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It’s time for PewterReport.com’s 2-Point Conversion post-game column, which features two statements, two questions and two predictions based on the latest Bucs game. Tampa Bay snapped a two-game losing streak with a 26-14 win over Minnesota and continued on its quest for the playoffs, improving to 8-5. The Bucs defense recorded six sacks and contained Vikings running back Dalvin Cook enough, while quarterback Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes in the win.

2 BIG STATEMENTS

STATEMENT 1. Despite Win, Bucs Defense Remains A Mystery

Christmas came early for the Buccaneers in Sunday’s 26-14 win over the Vikings, and Minnesota kicker Dan Bailey played the role of Santa Claus on Sunday, handing out presents in the form of three missed field goals and a missed extra point. The Vikings could have used all 10 of the points that Bailey cost them, and the Bucs defense gets some credit for holding Minnesota to three field goal situations, thanks to some timely sacks on third down.

On paper this win likes really good for the defense. Dalvin Cook had a good day, but didn’t run wild with 102 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries, and being held to eight yards receiving on two catches. The Vikings’ terrific tandem of Pro Bowler Justin Thielen and rookie sensation Justin Jefferson were each held to 39 yards receiving on the day, and the Bucs defense held the Vikings to just 14 points. That’s the third-lowest points allowed this season by a defense that allowed 28.75 points per game over the last four games prior to Sunday.

Bucs CB Carlton Davis III

Bucs CB Carlton Davis III – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Tampa Bay’s defense played well on third down, holding Minnesota to just 5-of-15 conversions on third down. Of the Bucs’ six sacks, three of them came on third down and another came on fourth down when it mattered the most. Rookie safety Antoine Winfield had a career-high 12 tackles, a sack and a forced fumble, and outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett had two sacks of his own.

Yet despite these defensive superlatives, Todd Bowles’ unit continues to mystify me and perhaps you, too. As much as I want to like second-year linebacker Devin White he continues to be a liability in coverage and gave up a touchdown catch to tight end Irv Smith. In fact, Smith had 63 yards and a score on four catches, while other tight end Tre Conklin, had five catches for 40 yards.

White didn’t give up all those catches and yards – fellow linebacker Lavonte David allowed some of that production, too. While White and David each had nine tackles, many of them were reactionary down the field and not near the line of scrimmage. Neither inside linebacker had a tackle for loss against Minnesota, and neither made any splash plays over the last month.

The Vikings amassed 162 yards on the ground and could have had more if they decided to stick with their running game without abandoning it after falling behind by 17 points. The Bucs came into the game as the league’s top run defense, allowing just 74.2 yards per game. By the time the Vikings took a 6-0 lead at the start of the second quarter, Minnesota had gained 76 yards on the ground. The Vikings had a nearly 2:1 time of possession advantage on Sunday, controlling the clock 39:03 to 20:57.

Minnesota took a page out of the Giants’ playbook and used an extra tight end – sometimes an extra offensive tackle as a tight end – and overpowered a Bucs front that is suddenly undersized without nose tackle Vita Vea. The Saints did the same thing with a power running game in a 38-3 victory over the Bucs, rushing for 138 yards. Bowles and his defense will continue to see more opponents probe the Bucs’ run defense, which – to be fair – improved as the game went on as the tackling got better.

Bucs DT Ndamukong Suh

Bucs DT Ndamukong Suh – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bowles and his front seven have to be prepared for that because they won’t have an opposing kicker be so giving every week – even as Christmas draws near.

“It is frustrating when they’re running the ball like that against our defense,” Arians said. “We’re just not used to that. It wasn’t anything scheme-wise – we were just missing tackles against a really good back. I think we cleaned that up and got better and better as we went along.”

The other concerning element is that the Bucs’ pass rush has trouble generating pressure without a lead. With a double-digit lead and opponents forced to throw the ball, it’s a different story. Going forward Tampa Bay’s defense will continue to rely on its offense to play well and get a lead for the defense to be the most effective it can be.

STATEMENT 2. Bucs Offense Needs More Miller Down The Stretch

Scotty Miller is not better than Antonio Brown. That goes without saying. Miller is in is second year in the league, while Brown has been to seven Pro Bowls and led the league in receiving twice.

But there is no question that this year – in Tampa Bay – Miller has been the more productive receiver. In fact, Miller was the team’s leading receiver with 400 yards heading into the Bucs vs. Saints game on Sunday Night Football, which is when Brown made his Tampa Bay debut. Since then, Miller’s playing time has taken a substantial drop due to Brown’s insertion in the offense.

