Dying On The Edge

November 9th, 2023

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The art of unnerving quarterbacks used to be a Todd Bowles staple. Now, it’s a lost art.

A solid defense that had been propping up the Buccaneers was just shredded by a rookie quarterback Sunday as C.J. Stroud had enough time to order a slab of ribs and some Texas toast from DoorDash.

Bowles made his reputation as a defensive guru by disguising coverages and manufacturing an effective pass rush. He’s met his match this season and as a result, Tampa Bay’s suspect secondary is now exposed.

Through a 3-5 start, the Bucs have allowed the most passing yards in the NFC. Opposing quarterbacks average an NFC-high 7.9 yards per pass attempt.

The Bucs rank 26th with 41 QB hits and 25th with 38 tackles for loss. Simply put, the holes in this roster have caught up with Todd Bowles.

If you’re looking for culprits, start with a defensive lineman and an edge rusher who were supposed to contribute. Instead, Joe Tryon-Shoyinka and Logan Hall haven’t made much, if any, difference on the pro level.

They certainly haven’t lived up to their draft status and their lack of production is killing this football team.

Despite starting all eight games and playing 64 percent of Tampa Bay’s defensive snaps, JTS has registered only 3 sacks, 5 tackles for loss and 5 QB hits.


That’s a good quarter for T.J. Watt.

One-hit wonder Logan Hall, Ira explains.

Hall bulked up in the offseason in hopes of stepping up his game in Year 2. It hasn’t helped one bit. He didn’t play against the Texans due to injury, but it’s not like the Bucs missed his presence.
While playing 56 percent of the snaps for Bowles, Hall has been credited with a half-sack, 1 tackle for loss and 1 QB hit.

While it may be too early to label Hall a bust, he has shown no indication that he can make an impact on this defense.

JTS may be a superior physical specimen, but this is Year 3 and there isn’t an offensive coordinator in this league who spends much time bringing up his name before a matchup against the Bucs.

Yes, Ryan Neal continues to struggle and yes, Carlton Davis looked overmatched and disinterested in Houston. Still, the biggest problem by far was the lack of pressure on Stroud as an injury-riddled offensive line offered more protection than the Secret Service.

The secret is out — this pass rush is failing and fading. Shaq Barrett is a shell of himself, in part because he’s such an obvious point of emphasis by opponents.

When’s the last time the Bucs drafted a dynamic edge rusher?

Are we supposed to count Adrian Clayborn in 2011? Not good enough.

Joe Tryon-Shoyinka

What about Hugh Green in 1981? He possessed a lot of talent but again, he wasn’t an elite pass rusher, finishing with only 15 sacks as a Buccaneer before being traded to Miami.

If Tryon-Shoyinka had emerged as a force off the right side, teams wouldn’t be so quick to assign multiple blockers to neutralize Barrett. If Hall played remotely like Jason Licht envisioned, Bowles would have some flexibility in establishing a disruptive rush.

Remember when Bowles said this defense wasn’t built for Vita Vea to lead the team in sacks? He wasn’t kidding.

Life on the edge has been a real downer since Jason Pierre-Paul departed. Bowles can work some magic but he doesn’t have enough on this depth chart to cobble together a unit that makes quarterbacks uncomfortable.

Yes, the Bucs are looking for a pass rusher in the 2024 draft. They should also be looking for a quarterback, but that’s an old story. At this point, it’s unclear which is the bigger need.

The Bucs are facing another rookie quarterback as Will Levis leads the Titans into Raymond James Stadium on Sunday. Expect quite a few empty seats — and some empty suits when it comes to generating a pass rush for the reeling home team.

Ira Kaufman Addresses Team Glazer Perspective On 4-Game Losing Streak, Dissects Two Odd Todd Bowles Comments, Talks Cade Otton, Winning Versus Tanking, And Much More

45 Responses to “Dying On The Edge”

  1. dbbuc711 Says:

    The boo birds will be ready

  2. Doctor_berto Says:

    And we passed on Josh Allen for a bad off ball linebacker

  3. Bucfan Says:

    Gee, with all these players not performing is there a slight possibility that the quality of coaching could be part of the problem??????

