Prove It

November 29th, 2023

Critical weeks ahead.

The Bucs are 4-7 in a spiraling nosedive after losing six of their last seven games.

Despite being just one game out of first place in the horrid NFC South, the Todd Bowles hot seat chatter is all over the place, from BSPN, FOX, SiriusXM NFL Radio, national NFL websites and social media to local sports radio shows.

And Ira Kaufman’s old friend, Judy Battista of, has a list of coaches she believes have entered the prove-it zone. Battista says all three NFC South head coaches (one was already fired) have dodged the ziggy and will be coaching for their careers in the next few weeks.

That includes Bowles.

… Todd Bowles — handed the unenviable task of overseeing the Bucs’ transition to the post-Tom Brady era, as well as the salary-cap cleanup necessitated by that transition — has to show he can get more consistent play, including by his defense, to keep the Bucs in the mix.

Clearly getting the defense righted is a major issue, specifically the league’s second-worst pass defense that lives in Tampa.

If you are a defensive-minded coach and your defense stinks, that gets the attention of the folks who sign the paychecks at One Buc Palace.

But it is more than that. Young cornerstones of the Bucs’ defense are regressing (Devin White, Carlton Davis and Jamel Dean). Meanwhile, other young players (Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, Logan Hall) are not being developed. That’s a very bad look.

So Joe believes Bowles must demonstrate to Team Glazer he can turn around a sinking ship, somehow get guys like Davis, Dean and White to rebound and coach up JTS and Hall to show they are more than just warm bodies.

Oh, and have his players cut the dumb mistakes. That might go a long way to keep the wolves away.

Most important of all, win games.

Joe doesn’t even want to think of how this Bucs fanbase will melt down if the Bucs lose Sunday to the worst team in the NFL, the one-win Stinking Panthers.

43 Responses to “Prove It”

  1. Fansince76 Says:

    The Buc’s are so bad at this point in the season it could definitely happen.

  2. TampaBayBob Says:

    The ground is approaching at a high rate of speed. I sense that a SPLAT is inevitable

  3. Lt. Dan Says:

    Please Glazers – clean house. The sooner the better. If the Bucs make the playoffs then so what? Who will they beat? Dallas? San Francisco? The fans are at a point where we are crossing our fingers now just hoping we can somehow beat the crappy, coach less Panthers in our own stadium this Sunday. As a far as I’m concerned every win from here on out does nothing but put us further away from a premium draft pick.

  4. Aceofaerospace Says:

    Bryce Young will look like a pro bowler Sunday. I have no doubt Toilet Bowels will find multiple ways to lose this game. Watching this game will be like watching the Darwin Awards on Facebook. You know something horrible is about to happen and it’ll be self-inflicted by doing something stupid.

  5. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Fortunate there are 2 games against the Panthers. No offense and no hope. The Aints are figuring out Carr is the biggest “ain’t” they could have gotten besides Jimmy G. Those should all be wins, and they might squeeze past the clueless Birds. Jags are a hard no and probably the Pack as well. Based on the incompetency of the division, they still might win the right to get drubbed by the Cowboys. Again

  6. Show Me the TDs Says:

    Geesh dude. What do you do, just cut and paste these articles together? At least move some of the words around.

  7. NYbucsfan Says:

    If we have lose every games for the season to ensure that we get rid of Todd I hope that’s what happens. That’s the first thing the franchise needs to do in an attempt to turn things around. He stinks

  8. danang Says:

    4-7 overall and on a run of 1-6 is proof enough for me. The Bowles and Baker show flopped. It’s time to see what else might work in these final 6 games. Even if healthy, Baker should be benched, but he’s not healthy, so all the more reason – a perfect excuse really – to bench him and put in Kyle Trask and assess our needs for the draft. If the Bucs don’t do this they need to explain to us fans why. NFL teams bench players all the time. What’s the Bucs’ problem?

  9. Voice of Truth Says:

    No Joe, we are the worst team in the NFL

    We have TONS more talent than Car, Chi, AZ – yet we play like all 3 of them and are 1-6 over the past 2 months – same record as Carolina…

    With Todd we are the absolute worst team in the league currently

  10. BucU Says:

    Not only is Bowles an awful HC he’s a bad defensive coordinator. He’s no defensive genius by any stretch of the imagination.