Bucs WR Scotty Miller – Photo by: Getty Images

Bucs WR Scotty Miller – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Over the first four games heading into Sunday’s game against Minnesota, Brown had 20 catches for 168 yards and no touchdowns, while Miller had only one catch for 14 yards during that span. The Bucs went 1-3 in that stretch, and the offense averaged 24.2 points per game. The team had averaged 30.9 points per game prior Brown’s arrival.

It’s not that Brown has been the reason why the Bucs have lost, but trying to force-feed him the ball at Miller’s expense has contributed to some of Tampa Bay’s offensive misfires. Miller averaged 15.3 yards per catch prior to Sunday, which was nearly double what Brown averages. The 32-year old Brown hasn’t been bad in his first month in Tampa Bay, but he hasn’t made many impact plays, either. 

Miller, when on the field, has typically been quite good, and that was evident on Sunday when he ran a deep post pattern and caught a perfectly thrown 48-yard touchdown bomb from Tom Brady to give Tampa Bay a 7-6 lead against Minnesota in the second quarter. It’s that type of explosive play that the Bucs offense has missed with Miller out of the line up – in addition to his touchdowns. Miller now has a career-high three scores on the year.

Brown played well on Sunday, but Miller’s touchdown ignited Tampa Bay’s offense in a second quarter that saw the team score 17 unanswered points.

“That was a huge touchdown,” Arians said. “I think getting a stop [and] then that play changed all of the momentum on our sideline.”

Brown likely had his best game as a Buccaneer, catching all five of his targets for 49 yards and converting a few third downs, so the two receivers can coexist in this offense. The Bucs just need to target Miller more often because of his big-play ability and because he has an uncanny rapport with Brady.

2 PROBING QUESTIONS

QUESTION 1: Did The Bucs Beat The Vikings – Or Did Bailey?

Bailey missed two field goals and an extra point in last week’s overtime win over Jacksonville, and continued to stink this week in Tampa Bay. Bailey missed the Vikings’ first extra point, as well as his next three field attempts. It got so bad that head coach Mike Zimmer lost faith in his kicker and decided to go for it on fourth-and-6 from the Tampa Bay 26 with just over two minutes left in the third quarter, trailing 23-6. A field goal would have cut the Bucs’ lead to 14 points.

Vikings K Dan Bailey

Vikings K Dan Bailey – Photo by: USA Today

Zimmer’s decision to go for it paid off as the Vikings scored a touchdown on the drive, and he went for a two-point conversion instead to make the score 23-14. But Bailey’s struggles continued as he missed a 48-yard field goal wide right in the fourth quarter.

Bailey’s three missed field goals and an extra point cost Minnesota 10 points and should have put the Vikings up 24-23 in the fourth quarter instead of trailing 23-14. Bucs kicker Ryan Succop wasn’t perfect, missing one extra point on Sunday, but he did make both of his field goals and was 2-of-3 on PATs, and that was the difference in the game.

Did the Bucs beat the Vikings on Sunday, or did Bailey’s missed 10 points really do Minnesota in? If Tampa Bay had played a better team – or a team with a better kicker – would the outcome have been the same? I’m not so sure, as this was far from a dominant performance by the Bucs.

QUESTION 2: What Does This Victory Mean For The Bucs?

Tampa Bay’s victory over Minnesota means a lot of things. First, it snapped a three-game home losing streak, in addition to a two-game losing streak dating back prior to the bye week.

The Bucs’ win also gets the team to eight victories, which was one more than Tampa Bay had last year when it finished 7-9. That shows that this team has improved from a year ago and has a very good chance to finish 2020 with a winning record.

Bucs HC Bruce Arians

Bucs HC Bruce Arians – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

More importantly, Tampa Bay inched closer to a long-awaited playoff berth, and now has the head-to-head tiebreaker over Minnesota, which falls to 6-7 on the year. Due to the Seahawks’ win over the Jets, the Bucs held on to the No. 6 playoff seed with Sunday’s victory, which currently knocked the Vikings out of the No. 7 seed.

“We got the tiebreaker on these guys,” Arians said. “This is a good football team – they’re going to win some games down the stretch. We’re [taking it] one day at a time – that’s what I just told the guys. It was a great win because it started on Tuesday. We had great practices this Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday [and] Saturday. This week is different [because] we can’t meet Mondays and Tuesdays. We have another different way that we have to handle getting ready to play a ballgame. Whether it’s virtual [or] however we get it done – we’ll get it done and just make sure that we take care of tomorrow’s business tomorrow.”

