoffs but horribly worse on punts… 9.4 for Darden vs 6.0 Thompkins, I think!!!!

  19. Gofortheface30 Says:

    Is losing *checks notes* Russell Gage, our 3rd option at receiver and Jensen supposed to be some sort of “gotcha?” Serious question, because do you think we’d somehow be averaging 30 if we have a guy coming off a devastating injury and our 3rd receiver back. It’s a massive, incomprehensible reach to assume that would be an order of magnitude difference. Relative to literally other team in the NFL – NO we do not have any injuries. We are as healthy as a football team can be. We are not anywhere NEAR as talented in any capacity as a lot of people would like to think we are.

  20. Nate Says:

    Russel gage we should have kept scotty Miller instead lol

  21. Pelsbuc61 Says:

    Gage had padded stats bc he caught mostly in garbage time. Licht really whiffed on him, resigning Davis, Dean and letting Whitehead go. Really miss Jensen.

  22. HC Grover Says:

    Thompkins aint the answer. another bust.

  23. Schindlers Lisp Says:

    Joe I know you’re pressing for content here but we both know Russell gages absence is nowhere near as detrimental as the presence of Ryan neal… can you please admit you were wrong and address this situation? If you have any journalistic integrity you will…

  24. Joe Says:

    Joe I know you’re pressing for content here but we both know Russell gages absence is nowhere near as detrimental as the presence of Ryan neal

    Pressing for content in the middle of the season? Middle of June, maybe.

  25. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    I’m with you here, Joe. Prior to Gage getting hurt, I really felt that with what Canales was supposedly going to install as an offense and with Baker that Gage could have probably led the team in receptions and maybe even yardage.

    Out of all of our receivers, he was the best route runner and great at finding the holes in coverage for mid-range throws, the kinds this offense was supposedly going to feature.

    Throughout his career, he was that guy. How many of us who watch a Chiefs game scream at the TV and say “How the hell do you let Kelce get that open all the time?” Answer is he gets himself open and Gage was in that mold to a lesser degree because he hasn’t been healthy enough to build that bond with the QB since he got here.

    Calling him a “stupid pickup” or “washed” because he got injured? He was pretty much injury-free before coming here. Injuries happen. “Let’s see….we want to bring in a guy who runs great routes, has no injury history, great hands and YAC but wait…our crystal ball and tarot cards predict he’ll get injured and won’t be available to help us. Pass.” Gimme a break.

    So yeah, I am missing Russell Gage. He would have been a legit 3rd receiver giving us ME13 as #1, CG as #1a and Gage as #1b for defenses to try to figure out who to double or focus on. Right now we have “arguably” the best WR duo in ME & CG, but with Gage we would have had the best trio…period. no argument and nobody else even close.

    I think Palmer needs more playing time than Tompkins. Put his speed on display early and often even if we don’t throw to him a ton, make the opposing teams take notice and rotate some more coverage his way. If they don’t take him as a serious threat, as Moss used to say to his QBs, “Chuck it deep, Dawg” and let the kid go get it. He’s shown he’ll go after it.