  11. Iamabuc Says:

    The BUCS Fan base has melted down since three games ago, Joe. Time to walk the plank for Bowles because I really believe we’re not getting any better from now on. The proof is in the pudding.

  12. fishhawkbuc Says:

    Same storyline every week Joe. Let’s bring up other interesting tidbits; Like, Why did Bowles not call a timeout with nearly 4 minutes left in the game last Sunday? The colts melted away over a minute of clock. This in turn made it “frantic time” for the offense. Here is another nugget; why not challenge the Mike Evans catch at the 1 yard line, on the first drive of the game? He rolled into the end-sone on top of a Colts player. It ended up costing us 4 points and darn near a significant injury to your starting QB on the next play……..QB sneak. Why is the Tampa media so soft on Bowles???

  13. Bucfan Says:

    Don’t forget – Bowles had a losing record WITH THE GOAT!

  14. Razor Ramone Says:

    Fishhawkbuc, true. I thought we got boned on Mikes catch, no challenge we’ll just sneak it. Of course BM gets destroyed!!! Survey Says????? 3 points!!!

  15. NE Fan Says:

    Bucsfan@ Brady’s ONLY losing season is with Bowles. Bucs should beat Carolina easily and handle Young like they did Levi. If they win and it is remotely close that’s like a loss. With the overall talent this teams has I’d say they are the worst in the league. The 2nd worst secondary in the league and no DB coach firings, Bowles played DB as a pro. Not a good look by any means.

  16. Wokeizdunn Says:

    This goes back to Jason Licht and Bruce Arians. Does anyone thing Arians stepped down abruptly just before season start last year to hand Bowles his second (undeserved) head coaching job. Does anyone think the ONLY reason the Bucs did anything in 2020 and 2021 for anything other than Tom Brady and the bodies (including A. Brown) who wanted to be around him? Why did Tom come here? Because he wanted control, and the boobs at One Buc were more than happy (and wise) to let him run things. But even with Brady, last year was 7-10. Even he had all he could do.

    Licht should have been fired in 2019. Now he and the whole lot need to go. Don’t draft a QB. The Bucs have NEVER developed a QB. NEVER NEVER.

    Frankly, as a season tix holder, a CAR win this weekend is exactly what’s needed to get the fat Glazers off their duffs. Maybe they will sell.

  17. BucsFanSince1996 Says:

    BucU Says:
    Not only is Bowles an awful HC he’s a bad defensive coordinator. He’s no defensive genius by any stretch of the imagination.

    @BucU, While the Bucs defense is bad THIS season Bowles overall record as a defensive coordinator is very good, including holding Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs to ZERO TD’s in their Super Bowl.

    I suspect that his needing to spend some time on so many other things now that he is a HC instead of a DC is one of the factors in the defense not doing as well. When he can focus just on the defense his track record is good, and if he needs a new job in 2024 he would be an upgrade to many of the DC’s on the job presently.

  18. HC Grover Says:

    It will be hard to lose to the Panters. Bowles would have to work at it. He may be able to do it but it would be hard.

  19. Why Not Says:

    Joe, the Bucs are not making too many mistakes, it’s just that they are making mistakes at the wrong time. Bowles needs to coach up the team so they are making mistakes at the right times. It is all about timing.

  20. 1#bucsfan Says:

    Agreed Joe that those players you mentioned have regressed. CD111 had his best game this season against the colts. That’s not saying much but he laid some nice hits on a few players and actually made an int. I’ll be looking to see if he keeps his momentum going forward. Just need Bowles to play to these guys strengths. He’s a cover corner not a zone. He’s lockdown some of the other teams best WRs and has kept them in check.

  21. WiscoJoe Says:

    Melt down? The fanbase would jump for joy! We would be another step closer to a potential franchise QB and hopefully a young up and coming offensive minded head coach.

  22. realistic-optimistic Says:

    If I still allowed myself to “melt down” every time the Bucs lose my heart would have given out years ago. Long suffering Bucs fans have learned to take the losing in stride. I even had a difficult time getting excited during the 2020 SB run. Just kept waiting for the inevitable rug pull. On to the next coach!