While certain parts of the Bucs’ win showed promised, such as no sacks or turnovers from Tampa Bay’s offense, and six sacks from the defense, what I liked most about it was the aggressive mentality from Arians right before halftime. Arians wanted to get more points on the board and not just settle for a 14-6 lead, knowing that the Bucs would get the ball to start the second half.

Arians called a timeout during the Vikings’ last possession before halftime and the Bucs got the ball back with one timeout and less than a minute left. After receptions by Cameron Brate and Antonio Brown, Brady heaved the ball deep for tight end Rob Gronkowski with one second left, which drew a pass interference call in the end zone as time expired. With one untimed down due to the defensive penalty, the Bucs got the ball at the 1-yard line and opted to kick a 19-yard field goal. After leading 17-6 at halftime, the Bucs scored a touchdown on their opening drive of the second half to go up 23-6 and essentially put the game away in the third quarter.

Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski

Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

“When they ran the ball, I didn’t think there was enough time [to score on offense]. I thought there was either enough time for a punt block or try to get a [punt] return. We just missed the return. Tom [Brady] did a great job of executing and getting us up there for the Hail Mary. That’s all we were trying to get. We were trying to either get to the 36[-yard line] for a field goal or get a shot to the Hail Mary. We got the [penalty] call and got the three points and came right back with a touchdown [to open the second half]. Any time you get that double score, it’s huge.”

Arians had no second thoughts about going for a touchdown from the Minnesota 1-yard line right before halfime.

“None,” Arians said. “To get a chance at points – we were not going to take any chance of not coming out with any points. It was risk to do what we did and it paid off for three [points] because we had the ball coming out for the second half, got the touchdown and it’s a 10-point swing.”

2 BOLD PREDICTIONS

PREDICTION 1: Pierre-Paul and Barrett Both Finish With Double-Digit Sacks

Over the last two games, outside linebackers Jason Pierre-Paul and Shaquil Barrett have combined for five sacks and two forced fumbles. On Sunday against the Vikings, the dynamic duo had half of the Bucs’ six sacks with Barrett recording two sacks and Pierre-Paul with one, plus a forced fumble.

Pierre-Paul now has 9.5 sacks on the year with three games left, and Barrett, who started the season slow, now has eight and is closing fast. Barrett led the Bucs with 19.5 sacks last year, and is just two away from reaching double digits again this year. Pierre-Paul has three seasons with double-digit sacks in his 10 previous seasons in the league and is on his way to a fourth.

Bucs OLB Jason Pierre-Paul

Bucs OLB Jason Pierre-Paul – Photo by: USA Today

In the last five games of the 2019 season, Barrett and Pierre-Paul combined for 12 sacks and two forced fumbles. They’re on a similar-type production pace this season with three games left, and Barrett and Pierre-Paul heating up in December is good news for Tampa Bay.

“Yeah, we have to – it’s not an option, we have to,” Barrett said. “I mean not ‘we.’ I started slow and I just have to pick it up. I want to do my job as much as possible and be known as one of the best, so in order to do that you have to have the stats, you have to have the numbers to go with it. Having JPP on the other end just helps out a lot. We always talk and are always switching sides now and are trying to figure out what works best for us. It’s working right now, and we’ve just got to stay hot, keep it hot and keep going.”

PREDICTION 2: RoJo Tops 1,000 Yards Rushing

Okay, this one looks like a gimme. The last Tampa Bay running back to top 1,000 yards was Doug Martin, who rushed for 1,402 yards and six touchdowns in a Pro Bowl season in 2015. Jones finished Sunday’s game against Minnesota with 80 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries.

Bucs RB Ronald Jones II

Bucs RB Ronald Jones II – Photo by: CliffWelch/PR

With 900 yards and six touchdowns on 180 carries, Jones needs to get 100 yards rushing over the next three games, which certainly seems doable if he can stay healthy. In fact, I’m going to predict that Jones finishes 2020 with over 1,100 yards rushing, while maintaining his 5.0 yards-per-carry average.

The last 1,000-yard running back in Tampa Bay to average 5.0 yards per carry was LeGarrette Blount in 2010 when he rushed for 1,007 yards and six touchdowns. Jones could very well be the second.

