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  1. 1


    Like I said a million times, I didn’t care if Lovie stayed or was fired because I learned after the Dominik, Morris, Schiano experiment that the GM matters more than the coach. That said, I thing about Lovie that should be clear now is that he was justified in switching around the CB’s last season and settled on guys other than Banks and Verner. They had a clean slate by a new defensive regime (which they also had when Lovie arrived) and were still beaten out by Adjei-Barimah and others. Maybe it wasn’t the secondary coaching staff last year. Maybe the combo of Banks, Verner, Conte and McDougald just sucks worse than any other option.

    1. 1.1


      Always enjoy your player analysis my friend. I had high hopes that the game of musical chairs in our secondary was over with Smith and Son’s departure. I fully anticipated the release of Verner due to his play not being commensurate with his play, but he had a fairly good game in Week 1. I don’t know all of the salary cap implications but I suspect his place on the roster is more about who is behind him. The rotating of CB’s reminds me of the old saying, If you are playing two QB’s you really have no QB” . As much as Licht tried to fix the back-end, it still looks a bit weak.

    2. 1.2


      GMs matter a lot, but I complete reject your notion that they matter more than coaches. GMs don’t create schemes, they don’t coach the players, they don’t call the plays, they don’t make in-game decisions. Great coaches can make other teams’ cast-offs look like stars … we Bucs fans know that better than anybody, given that we’ve had major stars on most of the Super Bowl teams of the last decade while we were rooting around in the cellar. Just last weekend, another Buc cast-off, Aquib Talib, make Jameis Winston look like a fool in front of the home town crowd. Bill Bellichick has repeatedly taken Bucs cast-offs and used them in his championship teams.

      Coaches matter more than anybody in the organization, including the players. Everybody matters, of course. But unless a team has a quality coach, nothing good can happen no matter the quality of the players, or the GM.

      1. 1.2.1


        I couldn’t disagree more. Coaches don’t throw or catch passes nor do they make blocks or tackles, players do. GM’s select those players. If fact, coaches have less impact than they ever have after the new CBA. They are more restricted than they have ever been in terms of contact with the players in the offseason and the number of practices where they can coach players. Also, on many teams (including the Bucs) the GM chooses the coach, making the GM all the more important.
        It’s this type of outdated philosophy that the HC is more important that anything that makes for a good movie but makes for a poor NFL team due to players that aren’t good enough to beat other teams better players. Belichik is the rare exception and his success is at least in small part due to cheating.

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    The problem with the CB’s this year seems to be more connected to communication that skill set.
    As a whole, except for the busted coverages which have resulted in gash plays, the coverage has been better than last year.
    I just hope to see all of the defense start fresh and healthy after their bye week.
    With five games under the belt and with healthy players, maybe we can get a sense of how well this defense can be.
    As it is, I don’t think anyone will have to worry about Mike Smith having a line of suitors waiting o hire him as a head coach if the quality of play continues at the same level it has.
    I will say the defense did play better last Sunday, especially for the amount of time they were on the field.

  3. 3


    Except for one busted play Vernor was having pass breakup after pass breakup. He was playing at least as well as Grimes. I’m a little concerned that we’re back in the “one mistake and you’re benched” system that made CBs so timid under Lovie.

    That being said, coverage on the outside by the corners has been good. Giant holes have been opening up in the middle where guys like Kwon Alexander,Lavonte David, Chris Conte, Keith Tandy, and Bradley MacDougald are supposed to have everything under control. With the lack of pressure on opposing qbs, everyone is going to get open sooner or later. None of our healthy lineman can get off a block.

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      I think it’s fair to say that if this was a “one mistake and you’re benched” system that Grimes would have been benched in favor of Verner as Grimes has made a ton of mistakes. Especially given Verner’s salary.

      1. 3.1.1


        @russmillerwy and @pinkstob … I think you’re both on to something there…it may not be “one mistake (on the field) and you’re done”…as @pinkstob accurately reflects, Grimes has made many more than one mistake (and I’m not sure Banks has made one yet, since he hasn’t seen the field 🙂 )….but let’s think about ASJ (even before the DUI)…there is some sort of “doghouse” going on at 1Buc that falling into means you’re going to see the pine a lot. Maybe Grimes is just a better Video Room guy than Verner and Banks and that means that since they’re all fairly pedestrian on the field, he gets the nod for playing time….who knows.

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    This kind of roster and role experimentation is why a new defensive regime (coaches, scheme, and players) takes awhile to gel. Add in the uncertainty in roster when major injuries take out key players, and that adds to tie difficulty in bringing a new defense together on the same page.

    It’s possible this defense won’t gel at all this season … but, it often takes at least a half season if not more.

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