It Isn’t All Bad For Dave Canales

December 7th, 2023

There are positives.

Rightly or wrongly, fair or unfair, now that Chris Godwin’s wife Mariah has made the misuse of her husband in the Bucs’ offense a national issue, Bucs offensive coordinator Dave Canales is caught in the crosshairs.

Canales is getting dragged as the first-year Bucs offensive coordinator for two reasons: unshakeable insistence on running between the tackles with the worst run game in the NFL despite having three of the best passing weapons in the game, Mike Evans, Rachaad White and Godwin, and touble scoring points.

That leads Joe to Godwin. For reasons unknown, despite talking about it each week, Godwin could sure use more targets.

But as Gilberto Manzano points out, what Canales has done for quarterback Baker Mayfield and Evans shows that Canales is a talented coach. Manzano points to a specific Mayfield-to-Evans play on Sunday.

With a three-point deficit in the third quarter, Baker Mayfield took three steps back and noticed Evans with the inside lane against his defender and hit Evans in stride for a 75-yard catch-and-run touchdown to give the Bucs (5–7) the lead they never relinquished. It was a terrific call by first-year offensive coordinator Dave Canales on the first play of the drive.

Evans has made many plays with different quarterbacks and play-callers, but Canales has made his job easier this season with the way he’s utilized the future Hall of Famer in his offensive scheme. Evans, 30, is on track to have his best statistical season since 2018 when he had 86 catches for 1,524 yards and eight touchdowns. With five games to go, Evans is currently at 61 catches for 1,012 yards and 10 touchdowns. …

Evans needs more attention, and so does Canales for what he’s done with a Mayfield-led offense in Tampa Bay. Canales was Geno Smith’s quarterbacks coach last season in Seattle, and the Seahawks have missed him this year.

Fair points. Mayfield is having one of his best years after being left for dead last season. And Evans, who has been used differently this season, has had a rebirth of sorts.

And yes, how Canales saved Kyle Trask in a span of six weeks this summer from an NFL scrap heap was remarkable.

While Joe cannot give Canales a pass on his insistence on running to nowhere week after week after week after week and too few Godwin targets, it’s not like Canales has been totally horrible.

42 Responses to “It Isn’t All Bad For Dave Canales”

  1. PC Says:

    It is evident (through words and actions) the head coach has insisted on the ground & pound offensive philosophy and Canales is being a good soldier – following orders. The stubbornness of the approach even when it is not working is a dead giveaway.

  2. Red86 Says:

    Coordinators are only as good as how well their players execute plays.

  3. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Offense no better than last year or no worse……Canales is Leftwich 2.0

  4. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Baker can only make his first read and then check it down or panic. Mike gets the most reads/targets because he’s the #1. Canales is limited by his QB and head coaches outdated backwards offensive philosophy of turtle ball versus trying to score as many points as possible. Bowles is literally the antithesis of No risk it no biscuit.

  5. QBKilla Says:

    Good coaches adjust their scheme to the strengths of their players, all of them, not just a few.

  6. ModHairKen Says:

    Canales does not get credit for the 75 yard TD. Evans does.


  7. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Bowles is the problem. He has hamstrung every OC he has ever had. No one wonder they never last more than a year.

  8. Smashsquatch Says:

    Bowles = Dungy 2.0 – defense

  9. Lord Cornelius Says:

    I don’t really have that much of a problem with the relative # of runs. We’re top 8 in Pass % vs Run %, and bottom 7 in total rush attempts.

    It’s still a little too much but he’s definitely leaning pass heavy relative to the league so I don’t really get this narrative of him obsessing with the run game. There’s not much room to run less. Maybe flip 3 plays a week and that’d get us to #1 in least rushing attempts in the league.

    You can’t just completely abandon the concept of a run game in the NFL lol.

    The only team in the top 10 of Pass % vs Run % that has a winning record is the KC Chiefs who have a cheat code of a QB to run their offense.

    Everyone else is 6-6 or worse. You can’t NOT run and win in the NFL. Unless you have Mahommes basically

  10. A Bucs Fan Says:

    @Lord Cornelius – in Bruce Arians words it’s not the quantity but the quality of runs that matter. Bucs run game is bad because their run game does not produce quality runs. Who cares about quantity if it doesn’t work. Running up the middle 1st and 2nd down hasn’t worked for almost two seasons. Yet the philosophy stays the same. It’s maddening.

  11. realistic-optimistic Says:

    My biggest issue with Canales is the repeated inside runs behind a struggling IOL. It’s not too many runs, it’s the type and timing of the runs.

    I think he’s done a nice job scheming the passing game. Watching all-22, you can see guys break free all over the field. Unfortunately, he’s stuck with the QB Bowles selected.