  23. Colonel Angus Says:

    “ A liquor captain never abandons a sinking sh!t-ship”
    – Jim Lahey

  24. Buc4evr Says:

    Bowles was the last person to put in charge of a team in transition, much less adding an OC that has no experience. Sometimes Jason and the Glazers are knuckleheads.

  25. NE Fan Says:

    Bucsfansince@ in 2020 Bowles had a very motivated team with an offense that averaged 30+ points a game forcing teams to go one dimentional making it much easier to defend. I would use this as an excuse as a buffer for the poor DB play. That excise is no longer applicable since the 2022 season proving the Bucs have and has had a bad poorly coached secondary.

    2020 Playoofs:
    1. Heinike almost beat the Bucs if not for the O out scoring Wash.

    2. Brees could throw past 10 yards. Proof Jamais came in and torched the D on one play when EVERYONE watching knew what he was going to do. D. White did step up.

    3. Green Bay, front 7 dominated, great D and O but D front 7 was the best in the league.

    4. Mahomes hurt, oline decimated, Andy Reids son/assistant coach arrested for vehicular manslaughter SB week.

    5. 3 dropped TD passes.

    6. O scored 31 points.

    7. Rams playoff game, the D played the best 4th quarter I’ve seen in 4 years only to be kicked in the gonads by their job shopping DC coach who blitzed the best QB in the league against the blitz with 28 secs left on the clock leaving at that time the best receiver in the league one on one with a safety. The irony is he has come close or lost many games by playing a soft zone yet that situation he decides on a all out blitz on a obvious passing down. Two words Todd, sideline prevent.

    Ever since then during his regime it’s been downhill!!! Facts!

  26. Marine Buc Says:

    This has been another frustrating season for us fans.

    However – nobody had the Bucs winning more than 5-7 games this season.

    – New OC
    – New questionable QB
    – 13 rookies playing
    – $75M of dead cap space – salary cap hell
    – Todd Bowles as our HC

    This team IS in rebuild mode and there is nothing wrong with admitting that fact – regardless of what the people selling season tickets tell you.

    Next off-season will be just as bad as our salary cap will continue to be a mess until 2025-2026…

    Keep building the offensive line and the defense through the draft and continue shedding these toxic contracts that the Bucs used to win a Super Bowl (dam near 2 SBs).

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see several players cut –

    – Jenson
    – Gage
    – Davis
    – Barrett

    Those moves will save the Bucs another $30M but will also create four more holes in this roster of 33 signed players.

    Because of the above it wouldn’t surprise me to see Todd Bowles back next year if he is able to win 7-8 games this season.

  27. Allbuccedup Says:

    Why does everyone keep saying salary cap cleanup Licht is not doing that and as long as he takes orders from the clueless Glazers he never will. He will just keep pushing money down the road. The salary caps a joke in the nfl anyway.

  28. stpetebucfan Says:

    I get that changes are in order IF the Bucs finish the season on this losing streak.
    I also get that the odds are not in favor of the Bucs or Bowles.

    And I agree even one more loss means Bowles has to go unless the Bucs make the playoffs and advance. Probable? Or course not! Possible? Yes. Stranger things have happened.

    I do not mind speculation about new coaches. But the vast majority of this board have GIVEN UP.

    I remember years ago at a Buc’s game when the pop hit of the day they played over and over again was Chubawamba’s “Tub Thumping”. That song now gets retired forever by most of the Bucs fans here. The hook to that song…” I get knocked down but I get up again”.

    We need a song that says I get knocked down and I give up. Losing is NEVER fun. Giving up sucks even worse!!!

  29. Marine Buc Says:

    @ St.Pete


    I remember those days… Watching Mike Alstott running over helpless CBs on his way to the end zone and hearing that song over and over again.

    Good times.

  30. BucsFanSince1996 Says:

    Marine Buc Says:
    This has been another frustrating season for us fans.

    However – nobody had the Bucs winning more than 5-7 games this season.

