As Baker Mayfield Goes, So Do The Bucs

July 8th, 2024

2024 too soon to be the man?

Unlike many other national #NFLMedia stenographers who believe the Bucs won with smoke and mirrors last year and will revert to their pre-Bucco Bruce Arians level of losing, one man is not buying that mindset.

Matt Verderame thinks the Bucs have the talent to compete. He typed for the Bucs showed last year they have the talent to win again and perhaps make a run in the playoffs.

While most folks would say the key to the Bucs winning is Mike Evans and Lavonte David continuing to stiff-arm Father Time, Verderame thinks the Bucs being a playoff team or sinking back into the abyss rides on the shoulders of Baker Mayfield.

Verderame further types that the Bucs can only win if Mayfield plays well.

Furthermore, should Mayfield regress, the offense isn’t equipped to succeed in another capacity. The run game ranked last in yards per game (88.8) last season, and nothing changed in the personnel. Mayfield needs to continue being the focal point.

Now, now, now. Joe knows Bucs fans reading that excerpt from Verderame are ready to jump out of their chairs and scream, “What about Bucky Irving???”

Hold up now. Joe is a huge fan of the Bucs drafting Irving. As much as many Bucs fans want to see him turn into Warrick Dunn, pause the excitement. Realize Irving is a late-fourth-round pick. And a rookie.

But expecting Irving to blow up as a rookie and unseat Rachaad White is a big expectation. For this season. Not everyone is LeGarrette Blount (he was a rookie 14 years ago) or last year’s fifth-round phenom Kyren Williams.

Besides, White, the Bucs’ incumbent No. 1 running back, is so dangerous in the passing game, Joe firmly believes White will have to play his way out of a job first for Irving to get enough carries to lead the rushing attack if Mayfield regresses.

Simply put, if Mayfield has a bad year, it’s not a stretch to think the Bucs have a bad year.

36 Responses to “As Baker Mayfield Goes, So Do The Bucs”

  1. westernbuc Says:

    Licht revamped the o-line. To say we did “nothing” is crazy. First round pick on a center. New offensive coordinator. Bucky Irving. We’ll see if it’s enough but this seems lazy

  2. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe … ‘Simply put, if Mayfield has a bad year, it’s not a stretch to think the Bucs have a bad year.’

    Great bottom line Joe. Hard for the other 52 guys to overcome bad QB play (see 2019 & Jameis’ 30 INTs).

  3. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    Hopefully Joe realizes that IF Irving can run between the guards like Dunn did, hold onto the ball like Dunn did, have vision like Dunn did, and take the big hit like Dunn did, mayfield will have so much time to throw he will have a banner year.
    Also someone once said the goat was drafted in the sixth round and won a pile of Superbowls although he was a quarterback, stranger things have happened in the nfl.

  4. Stanglassman Says:

    *LeGarrette Blount (UDCFA)

  5. MadMax Says:

    Bucky and Baker….yall see these stupids out here (not you Joes)…I know my guys that i push for and im usually right…i cant wait! Thank you Jason….youre golden

  6. Greg Says:

    Meh. Whatever. If it wasn’t for the unexpected that happens every season we could just watch Madden simulations.

  7. Hodad Says:

    Even when we had Brady, and Arians our run game wasn’t great. I think we got better when our run game coaches went to Carolina. Be interesting to see how their running attack fairs. We did use our first pick on a center, so to say we did nothing isn’t correct.

  8. #99 the big fella Says:

    Just watch Carolina run up the middle. Every team knows it as well.i am glad Canales is gone

  9. HC Grover Says:

    Well that makes sense. He is QB.

  10. BucEmUp Says:

    Not giving the better rb the rock would be on coaching, and Irving isa good pass catcher. Other than pass protection he should get every opportunity to improve the teams running game

  11. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Yesterday I learned that Baker can basically only throw accurately to his right and struggles with accuracy on vertical routes like go-balls. Is that a mechanics or footwork issue or both?

  12. Fan of the South Says:

    Of the 4 teams in the Championship Games in 2023 they ranked 1,3,5 and 19 in rushing. Chiefs ranked 19rh but had Patrick Maholmes.

