QB Alex Smith scampers for a TD – Photo by: Getty Images
It wasn’t perfect and there were some nerve-wracking moments to get through, but the Bucs got out of Arrowhead with a massive 19-17 win. The Bucs were forced to weather a couple more injuries on both sides of the ball and depth was tested once again. When push came to shove, however, the Bucs stepped up to the challenge more often than they failed.
So what’s to be disappointed about? Not much, really. Big win, back to .500, game behind Atlanta. But let’s give it a go, anyway. Here’s PewterReport.com’s weekly Most Disappointed list after the Bucs’ win over Kansas City.
RED ZONE OFFENSE
Winning in the NFL is no easy task. Doing it with field goals instead of touchdowns amplifies that challenge.
The Bucs’ performance in the red zone was the most disappointing element of an otherwise great result. The Jameis Winston-to-Alan Cross touchdown connection in the final quarter represented the team’s lone touchdown of the day.
Included in the struggle was the sack-fumble of Winston that ended Tampa Bay’s first offensive series. The Bucs had first downs inside the Chiefs 20 on three occasions and the Cross touchdown was the only success. The roughest effort came midway through the second quarter after Winston hit receiver Mike Evans with a 31-yard pass that brought the Bucs down to the Chiefs 4. Running back Doug Martin picked up a yard up the middle on the first play and then passes to Adam Humphries and Evans fell incomplete.
Overall, Tampa Bay’s improved in this area from last year and entered Sunday with a 61.3 percent success rate. Fine-tuning the effort and play calling with a short field against playoff-contending opponents is a necessity if the Bucs want to make a run at this thing.
BUCS PASS RUSH
Tampa Bay’s improving pass rush took a little step back Sunday.
Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith hung his head walking back to the locker room because of a 19-17 loss, but at least he might not have to wash his jersey. The Bucs defense was shut out in the sack department for only the second time this season. Oddly enough the other occasion also came during another victory – the Week 5 Monday Night Football triumph at Carolina.
No one inside One Buc Place is going to start saying zero sacks is a crucial key to victory, though. Part of the problem stemmed from Kansas City’s offense. On the year, and average completion for quarterback Alex Smith goes for less than seven yards. Against the Bucs that stat was 10.9 yards, but the point is that head coach Andy Reid and the Chiefs want to get the ball out of Smith’s hands as quick as possible. That can make getting him to the ground difficult.
The most disconcerting component of the Bucs’ inability to pressure Smith may be Gerald McCoy’s lack of disruptiveness. The defensive tackle faced some double teams throughout the game and got Smith off his mark a couple times but still didn’t get in on a single tackle Sunday.
Enjoy the win, Bucs fans. Victory Monday.
What, not one person singles out?
Chiefs I think only threw one ball that went over 10 yards. Tough to get a sack under 3 seconds.
Well on offense it was Donavan Smith and Doug Martin. On Defense it was McCoy, McDonald, Ayers, Hargeaves, and Verner. Just because we luck out and win this game doesn’t mean you can’t be real about some players under performing on this particular game.
Horse, I don’t understand any of your choices?
D. Smith and Dotson did not jump offsides 4 or 5 times each nor did they have gobs of holding calls. Doug Martin was getting hit in the backfield and still getting 3 or 4 yards, he caught several passes for over 40 yards total, and made some key blocks to save Winston on blitzes. The DL didn’t get sacks because they were up against a dink-and-dunk Qb. Verner came in cold and had several breakups of passes. Can’t defend Hargeaves.
Hargreaves, Verner, and Martin were actually 3 of the top graded players for the bucs by PFF. I know their grading system isn’t perfect, but it is saying something. Martin was hit in the backfield all day and had 60+ of his 90 or so yards after contact.
Sometimes I really don’t know what Horse is seeing. I guess some folks have a preconceived idea and perception then try to make it a reality in spite of the evidence. Just why he thinks Donovan Smith was “disappointing” in this game is a mystery. In order for a QB to be sacked he has to have the ball in his hand. With Alex Smith’s penchant for getting rid of the ball quickly getting him on the ground is a difficult task. No, Doug Martin didn’t have a breakaway run. What he had was a solid steady performance with a hurt center and a rookie guard playing in his second game to block for him.
I’m not so naive to think everything was perfect because our team had a great win. I just wasn’t disappointed.
I’ve been dogging Smith, and Dot for awhile now, but I thought both played their best game of the season. Not saying pro bowl stuff, but they were solid. If I had to pick some, I’d say David had a rough day. He was pancaked on one play, and seemed to get blocked out well on others. The problem with both David, and Kwon is their size, which hinders them from shedding blocks. If they don’t get to the ball carrier with speed, chances are they’ll be blocked out of the play. So if I have to nit, pick, it would be them for me.
Not sure what’s up with David the run play he got flattened on was pretty bad. Maybe he has an injury? Who knows. Great game though.
D line was not very good and will have to have the their best game of the year to contain Wilson and that offense. Will have to be very gap disciplined. Wilson is more elusive than Smith.
Nobody gave us a chance Sunday, but I thought the Chiefs were very beatable despite the record if we played a good mistake free game. It wasn’t perfect but we didn’t beat ourselves. Their offense is pretty vanilla like Dallas but it’s working.
To beat Seahawks Bucs will need to be even better and probably get a turnover or two like we did when Smith threw that int. In end zone to Conte.
Go Bucs!!! Win or lose the team seems to be improving so I’m happy for now.
Glad I stirred some things up. Very happy we won. We needed some breaks and luck and we got both. Martin made some poor decisions; I think sometimes stutter stepping isn’t the answer and him dropping the handoff was another mistake. I do have to say his blocking was good. Other RB’s came in and they did move the ball forward. Smith and Dotson were getting help from both TE’s as they couldn’t handle the individual rusher by themselves. Lets face it here folks; Winston was fantastic and thank you Andy Reid for playing your conservative offensive scheme for oue weaK PASS RUSHERS. Just my opinion.
I’d argue that Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David need to be singled out. Both were complete ghosts. David has just had a baaaaaaaad year
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