  4. Joe Says:

    Gee, with all these players not performing is there a slight possibility that the quality of coaching could be part of the problem??????

    Joe’s been trying to say that. 🙂

  5. buccaneric Says:

    So, it’s draft talk time. Again.

  6. Joe Says:

    And we passed on Josh Allen for a bad off ball linebacker

    Please don’t remind Joe. smh 🤮

  7. Rich Says:

    Amen about the coaching! How many players on this ream have really been coached up? You can name a whole bunch who’ve been coached down!!!! There are 7…yes 7…players on the defensive side that started and won a Super Bowl! Hoe can this happen when we have that returning talent? Hmmmmm just sayin

  8. Buc'n Enough Says:

    Enough..call out Jason Licht for his piss poor evaluation of talent and over reaching.
    Without Arians and Brady..Licht is a terrible GM

  9. Bobby Says:

    Your next Bucs HC 2024 Todd Monken, that would be a smooth fit here in Bucs organization. Heard the Joe Bucs Fan trio mention it on the most recent podcast episode. Like it!

  10. WiscoJoe Says:

    Not only a coaching but it has to be a scouting issue as well, no?

  11. Fred McNeil Says:

    I was saying JTS would be much better this year with a new coach. I stuck up for him many times. Now I’m just disappointed. I was wrong. The “Jane” is strong with this Tarzan lookalike. Hall…I never had much hope for him after last year. He will always be more non-factor than JAG. It was a waste of time to hope Bowlzo would learn from his mistakes.
    I had high hopes for Palmer and Jarrett and Thompkins. They’re barely visible now. I don’t think Canales is using them right. Put White in at slot for a few plays.

  12. SlyPirate Says:

    Bucfan Says:
    Gee, with all these players not performing is there a slight possibility that the quality of coaching could be part of the problem??????


    Is Godwin’s lack of production because he sucks?
    CDIII and Dean were awesome in the Super Bowl run but now they’re terrible?
    I agree. We’re not giving the coaches enough blame.

  13. TheMIGHTYVH Says:

    Everyone has a hand in this debacle – from leadership and management (GM/ALL coaches) to the players themselves. And it’s not just the lack of production on the defensive front, it’s poor decisions (signing overrated players to 2nd contracts), improper planning (see current OL) and bad drafting/scouting. I mean for every Wirfs, Evans and Winfield there are three bad picks.

    Should have been sellers last week Ira. We will see how this team responds this week at the Den of Depression against another rookie QB with a POOR offensive line. PROVE ME WRONG BUCS! My guess is we get beat again and the losing streak pushes to five,.

  14. gotbbucs Says:

    Before you criticize the front office too much, consider that most of the defensive backs that have left this team recently is starting for a different team and playing well. Whitehead, Edwards, and SMB all have at least one forced turnover this season.
    I’m not ready to give up on any of the players. They are a slave to the system and coaching.

  15. zzbucs Says:

    JTS would be an extraordinary advertising model for underwear in public, it is useless for anything more than that after 3 years of playing professional football.

  16. larrd Says:

    At one point the claim was there were nine good outside linebackers on the roster.

    What the hay?

    Bowles needs to blitz White on every play and let his big corners play man-to-man, is all. Run blitz/pass blitz. Every play.

  17. Bobby M. Says:

    The reason this defensive scheme ever worked was due to two things…

    1. We had a high scoring offense which forced teams to keep up with Brady & Co. It was much easier for Bowles to play aggressive knowing his offense was very capable of putting together scoring drives while the defense rested.

    2. We had an elite front seven….Vea, Suh, JPP, David, White, Barrett. Pick your poison, somebody was left 1 vs 1 and we made them pay.

    Bowles actual scheme sucks, it was simply propped up by a high scoring offense and elite front seven. We don’t have either now and his defensive genius has evaporated. If you’ve followed this team since Bowles came in, we’ve routinely been scorched by back up and rookie QBs, a true defensive guru would make life difficult for those QBs…..against Bowles defense they look like hall of famers.

  18. Voice of Truth Says:

    We will never know how much Todd wanted these picks or if JL forced them but Hall and JTS have been complete busts.