    If Bucs are going to attempt to win without committing to the running game Mayfield is going to have to up his game. Although some here think he is as good as the Baby Goat I don’t see it being close.

    Panthers ranked 20th in Rushing last season on the 19th most carries. Had 260 more yards on 6 more carries than the Bucs.
    Can’t wait to see the Brainacs spouting about how much the Panthers are running the ball with Canales.

    BTW Super Bowl had SF rushing 31 for 130 and Chief’s 20 for 110.

    If 20 rushes a game for 50 to 80 yards will get a Division Title it will be due to the Buc’s Defense for sure.

  13. garro Says:

    Funny but I do believe that the Bucs play defense as well as offense.

    All this stuff about you can’t win without a QB has gone to some folk’s heads.

    It is still a team sport despite Roger !@#$ McKay’s best efforts to make it all about touchdowns and flag football.

    Go Bucs!

  14. Pickgrin Says:

    Better OLine play is the key to Bucs offensive improvement….

    Mayfield and the RBs will do just fine if the OLine is solid this year.

  15. Dude Says:

    “Is that a mechanics or footwork issue or both?”

    Both, his issues with his footwork effect his throwing base, which effects his accuracy which is a big reason he’s not regarded as a consistent performer from the pocket. It’s why WRs have to come back for passes more often then they’re lead into throwing lanes. Partly why Bakers stinks throwing over the top of the formation(outside of not being able to see) and almost threw 2 picks in that part of the field week 3.

    Also why his passes sail and don’t come down when he’s facing pressure, and his footwork also cuts into his pocket time and makes his passpro look worse than it actually is. There’s evidence for all this all over our 2023 tape, part of the reason why we only scored 30 points and

  16. Marky Mark Says:

    The game is designed to put too much responsibility in the Quarterbacks hands. Its the same for all teams. Basketball has become positionless as has soccer except for the keeper.

  17. Scotty Mack Says:

    It’s also not a stretch to say the same thing about every NFL team and their starting QB.

  18. 2023 Surprised the Hell out of me Says:

    All bucky needs is 1 block … and his ability to pivot,shift and turn is remarkable watch his college tape and just watch his feet in relationship to the defenders . it is quite a sight

  19. SlyPirate Says:

    “… and nothing changed in the personnel.”

    This perception is why everyone is down on the Bucs. It’s bewildering how a person can be a professional football analyst and overlook the trenches.

  20. Joe Says:

    Also someone once said the goat was drafted in the sixth round and won a pile of Superbowls although he was a quarterback, stranger things have happened in the NFL.

    What’s stranger than a sixth-round pick becoming the greatest quarterback who ever lived winning seven Super Bowls?

    Not sure there are too many NFL employees (or even owners) that are shooting for the ultimate outlier to give them career stability and a nice raise.

  21. Joe Says:

    This perception is why everyone is down on the Bucs. It’s bewildering how a person can be a professional football analyst and overlook the trenches.

    How about overlooking Jordan Whitehead? It’s not like the guy was Sabby the Goat. You’d think he would be on peoples radars since he played for the Jets. You know, bright lights, big city, Gotham, the media capital of the world.

  22. Joe Says:

    All this stuff about you can’t win without a QB has gone to some folk’s heads.

    Go look at all the Super Bowl winning quarterbacks this century. Of the 24 championship teams, you will find just two stiffs at quarterback.

    Trying to win a Super Bowl without a quarterback is like an NFL GM trying to survive jumping out of a plane without a parachute. Sure, there have been examples of dudes surviving when their chutes don’t work. That doesn’t mean you’re better off jumping without a chute.

    Why do people always point to obscure outliers as proof a bad situation will work?

    (Yes, Joe does believe Baker Mayfield gives the Bucs a puncher’s chance.)

  23. Dave Pear Says:

    Ya, well, in order to win in the NFL, everyone needs to play well. Baker could throw for 5000 yards and 31 touchdowns, but if the run game continues to resemble a bullfight where the bull wins, and the defense keeps giving up passing yards like free cookies at recess, it’s gonna be tough.

  24. Rod Munch Says:

    Defense Rules Says:
    July 8th, 2024 at 4:28 am
    Joe … ‘Simply put, if Mayfield has a bad year, it’s not a stretch to think the Bucs have a bad year.’

