Last week, following the Bucs 42-14 loss against Tennessee to open the season, head coach Lovie Smith summed up the team’s mentality with a single message saying, “One game doesn’t define who we are.”
Of course, that’s easy to say after a bad loss, but what’s the message after an impressive win?
While Smith is still keeping the season in perspective, he was encouraged by the team’s progression from Week 1 to Week 2, which was another point of emphasis heading into New Orleans. If September 13 was their first opportunity to find out where they stand, Sunday was the first opportunity to prove they’re an unfinished product on the rise.
“It’s the same thing. It was one game, but the message also last week was, ‘This is where we are. This is how we perform, alright. Let’s see how much improvement we can make between [now] and this next week of practice.’ That was the message. [The] message will be the same this week.”
After watching tape, Smith said there’s still room for improvement – scoring touchdowns and holding on to a lead – but that it’s always better to highlight flaws and make corrections after finding a way to win a tight game.
“We had some opportunities offensively where we got field goals instead of touchdowns,” Smith said. “We had favorable positions a few times there. And then just some plays we just missed, as much as anything. I thought our offensive staff did a good job calling plays and putting our guys in position. But it’s always, when we say we left points on the field, it’s about not executing a certain play a certain way. We’ll get more opportunities this week.
“Now when you win the football game, it’s good that we won. It’s hard to win in the NFL, but when you watch the video guys see that, ‘Yeah we won, but I can play that play better and if I only did this.’ For our football team, we had a lead. It’s just a lot better making improvement on a win though than a loss. I will say that.”