Controlling The Game With The Run

December 1st, 2023

Pumped over revitalized run game.

Last week in Indianapolis marked a Bucs milestone.

Second-year running back Rachaad White ran for 100 yards for the first time in his young NFL career in the continental-48. And the Bucs had an OK game moving the ball (298 yards of offense).

Yesterday, Bucs offensive coordinator Dave Canales crowed over White’s second-best career run performance. And Canales strongly suggested White’s success will springboard the whole offense.

“We’re always hoping for those big games [on the ground] to control it from the run game,” Canales said. “It opens up a lot more things for us – play actions and some of the screens and things that we do there.”

Well, this is a wive’s tale that you need a running game to run play-action. Tons of data is out there for anyone inclined to DuckDuckGo and bang on a keyboard; you can find the stats that show just the quarterback showing the football in a faux handoff buys a quarterback time.  Joe is surprised Canales doesn’t seem to know this.

Canales raved about the Bucs’ offensive line, stating have been getting the job done up front for the past month. There is no question that right guard Cody Mauch seems to be settling in as an NFL starter.

Mauch had a fine game against San Francisco, against maybe the best front seven in the game. Mauch followed that up with a solid game against the Colts.

Canales believes White is finally getting comfortable.

“Then Rachaad [White is] trusting what’s happening up front,” Canales said. “I thought it was his best-disciplined run game that he had of the year, in terms of just pressing the runs the right way to force the defense into those combo blocks. That’s where we’re seeing that all come together.”

The Bucs are being held back by what he deemed a “sloppy” passing game, Canales said. While maybe sloppy, the passing agme sure hums better than the Bucs run game.

Look what happened at Indianapolis last Sunday when on the same drive Baker Mayfield kept targeting both Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. The Bucs scored a quick touchdown. That wasn’t an accident.

Want to open up the run game? Start targeting Evans and Godwin a lot more, and then watch defenses turn soft on the run.

Joe has no earthly idea why it is such a mortal sin to use your best players and stay away from an element of your offense so bad (running game) it may cause good people to lose their jobs next month.

32 Responses to “Controlling The Game With The Run”

  1. HC Grover Says:

    A great loss.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Our running game has controlled a better draft position…..nothing else

  3. Buc4evr Says:

    Blah,blah,blah…talk is cheap and stats are for losers. When will a Canales learn that it is about scoring points any way possible. I don’t care if White gets 1 yard or 100 yards as long as the Bucs win. There are no moral victories in the NFL.

  4. Since76 Says:

    The one constant here is Qb play. When your QBs ceiling is average play your going to have a hard time winning games. Even with the 1 in 9 games your offense runs for a hundred yards. When you run that often I would hope you would get 100 most games.

  5. Pelsbuc61 Says:

    Every week Canales and Bowles try to spin their press conference to have us fans believe things are improving, when in fact, everything is disintegrating before our very eyes. Enough with the bs. They should man up and admit they suck and their players suck.

  6. Craig Says:

    The O-line needs to do something more than just block forward for a run game to happen.

    They need to use a zone blocking scheme of some sort to vary the pressure on the D-line. Using a TE to break something is all they have done so far. It could work more, but the timing of it being used is suspect.

    That second down run by White on the first drive sis not have that helping TE. If you are going to use it, do it where it counts, like at the goal line.

  7. Ra'Shad Says:

    That’s all I been saying all year. Throw the ball to our stars. Then the holes in the run game will appear.

  8. Kgh4life Says:

    Canales needs to worry about scoring points, and running the football does not score points. The philosophy of the HC and OC are not working.

  9. Crazyhorse54 Says:

    Kgh I couldn’t agree more. Well said.

  10. Cobraboy Says:

    I’m now in the phase of a “Buc fan who doesn’t care anymore this season.”

    Crappy, uninspired foosball orchestrated by terrible coaching will do that to you.

    I now watch games expecting failure and terrible football, knowing the result is another loss followed by lame excuses.

    “We keep working hard” has become another Dungy-esque “we just weren’t in sync.”

    I look forward to “Black Monday,” wholesale roster changes, the draft, and new hope for my beloved team.

  11. Buccos Says:

    You would almost think that we won the game the way Canales is glowing over it. I guess when you are on a losing streak like this you have to settle for moral victories

  12. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Evans and Godwin were targeted 16 times and 9 passes were completed vs Colts- that’s 7 incompletions (no gain and loss of down) plus 1 interception when Mayfield forced it to Evans under triple coverage.
    The other receivers combined caught 11 of 14 targets- the opponents are focusing on defending Evans and Godwin.
    If anything, Mayfield needs to target the short pass open receiver more often and then he’ll have less sacks, less turnovers and the Offense will move the ball more.

  13. Texasbucsfan Says:

    This whole coaching staff is clueless. Canales is beginning is getting to be one of the worst. Fire all of them and start over

  14. FortMyersDave Says:

    Dave Canales speaks and the Vegas line of the Bucs Panthers moves toward the Panthers. Ditto for the money-line. Canares is talking about trying to run, probably the one thing the Panthers can stop. Throw the ****ing ball Dave. Insane Dave! Get to 19 or 20 and you are likely to win unless your O gives the Panthers free points on numerous turnovers.

