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FIVE MOST DISAPPOINTING BUCS PewterReport.com lists the five players who disappointed us in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 20-17 loss on Saturday night to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Pewter Report has already listed the top five players who impressed us in an article posted on the front page of PewterReport.com.
CB TORRIE COX Although he notched three tackles and two special teams takedowns, Cox’s muffed punt in the first quarter gave the Jaguars the ball on the Bucs 29-yard line. That costly turnover eventually led to a field goal, which proved to be the difference in the 20-17 game. Cox also allowed Jags wide receiver Reggie Williams to haul in a 16-yard pass near the sideline for a first down in the first half. Cox didn’t do much on Saturday night to win the nickel cornerback or punt return jobs.
QB CHRIS SIMMS For the second consecutive preseason game, Simms struggled, and this is becoming a disturbing trend considering the fact that he’s put together impressive preseasons over the past two seasons and is now struggling in his third preseason in the NFL. On his first series of the Bucs-Jags contest, Simms took a coverage sack and was sacked on the very next play on third-and-16. Both quarterback takedowns occurred when Simms took seven-step drops, and he appeared to hold onto the football too long both times. Later in the game, Simms misfired a pass to wide receiver Ike Hilliard near the sideline. On the next play, Simms threw a pass too hard and too high for Hilliard, who was running a slant pattern. Instead of getting a first down, the pass fell incomplete and ended the drive. Simms finished the game completing 6-of-10 passes for 41 yards. He was sacked twice and his longest completion went 12 yards to WR Michael Clayton. This is certainly not the type of performance the Bucs expected out of Simms this preseason. The good news is he has two games left to redeem himself.
CB RONYELL WHITAKER Whitaker’s four tackles on the night were overshadowed by his bonehead penalty on special teams against the Jags. Wide receiver DeAndrew Rubin broke off a 41-yard kickoff return, but Whitaker got into a sideline altercation after the play was over, which drew a 15-yard personal foul penalty. That certainly won’t help Whitaker make Tampa Bay’s active roster this season.
RB CADILLAC WILLIAMS: For all of the questions and hype surrounding his debut, Williams’ five carries for 13 yards (2.6 avg.) certainly didn’t help the first-round draft pick live up to expectations on Saturday night. In his defense, Williams didn’t have much daylight against a solid Jacksonville run defense. In fact, you can include all of Tampa Bay’s running backs in this category. Williams, Michael Pittman, Earnest Graham, Derek Watson and Ian Smart combined for just 46 yards on 18 carries. Heck, quarterback Luke McCown outrushed all of the Bucs’ running backs by producing 25 yards via the ground game. It was not a good night for Tampa Bay’s offensive line and running backs.
SECOND- AND THIRD-TEAM DEFENSE Tampa Bay’s second- and third-team defenses struggled mightily against Jacksonville’s offense. The Jaguars were allowed to hold onto the football for entirely too long. In the second quarter, the Jaguars put together a 77-yard drive on 16 plays, and the entire drive chewed up 10:01 off the game clock. Later in the game, the Jaguars went 67 yards on 13 plays, and that drive ate up 7:11 off the clock. The third-team defense allowed Jacksonville to put together a seven-play, 85-yard drive in the fourth quarter, which resulted in a touchdown. These drives were sustained thanks to Jacksonville’s ability to convert third downs. In fact, the Jaguars converted 8-of-13 (62 percent) of their third down tries on Saturday night. These drives led to points and kept Tampa Bay’s offense off of the field for entirely too long.
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