FAB 5. SR’s Buc Shots

• I had a conversation this week with a guy who is very knowledgeable about the game of football and he had an interesting observation regarding the Bucs offense. Dirk Koetter’s most productive season as a play-caller was in 2015 when the offense was more balanced and featured the ground game. The Bucs had the fifth-ranked offense in quarterback Jameis Winston’s rookie season with the league’s fifth-ranked running game, which averaged 135.1 yards per carry.

Lovie Smith and OC Dirk Koetter – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Lovie Smith and OC Dirk Koetter – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Both Winston and running back Doug Martin, who rushed for 1,402 yards and six touchdowns that season, made the Pro Bowl. In 2016, Koetter’s first year as head coach, the Bucs had the 24th ranked rushing attack, averaging 101 yards per game, in part due to the fact that Martin was injured and then got suspended, missing the last two games of the year.

This year the Bucs’ ground game is ranked 29th in the NFL, averaging a paltry 81.1 yards per game. Granted, Koetter has been without Martin for three of the team’s seven games, but like last year, Koetter is also guilty of abandoning the run too early in some games, which has stymied production.

The point that was made to me was that perhaps former head coach Lovie Smith, who had his faults while in Tampa Bay, directed Koetter to run the ball far more in 2015 than Koetter has elected to do over the past two seasons. Perhaps the real reason the Bucs had a 4,000-yard passer and a 1,400-yard runner in 2015 was at Smith’s instance to stick with the running game to achieve balance. Or perhaps it was all Koetter to begin with, and it’s worth noting that Martin was healthy and available for the entire 2015 season.

It’s just something to think about. It was an interesting observation and I wanted to share it with you.


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• New Orleans is finding more balance on offense this year with the running back tandem of Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara combining for 707 yards and five touchdowns while averaging a collective 4.7 yards per carry. Quarterback Drew Brees has still been his spectacular self, completing 70.6 percent of his passes for 1,951 yards and 11 touchdowns, but the real story in New Orleans is the play of veteran receiver Ted Ginn, Jr., who is in his first season with the Saints.

Ginn has given Brees the deep threat the Saints thought they had with Brandin Cooks, who was dealt to New England in the offseason. While Michael Thomas is still the primary receiver in the Big Easy, leading the team with 42 catches for 480 yards (11.4 avg.) and two touchdowns, Ginn has been just as productive with fewer opportunities.

The 32-year old Ginn is providing the Saints with the kind of explosiveness the Bucs were expecting from DeSean Jackson this season. Ginn has 24 catches for 421 yards with two touchdowns and is averaging 17.5 yards per catch. Both he and Thomas have eight catches of 20 yards or more with a long of 53 yards.

Jackson has nearly identical stats with 25 receptions for 397 yards and two touchdowns with a 15.9-yard average. Jackson leads the Bucs with eight catches of 20 yards or more, including a long of 38 yards.

• Thank you, Pewter Nation, for helping us surpass 28,000 Twitter followers for our @PewterReport Twitter account. For  the latest Bucs news, observations from the PewterReport.com staff, reports from Bucs press conferences and notifications of the latest PewterReport.com stories, join the legions of Bucs fans who follow @PewterReport and help us continue to grow our following on Twitter. And if you are on Facebook, please follow our Facebook page by clicking here.

• In last week’s SR’s Fab 5 I suggested that Tampa Bay cornerback Vernon Hargreaves may be a bust after a rough 22 games to start his NFL career. Over those games he has been the most targeted cornerback in the league and surrendered the most passing yards of any cornerback while only picking off one pass.

Bucs CB Vernon Hargreaves - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Bucs CB Vernon Hargreaves – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

But over the last two games Hargreaves has really turned it around and showed some very encouraging signs. According to Pro Football Focus, Hargreaves had 26 cover snaps playing inside at the slot cornerback position where he was targeted four times, but allowed zero receptions, broke up one pass and forced a QB rating of 39.6 from passes thrown his way.

Against Carolina when he moved outside to left cornerback, he had 34 snaps in coverage and was targeted seven times, allowing just two catches for 13 yards. Hargreaves also had one pass breakup and once again allowed a 39.6 QB rating.

What was interesting is that Hargreaves has played right cornerback exclusively when starting outside. He moved to the left side of the field and really excelled in coverage as Ryan Smith, who started at left cornerback in Minnesota in Week 3, played right cornerback against Carolina.