    There is no denying the lack of pass rush and suspect run stopping is getting progressively worse instead of better

    It is glaringly apparent Todd can’t develop players or game plans past week 2 of the season

  19. WyomingJoe Says:

    Although I think that it’s too early to be concerned about the draft, unless you write for a living, I think that Monken is a really good OC candidate. Although Cleveland couldn’t get rid of him fast enough. Now, every Bucs fan thinks he’s THE solution. He actually worked great with Mayfield because he let him just sling it! And yes, I know that many of the loser fans on this site hate Baker, lol. Even though they’re wrong about him… I’m telling you, he’ll be rated as one the Top 10 QBs before the season ends, unless the Bucs just give up.

  20. Mark Bennett Says:

    The Packers just traded a CB they got off the Seattle Practice squad a couple years ago for a third rounder just before the trade deadline. Sure they have their problem’s, but Corner really isn’t one of them. Don’t know why we can’t find and develop them.

  21. BucaneroJim Says:

    Players not being coached up?… maybe re-hired JPP as defensive coach.

  22. Mark Bennett Says:

    BTW… I believe the Packers had to start two 7th round draft pick CB’s in the Rams game, due to some injuries. And they played well. So it isn’t like there isn’t talent out there.

  23. Mark Bennett Says:

    As I remember, Kupp had only one big catch, and Puka had a big offensive pass interference play, but little else. But of course Stafford wasn’t playing. Still, that is a good day

  24. Defense Rules Says:

    Bobby M … ‘Bowles actual scheme sucks, it was simply propped up by a high scoring offense and elite front seven. We don’t have either now and his defensive genius has evaporated.’

    Excellent point, and one that I doubt anyone could argue with. When we had that much elite talent, those players could probably make just about any system work. I think back to 2019 when Shaq got 19.5 sacks, 37 QB Hits, 6 FF, 1 INT, 19 TFLs & 58 tackles … in 16 games. That was Bowles 1st year here, and the Bucs’ players had to learn a whole new defense. Who’d Shaq (889 snaps) have with him up-front when he got those gawdy numbers? Suh (874 snaps), Vea (749 snaps), JPP (586 snaps) plus several other pretty good depth players (Gholston, RNR, Nelson etc). Pick your poison.

    Shaq pretty much equalled those numbers in the following TWO years (18 sacks, 38 QB Hits, 5 FF, 1 INT, 20 TFLs & 82 tackles), even though Vea, Suh & JPP were still Bucs. Without that elite talent around him though, it’s easy for opposing OCs to focus on neutralizing Shaq (his numbers seem to bear that out).

    Still, good chance he’ll be here for another year. His current CAP hit next year is $14.2 mil, but his Dead CAP hit would be $26.7 mil. Yikes! How do you absorb a CAP hit like that if you release him AND replace him with someone of equal talent? Wonderful Buc, but guys making the huge $$$ need to be both team leaders AND produce on the field. I don’t see Shaq doing either right now.

  25. Mark Bennett Says:

    I’m not saying to tank the season. But I would say that I’d get every young guy out there and see what they really have in game situations. With the cap situation we have, the guys that we can and can’t resign among our best players, and the likelihood of at least some coaching changes, the last thing we need it to not know is which guys really fit into the future. And we certainly don’t need mid to lower than mid round draft picks because we back into some four weak team division championship, and get embarrassed in the first round of the playoffs. Time to look to the future.

  26. Texasbucsfan Says:

    No one can coach self motivation. Talent is meaningless unless a person is sell motivated.

  27. Cobraboy Says:

    When do the head bags come out?

  28. 74 Bucs Fan Says:

    We need the highest draft pick possible. We aren’t doing anything this year as expected. Winning the division means very little in this crap division. Yeah anything can happen, but come on.

    Status quo should get us where we need to be – very high picks and a new coaching staff.

  29. Destinjohnny Says:

    The good news after 11 Jason drafts jTS is his best outside draft pick
    He has made…
    JTS get get your head around that
    He is our best draft pick at the position.jason licht has made after 11 drafts
    Whenu say it to your self it’s kinda mind blowing..

  30. Steven007 Says:

    Clearly JTS was a swing and a mess. Happens every draft with many teams. And for some teams like the Patriots it happens every draft. But for some reason this team has almost never hit on a homegrown edge rusher. Even if Kancey ends up being the player, we hope he’s an inside guy.

