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. The Buccaneers lost their third division game of the season in Atlanta, 34-20. This brings up some controversial decisions that may need to be made very soon.

Bucs beat writer Trevor Sikkema shares his thoughts.

TWO BIG STATEMENTS

STATEMENT 1: Dirk Koetter and Mike Smith will not be coaching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers next season
It’s over – it has to be.

There are a lot of excuses to be had for the season. For one, PewterReport.com has learned that quarterback Jameis Winston has been hurt for a while, even before the Arizona game, and that the team continued to play him until he was really hurt in Arizona. That along with a string of other injuries such as Lavonte David, Kwon Alexander, Noah Spence, Josh Robinson, Vernon Hargreaves, Will Gholston and Robert Ayers all make for a big ol’ plate of “not my fault.”

But, you know what? I don’t buy it.

Players being hurt don’t make bad play calls. Players being hurt doesn’t make a defense so soft that teams with actual talent are running you out of the building. Players being hurt aren’t calling stunts and delayed blitzes. Players being hurt aren’t being so predictable on offense that fans in the stands could shout out the plays just from who is on the field. Players being hurt doesn’t call zero targets to tight ends in the first half. Players alone don’t give up over 500 yards of offense, 253 of them going to just one guy. That’s collective.

That’s coaching; that’s Koetter; that’s Smith.

Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Let’s admit it: we all got lost in the hype from last season. Even if you were more cautious than others, no one predicted this. We were all fooled by the five-game win streak last year. We were fooled to believe that just bringing in talent meant an automatic upgrade from the previous record. We all thought it would be easier.

It’s not. Nothing is in this game. It’s all earned, and it starts in July (more of something Koetter didn’t do with one of the softest training camp programs we’ve seen). The players weren’t ready for the year once the good teams came calling, and now that they’ve warmed up and can at least hold their own, when healthy, it’s too late.

No one wants a constant carousel of coaches. Koetter is in his second year, but leaders are judged as much on how they handle adversity as they are getting to mountain tops. Here we are in a nightmare season and all Koetter can say is that they have to continue to stay the course and keep working on the very scheme, schedule and philosophy that got them in this mess in the first place.

That tells me he just doesn’t get it.

Maybe Koetter and Smith will be scapegoats more than the actual source of all this. Who knows? But, the reality is that you can’t go into next year with this staff. You just can’t. They’ve done some good things, but this is the NFL, and what they’ve done with what they’ve been given hasn’t been enough.

STATEMENT 2: This team is shooting too low
From the beginning of training camp, heck, even during the early offseason, the key word with this team was “playoffs.”

After each practice week, each preseason game, each loss and each win, players, coaches and anyone else around the organization kept using the word “playoffs” as the goal for this season. We as the media were guilty of it, too, making it easy on ourselves to write the fact that the Buccaneers haven’t made the playoffs since 2007. But, that goal has bothered me.

Why was reaching the playoffs the goal? The goal is the Super Bowl. The goal is a world championship. Speak it; believe it; will it.

Now, I know your first response to that is, “Trevor, if they make the playoffs they have a chance to win the Super Bowl, that’s the whole point.”

To that, I have a story.

I stayed late at One Buc Place after one of the Buccaneers training camp days back in August to work on an article. As I was writing, a familiar Bucs face walked into the media room. It was former Buccaneer wide receiver Michael Clayton. I said hello to Clayton and introduced myself, meeting him for the first time. He was there for part of his news show and I was asking him about that. Then we got into just casually talking about the team and how they looked, how we thought the season was going to go.

At one point, Clayton sort of stopped and leaned his head back. I knew he was about to say something good. He then asked me, “What do you think about this team and its goal?” I responded with something like, “Well, the players and coaches all want the playoffs.” And he responded, “That’s just it. That’s what I don’t like.”

I was a bit confused, but I was intrigued.

Clayton went on to talk about his time with the New York Giants, the team he won his only Super Bowl ring with. In that 2011 season, the Giants finished with a 9-7 record, in fact, they even lost four games in a row in the month of November. But Clayton told me that no matter what their record was, no matter what their result was each week, they all had the same goal – it was a Super Bowl. Clayton said they all talked about it as if it was real, not just some shallow media quote about the goal being a title. No, he said that him and his teammates said it and they meant it.