• Pro Football Focus has Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston as the highest-rated passer outside of the pocket this season with a 137.3 rating, followed by Dallas’ Dak Prescott at 121.8. Yet Winston hasn’t made enough plays from outside the pocket this year as he’s done over the past two seasons, and that may be contributing to the team’s lack of point production.

Escaping the pocket and trying to make plays has proven to be a double-edged sword for Winston. His fourth quarter touchdown pass to Mike Evans in Buffalo that gave Tampa Bay a temporary lead was on a scramble. But so was the hit by Arizona linebacker Chandler Jones that injured Winston’s throwing shoulder.

Pewter-Nation-Podcast-Pewter-Report• Tampa Bay is on the road in New Orleans this week, trying to snap a four-game losing streak and earn its first NFC South victory of the year. Check out the Pewter Nation Podcast that previews this Sunday’s NFC South contest. Get the insight and analysis on the Bucs from PewterReport.com’s Mark Cook, Trevor Sikkema and yours truly in our latest audio recording. We cover a lot of bases from the health of Jamesis Winston, the play-calling of Dirk Koetter and other important topics in this week’s podcast. Here is a link to the latest Pewter Nation Podcast – Episode 41: Make The Change

If you haven’t listened to this week’s podcast yet, it’s the perfect way to enjoy your lunch on a Friday afternoon or battle rush hour traffic on your way home from work. We’ll be taping another Pewter Nation Podcast on Monday afternoon after the Bucs play the Saints. In addition to listening to the Pewter Nation Podcasts on PewterReport.com you can also subscribe to the free podcasts at PodBean by clicking here and on SoundCloud by clicking here.

• Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston really opened some eyes during Thursday’s press conference when he admitted that Tampa Bay, sitting at 2-5 after four straight losses, didn’t have an identity halfway through the season.

“We’ve got to find it,” Winston said. “Every time you add new pieces to the puzzle, you are always trying to see how you can work it. I’m ready for us to go ahead and find our identity, but I know it’s a process. At the end of the day we’ve just got to go out there and play – play our game, play our best games [and] all do our own job and try to see whatever it is.”

Um, what did the Bucs do in the offseason with OTAs and training camp? Identities shouldn’t be found. They are supposed to be forged in training camp. The fact that Winston said this was startling, and scary.

When asked if he agreed with Winston’s comment about this team not having an identity midway through the season Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said, “Yeah.” When I followed up that question and asked him why it’s taken so long to find for this team to find an identity, McCoy said he didn’t want to answer that.

That’s not good, Pewter Nation.

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• And finally, make sure to visit PewterReport.com on Saturday for our weekly Pewter Preview and Predictions column where Mark Cook, Trevor Sikkema and I reveal who we think will win the Tampa Bay vs. New Orleans game and why. It’s one of our most popular opinion columns each week, so thank you for visiting PewterReport.com on Saturdays.

 

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Scott Reynolds is in his 24th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his son's Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]
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athans5
2 years ago

SR, I think that part 2 is a major overreaction. Koetter is known around the league as one of the best play callers, why would you want to strip him of what he is best at for Todd Monken? Who is completely unproven as a play caller. Ever since Koetter has come to Tampa we have had the best offense that I have had the pleasure to watch in my many years as a Bucs fan, by far! If anything we should be worried that Koetter was being too loyal to his friend Mike Smith when we should have gone… Read more »

DonkeyHunter
2 years ago

Don’t feel bad. There were plenty of us who didn’t buy into the PR hype this season. When it was announced that we were participating on Hard Knocks, I knew the season was over before it started. A bunch of players buying into their own hype. Soft practices. Trying to look good in front of the cameras. Believing they were the media darlings, despite not accomplishing shit in 10 years. PR ate it up like the abundance of casuals roaming the boards. So, after your apologies for not “reporting it like it is” and for “overhyping the team”…your first line… Read more »

tog
tog
2 years ago
Reply to  DonkeyHunter

Where I disagree DonkeyHunter is that it’s not just about Koetter’s playcalling. Perhaps its not PRIMARILY about Koetter’s playcalling.

It takes so much to be an HC, and I think most coaches are better for focusing on that. And Koetter is a good playcaller, but there’s also reasons he get criticised for some of his decisions (3rd down, Sims, tosses, etc.)