    Great bottom line Joe. Hard for the other 52 guys to overcome bad QB play (see 2019 & Jameis’ 30 INTs).


    You forgot the 5000 yards, 3rd in scoring – and historically bad defense in the first half of the year. Also the fact Matt Gay personally lose the Bucs 2 games, and you were down to having to start Perriman and Watson at WR at the end of the year — not to mention Cam Brate dropping an easy 4th down pass that basically cost them the Houston game.

    Remarkable how the memory works when you have an agenda.

    Anywho, I do agree that this year will come down to Mayfield – who was wildly inconsistent last year, and even in a career year was just 18th in QBR and 20th in scoring. But unlike the Winston haters that rooted against him and the team year after year after year, I actually hope Baker can improve and help the team and isn’t the guy who ended the Lions games with an INT in the biggest moment of his career.

  25. Oneilbuc Says:

    The bucs defense was ranked 7th last year in the NFL our defense played good enough to win more than 9 games . When you have a offence that can’t score in the first quarter that much then it looks like the offense was the main problem with the bucs last year rather that’s coaching or bad quarterback play or the running game or the line.

  26. Dude Says:

    “Baker could throw for 5000 yards and 31 touchdowns”

    We could’ve scored 9 more points in the divisional playoff game & won, but instead we turned the ball over twice, missed a FG and a 2 point conversion leaving about 6-19 points on the field, see how hypotheticals work?

  27. Durango 95 Says:

    The draft has come and gone and the team still lacks power at running back.

  28. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    As Baker Mayfield goes, so does Todd Bowels.

  29. Dave Pear Says:

    Dude – no hypothetical.. point is, even if Baker plays lights out but the run game and defense soil the bed, the Bucs won’t win enough games to make the playoffs.

    Everyone needs to play well, and the coaches need to coach way better.

  30. Dude Says:

    Dave Pear

    I’ve got more confidence in our defense remaining one of the stingier units in the NFL, because that’s been the case 3 of 5 years(‘20, ‘21 & 2023) with our ranking last year in ppg allowed being our highest rank since….2003. I’m of that mind that remains the same than Mayfield flipping some switch he’s hardly found in his career. Probably too busy staring Evans down to find it lol

  31. Gipper Says:


    Nice try pretending you know about QB footwork. Mayfield moves his feet the same way Peyton Manning did. That stuff is right out of Manning QB training school. Baker was under constant pressure last year which is why Licht made the correct decision to beef up the O Line. A QB has to reset feet to move through receiving progressions. Most of the time last year, Mayfield had little time to move through his progressions. Mayfield has one of the strongest arms in the NFL. That’s not my opinion, it is the opinion of Bills gunslinger, Allen.

  32. Joe in Wisconsin Says:

    Almost like QB is the most important position. There’s a reason (not a smart one) Daniel Jones got paid like he did.

  33. BAKERSBucs says Says:

    Another of chatter bout If mayfield regressed what regressed like he doesn’t know how to play football wtf do u people
    mean he has many accolades,since high-school he has been fine at this game since day 1 in football usually u say regress when u are over the hill at 45 not framing 29 years of age a young man with a mission family of 3 with tons of pride get the popcorn ready,I did last year is was awesome

  34. Bucs And Them Says:

    I think we’re going to see a better balance in the effectiveness of our run game and passing game. Not so much the ratio but, the effectiveness. And, it’s a must that we improve our run game in the red zone.

  35. Dave Pear Says:

    Dude – Lars try. The article’s premise was Baker must play great or the Bucs will lose. What “great” is? At least ago last year’s standard?

    But he could play well and they could easily still lose. Perennially giving up more passing yards than all but four teams is not stingy. You can’t go to that well forever expecting your D to suddenly become the 2002 Bucs in the red zone.

    Your confidence is in the low points allowed….one reason for that is that for the past two years, teams knew if they could score over 21, they’d win.

    The point is, everyone needs to play better on both sides of the ball, not just one guy.

  36. Marky Mark Says:

    Probably the only position in other sports equal to the QB to lose a game fast are the baseball pitcher, and goalies in multiple sports. Hard to overcome interceptions, fumbles, homeruns and easy goals let in.