In the end, they were right.

The Buccaneers need to take notes. The playoffs are not the goal. The playoffs are a path for the goal. The goal isn’t to get to the dance. The goal is to ask the best looking person out onto that dance floor and steal the show.

The goal is not the playoffs. It’s the Super Bowl. Believe it; speak it; will it to be.

TWO PROBING QUESTIONS

QUESTION 1: How quick could a new coach turn this around?
Ah, yes, good question, Trev, good question.

In a bit of a cop out answer, it all depend on who the guy is.

Let’s take Jon Gruden, for example. We don’t know how Gruden will be as a play caller or what he will be like on the field. He hasn’t coached in 10 years, so anyone trying to correlate what he was like with what he might be like now, in that aspect, is just talking to the wind. What you should rather focus on is who this person might be as a leader.

Former Bucs head coach Jon Gruden Bucs

Former Bucs head coach Jon Gruden – Photo by: Mark Lomoglio/PR

Gruden was brought back to One Buc Place this summer for a press conference held on behalf of him getting into the team’s Ring of Honor later this year. During that time, Gruden spoke to the media both at the podium and off of it, but we were also told that Gruden did have a brief word with the Buccaneers players, too, which was right around the time of Hard Knocks. From those around, Gruden’s message was a simple one: win now – they’re good enough to do so. But, even though the message ultimately didn’t come to fruition, those who were there said that every eye and ear in the room was glued to him. Each person was hanging on every word.

That’s the kind of guy the Buccaneers need. They need someone who the players respect. I don’t think they trust their current coaching staff anymore – they certainly aren’t playing like it. A guy like Gruden can not only be a leader in his experience and expertise, but in his command of a room.

Whether it’s Gruden or someone else, this Buccaneers locker room is going to need a guy they can look up to. Right now they’re lost. They know they’re good, but even though they speak of playing together, they’re not like a championship team needs to play.

They need a leader.

QUESTION 2: Will Todd Monken finally get play-calling duties?
It’s 4th-and-1. Down just seven. The ball on Atlanta’s 18-yard line. Just one yard.

A pass 15 yards down the field?

Incomplete. Shocker.

“I told the players I should’ve given them a better play,” Koetter said. “That’s on me.”

It wasn’t the first boneheaded play Koetter has called this season, and it likely won’t be the last – or will it be?

It should and that’s because offensive coordinator Todd Monken should take over the play-calling duties. Monken led Top 3 offenses in all of college football in back-to-back season at Oklahoma State. He knows what it’s like to light up a scoreboard, and where he hasn’t had much experience in the NFL with his hand in the calls, I think it’s time we see what he can do.

Koetter referenced at the end of last season that he did think about relinquishing play calling duties, but ultimately did not. Here we are with the Bucs to 4-7, will Koetter think of doing it again?

He should, for the better of the team. He clearly has a lot on his plate as the head coach and play-caller. Giving up some of that might let him think with a clearer mind. But, unfortunately giving up such duties now would only worsen his case to be retained with the season at what it is right now – unless if the Bucs win out.

Koetter should give up play-calling, but will he?

TWO BOLD PREDICTIONS

PREDICTION 1: Ryan Griffin will play more games the rest of this year than Jameis Winston
Right now the Buccaneers sit at 4-7. It was reported that Jameis Winston’s shoulder is “rapidly improving.” However, I think that was all talk in hopes that the Bucs were going to win the game in Atlanta on Sunday.

Winston wants to come back to play, you know he does, but should he? I say no.

At 4-7, the season is over. They would truly have to run the table to stand a chance, and they’d also need some help from other teams, too.  Knowing that, and knowing that if Winston plays they would only be tarnishing their draft spot, why risk his health anymore?

