Defensively, we were talented up front, but lacking on the backend. The development of CDIII, SMB, and Dean with the drafting of S AWJ made the backend finally filled with talent. Our biggest weakness was at safety two seasons ago, which was why I was pining for S Delpit or S AWJ because they were the best coverage safeties.
Defensively, we were finally balanced. Two seasons ago, we had 47 sacks, tied for 7th best in the league. Yet our sack rate was 6.7%, ranking 20th overall. Our secondary sucked and we couldn’t close the deal more often. Our secondary gave up 270.1 yard per game, ranking 30th best… meaning we sucked!
Add in S AWJ in the draft and our moribund secondary to give up 246.6 yards per game, ranking 21st. That allowed our front end to close more often on QB’s. We had 48 sacks, which ranked 3rd overall. Our sack rate was 7.9%, which ranked 6th.
Offensively, our run game still sucked between the two seasons. We actually were slightly worse this past year during the regular season.
We were not balanced in either season. We generated fewer yards in 2020 in both running and passing. So what gives? Simple. Grab a HOF QB with his binky, TE Gronk. QB Brady made the passing offense efficient. It scored more points and had far fewer INTs.
I hope this helps with the appropriate “keys to the playoffs”.
Don’t disagree with your metrics or analysis. My metrics only dealt with rankings of total yardage both defensively and offensively with the Bucs ranking both 6th and 7th in those categories. That is where the balance is figured. The rams with rankings of 1 and 11 aren’t as balanced with their 12 to 13 advantage. I believe it is noteworthy that of the first 14 teams 10 made the playoffs for that metric with the browns(15),steelers(17),bears(18),and seahawks (20) not in the top 14. That very simplistic correlation is interesting to me especially for the SB champs and where they ranked for the season before the playoffs.
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