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pinkstob
2 years ago
Reply to  DonkeyHunter

DonkeyHunter I agree with what you said for the most part. The only part I’m not sure on is whether Koetter might be part of the problem as the play caller. Winston has been inaccurate and Koetter continues to call the deep ball which is bad, but I don’t know if the OC will call a more balanced attack than Koetter. Even if you can run the ball, if your QB can’t hit wide open receivers it doesn’t matter what passing play you call because you can’t win only throwing short. Defenses will adjust. Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb DownSubmit Rating00… Read more »

Naplesfan
2 years ago

A lot of flailing around here, Scott. Bottom line is, if Koetter can’t turn it around and win most of the remaining 9 games, resulting in a 4 or 5 win season, the Glazers are going to look elsewhere for a head coach. And Jon Gruden might just be that guy. Or not. Whether Koetter calls his own plays or not is immaterial – he has to start producing wins, or he’ll be another failure at the head coaching spot in Tampa. It’s not just one thing here, it’s everything that is inconsistent and producing less than mediocre bottom line… Read more »

RootsCrew
RootsCrew
2 years ago

This is a great and depressing Fab 5. So many things have gone wrong in just 7 games it’s hard to even point to one thing. Offense, defense, clock management, in game adjustments, player rotation, execution and on and on. Maddening. I like Dirk. I like Winston. I love the playmakers we have on offense. But the disconnect on offense is disturbing to watch though. I was on board with Dirk giving up play calling at the end of last season. He specifically mentioned he might be stretched too thin to effectively call plays. As Scott mentioned, our predictability on… Read more »

Jlog
Jlog
2 years ago

Koetter play calling is not great, clock management is still questionable with him as well. I’m more concerned with him as a coach, I just don’t see him being effective. The locker room may respect him, if they down it’s not a lot though. Not holding Smith to any standards is a complete failure IMO though. Also this “we don’t have an identity” BS, really. The team doesn’t have the identity that we expect them to have with the talent we have but they certainly has an identity and it’s a consistent one. Only the coaching staff and those men… Read more »

FLBoyInDallas
2 years ago

Haven’t commented since draft season earlier this year but I’ve been reading PR every day as usual and of course following the Bucs, and let me say this: Gruden is not the answer. How quickly we forget that Gruden’s overall record in Tampa produced a mere .509 winning percentage (57-55 record). In seven years he did win the division three times, but the other four finishes consisted of two third places and two fourth places. Besides the Super Bowl year, those other two first place NFC South finishes produced first-round wild card losses. Not only that, but his trend as… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  FLBoyInDallas

100% agree; look at all the younger coaches who are winning without a QB like Brady or Brees.

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pinkstob
2 years ago
Reply to  FLBoyInDallas

Agreed

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scubog
2 years ago
Reply to  FLBoyInDallas

When criticizing the acquisition of players; shouldn’t you also consider the fact that so many premium Draft choices were given up to get Gruden in the first place?

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Horse
2 years ago

Well IRMA didn’t help at all as there is no two week reset-timeout button to go forward. I really don’t expect two more wins at best, but I hope I’m wrong. There’s not just an identity issue with the players; there’s also no solid coaching, good communication going on between coaches and players, and on going teaching player’s isn’t happening either. No contact at practices during pre-season was a surprise for me, and does answers some of my questions as to what happened with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. What I see so far is an inexperience head coach not learning… Read more »

martinii
2 years ago

Really some good honest and realistic insights Scott. Don’t feel like the lone ranger, the vast amount of Buc Fans and many respectable analyst predicted they would have a good season in view of their 9-7 record and weapons for Jameis acquisitions. After 50 years of watching and playing football I can tell you I cannot predict nor even come close to determining what a team will actually accomplish in terms of Wins and Losses during any given season. The long used axioms, “On any given Sunday, and Thats why they play the game,” are alive and well and have… Read more »

Mic
Mic
2 years ago

Everything that was said about the bad adjustments playcalling and defensive specialization I called for it since the Arizona game. It’s dumb and we’re both right it doesn’t give the players time to feel it out and set up moves or catch on to tendencies. One thing I disagree with is running Martin because you can look back through the film and see how obvious it is when it’s a run the formations the pre snap motion defensive players can see this and this is why we have a lot of one yard gains and losses but that occasional 10… Read more »

WinstonMVP
2 years ago

Way Too early to be saying Koetter needs to give up play calling. Hard to get in any groove when we cant complete any third down conversions. A lot of that falls on Winston’s slow starts. He just seems to take for ever to get rolling. That’s hurting alot. And our offense has had some high scoring games already. Just way too early to give up play calling. If it’s still a problem next year than I could see Koetter giving up play calling. IMO GO BUCS!!! Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb DownSubmit Rating00 No votes yet. Please wait...

Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  WinstonMVP

What does it matter who calls the plays? What matters is points on the board, and Ws in the W-L column. It’s Koetter’s responsibility to decide how and who calls the plays. Maybe Moncken isn’t a good play caller – nobody can say he’s ever done it effectively in the NFL before. Or maybe he is a good play-caller. Either way, it’s Koetter’s responsibility to git’er done. And right now, Koetter’s not gittin’ er done. That has to change, or the Glazers are going to have to take action to git’er done. Rate this item:Thumb UpThumb DownSubmit Rating00 No votes… Read more »

surferdudes
2 years ago

Too many “whys”, in this article, and no answers in sight. If Licht, Koetter, the Glazers themselves knew how to fix this mess, they’d have been doing so. Every press conference, the same questions are asked about this team, and we get the same we need to do better all around spiel. That may be true, but nothing changes that might make that happen. You can’t pry the play calling away from Koetter, Smitty is staying in the press box, we keep rotating players, nothing has changed, nothing will change. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over,… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  surferdudes

surferdudes, agree with you.

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Mike.Seven
2 years ago

I want to go on record before Sundays game, Koetter was not great choice for coach but has made some strides, The problem is the defence is being asked to spend to much time on field due to fumbles, punts, Ints open receivers being missed, and on this site no one wants to blame the QB. This site assumes he is great franchise QB with bad team and coach. However, in 2 quarters Fitz lit up the field with points TD and yards using the same team. There will be excuse Monday JW is hurt shoulder, my point let the… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Mike.Seven

Mike.Seven; you make good points and I do agree with some of it, but during Fitz time on the field the game was over and the other teams defense was playing softer coverages

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Mike.Seven
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

Understand 2nd half they were in more prevent, however, I sure liked the way ball hit receivers in the numbers and open receivers were found so often.

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  Mike.Seven

If Winston can play he should. If he can’t, he shouldn’t. That’s up to the medical staff.

Whether Fitz will do better or not, that’s impossible to say unless he is asked to take over.

I don’t believe that anyone is making excuses, Koetter, Winston, or anyone else associated with the team. Everybody on the Bucs agrees that the performance to date is bad and must get better. Talk is cheap. We need to see improvement or nothing else matters.

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Naplesfan

Naplesfan, Agree with you.

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Buc 1976
2 years ago

Koetter should be here next year no matter his record. He does not throw the ball nor catch the ball. As far as the assistant coaches go many will probably be let go.
The person to look at maybe Licht GM earn their pay by finding talent in the 4th to 7th rounds he has not done so. If we look at some good teams they find some talent in those rounds.

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Buc76
2 years ago

Its already too late. Koetter is not an NFL Head Coach. Its obvious. Someone I work with said this team has no soul and they are right. Its a lifeless team. Not inspired. Its beyond play calls and the clock. these guys are just collecting paychecks. they do not care if they win or lose. This has been going on the last 9 years.

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Buc76

Buc76; not sure yet. I’m going to wait until after these next two games.

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Buc 1976
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

Horse this season started with a bye because of IRMA. That was a game that could have played on Thursday! But because of network contracts was NOT. The Bucs IMO would have won that game and the Bears game a week later.
And who knows after that but the moral I think would have been much better with 2 wins under their belt.

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Buc 1976

I can’t disagree with those thoughts, but I thought we were focused at the Bears game and it gave me no reason to doubt we were in trouble. Not sure if the Coaches know how to coach out of this mess. Surprised no trades were made last week? I sure would have sent some kind of message to the team as a wake up call.

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stlbucsfan
2 years ago

Great Fab 5, I agree the soft training camp was probably the recipe for disaster on this team. The offense didn’t face real competition in practice so it makes sense why the timing is not good and things are inconsistent. We had guys playing flag football all summer now when they get hit in the mouth THIS team doesn’t know how to respond. There are new players starting at virtually every level of the team that are facing real competition for the first time as a unit during the season. Teams bond and find out a lot about themselves during… Read more »

surferdudes
2 years ago

Koetter thought the whole preseason was about finding out who your back ups were going to be. His admission, he didn’t know how to approach the games, because winning didn’t matter. He admitted he didn’t game plan. I don’t see why he couldn’t do both. Yeah you got to find out who your back ups are going to be, but your main goal should be getting your starters ready when it does count. Koetter clearly has failed at that, slow starts, no physicality, on either side of the ball from a soft no contact training camp. I get he didn’t… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  surferdudes

Surferdudes, I hear you for sure and agree on most what you are saying. I’m waiting to see what happens these next two games. I’m waiting to see how many players step forward so we know who to release, cut, trade when the season ends; same for Coaching, GM too. There’s got to be some major progress here in winning now!