Bucs QB Ryan Griffin – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

With the loss to Atlanta on Sunday, I think that there’s a better chance we see Griffin start more games than Winston form here on out. Ryan Fitzpatrick is just on a one-year deal. He isn’t coming back next year. The team would be wise to see what they really have in Griffin, who hasn’t had any real-game action at all yet in his career.

I think it’s a win all around. For one, you keep Winston healthy. You also don’t let him play quarterback as his current investigation is going on. Griffin also gets some quality starts and you’ll likely still get a Top 10 draft pick as consolation for a season of promise gone awry.

PREDICTION 2: This offseason is going to be a slow burn
Speaking of investigations, the nightmare season for Bucs fans might be just getting started. This Winston investigation isn’t going anywhere. In fact, it’s likely to linger into the offseason and perhaps even into the 2018 season.

Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott – Photo by: Getty Images

Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott – Photo by: Getty Images

Think about it. The NFL gave Ezekiel Elliott a six-game suspension and he wasn’t even charged with a crime. The NFL also gave Tom Brady, its golden boy, a four-game suspension for just tampering with evidence. Ben Roethlisberger even got a six-game suspension back in 2010, and that wasn’t anywhere near what the political climate for tolerance is now. You really think there’s any chance the NFL lets Winston off the hook here without a suspension, especially know he has a history of another accustion?

Nope.

Unless there is some kind of concrete, indisputable evidence that saves Winston from this situation, no mater how it plays out legally, Winston is looking at a suspension, and the slow burn in all this is that it’s not going to come this season. If Winston is going to get suspended it will likely start at the beginning of 2018.

And adding insult to injury, if the Buccaneers were to move on from Koetter and begin a coaching search, having a young franchise quarterback in place would be their most attractive sell to a big name coach that would bring that leadership they need. They might not have such solid selling point anymore.

It might be a bumpy six or eight month for Bucs fans coming up.

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]
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cgmaster27
cgmaster27
4 years ago

Yikes, not one for fire and brimstone talk, but this is all a reality. Coach K and Smith shouldn’t be back next year. This is just unacceptable. If Jameis was hurt pre Arizona game and he was that bad off, then that’s just bad management. As for how quick a new coach could turn it around. Look at the Rams, the Eagles, and the Bills. They are all very competitive with first year guys. Just need a guy that pushes the right button and doesn’t throw the ball 15 yards down the field on 4th and 1. On top of… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  cgmaster27
4 years ago

Sorry, I know the Eagles coach Peters is a second year guy, but a quick turnaround is a viable option these days.

Horse
Horse
4 years ago

I don’t agree about bringing Gruden back; he says the same sales pitch over and over. I believe the team would give up on him if they loss a couple games right off the bat. Gruden is too arrogant to listen to others; that’s a big problem I see. As to Winston; how can NFL suspend him for this accusation when someone has already come forward and said he was there and it didn’t happen that way? I don’t believe the NFL Commisioner would go that far to suspend Winston because the NFL could loose this case and cost them… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Horse
4 years ago

Darby is NOT a credible witness in this situation.

Gruden may or may not be the best head coaching candidate available, but you are among the Gruden haters who simply dismiss him out of hand while repeating the same old, same old discredited debunked complaints about him that simply were never true.

Horse
Horse
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

Sorry Naplesfan, but I guess you haven’t been in court too much for civil suits defending your business via a multitude of lawyers, or on many criminal jury’s. An eye witness means a lot and I don’t see a judge ignoring it; commishner can’t either. Is his witness a criminal? I would hope my friends would come forward if someone accused me wrongly and they were present. What Winston hasn’t learned yet is he is a well known sports figure and needs to pay attention when he is out in public.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Horse
4 years ago

Very close personal friends in general are not credible witnesses, for the obvious reason that close personal friends will tend to cover for each other. Doesn’t take a genius to figure that out on a jury panel. Darby is especially questionable since, since just as with the Kinsman rape case, he waited until long after the event and then gave testimony, unsworn, that is obviously helpful to the alleged assailant, Winston. He was a participant with Winston in the event that caused Winston a great deal of legal jeapardy, and now claims to be a participant in this same event.… Read more »

Horse
Horse
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

No need to discuss this anymore as you won’t change your position. So now this is a rape case? Good luck with those thoughts.