    Bucs must win Sunday, yet I feel like I am back in 1987 to 1990 or so with the Bucs playing at the old Sombrero wondering if the Perkins led 2-8 Bucs can beat the 2-8 Packers or Lions as we are favored for the first time since we played those clubs at home last time…. The difference is now the whole NFC South bites, back then the NFC Norris had decent clubs in Chicago and Minneapolis, while the Bucs, Lions and Packers were bottom feeders…….

  15. Fred McNeil Says:

    White did indeed have a fine day. BFD! We still lost a game we should have won.
    Maybe he can do it again Sunday. It won’t help unless we score more points than them.

  16. Bojim Says:

    Maybe if he has a couple more games like last week.

  17. Bucsfanman Says:

    It really is head-scratching to try to understand why Evans and Godwin aren’t being targeted more frequently. They are, literally, our “bread and butter”!

    The way our defense has been struggling, it has never been more important to maintain TOP. An effective running game will take some pressure off. Lets hope that last week’s performance continues to progress.

  18. Mike Johnson Says:

    My Quess is Mr. Chipper (Canales), also has his bags packed. He and Bowles will share jokes and coffee after their firings.

  19. unbelievable Says:

    Yay, more positivity from our team motivational speaker- I mean, offensive coordinator.

    @Alanbucsfan – the vast majority of Mayfields passes are already checkdowns for short yardage. It doesn’t open up anything, except more opportunities for the opponents to get the ball back when we fail to convert on 3rd and 7.

  20. Conner50 Says:

    The Bucs should’ve hired Todd Monken. Canales was the wrong choice and should go with Bowles after we lose to Carolina.

  21. doolnutts Says:

    I dont really have an issue with our offense I expected us to struggle a little bit. I am pretty pissed about the defense though,. Todd Bowles defense is letting us down its that simple. Games like the Texans game or letting the colts score 27 just cant happen period.

  22. WyomingJoe Says:

    Todd Monken loved Mayfield when they were at Cleveland in 2018 during Baker’s rookie season. Monken should have been named the HC in 2019. I believe that would have saved Mayfield in 2019 by adding stability to his maturing process. But typical of the Browns, they hired someone with no head coaching experience.

  23. Jack Clark Says:

    WyomingJoe Says:
    December 1st, 2023 at 11:31 am
    Todd Monken loved Mayfield when they were at Cleveland in 2018 during Baker’s rookie season. Monken should have been named the HC in 2019. I believe that would have saved Mayfield in 2019 by adding stability to his maturing process. But typical of the Browns, they hired someone with no head coaching experience.

    Doesn’t Todd Monken also have no head coaching experience at the NFL level? You sound like a hypocrite

  24. Alanbucsfan Says:

    I’m just saying that Mayfield tends to hold the ball too long waiting for Evans and Godwin to get open when he has other receivers open for shorter passes and that this leads to him getting sacked and fumbling. – take what the opponents’ D is giving you.

  25. FortMyersDave Says:

    Conner50: Monken also had the Baltimore job on the table (and others in most likelihood). Can not blame the dude for picking Harbaugh and Lamar Jackson over Bowels and Baker job security comes to mind. Many were amazed Bowels did not get launched with Leftwich after last year’s epic fail.

  26. unbelievable Says:

    Yeah, I think it’s cuz he can’t see over the offensive and defensive lineman half the time. There’s been a lot of plays where he’s not even seeing or looking towards open receivers, whether it’s Evans, Godwin or anyone else. And the truth is Trey Palmer and the other guys have dropped a lot of passes themselves as well when targeted.

  27. Dave Pear Says:

    This article should be named “Controlling the Loss with the Run” or maybe “Losing Closer with the Run.”


  28. NE Fan Says:

    It was freaking Indy!!! They are ranked 23rd and give up over 5 yds per play. Bucs are now ranked 27th how the mighty have fallen under Bowles. Look back at Joe’s previous post with Bowles D rankings as a HC both Bucs & Jets. His predecessors hand him a top ranked D and within one season he tanks them. How is this guy a good DC?

  29. Conner50 Says:


    Money talks bs walks, could have gotten Monken if they really wanted him I’m sure but oh well. Gotta start over with HC anyhow

  30. Voice of Truth Says:

    They forgot the golden rule – no matter what, you have to have more points that the other team to win….

    We don’t play to win, we play to be “in it”

  31. Confido75 Says:

    What is Canales rambling about? RW had a 100 yd game and this team still lost. These coaches know they are done come the end of the season. He is just auditioning for his next gig. I bet he goea back to Seattle next year.

  32. steele Says:

    Control what? What great running game? There has been no smashmouth established this season at all, not with this bunch of average backs and this deficient OL. Slow mo Rachaad had an average day with one long run off of a broken play. Nothing special about it, or him.