Bucs Pass Defense Is Gross

December 16th, 2023

Need more sacks.

Maybe if Todd Bowles played outside linebackers who can rush the passer instead of having them learn from the sidelines while watching nonproduction, this would be different.

Bowles, to his credit, wants well-rounded players on the field. He doesn’t seem to care much for one-dimensional guys.

For example, earlier this season YaYa Diaby was clearly a better pass rusher than Joe Tryon-Shoyinka. (Yeah, that’s not much of a high bar to clear.) Just about anything is more productive than a seven-figure lawn chair. But Bowles sparingly played Diaby, not even on obvious passing downs, because he didn’t like how Diaby was a lesser player in areas other than pass rushing.

Bowles even scoffed a bit saying, in so many words, all Diaby did was make splash plays here or there. Well, yeah!

Joe is convinced this is also why edge rusher Markees Watts is buried on the bench.

Now Joe is not saying these two guys are Deacon Jones and Bruce Smith. But as Joe’s old man always said, something is better than nothing. And nothing is just what the Bucs are getting these days from Shaq Barrett and JTS in the pass rush. They have combined for one sack in the past four games — one!

(Joe hated typing that about Shaq, who Joe loves, but dang it, the facts are the facts.)

Are the Bucs in first place? Yes. Are the Bucs playing better? Eh, maybe. Is Bowles out of the woods yet with his job being safe? Joe doesn’t believe that. So research on the Bucs’ pass rush by Rich Hribar of Sharp Football Analysis shows it may be high time Bowles rethink getting Diaby and Watts more snaps.

Why? Quarterbacks are absolutely carving up the Bucs defense since Shaq and JTS have gone on midseason pass-rushing siestas.

Since their Week 5 bye, Tampa Bay has allowed a 65.7% completion rate (26th), 8.3 yards per pass attempt (31st), and 13 passing touchdowns (24th).

Hribar added that five different quarterbacks have had virtual season-best passing games against the Bucs defense since the bye, including dismal Desmond Ridder.

Sacks. There is no more important defensive position than edge rusher. And right now the Bucs aren’t just getting poor play, they are virtually getting zero production from Shaq and JTS.

If Bowles doesn’t find a way to get Diaby and Watts on the field more, it could lead to curtains for a lot of people’s jobs.

23 Responses to “Bucs Pass Defense Is Gross”

  1. orlbucfan Says:

    Seriously, where is Barrett? Is he injured and not recovered? D. White is a hot aired joke who better show up tomorrow. At least the Lambeau weather is decent. It has been raining like crazy all day, and will continue through Sunday. Wind alerts are up. Go Bucs!

  2. Marine Buc Says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me to see Barrett cut after June 1st.

    Another toxic contract left over from our three year Super Bowl window.

    – Barrett
    – Jenson
    – Gage
    – Davis

    Might all be let go this off-season.

  3. Tbbucs3 Says:

    The Bucs are paying Shaq Barrett to be the guy he was in 2019-21 and hes just not that anymore. So many bad contracts on this team.

  4. Beeej Says:

    WE restructured Shaq’s contract once or twice, from what I can tell we can’t cut him with a HUGE cap hit, doubt anyone will trade for him

  5. sasquatch Says:

    The Bucs are not playing better. They barely beat Carolina and Atlanta. Nobody should be impressed with those W’s.

  6. BelleGladeBuc Says:

    To paraphrase Christopher Walken from the great SNL Cowbell skit with Will Ferrell, “Need more Pass Rush!”

    All of us Bucs fans have been begging and pleading for more pressure on the QB’s because when we rush four we do nothing and when we blitz we get torched.

  7. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe. … ‘And nothing is just what the Bucs are getting these days from Shaq Barrett and JTS in the pass rush. They have combined for one sack in the past four games — one! (Joe hated typing that about Shaq, who Joe loves, but dang it, the facts are the facts.)’

    I’m beginning to enjoy the way you praise a player and then apologize Joe. … Right before we hear the ‘Thump, thump’ as you run over the guy with the bus. Great fun.

  8. ModHairKen Says:

    Everything that has happened is over. This is a one game season. For Bowles. For Shaq. For Tryon. For Davis. For Dean. For Neal.

