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October 15, 2013 @ 10:53 am
Current rating: 3.67 Stars/3 Votes

Eagles Claw Bucs 31-20: Most Impressive and Disappointing

Written by Mark
Mark Cook


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Tampa Bay is 0-5 and just 1-10 in their last 11 games after Sundays 31-20 loss to the the Eagles at home. Some players had a great game, despite the final score, while others need to figure out how to improve dramatically before the team travels to Atlanta to face the Falcons on Sunday.
Panic mode is close to setting in for fans and members of organization after Tampa Bay dropped their fifth straight game against the Eagles on Sunday. Issues continue to abound for the Buccaneers who have yet to put together a full 60 minutes of football. And the news that MRSA was back in the building didn't help preparation by any means.The coaching staff along with a number of the players have struggled to figure out how to have success in 2013.

PewterReport.com takes a look the most impressive and most disappointing players from Sunday's loss in this weekly postgame feature.

Wide Receiver Vincent Jackson

Bucs fans may not realize how lucky they are to have a guy like Jackson as a member of their team. Besides the on-the-field play, Jackson is a professional through and through. Sure he isn’t one to talk everyday to the media, and that rubs some the wrong way, but for the most part he is a standup guy, echoed by his comments after Sunday’s loss where he said he loves this team, his teammates and the fan base.

With all that said, Jackson is a pretty good football also. Quarterback Mike Glennon and Jackson have spent some additional time together recently working on developing chemistry and it was obvious on Sunday. Jackson has his first two touchdown catches of the season against the Eagles and finished the day as the leading receiver for Tampa Bay with nine receptions for 114 yards and two TDs.

Tight End Tim Wright
Lots of fans, and many in the media wondered how Wright made the 53-man roster coming out of training camp, myself included. Many thought of Wright as just a camp body that did little to justify his roster spot early on in the season. Coming into camp Wright was a receiver who made the not-so-easy transition to tight end and while he didn’t impress many from the outside, those inside the building saw his potential, and on Sunday against Philadelphia, the Wright that the staff and organization believed was a legitimate tight end, was validated.

Wright showed terrific hands minus one drop in the end zone. Watching from the press box some of Wright’s routes couldn’t have been run by a conventional tight end, as many were more wide receiver routes than that of a standard tight end. Finally, the Buccaneers coaching staff, and Glennon, realized the importance of having another option in the passing game.

Wright ended up as the Bucs second leading receiver with 91 yards on seven receptions.

Linebacker Lavonte David
All of the off-the-field distractions have overshadowed much of what is taking place between the white lines each Sunday. After having one of the most impressive defensive rookie campaigns in Buccaneers history, linebacker Lavonte David has shown no signs of suffering a sophomore slump. In fact David is playing even better than he did last season.

While there weren’t a ton of splash plays to speak of, David was his solid dependable self, calling the defense and getting everyone lined up. And while quarterbacking the defense against the second leading offense in the NFL, the former Cornhusker was still able to manage nine tackles, once sack and a tackle for loss.

Quarterback Mike Glennon
Glennon took a step forward in his second-career start against the Eagles in Sunday, and while it wasn’t enough to win the game, Glennon showed improvement and did what hasn’t happened all season – lead a Buccaneers offense to more than 18 points.

Glennon has plenty to still work on before anyone can say he is the future of the Buccaneers, but did show some good things as well. Glennon does a good job of looking through his progressions and finding the second third and sometimes fourth options, as evidenced by his seven completions to seldom-used tight end Tim Wright.

Glennon’s deep balls are still dreadful however. The four or five deep ball shots that I can remember him attempting in his first two starts, all were either out of bounds or well over the receives head.

All in all, Glennon probably did enough for the Bucs to win, but as in the previous four losses, Tampa Bay still managed to find a way to lose.

Tackle Demar Dotson
Compared to the salaries of the other four offensive linemen, Donald Penn, Carl Nicks, Jeremy Zuttah and Davin Joseph, Dotson is an absolute steal, making just under $2 million. And through five games Dotson has been the most dependable and consistent of all the linemen, making him even more of a value. Dotson didn’t dominate in Sunday’s game, but was rarely beaten and once again did not give up a sack.

PewterReport.com pointed out in our training camp report of the strides Dotson had made, and so far he hasn’t disappointed.

KR Eric Page, P Michael Koenen, K Rian Lindell

Guard Davin Joseph

Joseph had one of his worst games of his career on Sunday against Philadelphia giving up numerous pressures, one sack and as largely in effective in the run game.

Something just isn’t right about Joseph, as the push battle that he always seemed to win in previous seasons, just isn’t there. Perhaps he is still feeling the effects of season-ending knee surgery in 2012. Maybe he isn’t in good enough football shape. Whatever the reason is, Joseph and the Bucs staff need to find a way to get it corrected as soon as possible.

