For a long time now, the Buccaneers have been Gerald McCoy’s team.

He was the third overall pick back in 2010 when the team was still trying to recover from its Super Bowl fall out (which they’re still recovering from today), and was crowned the prince of the next era in Bucs football from the get-go.

Since then, McCoy has been a five-time Pro Bowler, and has indeed become that face of the franchise over the last six years.

But that hasn’t come with many wins, and, to some, a lack of wins means a lack of confidence in who you have as a leader (unfortunately).

This week the Tampa Bay Times has been focusing on the phrase, “a badass football team,” something Bucs head coach, Dirk Koetter, said he hopes his team is known as soon.

Over the weekend, Martin Fennelly of the TBT, spoke to former Buccaneers great, Ronde Barber, and asked if he saw any badass qualities on the current Bucs team. This is what Barber had to say.

“Nobody like that jumps out on today’s Bucs. They’re not there. I would say the quarterback (Jameis Winston) fits the mold. He is clearly that guy, the leader.

But you see an attitude emerging, especially at linebacker. Those two guys, Lavonte (David) and Kwon (Alexander) have to be able to drive the bus, especially Kwon, because he has so much energy. If he can consistently be that guy, it will raise the defense. I love Gerald (McCoy), but for a defensive tackle to drive a team, he has to have a huge personality. I mean like the personality of (Warren) Sapp or a John Randle.”

Barber didn’t say anything bad, but whether he meant to hurt feelings or not, but it was his observation of McCoy.

McCoy had already been going through a bit of a shocking revelation when someone at the Pro Bowl this year told him he wasn’t doing enough as a leader. McCoy wore that shot to his pride on his sleeve during one of the team’s offseason press conferences and told the media that he now knows he has to be better – but still seemed taken back by it all.

With the core of who he’s been as a player already shaken from that event, I assume that reading Barber’s comments this week sparked this series of tweet from him this morning.

McCoy doesn’t call out Barber’s comments specifically, but McCoy referencing no longer keeping quiet right after Barber said you have to be a bit of a loud-mouth to lead as a defensive tackle sort of paints the picture.

Whatever the reason truly is, whether it was Barber’s comments or not, it seems as though McCoy has been pushed over the edge just on the eve of training camp.

Perhaps we’ll see a side of McCoy we’ve never seen before.

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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: trevor@pewterreport.com
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Ken Grant
4 years ago

Can we please stop trying to turn Gerald into Warren Sapp?

REALbucsFeed
Reply to  Ken Grant
4 years ago

You DO NOT know more about football than a Hall of famer who works in broadcasting of the sport. You DO NOT more than McCoy than someone who’s played with him several years since McCoy entered the league and was they before him. You DO NOT more than the guy who played on arguably greatest DEFENSE all time alongside hall of famers Sapp and Brooks. Listen to what he’s saying. He mentioned John Randall noone wants Mccoy to be like sapp but it’s a TRAIT he’s speaking of that is successful to winning Such as a Ray lewis 2-time champion..… Read more »

gobuxfla
Reply to  REALbucsFeed
4 years ago

Awesome. I’d love to see Gerald drop kick Matty Ice’s head through the goal posts after a nasty sack. Er, uh, just kidding.

bucsfan524
Reply to  Ken Grant
4 years ago

In all fairness to McCoy, he really has not had much help over the years . Sapp had so much more talent on the line then McCoy has had. I do think with Noah Spence and Ayers and Smith to name just a few, He now has some talent on the line that might take his game to the next level! Folks being a loud mouth does not make you a great player!

drdneast
4 years ago

Im glad Gerald isnt Sapp, but if you ever heard any of McCoy’s pregame speeches you would think he wss getting his team ready for a Tony Robbins seminar rather than a 3 hour battle and war in the trenches.

cgmaster27
Reply to  drdneast
4 years ago

HAHA. That one got a good laugh out of me Drd. AS for his pre-game speeches, I’d agree , they are pretty terrible.

REALbucsFeed
Reply to  drdneast
4 years ago

Yes that’s the truth. Everyone is caught up in the HYPE of Gerald McCoy news like this is absurd. The league is watered down and one reason why McCoy is great as is he but need to step away from being a fan and analyze without being biased. I said this years ago and i was crazy and if a player speaks up to McCoy at the pro bowl that means that player has gone to others about the issue and agreed on it cause you know that’s how it went down you just don’t go up and say that.

REALbucsFeed
Reply to  drdneast
4 years ago

Robert Ayers is more badass

Buc 1976
4 years ago

I really don’t understand some people that have a problem with McCoy!
He play’s hard every game, he busts his butt at practice and is a pro bowler.
OK maybe he is not vocal enough for some people but action speaks louder than words.
Just my opinion

Dman
4 years ago

McCoy is a good player, but not a take-over-a-game-guy that closes out teams in the 4th quarter. He doesn’t need to be Sapp to do that, he just needs to get it done. So far he hasn’t. And I could care less about being vocal, just make plays with the game on the line.

Power_Buc
Reply to  Dman
4 years ago

Check the last offensive play from the Falcons week 1

Hint: McCoy wins the game for us

cgmaster27
Reply to  Power_Buc
4 years ago

Well we can’t really pat him on the back for one 4th quarter sack in the last 5 years. When the game is on the line McCoy has been pretty invisible. Love the guy, but that’s just the fact of the matter.