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About the Author: Scott Reynolds

Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: sr@pewterreport.com
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WeAretheChamps2002+2021
9 months ago

Bucs came out flat after a bye week which speaks to the poor coaching we all know exists. Bucs were lucky to win this one in the end, thanks to Dan Bailey’s meltdown.
This team looks really soft on defense. Corners still aren’t physical with receivers off the line of scrimmage and Davis is paranoid of being beaten deep. Tampa’s coaches could learn a lot form Miami, a team with far less talent on both side of the ball, yet they have the same record at the Bucs.

Dave
Reply to  WeAretheChamps2002+2021
9 months ago

Bucs were lucky to win this one? Guess you saw a different game than I did. The dude missed 3 FG’s sure. But one was a 54 yarder. Another was 46. Not saying they couldn’t be made, but those are not automatics. Especially in Ray Jay. Plus, they got a 2 pt conversion, which negates the missed extra pt. The Vikings had only 2 goal to go trips(4 total plays out of 76), and were 1 for 2 for 7 points scored. I’ll give you 2 of the 3 FG’s. That puts the Vikings at 20 points. Give the Bucs… Read more »

drdneast
9 months ago

I haven’t seen a perfect win yet from any team. Never heard anyone say we “really won” after Arroyo, Folk and Gay missed all of their field goals over the last few years. Now all if you mutts who used to dog Vita Vea for not being more impactful was doing in this defense. It looked like the Bucs caught the Vikings flat footed by running McCoy so much. Credit Lefto {I really hate saying that} for coming up with that one shrewd move. Other than that Lefto was up to his typical play calling except we didn’t seem to… Read more »

PatrioticChief
Reply to  drdneast
9 months ago

BL gets exactly zero credit for McCoy. BA, despite being quick to claim credit, also gets minimal credit. LeSean flat out said that Brady had been asking BA to put him into games more and BA finally did this week. If McCoy is to be believed, the only person who gets credit should be Brady and McCoy himself for producing in pass protection and being efficient with his few runs.

RW
RW
Reply to  PatrioticChief
9 months ago

Because we have video of McCoy giving Brady the credit for getting him into the game we can only assume that Brady knows more about what this offense needs than Lefty or BA.

Eddie
Reply to  PatrioticChief
9 months ago

During the press conference, the head coach distinctly said it was “I” that decide to put McCoy in. So no credit for BL or anybody else for that matter

RW
RW
Reply to  Eddie
9 months ago

Watch McCoy ‘s media session on youtube and listen who he gives the credit to for playing. His QB

BigSombrero
Reply to  drdneast
9 months ago

Bucs are hovering at 50/50 pass/run on first down for the season.

RW
RW
Reply to  BigSombrero
9 months ago

It was 14 to 4 run/pass yesterday on first and tens ( not counting the spike and kneel-downs )

RW
RW
9 months ago

I like Scotty Miller as a home run threat as he has great speed. But he cannot catch the ball in traffic like Brown. If it’s 3rd down and long and pressure is coming I trust Brown to get open and make the catch.

PatrioticChief
Reply to  RW
9 months ago

I agree. I think Miller deserves a world of credit for building a good deep connection that the other receivers simply haven’t built. Brady’s best throws have been to Scotty and that speaks to their connection. But AB is more versatile. Not saying Miller is purely deep threat but AB has made some hella catches, just hasn’t landed those explosive plays yet. I’m still hoping things round into shape over the next four weeks between Brady and his weapons. Reps, reps, reps, reps…

Eddie
Reply to  RW
9 months ago

Yes indeed. A quick check on the 40s time of all the receivers and running backs, Miller is the only one with a sub 4.4 time. So fastest by a long short. Explain why he is open often on deep route. His also have good short shuttle time.

Bucco-Bruce
9 months ago

It wasn’t the best looking win but both the offense and defense still needs work and we are 3 games till the end of the season!!! This is not how a playoff contender should be playing. We should be hitting on all cylinders both on offense and defense. Let’s hope we continue to get better

Dave
Reply to  Bucco-Bruce
9 months ago

Oh ok. So there’s a single team In the entire NFL, let alone the NFC, that’s “firing on all cylinders”? Last time I checked, the Bucs are flawed, as is EVERY single team In the NFL. Let’s go down the list of all playoff teams shall we. List goes in order from the best perceived teams to the worst. Chiefs) -they have zero running game. A bad run defense. A beatable secondary. And every single game they play comes down to the wire. And they play down to their competition Saints) – every single non Bucs game is a close… Read more »

Last edited 9 months ago by Dave
Naplesfan
Reply to  Dave
9 months ago

We are pretty sure that the Steelers, Chiefs, and Saints are a whole lot LESS flawed than are the Bucs.
It’s all in the Ws and Ls.