    Those that are hurt and not able to play, that’s tough. But this team does not have the time or the patience to coddle soft players. For those that are playing, but loafing, that’s your problem.

    There will be a mass involuntary exodus after the 17th game, starting with the HC, if they choke job this 4 game stretch. See Jon Gruden’s last season. See Tony Dungy’s last season.

  9. Buc4evr Says:

    Think the Bucs need to spend a lot more time in 4-3. It’s clear that the OLBs are not getting it done. The defense will be in total rebuild mode in the off season. Maybe there will be some openings in the coaching staff also. Belichek andRivera deserve a serious look.

  10. dbbuc711 Says:

    If Bowles is let go and the end of the season it will totally be because he did it his way. No blame but himself.

  11. Tony Marks Says:

    ‘I’ll take coverage sacks all day long over pass rushes (although you need both). They are hit and miss. Yes they rattle young Qbs and nothing is better than the loss of yardage BUT they are hit and miss. Better Qbs can see them coming and adjust and OC.s can adjust

    Defense suck at corner and pass coverage.

  12. Larrd Says:

    The soft zone does not help.

    Put Devin White outside and get him in the backfield.

  13. Popcorn Mike Says:

    I mentioned earlier today about when Bowles take out JTS and Hall the defense looks a lot better. Also I don’t understand why Nelson is not getting more playing time. Every time he’s in he either get a sack or qb pressure and Lb Britt looks pretty good and never gets into the game unless someone is injured.

  14. Glass (almost) Half Full Guy Says:

    I dunno, maybe don’t play our DBs 10 yards off so QBs can’t complete quick passes before a pass rush can get home? Not a novel concept

  15. Capt.Tim Says:

    This is a bad team, with huge needs.
    And stats back up what I keep saying.

    Our biggest need is pass rusher. Opposing QBs love to see us on the Schedule.
    They know they will have a nice clean uniform all day.
    Shaqs achilles hasnt healed. No surprise- usually takes 2 years.
    JTS was a waste. Quick, but weak as a child. No tackle worries about him. Its like a day off

    Our defense will be an embarrassment, until we can rush the passer.

    Next two huge needs are Center and Guard.
    Gonna suck until we fix those 3 things.

    And, of course, we have to get a different Coach
    Bowles stuborness is his downfall. Cant be a good team with him at the helm

  16. David Says:

    Ever since Sapp and Simeon Rice left, it has been the same thing year after year after year after year (except for a 2-year stint with SHAQ andJPP)-

    And as the league has become more and more about the pass, that has become more and more important. Blitzing is great, but it’s not sustainable long-term to do so much of it.

  17. David Says:

    YaYa and Kancey with Vea is the future. Everyone else on the line is questionable.

    Devon White has shown over and over He cannot be consistent and cannot play to the level he did during the playoff run. Use him the one way we know he is good at… Rush the passer.
    He should be in there as a rusher on every third and long. He also should’ve been traded already.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    Preach Joe.

    But we both know Bowles is too stubborn.

  19. ChrisBuc23 Says:

    We need to Stack up that Dline some more and get rid of the non producers. And this articule is spot on Shaq has been a no show and JTS as well we need to get nastier on the DLine soon that’s for sure and dump all of these contracts for inconsistent players that are not producing like they should 💯

  20. garro Says:

    “Bowles, to his credit, wants well-rounded players on the field. He doesn’t seem to care much for one-dimensional guys.”

    Ok I’ll bite.
    Explain the exceedingly one dimensional Diva White to me. He can blitz in a schemed blitz. Only. Period… When he isn’t bored.

    Bowles is not getting that credit from this Bucs fan at all.

    Go Bucs!

  21. Obvious Says:

    @Cpt Tim

    I like how you summed that up. We don’t agree about the qb situation but I believe you certainly made it decisive for the most part.

    I guess I’m sad to say that our secondary is going to have to be looked at long and hard as well… THAT according to the record IS at the very least the second priority! 26th /31st/ and 24th in the league?!?

    Now that I kick it around a bit more, Secondary looks to be our Highest Concern! How much are we paying past Far Too Much for our corners again?

    Anyways, I loved how you put that together. Well Done

  22. Locked In Says:

    I thought we were gonna wreck sh!t

  23. BUCS4LIFE Says:

    Pass defense “gross” is a very kind description.