    Most of us had low expectations coming into the season as you wrote. But what made it more frustrating is them starting off 3-1, leading us to believe they were better than they actually are.

    Some of these 13 rookies will take a step forward next season and some holes will be filled in the draft, So there’s hope going forward. With the right coaching staff we could be competitive again by 2025 if not next season.

  31. stpetebucfan Says:

    Marine Buc

    Agree with your observations. Although I have yet to give up on this season I respect reality I just can’t MAKE myself give up…EVER!

    Tanking for draft position makes me want to puke it goes against every fiber of my hard headed Irish nature.

    Losing to “win” is like scrwing for virginity!

    If the odds hold up and Bowles gets the axe I’m not sure the rebuild is as major as believed. There is still some talent on this team for the right coach to begin winning immediately! What alarms me most about the Bucs is the “stars” are no longer making plays. DW45 is perhaps phoning it in or hurt. But when Winfield dropped that easy interception my jaw dropped. IMHO Winfield is the very best player on he Bucs D. That is uncharteristic for him.

    Baker Mayfield took the lousy Browns to the playoffs and road win against the Steelers. Kyle Trask had an incredible season at UF. NEITHER of these guys is chopped liver. They may not be able to CARRY a team but they have the talent to play their position well enough on a good team to win.

    A new coach like Harbaugh, or Ben Johnson or as someone suggested Eric Bienemy might get the team to play well and simply add some finishing touches.

    I like what Lynch has done at SF. He built a great team first…SB ready..just add the QB. Lynch pulled an fup as big as the Bucs selection of Jameis wasting 3 first round draft picks only to be saved by the final pick of the draft.

    FIRST…lets see the Bucs man up and play their arses off then see what happens. No major improvement and TB is gone. Find the next guy and give him control of the personnel. I like Licht but I trust a several coaches in the league to make better decisions..especially at QB.

    Before wasting a top pick on another Jameis…or another Trey Lance…make SURE the right guy is making the decision. I like Lichts OL picks…his QB pick was one just horrible…a total failure and it should have been obvious from the get go that the man child with no character was NOT worth that much draft capital. The opportunity costs of the mistake are still affecting the Bucs just like the Salary cap hell created by Brady. The difference is one delivered a SB the other taught us how to eat W’s like our fingers…to “check our sheets”.

  32. Marine Buc Says:

    @ BucsFan1996

    I agree.

    I also was hooked on hopium after our 3-1 start. But the reality is we were very lucky to win in Minn and the Vikings really beat themselves. Several turnovers inside the Bucs redzone…

    Then we barely beat a bad Chicago team at home. Another win against a bad Saints team on the road. Then we all got a reality check against Philly.

    So that 3-1 start was a bit of a mirage unfortunately.

  33. DFW Buc Says:

    Flush Bowels. Can’t wait! The stench from this defense and head coach is putrid. Bowles is lost at sea without the ability to navigate. As I have read so often summed up with one word…. Stubborn!

  34. Marine Buc Says:

    @ Allbucdup

    The salary cap is like a credit card for an NFL team. You can push off paying for players but at some point the bill becomes due.

    The Bucs only had $148M to spend on this year’s roster.

    Other teams had @ $224M to spend on their rosters…

    So – YES – the salary cap is real and the spending spree the Bucs went on in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 are being paid for in 2023-2026.

  35. Ed Says:

    Bowles belongs up in the box like all defensive coordinators do. Standing on the sidelines, he is lost.

    Like many others have said, we can all watch our TV’s and see those spots where more than half the coaches in the NFL call timeouts to look forward to getting the ball back.

    Not using replays is another coaching miscue by Bowles.

    Never see him talking to players during games or certainly showing any interest on what is happening in front of all eyes. Looks like a spectator to me, not a leader.

    Please go back to the box and play chess up there where you can see the field and make adjustments. Bowles is a proven failure as a head coach and his clock has already ran out. The Bucs are going to be a 6-7 win team at best so
    there is no improvement and no reason to continue this direction.

  36. Marine Buc Says:

    @ StPete

    I agree with your take.

    “What alarms me most about the Bucs is the “stars” are no longer making plays. DW45 is perhaps phoning it in or hurt. But when Winfield dropped that easy interception my jaw dropped.”