RW
RW
Reply to  Naplesfan
9 months ago
  • Did you watch the Steelers last night? With their injuries on defense, the lack of a running game and their inability to throw longer passes they are now just a good team and will get knocked out early in the playoffs.
  • The Saints were exposed by a rookie QB playing his 1st game.

The Bucs are below the Chiefs but every other team is beatable.

BigSombrero
Reply to  RW
9 months ago

I agree. The Steelers are now overrated. No running game and their defense has lost its best 3 linebackers.
Chiefs, Titans, Colts, Bills, Dolphins, Browns, and Ravens can all beat the Steelers at this point.

Naplesfan
Reply to  BigSombrero
9 months ago

So overrated – they just win games. Such a minor consideration.
SMH
Dude – this is the NFL .. the only stat that matters is W-L. Nothing else matters in the slightest. This isn’t college ball that is based upon style points.

Naplesfan
Reply to  RW
9 months ago

If a team wins nearly all of its games by a narrow margin, what that tells us is that team knows how to win, and has the ability to win .. you know, that W-L thing. Any team that wins nearly all its games is by definition less flawed than a team that just lost three of its last five games heading into the end of the season. Can the Bucs beat good teams? Well, we’ve only beaten one good team – the Packers. All the others we lost. This is not a prediction for future performance, based upon talent… Read more »

Dave
Reply to  Naplesfan
9 months ago

The Chiefs have played 7 games decided by a TD or less. And have had only 2 blowout wins(17 or more). And they were against the Jets and Broncos. We’ve only played in 5 games decided by a TD or less. With only 2 of our 8 wins coming by a TD or less( LAC, NYG). And we have 4 blowout wins. We’ve played 6 games against playoff teams, the Chiefs have played 5. So the fact that they’re involved in that many close games means they are flawed as well. They just have Mahomes to mask those flaws. The… Read more »

Last edited 9 months ago by Dave
Naplesfan
Reply to  Dave
9 months ago

And the Chiefs win those games
In the NFL, that is the ONLY thing that matters – winning. Nobody gives out championships based upon stats or style points. This isn’t college ball.
W-L is ALL that matters. Period. Matters no if the win was by one point as time expires, or by 50 points. It still counts as just one W.

buddah
Reply to  Dave
9 months ago

Good post.

liquidmuse3
9 months ago

Guys, you gotta fix the website. The whole entire pic off the front page should be clickable, because that’s kinda how the Internet has worked for 20 years. Only getting to the article through a tiny button in the left hand corner is just not smart.

gcolerick
Reply to  liquidmuse3
9 months ago

I agree….the whole damn look and feel of the website is not good. Liked it much better before this new look. Thing I hate the most is you used to be able to hit the scroll up wheel and the toolbar at the top of the page would be available for navigation purposes and that functionality does not exist now. Change for change’s sake sucks! Person responsible for this should be kicked to the curb with Bailey.

liquidmuse3
9 months ago

It’s not a mystery, Scott.
1) Vita’s out
2) Devin’s just learning linebacker
3) Lavonte’s slowing down a bit

Dman
Reply to  liquidmuse3
9 months ago

Pretty much sums it up.

cptsora
9 months ago

Look I’m all for bashing but we won. And the defense came in clutch when we needed them too. And they only allowed 14 points from the 6th ranked offense in the NFL. A season low.

scubog
Reply to  cptsora
9 months ago

Nice that someone noticed that the opponent only mustered 14 points. I don’t think the Giants or the Falcons put an asterisk on their victories last season when Gay missed those game-winners.

