Once again the Bucs managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, losing in the last minute to the Panthers on Sunday. Below is our list of most disappointing Bucs in the loss.

Offensive Line
It’s hard to beat up the offensive line that is missing three starters, but the backups are paid well to fill in and perform. This was a terrible performance by every single offensive lineman who played on Sunday.

It started early, on the Bucs first drive Evan Smith was beaten badly and then tackle Caleb Benenoch gave up a sack which turned into a fumble on the Bucs first drive. Later in the first half Smith was beaten again and Winston was sacked on third down. Late in the second half, with the Bucs poised to go up 10-6, the line couldn’t stop the Panthers who just rushed four and Winston was sacked once again.

And finally, with a slim chance, but a chance nonetheless inside a minute to go, Kevin Pamphile and Caleb Benenoch did their best Spanish bullfighter impressions and allowed Winston to be sacked for the seventh time on the afternoon, and the ball popped loose. Carolina recovered (allegedly) and it was game over.

The Bucs linemen took turns getting beat on the day and helped contribute to the loss.

K Pat Murray
Two weeks in a row Murray has been called upon for a fourth quarter attempt of 50-plus yards, and both times missed them. Sure Murray made four others on Sunday, but in both games the misses were the difference in knotting up the score. Murray’s kickoff distance also has been average to below average all season long. While Murray has been much better than Folk, the six points left on the field the last two weeks were costly. We debated a lot about whether Murray deserve to be on the list as he was 80 percent on the day, however the Bucs defense played great for 98 percent of the day on Sunday, yet couldn’t get the job done in the end. Murray also failed to perform in the clutch.

Bucs Three-Minute Defense
I credit Mike Smith and his defense for playing one heck of a game. For 57 minutes. Unfortunately the game lasts 60 minutes, and for at least the fourth time this season, the Bucs defense folded late and allowed their opponents to move down the field with relative ease and win the game. How does this continually happen? It most likely doesn’t matter trying to figure it out as this staff – and a few of these players – won’t be around next season to try and come up with a remedy.

Special Teams
The 2017 Bucs special teams have been a disaster.

From poor field goal kicking, to shoddy coverage, to blocked kicks, there is no other way to describe it. On Sunday the Bucs managed to find another way to be bad, allowing a 103-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. And not to be outdone, the punt coverage team allowed the Panthers to convert a fake punt opportunity. Although it looked to be schemed correctly, Josh Robinson mugged the intended pass receiver and that gave the Panthers an automatic first down.

DT Chris Baker
While the loss is hardly on Baker, his neutral zone infraction late in the fourth quarter gave the Panthers the ball on the two-yard line and the Panthers scored two plays later to win the game. Baker’s gaffe is just a microcosm of the Bucs 2017 season. Self-inflicted, unforced errors that tell the story of why this team is 4-11.

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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, the beach and family time.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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chefboho
chefboho
4 years ago

WEll, this is pretty accurate to me. We still don’t have a clutch reliable kicker, Baker is essentially worthless, the oline was atrocious m, and for some reason while we are trying to run the clock down, you have Doug Martin in he game. Also the play calling before the half is just mind boggling. It’s like koetter has no idea what to call when we get inside the 10 yard line. He said it himself in his presser. It’s become the norm for this team to lose in the fourth. I swear on my 4 year old child that… Read more »

Amo
Amo
4 years ago

Dear Chris Baker,

Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son.

devasher
devasher
Reply to  Amo
4 years ago

Yeah, but thanks to Jason Licht he’s fat, drunk, stupid and rich.

There are worse ways to spend life IMO.

Amo
Amo
4 years ago

Sounds a lot like Malik McDowell during his recent collar.

TheTruth
TheTruth
4 years ago

Four (4) out of Five (5) of those on our GM who can’t draft or sign FA’s right, last one is on Mike Smith which I still wonder………….why is he not a coach anymore………..ok look at our D standings and then tell me then. I love Pewter Report in stating the obvious, like the fact the Smith can’t even use the talent he has, a better DC would have continued on where we left off last year and built upon that. I still stand by the fact if we had 1 premier pass rusher we would be in the top… Read more »

surferdudes
4 years ago

Dirk Koetter, gutless coach who settles for field goals, can’t manage the clock, and calls horrible spineless calls in the redzone, he’s the reason we lost today.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  surferdudes
4 years ago

No reason to get very personal and ad hominem about Koetter. He doesn’t lack courage. He lacks the ability to coach well enough in games to win the close ones that we’ve been losing this season. I like the guy as a person, and he’s no doubt a pretty decent coach, but he has not performed well as our head coach and as the guy to develop our on again/off again no. 1 overall draft pick quarterback. I am fine with giving Koetter his walking papers next week after we play the Saints. But he doesn’t need to be insulted… Read more »

scubog
scubog
4 years ago

I know we like to list the culprits responsible for the less than favorable results. Anyone see our high-priced running back, Doug Martin make a play of any kind? What has happened to our now seldom used tight ends? Cameron Brate has all but disappeared for some reason. Apparently Anthony Auclair isn’t made aware of the snap count.