Garv
Garv
4 years ago

Good article but a very bad and sad outlook for a team we all felt so good about just a few short months ago. This is a bad team with a few good players. And while I’d like to see some continuity, especially for Jameis, being continually bad is NOT an option. As for Jameis, I’m feeling more and more negative about this. IF there were three people in the damn Uber car, WHY hasn’t the third person supposedly in the front seat come forward? This could be wrapped up quickly if that person were identified, couldn’t it? Few if… Read more »

Bucnut2
Bucnut2
Reply to  Garv
4 years ago

AGREE Garv!

Jlog
Jlog
4 years ago

Even without the off the field drama Winston is not an attractive sell any more than Jay Cutler was 5 years ago. Winston will keep the best coaches away, no coach wants a inconsistent turnover machine as their QB. Winston has lot of promising traits but it doesn’t translate even to being average on the field just like Cutler.

I know I will get plenty of down votes for this but as Bucs fans you guys need to take the blinders off with regards Winston, even his old man is more honest about him.

Bucnut2
Bucnut2
Reply to  Jlog
4 years ago

Jlog-
I am with you. I think Winston is a determent to recruiting good coaches and will be out of NFL in a couple of years. The guy is a TO machine with off the field issues. Let’s sign Kirk Cousins.

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  Bucnut2
4 years ago

yes His 6 picks make him a to machine? Haha now your boy mariota, that’s a turnover machine. What’s he have 6 in his last two games? And stop with the cousins talk he’s not coming here.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  cgmaster27
4 years ago

Scoff at Mariota all you like but he’s got his team in first place in his division, and statistically he is no. 11 in total QBR vs. no., 26 for Winston, and he is not under investigation by the league for abusing women.

What’s past is past, there is no going back now. A lot of bad decisions got us here. Mariota is not an option going forward.

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

Naples I’ve reiterated I could care less about your qbr stat. He’s got 10 tds and 14 ints which sucks, spin it however you want . The titans are winning in spite of him, not because of him. They also play in the worst division in football.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

The stats are the stats – they don’t tell lies. No spin required. 7-4. And vitrually nobody on the Titans or in the Titan’s fan base or in the NFL media thinks that they are winning “in spite” of Mariota. Or that the Bucs are losing “in spite of” Winston. But you can always tell the people with poor arguments when they only argument they can come up with is the other guy sucks more than their guy, when the individual stats and the W-L column says otherwise. You don’t need to keep slandering Mariota to defend Winston. Winston is… Read more »

Jlog
Jlog
Reply to  cgmaster27
4 years ago

That is 6 picks and 8 fumbles 3 of which were recovered by the other team for Winston in the few games he played. As for Cousins he’s going wherever he gets the best deal and the Bucs certainly have the cap space to get him. Though it’s doubtful the Bucs would make that move considering all the problems with the O line and defense not mention that Winston is dirt cheap for one more year. Also you were the one that dragged Mariota into this. The reality is 2015 was a down year for QB’s in the draft, the… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Jlog
4 years ago

Winston won’t keep any coaches away. He will be in the last year of his rookie contract in 2018 – that is a very good opportunity for a new coach, especially if he is a “quarterback whisperer” coach (or if his OC is such) to fully evaluate Winston for a full off season, pre-season, and regular season, and figure out if he can be effective going forward, or not. And also this gives the coach an opportunity to bring in competition at the QB position. If Winston does not perform, the new coach can recommend the GM let him walk… Read more »

seat26
seat26
4 years ago

The Team had some bad luck with injuries, and Strategically, the Draft was not a good one. The Coaching was a little off, but when it became obvious that our Defense was not up to it I think Koetter did the best he could with what he had. Making a Head Coach Change in my mind is a bad idea unless we lose every game left. If we end up with 6 wins I think it would be smart to keep Koetter. The Truth is, Fans had unrealistic expectations of this Defense. We needed a DE and we didn’t get… Read more »

Mike
Mike
4 years ago

Shouldn’t Jason Licht’s name have come up in this article??