Guard Ted Larsen
No one will ever confuse Larsen with Carl Nicks, Ian Beckles or even Ray Snell. But when called upon to start, as Larsen was on Sunday, there has to be better production. Sunday, against the Eagles, Larsen’s second quarter hold negated a nice Martin run and backed the Bucs up, eventually stalling a drive. Besides the penalties, Larsen also gave up way too much ground in the run game, and while for the most part his man didn’t make the tackle, getting pushed back, as he was on a regular basis, created problems in the backfield and at times redirected the running backs throwing things out of whack.

Look for Jamon Meredith to get some looks in practice this week, along with Larsen getting more center reps and Jeremy Zuttah moved to guard as he did last year after Nicks toe injury.

Center Jeremy Zuttah
Zuttah, like most of the offensive line struggled against the Eagles on Sunday. Zuttah was flagged for holding and also, like Larsen, was bullied backwards a few times, causing the timing of some of the runs to be altered.

While Zuttah isn’t making Nicks, Penn or Joseph money, he is still one of the top paid centers in the NFC and the Bucs need a better investment on their return.

CB Johnthan Banks
Banks, as he told PewterReport.com in the locker room on Monday, has his “cherry popped” on Sunday, meaning giving up a deep ball touchdown that sailed over his head. Replays show a clear push off by the Eagles Riley Cooper, but no flag was thrown. Take that play away and Tampa Bay’s second-round pick from Mississippi State still has some struggles and missed tackles. Of course being diagnosed with MRSA (although Banks still doesn’t acknowledge he has it) could be reason for his mind to perhaps not be in the game or even in the preparation leading up to the Eagles game.

Banks will be fine in time, and even the Cooper push off for a score will be a learning and teaching moment that should make Banks a better cornerback in the future.

Wide Receiver Tiquan Underwood
The move to dump wide receiver Kevin Ogletree and the re-signing of Underwood was applauded by many two weeks ago, including PewterReport.com, but on Sunday it certainly didn’t pay off for anyone involved. Underwood was targeted four times and failed to show up on the stat sheet. To make matters even worse, Underwood was called for offensive pass interference and also has some miscommunication with Glennon on a second half pass that was intercepted.

DISHONORABLE MENTION: The coaching staff on both sides of the ball, S Mark Barron, FB Erik Lorig, CB Leonard Johnson

Last modified on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 13:08

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  • avatar

    Underwood is afraid to go over the middle. When cats are frightened their hair stands up. Yep, that's Underwood's hair style, "The Scaredy Cat."
  • avatar

    Well done Mark. Underwood was pretty good last year until he was concussed going across the middle a few games. Sadly he has been timid and pretty much useless ever since (hard to blame him). Glennon threw what looked to be a perfect bomb to Underwood but he inexplicably stopped started an hand fight with the defender leading to the PI. I was not a Glennon fan before but he was very impressive. I watched him as much as I could on Sunday and he looked the part of an NFL QB. He looked like a leader, never had deer in the headlights and always got the plays off with no timeouts or delays of game. He interacted well with the team too. He made a large number of long third down conversions despite several holding penalties. His football IQ was very high. He has a ways do go yet but should get the rest of the season to see if he can handle the job. Hi deep balls were bad so I hope he can improve. They were a little less out of bounds this week (sigh). Not a bad 3rd round pick. In the 4th qtr you could see our defense was totally gassed and wasn't going to stop anyone. That was disappointing.
  • avatar

    @csidedave...I concur Glennon looked better at times but not in the crunch...he folded up shop in the last couple of drives quicker than a congressman at 4:00....he couldn't get to he showers fast enough....I mean when the Eagles DL came calling he laid down in the fetal position and threw the ball away like it was a bag of trash on Thursday morning....he couldn't fall over backwards faster if he was caught down wind in a hurricane....ahhhhhh, he was not good at the end.
  • avatar

    Barron did not impress me last year when he was covering passes, but I gave him some slack as a rookie. If all he can do is play the run and make good tackles which are important skills maybe a Coach needs to teach him how to stop passes, because otherwise he needs to just be a situational player and play on Special Teams and he won't like the pay with his next contract. I think Tandy can do a better job covering passes and is very fast. As to our 2d round DB. He should not have been starting after what he has been through with Mirsa this week. Besides statistically, Johnson is the better DB so far and should have started. You know I am beginning to wonder if our defensive back woes last year weren't more Sherman's stupid schemes than lack of talent by our DBs. Look how bad our all pros looked in Sherman 's schemes against Philly!
  • avatar

    I suggested we put Page in the slot three games ago. Guess I will try and e-mail the coach as he can't seem figure it out for himself.
  • avatar

    This O-line REALLY concerns me. I understand many posters say it's the coaching, but I saw them lose one-on-one battles time and again...oftentimes resulting in horrible holding penalties that allegedly cost the Bucs 75 yards when subtracting the gain that should have been plus the yardage for the penalties. They are also not picking Up late blitzes from LBs. right now, only David & VJax are playing at Pro Bowl level.
  • avatar