PatrioticChief
Reply to  scubog
9 months ago

I think we got lucky on the FG. Score should have been closer. That being said they they consistently kept a very good offense out of the end zone. I agree they deserve credit for that.

destinjohnny
9 months ago

Jason missed on basically missed on most of his defensive backfield picks.
Carlton is solid and Winfield is a keeper, but 2 of 9 is awful.
The talent is not there

Naplesfan
9 months ago

It is true that the defense is a little difficult to describe. However, overall they played pretty well against a very good run-first time of possession offense. And on the other side of the ball, our offense has not been very good at playing possession football all season. As always, complementary football largely determines the outcome. Our defense played well, but it would have played better (such as in creating turnovers) if the offense did not have yet another of its trademarked slow starts. That always puts the pressure immediately on the defense to keep the games from getting out… Read more »

fredster
9 months ago

This defense really worries me. It’s mainly the secondary and lot is Bowls stupid soft zone. They start horrible every week then get better in second half. They will likely be the reason we don’t advance in playoffs. Offense is starting to get better. Play calling was little better although the first time we had 3rd and 3 I think it was, we throw 30 yards to Gronk. Lol. Yes he was open but it’s still low percent play. I wish they would allow Brady to get into rhythm and also more play action passing. A win is a win… Read more »

Last edited 9 months ago by fredster
Horse
9 months ago

Scott, agree with you on this Article and I would like to add one more thought? Good teams have to have some luck to get to the Playoffs. I think we can check that one off. This coming draft in Rounds 1,2,3 hopefully will be foe another big DT,LB, OL.

SenileSenior
9 months ago

I think we saw good adjustments in the offensive game approach as a result of the Bye week. This should be menaingful as we end the season and embark on a pyayoff run.
We really miss Vita Vea. His absence will be significant enough to make the quest for the Lombardi an even greater challenge to say the least.
________________
Go Bucs!!!!

twspin
9 months ago

Enjoyed reading this Scott. But I just think our defense is on the field a lot. They play in spurts. But to their credit, Always find a way to come through. It’s our secondary that is the problem. I counted 7 errant Brady passes which were sure big-time gainers. And we got lucky yesterday. That Gronk call in the endzone has maybe been called 2 times in 20 years? And we all sympathize with the Vikes Kicker. He will probably be fired this week. Remember our 2nd kicking wonder Roberto A? Our biggest problem is we seem to come out… Read more »

Dave
Reply to  twspin
9 months ago

You counted 7 errant Brady throws that would have led to big gains? Well you counted wrong. Now cut that number in half, and you have your real number. He had 8 total incompletions. And by my count, 4 of them were short passes, that at absolute most would have been 10-15 gains.

Last edited 9 months ago by Dave
lambeau
9 months ago

I agree with Fredster. Stupid soft zone.

The Wall
9 months ago

Good call- the defense is a mystery, except to all the opposition offensive coordinators in the first half. We knew what was coming on Sunday but we didn’t do enough to stop it. Despite their offense running all over us, we were extremely lucky to have the lead. Then the Vikings we forced to throw. Once that happened, we turned on the pass rush (and the blitzes). Everybody seems to have our number in the first half. Why you and the other writers can see this and Bowles can’t is the mystery.

BigSombrero
9 months ago

A disappointing win? It sure seemed that way.
I expected the Bucs defense to shut down the run, make the Vikes one dimensional, then tee off on Cousins.
I expected the offense to come out sharp and shake the 1st quarter blues vs a team that has been very generous to opponents in the first half. Nope.
Three and out on offense due to poor throws continues to hamper the teams 1st quarter production while putting the defense back on the field.
Thank goodness the Bucs play losers down the stretch.

Dave
Reply to  BigSombrero
9 months ago

Poor throws causing 3 and outs continue to hamper the first quarter offense? Guess we watched different games. Brady had 1 incompletion in the first quarter on 2 passes and 1 offensive drive. And the Vikings ran 22 offensive plays to our 5. Brady throwing poor passes was not hampering our first quarter offense. Our defense not getting off the field at all is what hurt the first quarter offense

Dave
Reply to  Dave
9 months ago

Nothing to down vote. That’s not an opinion, it’s a fact. Can’t blame Brady for the poor start. He doesn’t play defense. They had the ball once, and ran on 3 of the 5 plays lol. Out of the blame pie, the defense was 90% responsible for the poor 1st quarter. Brady might be at 1 or 2%. Anyone that says otherwise was watching a different game between different teams

Naplesfan
Reply to  BigSombrero
9 months ago

There is no such thing as a disappointing win in the NFL. This isn’t college ball – nobody gets style points. There are only 16 regular season games, and all that matters is Ws and Ls.

76Buc
9 months ago

I agree that the defense is puzzling. Maybe Vea is greater than we thought. The only issue for the offense is the play calling. Every DC in the NFL knows that on almost every first down Rojo runs through the A gap. How he still gets a couple of yards is a credit to him (and the OL).

Mb Nfl Lock Of The Szn Pewter 728x90 Jpg