    He’s growing as an OC, and he should get more time. Unfortunately, he’ll be collateral damage when Bowles get’s fired. He knew that was a risk when he agreed to work with a HC on the hot seat.

  12. Lord Cornelius Says:

    @ A Bucs Fan

    “Who cares about quantity if it doesn’t work”

    100% agree man. My point is I have very little criticism with the quantity which Joe seems to think is WAY too much.

    And are 10th in passing % plays on 1st down and 9th on 2nd down. I guess we could go to #1 but – again – reality by snaps and usage says that we are not a team very committed to the run game and that we do lean pass heavy.

    It’s just that our run game is incredibly / borderline historically bad

  13. Jerseybuc Says:

    Same bullsh$$ offense as last year. There’s 1 common denominator coach radio. That’s what he wants it’s obvious. 4 more weeks! Radio is out. Bucs might win two more games that’s a big might

  14. Buc4evr Says:

    Canales is totally horrible. Futile running game instead of scoring points. Lousy play selection, not utilizing the clock, poor personnel groupings against defenders, unable to adapt and target defensive weaknesses. Overall the guy doesn’t get it. No change from last year, he needs to be on the train with Bowles out of town.

  15. BucU Says:

    I want Bowles and his ENTIRE staff fired. We’re a laughingstock to the rest of the league.

  16. SlyPirate Says:


    Mike Evans has made every QB and every OC look better than they are. Johnny won a Heisman, Winston a Pro Bowl, an OLD GOAT 5K. Mike succeeds no matter who occupies the QB or DC positions. Saying, “Canales has made (Evans) job easier” … is completely backwards. Evans has made Canales and Baker less of a complete bust. The reason Evans is overachieving statistically is because he’s playing for a big contract.

  17. Pewter power Says:

    This is why Todd Monkin didn’t take the job, he was too smart to fall into that trap

  18. VATom Says:

    Atl Defensive Coordinator salivating over sliding coverage toward Godwin. How many ints will Baker throw trying to force the ball to Godwin? Im guessing this is a 3 int game.

    Or…Godwins wife is on team Buc playing a little reverse psychology and as ATL shifts coverage to Chris, Evans gets 200+ in man…LOL. If only.

  19. bucs107 Says:

    Blaming the coaches easy way out
    Godwins wife got offended cause husband was hurt and coach protected him
    He makes millions not doing it for free

  20. RustyRhinos Says:

    “And yes, how Canales saved Kyle Trask in a span of six weeks this summer from an NFL scrap heap was remarkable.”

    What did OC Canales do other than let the Bucs 2nd Rd QB get actual second and first-team reps, in his offense? Show what he had learned from sitting behind Brady for two seasons. Did an actual “QB whisperer” actually whisper into Trask’s ear, You can do this, but you have to Show Me? I put the credit to both Trask and Canales. Has Slowfoot and even slower passing arm, our former OC found any employment yet?
    I am ready to see Trask show us what he has learned in an actual 4 quarter NFL game. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah I can already see the Buc fans response he is a bumb he is a nobody, B itch B ellyache C omplaine….

    GO!!!!! BUCS!!!!!

  21. NE Fan Says:

    Has it come to this Bowles is so bad players wife’s are venting for their husband’s? NOT a good look for the Glazers. Haven’t heard one ill word about Godwin only communication was he is a devoted team player. He either pissed Bowles, Faker or Canales off or simply Faker can’t see him.

  22. Since76 Says:

    Well we are 5-7 mostly due to offensive ineptitude. Saved trask????

  23. HC Grover Says:

    It all comes down to Bowles and Glazers. Godwin is planning his escape like Brady did. Coach Brady sounds good for next year. He would be a great HC and attract great players. Pay him the moon. He would find the best staff in the NFL. Super Bowl in the next year. Brady for HC.

  24. Jack Clark Says:

    Godwin needs to get his wife under control or it will cost him millions. What head coach wants a player whose wife will criticize him in open public and create more drama in the locker room? And throwing 2 touchdowns and one turnover a game is considered one of Baker Mayfield’s best years?! 😂 Please start playing Kyle Trask immediately because Baker Mayfield is AVERAGE AT BEST

  25. Tony Marks Says:

    VATom Says:
    December 7th, 2023 at 11:02 am
    Atl Defensive Coordinator salivating over sliding coverage toward Godwin. How many ints will Baker throw trying to force the ball to Godwin? Im guessing this is a 3 int game.


