About the author

Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]

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13 Comments

  1. 1

    JustaBuc

    If Glazers/Licht/Koetter/Smith just do an average job in free agency and the draft, this is a 10 win football team next year. Book it. This team is not nearly as far away as people seem to think it is.

    We don’t need to blow everything up, we just need to cut mental mistakes on the field and plug a few holes in the roster. This team has the talent.

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    Rating: +12. From 22 votes.
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    1. 1.1

      Ken Grant

      I think you may get plenty of agreement on whether this team has the talent to win. Its the lack of faith in the staff to make the proper adjustments to make it happen. When I hear Koetter double down on everything that went wrong and discard blatant issues like poor offensive line play I find it very disconcerting.

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    2. 1.2

      e

      Agreed. The bounce-back is fairly common in the NFL and the fact that they are finally seeking some consistency, gives them a better chance competing immediately, instead of players having to learn a new system again.

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    3. 1.3

      Pick6

      talent deficiencies, especially in the trenches, must be addressed if the bucs want to compete with better teams. that being said, between the number of close losses and unlikely number bad things happening the worst times, this team is due for some positive regression in the luck department. add a talent upgrade into the mix and you never know what could happen. still, as a long time bucs fan Mark Cook is right: it’s almost always a mistake to have high expectations of this team. 6 wins feels like a safe expectation

      the bigger issue is our division. the NFC South is ridiculously talented and competitive at the moment, as demonstrated by our division taking the maximum number of postseason slots possible. We can have a better team and a better year, but Atlanta looks like a winning franchise for the foreseeable future and New Orleans just got younger and better in its 2 weakest areas (run game & defense) this season. I always want to write Carolina off but they are as scrappy as teams get and find all kinds of ways to win

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  2. 2

    Ken Grant

    Completely agree on the miscues by the offensive line. A big part of why we have such a huge discrepancy between yards and points is those drive killing holding/illegal hands to the face penalties. The constant false starts. The completely whiffed blitz/stunt pickups.

    I’m terrified that the staff’s complete blind-spot for this group will lead to status quo and another year of drive killers, short yardage stuffs, and Jameis running for his life.

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    Rating: +14. From 20 votes.
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  3. 3

    htownbucfan03

    We should have beat new England, buffalo, green bay, atl, Carolina, detroit . That’s six games. And we fought in the Arizona game. We aren’t that far off but we have to learn how to win those tight games. In the off season situational football needs to be the focus. How a turnover or penalties can not only kill a drive but is the difference between 5-11 and 11-5

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    Rating: +10. From 20 votes.
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  4. 4

    Horse

    Regardless how fans feel we need pass rushers and not just one because Spence so far can’t stay healthy. As to the Offense and also Defense, different Coaching and GM might have had us in the Playoffs. If Licht doesn’t get it that this is a NEED draft and not a BPA draft because we are far from ready on defense; offense we are close. Right now we need two starting DE’s, one starting Safety, one starting CB, one non starting RB’s, one non starting OL, one Backup QB.

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    Rating: +6. From 10 votes.
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  5. 5

    ahenneke

    I like Licht, but would vote for Horse as co-GM.

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    Rating: +8. From 8 votes.
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  6. 6

    shuster

    I don’t think you have to choose between a premier RB or DE. There are going to be premier RBs available at the top of the second round. One of either Nick Chubb, Sony Michel or Derrius Guice should be there and any one of them would be a huge upgrade and make an instant impact.

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    Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
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  7. 7

    Rut

    Remember when Adrian Peterson had his only good game of the season and completely dominated our defense? Mike Smiths commitment to speedy, undersized corners really bit us in the ass. Running backs are getting bigger, we need to keep the quick little guys as safeties like Justin evans, and start getting some big, tackling corners. We got burned by Johnthan Banks but Schiano had the right idea there. Resigning grimes isn’t the answer, as much as us Bucs fans don’t want to realize it.

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    Rating: -8. From 10 votes.
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  8. 8

    seat26

    I am going with 9 or 10 wins, but I said the same thing this year. IF we can continue to draft like we have the last two years, We could improve dramatically. But if we do not get help Defensively, or at RB, we are Toast.

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  9. 9

    surferdudes

    We need pass rushers, but not at the expense of passing up more talented players to get one. I think Cleveland used their first pick in the draft last year on a D end, just saying. You can make an argument for help on both sides of the line at every position, R.B., C.B. come to mind next.

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  10. 10

    martinii

    Mark I noticed you hinted that Noah Spence would be back next year and that would be good, however I can’t find much data on his physical prognosis. I have read wear the shoulder could be an on going problem to ultimately career ending. What is the current status of his return? It is way too early to project wins and loses. I am an advocate of focusing on the pass rush first but I agree that it has become a fools errand for most teams with few exceptions. Some days I simply agree with the “Best Available,” approach. Last night one of the commentators explained that Lou Saban’s view regarding pass rush was not the number of sacks, but the number of disruptions imposed on the QB.

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