24/7BucFan
4 years ago

I’ve seen this all over Bucs sites. It’s funny how many people hate Sapp but want McCoy to be more like him ( A Badass). Makes no sense. If we win more than 10 games I will think we got a pretty badass team wither McCoy or any other Buc is a individual BA. I really think what Koetter meant is not necessarily what barber is saying. And for the record, there never was DT like Sapp before or after Sapp played. I love D Brooks but there’s other great LB’s like Brooks. No DT like Sapp. Sapp is the… Read more »

macabee
4 years ago

I think the Bucs have all the pieces in place to be a playoff team and I think they believe that. They now need to change the team mentality to match the talent on both sides of the ball. Whether it’s called the “Stick Carriers” or simply a “Badass Team”, that 2002 attitude must be regained. The players need to be on the same page as to what it means to be badass. As in 2002, the defense can lead that charge. Let me be clear! I don’t mean players that step on a downed player, gouge thru face masks,… Read more »

Power_Buc
4 years ago

Sheesh. Can we just let McCoy be himself? He’s all mind fucked now with everybody telling him how he should act, how he should lead. He’s a really good football player, just let him go play good football. He doesnt need to be the leader, Winston/Kwon can do all of that stuff. Just let the guy be himself, when you start trying to be something youre not, it usually doesnt end up being something positive.

scubog
Reply to  Power_Buc
4 years ago

Excellent point Power. In life in general people need to just be who they are and not attempt to play a perceived role that everyone knows is fake while rolling their eyes. We have far too many people out there spouting off what they think are words of wisdom trying to look intelligent, merely to hide the fact that in reality they are the Dumb Ass. A player can be great even though not considered a bad ass. And a player can be a bad ass and suck as a player.

cgmaster27
Reply to  Power_Buc
4 years ago

See that’s a problem though. If McCoy is that mentally weak that the media gets in his head, that’s a problem. Just look at what is said about Jameis on a regular basis and how he handles it. Vastly different.

GOBUCS!!YKJ
4 years ago

Barber was a great here and was on those shut down defenses along with Sapp that gave opposing teams fits!! So yes he is right and if talk like that fires McCoy and others up so be it!! The culture is has to change here and there are glimpses of it. McCoy will always be compared to Sapp just the way it is not saying the man don’t play hard it’s the sacks we are lacking at that position with the kind of $$ we give these players. Use this as a motivator and tear someone’s head off this season… Read more »

stlbucsfan
4 years ago

G.McCoy will never be Warren bc Sapp was the best Buc of all time in my opinion. Warren also never played with a QB like Jameis so what was required of him isn’t what’s required of Gerald. McCoy just needs to focus on his game, lead in his own way and focus on winning games. He hasn’t appeared in a playoff game his whole career, the Buc greats are well within their rights to push any buttons they think might get us over the top. If that means a pissed off Gerald heading in the season then so be it.

martinii
4 years ago

The only worldwide constant when it comes to humans is that we are all different, physically and psychologically. Thats why we incorporate adjectives into our language. Unless we master the art of cloning football players you are not going to get a replica of Warren Sapp, Dick Butkus, orTom Brady (et al.) You will no doubt get players that remind you of other players but the day you get an exact replica ain’t gonna happen. Players skill set and success or failure are predicated to a large extent on the team they are on, the era they are playing in,… Read more »

pinkstob
4 years ago

Hmmm, I find this all very interesting. Personally, I think McCoy is the 2nd best player on the team behind Evans…when he’s healthy. I find this interesting because I wonder if the changes McCoy has made since the Pro Bowl and continue to make after hearing this from Barber has led to a change in his preparation and execution that will lead to him staying healthier during the season. Maybe McCoy is just focused on changing his leadership style in which case we’re screwed (that’s not the problem), but if not and he’s actually focused on changing his production we’ll… Read more »

fredster
4 years ago

McCoy is a very good DT. Yes he gets double teamed a lot. Yes he’s had lot health issues too. He’s not the best DT. He does not take over a game ever that I can remember. It is what it is. I think he plays hard. I don’t know if he truly loves the game. One thing that annoys me is he doesn’t really seem to hate losing. Just don’t see fire in the guy really. Maybe it’s way he talks and mannerisms but that’s how he comes across. Just my take over the years. Am I glad he’s… Read more »

Ken - Kfromfla
4 years ago

I read here and mostly comment on another site. I posted this comment there and in the interest of easy, this is a copy. I think this is how many people see it. : Football is the modern-day version of a Roman Coliseum where men try to take each other out as a way to declare victory. Gerald gets a tough break because not everyone is in the mindset that a 4-3 DT can be effective and also be a nice guy. For some fans that is an oxymoron. Agree with it or not, some people believe that they 3-tech… Read more »

cgmaster27
Reply to  Kenneth Peartree
4 years ago

I would go along the lines of Aaron Donald, now that guy is a game wrecker with a serious attitude.

Gulfstrings
4 years ago

I don’t remember Rhonde being a “badass” as he describes the term. Great player for the Bucs but hardly “badass.” Seems McCoy is being a bit too sensitive over all this. He should just chill, count his money and be the pro he’s always been. Go Bucs!

Buc-in-Philly Fan
4 years ago

G Mac is good not great. The difference shows up in a couple of different ways. One is intensity. GM does not play with that high level of intensity from the eye test IMO. Another was stated earlier in the fact that great players make big plays in big moments. GM has not done that consistently. Additionally, there has been a number of injuries that has kept him from being available. These comments/tweets have also shown a lack of mental toughness from GM as he is responding to them in a way that makes you say “hmmm”. Is he a… Read more »

drdneast
4 years ago

Unfortunately PowerBuc you had to go back 16 games to find that example and unfortunately, there are to few to cite. I do know the defense doesn’t play as well when he isn’t on the field and he is one of the three best DT’s playing. But perhaps all of these comments clarify one thing, McCoy is an enigma on the field. He states he loves playing the game and he loves the competition and maybe that is the problem. Maybe that is enough for him. Perhaps, as one reader stated, he may like to win, but he doesn’t despise… Read more »