    Thats my one concern with this nonsense. Just when Mike got his so every one can start getting the ball mote theres this and the QB is going to have an obvious pressure to hit a particular guy

    LIke you said ATL DCs must be salivating

  26. Tony Marks Says:

    HC Grover Says:
    December 7th, 2023 at 12:20 pm
    Coach Brady sounds good for next year. He would be a great HC and attract great players. Pay him the moon.

    wow another dumb take

    GOAT QB doe not equal great HC
    anymore than Michael Jordan as GOAT translated into great owner/GM

  27. NE Fan Says:

    Brady doesn’t care about his $375MM media contract, why would he ever want to coach for what he would consider scraps?

  28. SufferingSince76 Says:

    I highly doubt Godwin’s wife will affect the Bucs offensive play calls this Sunday.

  29. SufferingSince76 Says:

    Brady has said multiple times he is not interested in coaching.

  30. BakerBucs Says:

    Jerk Clark need I say more?

  31. BakerBucs Says:

    NE fan says let me tell u buddy Brady is a GD friggin cheat period cheaters come from u r neck of the woods wtf wants a HC from NE a moron wud

  32. Rod Munch Says:

    Canales has done a MUCH better job than Leftwich did last year, just simply by not being as ultra predictable. Also, outside of some really stupid moments, he’s generally done a decent job of mixing things up – at least in consideration of being a Bowles lackey.

    There are so many points left on the field because of poor play by Baker, he’s got guys open all the time and instead doesn’t see them or just checks it down, with a better QB this offense would likely be closer to 22-24 points a game.

    I was not at all high on Canales when we got him, and I’m not a fan of this style of offense, but I think he’s done a decent job considering the limitations that bowles has put on him, that protecting the ball is more important than scoring points.

  33. BakerBucs Says:

    Jerkoff clark need I say anymore nope

  34. BakerBucs Says:

    I keep hearing ME this ME that I have watched him make many mistakes this season many drops that were sure game winners even pass interference against himself I have to say the guy throwing the damn ball has just a little something to do with success with cheat Brady last year I saw no outstanding heroics from Evans last year with Brady u people that supported Brady support a friggin cheat cheat cheat once a cheat always a cheat

  35. Mostly Peaceful Trask Fan Says:

    He still have Kyle Trask up his sleeve if he wants to play that card

  36. Beejezus-belt Says:

    I think the choice to run with a terrible run team is more of Bowles philosophy than Canales. Canales is doing what his boss wants him to do.

  37. NE Fan Says:

    Bakerbucs@ didnhe cheat when he brought your sorry ass team out of the bowels of the NFL and won you a SB??? It only makes sense a loser like yourself would.want to continue to lose, light right now with Faker Baker.

  38. NE Fan Says:

    Bakerfucs@ how did Godwin do with Brady and Evan’s didn’t have to make heroic catches the passes were in his hands more often than none. Unfortunately he dropped a few really important ones.

  39. 1#bucsfan Says:

    Leftwich got roasted by all of use and yet canales hasn’t done better. 2 diff OCs same results. ME13 still got his 1k and the run game is worst in the NFL. Same this year. The common denominator here is Bowles. We all know Bowles changed BAs offense last year as soon as he became head coach and that handcuffed leftwich. Good OCs learn to adapt. Leftwich didn’t. Again canales comes in and does what Bowles wants and look the results are the same. Bowles needs to be let go with his old philosophy of wanting to run the ball so much. He’s not playing to our strengths with his defense and he’s not allowing canales do the same with the offense. Bowles needs to go please

  40. Saskbucs Says:

    Canales is not Leftwich. He’s much better. Bowles is dictating this run balance, no doubt in my mind. Lefty could only dream about getting Mike the ball like this. Canales has made mistakes but I hope he is retained for our new QB.

  41. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    Mayfield misses more open receivers than Evans drops balls so stop it FakernotaBucsfan. He plays scared and has nervous feet in the pocket. He panics and can’t open receivers. You Fakerboi fans will blame everyone else for Mayfield’s shortcomings in the passing game

    Canales stubborn use of up the gut runs that net 2 yards out less is why we struggle on offense because play action doesn’t work when they don’t respect your run game. The Benn’d arounds he calls have been well blocked and surprisingly effective, yet we don’t have many off tackle or perimeter runs as we should. His refusal to use White in the passing game more is more reason why our offense struggles schematic wise. Bowles hired him because he’s a chip off his own block.

  42. garro Says:

    So defense dictates where a good OC goes with the football? Agreed but only to a point.

    He is doing Baker and Evans a favor? And deserves a pat on the back? Is that how we are spinning it this week?

    You know it really ticks me off when BS artists assume I am stupid enough to buy what they are selling.

    I do not think most competent OCs would allow their All Pro level #2 receiver to be limited to 3 targets unless his leg fell off. Just saying. Please continue to the next spin, Doctor.

    Go Bucs!