    And don’t look now but Wirfs is also starting to look more human giving up sacks and pressures last week.

    You know this team is in big trouble when we have to start worrying about Wirfs’ level of play. – OUCH.

    I don’t want the Bucs to tank either but I don’t believe they will win more than 2 games the rest of the season.

  37. Bobby M. Says:

    His body of work is mediocre at best….even the idea he’s a good DC is questionable. He manipulates the game through clock management in attempt to prop up his defensive rankings. Anyone that watches this defense can see they can’t stop anyone when it counts….ever! Late 3rd qtr through 4th qtr teams march down the field with ease.

  38. realistic-optimistic Says:

    I don’t want the Bucs to tank either but I don’t believe they will win more than 2 games the rest of the season.

    This is exactly how I feel. Bowles has shown us what his teams look like.

    @stpetebuc, I’m also not so committed to Licht. He was walking the green mile leading up to the 2019 season, before hiring Arians. His seat was still pretty hot heading into 2020, after Winston’s 30-30 campaign that resulted in a 7-9 record. But I think the Glazers wanted to give Bruce at least 2 seasons. That saved Licht’s job long enough to snag Brady.

    That worked! I’m happy for the SB, but then the mistakes picked up again. Drafting for “depth” in the entire 2021 draft was embarassing. Then overmaxing the cap before 2022 on guys like Rudolph, Jones, Gage, Hicks, and Fournette. Multiple void years to David, Davis, Jensen, and Brady. I was fine overspending in 2020 and 2021, but not in 2022. David was a good signing, but if money hadn’t been wasted everywhere else, it would not have required void years.

    Disagree a little with the criticism over drafting Winston. It was a terrible QB class, as we now know. Everybody wanted a QB, and the Glazers probably pressured him into taking a QB. Honestly, I think we got the best one in that entire class (not saying much). That being said, I’m not sure I want Licht drafting the next QB and hiring the next HC. Although that’s probably how it will play out.

  39. Bobby Says:

    This season is painful, it’s painful to watch these Bucs games right now.

  40. 1sparkybuc Says:

    The Bucs will beat Carolina, twice. They will lose the rest of their games. Six wins should put the team where they deserve to be in the draft. Looking forward to the new coaching staff.

  41. stpetebucfan Says:


    You are correct we probably disagree very little on the JW selection and indeed you are correct that it wasn’t a great year for QB’s. EVERYBODY said it was between JW and MM and yet BOTH of them have been major disappointment.

    Perhaps I’m angry with myself. I was swayed by Dungy and thought MM would be best because of his lack of baggage but it appeared to me at least JW was far more talented but an immature head case. FSU guys convinced me that JW was the call. I WAS WRONG!

    A couple of other posters here who I wish I could credit…bad memory…too much ganja or too many years…but these guys were spot on.

    They realized early on what you just said r-o..there were no QB’s in that class worth a first rounder much less the top overall pick. They claimed we should let the other teams overspend their draft capital and trade down and pick up at least three very good players for the future.

    My father the bookie is smiling down at me right now saying you always did have the chalk in your eyes meaning I do everything I can to go with the odds and am not a guy given to long shots. 1st round QB’s cost too much capital for the odds on their return IMHO but I certainly recognize there are many ways to get the job done.

    Bobby Beathard was part of 7 different SB Champs but he’s almost as well known for trading out of the first round for seven consecutive years. Like me the chalk got in his eyes and he wanted to make sure he got bang for his draft capital. Not really a wild gambler.

  42. Daniel Z Says:

    I hope the bucs lose, just so the Glazers realize where this team actually is at because of bad coaching. I’m being slightly hyperbolic, but if the bucs finish 3-3 (or thereabouts), I think Bowles dodges the axe. And he absolutely shouldn’t. I’m not sold on Canales, but if a new HC wants to bring in someone else, so be it.

  43. Aceofaerospace Says:

    Toilet Bowels should be fired no matter how the rest of the season goes. I never got over that Rams game and I never will. His ineptitude is just highlighted every week. Poor clock management. Poor timeout management. Etc