surferdudes
4 years ago

They are all gone after this season. As for Gruden, compare him to one of his mentors Dick Vermiel. He like Jon was an offensive wiz kid who went on to be a successful H.C.. He ultimately burned out, and went on to be of all things a college broadcaster for many years. He then got the itch to coach again, got the job with a sorry Rams team, turned them into the greatest Show on Turf, and won a superbowl in his sixties! So for those who think the game has passed Gruden by, and he couldn’t learn from… Read more »

seat26
seat26
Reply to  surferdudes
4 years ago

We cannot continue to do this every other year. If they are all gone after this year this Organization has no chance to ever be successful. I loved Gruden, but Koetter just had a bad season. With lots of Injuries. And a poorly thought out Draft.

A lesson never learned in NFL: There is no such thing as ‘best player available’. Tampa should have gone after DE and Corner and Running back. We did not need TE or Receiver.

Bucnut2
Bucnut2
4 years ago

I don’t think Koetter should be back but not sure that Gruden is the right answer. He has been a HORRIBLE talent evaluator. In addition, he will not have much patience for inaccurate QB’s with questionable decision making i.e. Winston. I think the Bucs should do what Jacksonville did when they hired Coughlin. The Bucs should hire Bill Polian and let him evaluate EVERYONE including Licht and the coaching staff. The Glazer’s need a football guy heading on the field operations. One more thing, I think we will hear more and more rumors coming out of 1 Buc which attempt… Read more »

RootsCrew
RootsCrew
Reply to  Bucnut2
4 years ago

You’re football opinions are so horrible. Polian? The dude is a dinosaur & the game has passed him by. You think Jacksonville’s success is because of old man Coughlin? Lol. It’s because their defense is elite & they drafted a running back. (should have drafted Deshaun though) Bucs need a modern football approach. Not some guy who’s 80. Now to your continued Winston hate. I’ll just say it, you hate him for other reasons not related to his play on the field. It’s obvious at this point. Winston has played abysmal? You’re an idiot. Plain and simple. Oh, and how… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  RootsCrew
4 years ago

Yeah bucnut is still upset mariota is awful this year. 10tds and 14 ints would’ve helped us a lot this year. Mariota sucks buc nut get over it!

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  cgmaster27
4 years ago

So awful that he ranks no. 11 in the league in Total QBR – the gold standard for quarterback statistical performance – and has led his team to the cusp of a division championship (currently in first place in the NFC South at 7-4). While the supposedly superior Winston ranks 26 in QBR (bottom 20% of the league’s players) and has led his team to a 4-7 record. And I seem to recall that one of the Winston fan club common knocks on Mariota is that he’s “injury prone”, yet he is playing and Winston will end up missing perhaps… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

You wearing your Titans shirt while typing this Naples? I have facts that back up he’s not playing well. You go to wins in a TEAM sport, so I’m not even going to go into which team has a better offensive line, running game, and defense. I’ve brought plenty of facts to the discussion including schedule and such, but you stand by your QBR. You don’t have to keep defending Mariota every time I mention him, and yet here you are. And of course Jameis doesn’t need me to back him up. But I will support my teams qb until… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

cg – Guess you can’t help but make personal attacks by suggesting I’m not a Bucs fan. It’s clear that you seem to think that only Winston fandom, practiced at the expense of the Bucs, seems to matter. here. You’re wrong. My reference to irrefutable facts about Mariota apparently got under your garnet and gold skin. I got over the Winston-Mariota debate three years ago, but you and the other Winston-first/Bucs second crowd just can’t get over it, apparently. If Winston is the quarterback who will help make the Bucs a winner again, then I am all for him. If… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

Personal attacks? Thin skinned much? No the only facts you have is a magical espn formula. Go to to nfl. COm and look at qbr. Mariota 79.1 Jameis 87.5, but I get it, you’re a always right. And if you’re done with the qb debate, why do you come running to his defense like and ex girlfriend every time I mention his name? I’m not insulting you here, and if you think that get thicker skin.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