    I'm torn between putting Barron on the list or just Schaino/Sheridan....Barron was burned (yet again) in coverage on WRs...but why is he in coverage on WRs...I suppose as a saftey he should be able to play a deep zone....but why are we making him do it when he has proven time again he cannot....he is very good in teh box against the run and even in coverage on TEs on short routes...but ask him to cover down the field and it's (not always but mostly) a bad idea....
  • avatar

    Agree @EastEndBoy. Goldson is supposed to the coverae hawk, Barron in the box, and Revis on an island. But apparently none of that is part of our current DEF scheme.
  • avatar

    Agree that Barron should have been an addition to this list. He looks lost in zone coverage, and not just on the long Philly TD. Also, Underwood should be front & center on the list - he continues to lose any battle for a ball in the air, has no shiftiness to elude coverage, and his unwillingness to catch over the middle led directly to Glennon's pick. He is just Ogletree with higher hair. Need someone different at WR3.
  • avatar

    I am all about putting Page in the WR3 slot. Quick, shifty, and has been great in spot duty (see NE game). At this point, why not? Tired of seeing no production from that spot.
  • avatar

    MC, I thought Wright looked as good as anyone we have had for a while at WR. Big body and did a nice job shielding the defenders from the ball. Owusu also "looked" okay. At least I noticed him which is more than I can say for some others. Maybe it was the jersey number?? Actually the first half I was rather encouraged by, (oh and I was in Tampa for the Cardinals game and was also encouraged that game in the first half), then Coach made his FAMOUS half time adjustments and we Stank up the second half. 4 of the 5 games we played the first half and then what the heck happened in the locker room at half time. Does anyone see a trend?? Oh, silly me, my toes are over the line again. Alas, GO BUCS!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's not the players it's.......well it just is.
  • avatar

    All those dollars and picks on the oline... how are they still a below average unit??????????
  • avatar

    @Norris.....see Yankees. Just kidding, it is not the same at all, the Yankees are old stars that have lost something now and are still getting paid, the Bucs have many good young players and a coach that can't bring out the best in them.
  • avatar

    Norris, its coaching that makes us below average.
  • avatar

    Also, I was one of many who cheered the hiring of O-line guru Bob Bostad. However, I have no idea why our line is underperforming the way they are right now. Is it scheme? Is it health? Too much talent up there to be getting blown up in the run and pass game on a regular basis right now, esp vs the 31st ranked Eagles DEF.
  • avatar

    Is there a reason Eric Page does not get any looks at slot WR? He cant be any worse than Underwood who was clueless on Sunday. I had to rub my eyes a few times after seeing a few crossing routes actually get called. Page would be perfect for that "Welker" type role in our offense. His speed gives us an added dimension on offense that we sorely need. Plus having another security blanket underneath for Glennon cant hurt. There is a reason no one picked up Underwood after we cut him.
  • avatar

    Also worth mentioning is Owusu performing well on his first NFL start. I was impressed by him and wouldn't mind seeing him work a little in the slot since he also has solid lateral movement and great speed.
  • avatar

    I firmly believe we will not lose to the Panthers this week....the Falcons maybe....
  • avatar

    Expected Mark Barron to be at or near the top of the most disappointing. You, as a Safety, absolutely do not give up the deeper route for hopes of making a play on the short route....I don't understand how he did that, and it can't be chalked up to him being injured as that is a mental error. I think Mark Barron deserved to be on this list way more than Banks...who is a rookie and also has a very dangerous infection....also Cooper committed an OPI on him for the TD.
  • avatar

    "ImMpressive...PanicS mode......pretty good football also.....better investment on their return..." Good content Mark, but damn man, get those toes on the line!
  • avatar

    What are you talking about? Huh?? I'm confused... Kidding, thanks for the heads up. Thank God for the edit button TNT. Been a long five weeks man.
  • avatar

    Horse, Block? Why should Wright be different from any of the rest of the Oline...ha ha!
  • avatar

    Funny how we all thought the Oline would be such a strength and why I thought we had a good chance this year and yet based on performance it is worse than last year. I hope Joseph gets better, I thought after a few weeks he would come around.
  • avatar

    PewterReportMC; I am with you on most of it. I give Barron a pass because of his hamstring. I don't see anything that special about Wright. Did he block at all?
  • avatar

    Horse that is why Meredith reported eligible 26 times on Sunday. Clark didnt black last season, as Stocker and even Trueblood would come in as an extra blocker. And after not seeing a TE do ANYTHING all season, I thought there was a lot of great catches made by Wright. Take him out of the equation and the Bucs may not score 10 points. He was clutch on 3rd down.
  • avatar

    PewterReportMC; thanks mark, I completely forgot about that.
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