  31. Steven007 Says:

    * meant to say miss, but mess works too unfortunately

  32. It's Corn Says:

    Ndamkong Suh made a big difference too.

  33. Tbbucs3 Says:

    I don’t believe that Todd Bowels sudden forgot how to coach defense….how about let’s call out Jason Licht more?

    Remember Licht let’s 3 quality safeties walk (Mike Edwards, Keanu Neal and Ryan) for Ryan Neal, let’s quality DB depth in Sean Murphy Bunting walk, can’t upgrade from JTS and signs underperforming Greg Gaines replacing Nuenez Roaches who was great at stopping the run.

    Look at the defensive roster form this year to last year, it fall off a cliff….just blaming coaching alone and not the GM is just stupid.

  34. Mark Bennett Says:

    TB… Licht may buy the groceries when it comes to many of these guys we draft and particularly those we sign as FA’s, don’t think that Todd doesn’t sign off on every one of them. I want a HC that knows personnel like Sam Wyche did. He had a hand in drafting how many HOF defensive players here in his short tenure?

  35. Defense Rules Says:

    DestinJohnny & Steven007 … I agree that JTS was a below average Rnd 1 pick, but I don’t consider him a bust … yet. If JL had picked him in Rnd 3 or 4 he’d probably look OK right now (in year 3). It’s not saying much, but he is 2nd on the team right now in sacks (3), tied for 2nd in QB Hits (5) and tied for 2nd in TFLs (5). Personally I think he could make a decent rotational player, I just don’t view him as being starter-quality. Maybe 1 day though, who knows.

  36. Bucs2023 Says:

    Appreciate your knowledge, Ira. Any reason Markees Watts isn’t being given a chance? He can’t do any worse than the high draft pick, over compensated guys in front of him on the depth chart. As for Bowles being a genius, why can’t he scheme a coverage taking advantage of the one on one skills of their overpaid CBs? Didn’t Dave Campo assign big mouth deion Sanders to cover the other teams best WR. while playing Cover 6 with rest of the back 7 for those 90s Cowboys? When Bowles said the rest of the secondary lacked man cover skills, maybe he subtly meant the entire secondary.

  37. Defense Rules Says:

    Steven007 … ‘Even if Kancey ends up being the player, we hope he’s an inside guy.’

    I think Kancey will end up being a quality player, but I still have trouble seeing him as an ‘inside guy’. He’s the guy IMO a DC should let line up virtually anyplace on the DLine depending upon the situation. Design formations to give him tons of flexibility IOW to take advantage of his quick git-off. He’s the type of player I think who could impact a play BEFORE it happens just by playing with the QB’s mind.

  38. Tbbucs3 Says:

    “don’t think that Todd doesn’t sign off on every one of them.”

    I’m not saying that Bowels doesn’t have his say on these off season moves I’m assuming that the GN that’s been here since 2014 has final say so he gets most of the blame.

    At the end of the day, the GM tag team of Bowels/Licht is failing regardless of who’s making the calls. This team has no depth, 0, on both offense and defense.

  39. D-Rok Says:


    Thanks for the laugh, buddy. It was needed.

  40. Jon Says:

    Use “Sat out 2020 due to covid” as a screening tool for player evaluation.

  41. matthew a veal Says:

    i stand by my argument that losing defensive backs over money is a consequence of a super bowl, but when it comes to edge rushers, ira is right, money wouldnt fix this problem. we sure cant draft one either.
    at least free agency got us 2 for a while under bowles.

    cap room is our best hope to fix this, and it isnt going to happen for a while

  42. Schindlers Lisp Says:

    Jordan Peterson said your website is trash…. must be the censorship aye

  43. Schindlers Lisp Says:

    He also thinks Mark Bennett is on your payroll

  44. Leopold Stotch Says:

    Joe, I’ll see your coulda had Josh Allen over Devin White and raise you a coulda had TJ Watt over OJ Howard.

  45. garro Says:

    Ouch! Ira!

    The truth hurts! Saddly you are spot on as usual Ira. Bowles managed ot hide it well last season and the begining of this one, but teams have caught on and are taking advanage at this point.

    Go Bucs!