Per ESPN Total QBR: Mariota – 58.5 (ranked no. 11 in NFL) Winston – 39.9 (ranked no. 26 in NFL). Maybe it was when you wrote, and I quote: “You wearing your Titans shirt while typing, Naples?” If you want to pretend that that’s not fully intended as a personal insult, go ahead. You’d be wrong, and anybody reading knows instantly. I’m not hammering on Winston. But I really don’t like to see guys like and including you who somehow feel a need to play the game of “Whatabout Mariota” every time a legitimate issue comes up with Winston. Mariota… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Bucnut2
4 years ago

It wasn’t Gruden’s job, ever, to be the “talent evaluator”. He was never the GM, and despite all the bullhonkey generated by the Gruden hating club, Gruden frequently disagreed with both of the GMs he worked under – not over – as the Bucs head coach.

The huge hurdles that Gruden had to surmount, and did surmount, was two full years of lost first and second day draft picks, plus horrible, absolutely horrible cap management by McKay that left the cupboard bare for years thereafter.

MWD
MWD
Reply to  Naplesfan
4 years ago

Great point Naples! Let the scouts do their job and let the coaches coach! Most of the homework can be done evaluating the talent coming into the draft by meshing it based on team needs or best player available at that position in need. The thought of bringing in Derrick Brooks as the GM and Gruden as the HC is not a bad idea in my opinion. I think Derrick would do a good job talking not just on a GM to player level but also on a player to player level. Sometimes I think the first impression made by… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
4 years ago

The coaching staff is done, stick a fork in’em. Winston – who knows how he’ll work out. If he gets a multi game suspension from the NFL, or appears likely to get one, that is just another good justification to look for competition at the QB position. Which we need, and which we do not have on the roster now. As for the rest of the roster, a new regime is going to give them all a hard look, and we may see quite a few moving on down the road next off-season. I really don’t see Jason Licht being… Read more »

RootsCrew
RootsCrew
4 years ago

Trevor, we’re gonna need more info about Jameis being injured before the Arizona game, because that is a fireable offense on it’s own, imo. Colts let Luck play on an partially torn labrum for 2 years and now he might be completely ruined. Horrible coaching and GM management. I felt Dirk was lying after the Bills game about how injured Jameis was and your throw away line semi confirms it. Dirk and Smitty’s fate has been sealed. I hate changing coaches every 2-3 years, but those two are not the guys for this team. I get the thought process of… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  RootsCrew
4 years ago

Roots – you’re right that it could be a fireable offense to worsen a player’s injury by playing him when hurt. But that is not on the coaching staff – that is on the medical staff, which reports to the GM. So ultimately, if that was a major blunder (we don’t know that for a fact now), firing Koetter for that would be dumb and unfair. Not that I don’t think Koetter and the coaching staff doesn’t need to be replaced (I do think they must go). But not for that reason.

Bucnut2
Bucnut2
Reply to  RootsCrew
4 years ago

I still don’t buy he was injured prior to Arizona. IMO this is Licht leaking stuff to save his job. This was the biggest pick in franchise history. The off the field issues are back( I am not saying they are true, just that, as I predicted JW would be a target) and frankly Winston has a losing record as a QB on the field with accuracy and consistency issues. Licht needs to save his job and will have to explain to the Glazers how he missed this pick both on and off the field if Winston doesn’t play better… Read more »

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
Reply to  Bucnut2
4 years ago

OFCOURSE you don’t agree bucnut. I mean you would know more than PR and the people behind the scenes.

Charlie C
Charlie C
4 years ago

The only point I agree with is shutting down Winston. The facts are that we rolled the dice on Jack and Spence and both those guys didn’t pan out this year. No pass rush = no defense. No ability to run the ball = no consistency on offense. I will say this again: the biggest problem Tampa Bay has is a ridiculous culture that starts at the top where coaches are fired every two years. The results speak for themselves: a decade of losing, plus a fan base that is so starved for winning that believes keeping the coaching carousel… Read more »

