The Buccaneers thoroughly dominated the Washington Redskins during the first half, but a late second quarter touchdown by the Redskins cut the Bucs lead to 13-7. Many Bucs fans wondered if the late TD was going to be a prelude of thing to come in the second half.
On Monday, during his day-after-game press conference, head coach Lovie Smith talked about the Washington score and how he felt it wouldn’t affect his team in the second half.
“I detected… not detected, I saw disappointment,” Smith said. “We had dominated the game for the most part and then for them to get that (touchdown). But then (we thought), ‘okay, we’re in great position still.’ We had a lead. We had the ball coming out of the second half, and I though we were a better football team; our guys felt that way. They were just disappointed in that series, there’s no way around that. We wanted all of us to be disappointed in that. And there were some things that happened. There was a bad call in there that really – I’m going to take the (blame). That screen for a touchdown, that was more on me. When guys realize that, it’s just about going out there and dominating the second half.”
Smith said the Bucs players never wavered in their optimism, despite having lost five games this season when leading in the fourth quarter.
“I don’t know if they said, ‘here we go again,'” Smith said. “We’ve lost some games in the fourth quarter, but that’s not necessarily ‘here we go again.’ We’ve lost some games in the past but it was a new day. That wasn’t the mindset because of how we played the second half, we kept the pressure on throughout. Again, there was disappointment, but no more than that. I think the guys felt that they we’re the better team and that this time we would finish the job. We have our coach talk – bear with me through coach talk – but we had our best week of practice last week. We’re doing more things like ones-on-ones and really felt like we were in position to win the game.”
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]
It’s amazing how many times over the years we have allowed the opponent to score right before the half.
Agreed. What’s worse though is when we have the ball before the half and don’t try to score, like in the Rams game this year. I hope we don’t see a repeat of that ever again while Lovie is the HC.
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