DCGoth
Reply to  Charlie C
4 years ago

While I agree that Winston needs to heal, ideally until next season, the bigger problem with changing coaches is not that it happens every two years. It is that the changes do not make sense. They fired Lovie after his second season, even though he was being discussed as a dark horse coach of the year earlier in the season, until the team tanked in the end. While one may or may not agree that firing Smith was justified, what happened afterwards was not. The major buzz back then, as I recall, was that Koetter was going to be a… Read more »

BrianDorry55
BrianDorry55
4 years ago

What an absolute disaster. I don’t know what should happen. I’ve been a fervent Koetter supporter since he stepped in the building. He was a breath of fresh air compared to Lovie. I understand the case for getting rid of him, but maybe for the sake of trying something new…ehem, patience…he should be given another chance. Smith has got to go though.

martinii
martinii
4 years ago

Just a few comments and as always all of our opinions are good, nobody is right or wrong, just pissed that year after year we for the most part have to watch bad football. Unfortunately this year we came back with over inflated expectations. Sort of like playing a bad round of golf until 18 when we hit our best shot of the day and can’t wait to get back out on the links next week. Three Opinions,1) Gruden’s not coming back, 2) Koetter and Smith aren’t going anywhere, 3) We have some very talented players on this team who… Read more »

DCGoth
Reply to  martinii
4 years ago

While you’re correct that Gruden is most likely not coming back, and there are some good talent levels on the team, there is little doubt that Koetter and his staff will be gone, short of sweeping the remaining games, which isn’t happening. The only game that I saw as even remotely possible of a win was against a Green Bay team without Rodgers; however, after watching last night’s game, i even wonder if that is a possibility. With the other three teams in the division all trying to best each other for the division, and the two Wild Card spots,… Read more »

martinii
martinii
4 years ago

Sorry, Not McDonald (S Alabama) Fitzpatrick S. Alabama.

WiltheBrewer
WiltheBrewer
4 years ago

I’d like to see if they can right the ship by Monken taking over the play calling from here on out- lord knows they have to score 35pts a game on the road to win! And seeing what they have in Griffin for the future…
If they can finish .500, I could see Koetter getting another year. Not sure if Smith gets another shot, though. Definitely not on the Gruden bandwagon

buccaneerNW
buccaneerNW
4 years ago

I’m ready to move on from WInston and his poor judgement both on and off the field.

Woodrow Pass
Woodrow Pass
4 years ago

If there is a third guy who hasn’t come forward sounds reasonable to me to think he hasn’t possibly because he was the guilty one. Makes sense if he was in the front seat. Also,,, tower hits and cell records would show the three people who are said to be in the vehicle moving through the city together, thereby proving they were going through the Mexican fast food drive through together.

Surely someone put the pieces together.

drdneast
drdneast
4 years ago

Tevor, when you use Michael Clayton as any credible source for football, you have lost me. Michael Clayton was one of the biggest busts and worst draft picks the guy you all want to hire ever made for the Bucs. One good year and pffft. He disappeared faster than Kaizer Solzay. Then after getting his contract renewed for way to much money by the idiot Mark Dominick, Clayton proclaimed himself a leader of the team and started sneaking out the back of the building early after practice. Some leader. I haven’t even mentioned his hands which turned into a pair… Read more »

GoldsonAges
GoldsonAges
4 years ago

This is Trevors worst article yet by far. Agenda driven, speculative Garbage article.

I hope this isn’t a trend Trevor

Richard Reeves
Richard Reeves
4 years ago

I have no idea if Jon is serious about returning to coaching or if he just enjoys flirting with countless teams every season over the idea of it. He has a pretty good gig at ESPN. HOWEVER…the point perhaps being missed here is that the NFL is a business and Gruden, at least in the short term, would generate excitement and put fannies in the seats. This may have more of a bearing on the Glazers than, frankly, thoughts about winning a second Super Bowl. Man U doesn’t win the EPL every season but…year in, year out they’re an eminently… Read more »

XpfcWintergreen
XpfcWintergreen
4 years ago

I will ask again.

If Gruden is brought back who will be the GM? Who will be his other keys coaches?

If not Gruden does anyone have any other coaches and/or general managers in mind?

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Go Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!