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bEubanks11
2 years ago
Reply to  surferdudes

I said the same things weeks ago. Being reminded of the timid training camp solidifies the view I have of Koetters mentality which is that he plays the game not to lose until he’s forced to play to win. I get that he doesn’t want to squander his first head coaching job and wants to protect it. That’s back firing badly. Time to lay it on the table Dirk and your players will follow!

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pinkstob
2 years ago

I’ve been waiting for this article. SR’s unrealistic insight and analysis has really turned me off of PR over the years. I can’t remember when it started but I typically read the title of the article and if it’s full of hyperbole and unearned hype then I haven’t been reading them. I hope this Fab 5 is the start of a return to insight and analysis based on the facts that brought me to PR in the first place over 10 years ago. I thought it was a pretty good article except there is one assumption almost everyone is making… Read more »

pinkstob
2 years ago
Reply to  pinkstob

BTW, all of this criticism I am directing at talent is a direct condemnation of Licht’s work as the GM. He needs to be gone after this season is over.

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  pinkstob

Pinkstop; hard not to agree with what you are saying. I’m not ready yet to fire the cannons until these next two games are done.

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  pinkstob

23 teams passed on Aaron Rodgers in the 2005 draft. Hindsight is always 20/20, and the cheapest kind of sight one can have. And Cadillac Williams won rookie of the year, and performed great until he got injured. No coach or GM can possibly predict injuries. Everybody was patting the Vikings guys on the head for getting such a great deal by taking Dalvin Cook in the second round. He looked fabulous for the first month of the season, and then wham! Out on IR. Ditto with all the declarations of genius bestowed upon the Texans for taking DeShaun Watson… Read more »

bEubanks11
2 years ago

Horse, you crack me up with how you get stuck on a saying and then end every post that way. What is the relevance of the next 2 games exactly? And Pink, I get that you’re angry man. I said last week that there’s got to be something more productive for me to do with my Sundays than to be wasting 3 hours watching this sh!t show. But to say there isn’t tremendous talent on this team is inaccurate. It’s the lack of refinement and use of talent that’s the killer. These players are not being put in position to… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  bEubanks11

beubanks; can’t disagree with you about my draw out as to what I know is going to happen, but I’m like many Buc Fans I still have some hope something good will happen. Once our 9th game is over we will be well into the season. If we are 2-7 by then, it’s surely over and any win after that means nothing, but losses in obtaining higher draft picks.

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scubog
2 years ago

We here in Bucville always know how to place blame when the losses begin to pile up. Here we cite predictable play calling when most of us couldn’t even diagram even the simplest one. We blame the General Manager for failed player acquisitions albeit more typically after the results are known. We blame the Head Coach for not getting the team ready when most of the players earn more than he does and shouldn’t need prompting. We blame the Defensive scheme when most of us have no idea what any of the terms even mean and certainly have no clue… Read more »

pinkstob
2 years ago
Reply to  scubog

I disagree with you for the most part on this one Scubog. Most football websites nowadays, including PR, offer offensive and defensive play breakdowns. TS does it with a fair amount of regularity with this Cover 3 articles. What better time is there for blaming the GM’s player acquisitions than after the results are known? Should we be calling for the GM to be fired before the results are known? The head coach is paid to get the team ready; it’s in his job description. If the players didn’t need prompting all we would need are coordinators and position coaches.… Read more »

bEubanks11
2 years ago
Reply to  pinkstob

I love the fire and heart and accountability you feel for this team Pink. You are a true fan to believe you are a part of this organization as I do as well. But to think that we can affect the buccaneers draft plans by watching more college film is a little far fetched. The organization has employees that they pay a lot of money to figure that out. These people have jobs just like we all do. I know for a fact they couldn’t do my job and I’m not for a second believing that I could do theirs.… Read more »

scubog
2 years ago
Reply to  bEubanks11

In my case, I do know about contractors, but I get your point. My point was to include ourselves as part of the problem with our favorite team’s psyche. There’s just little passion for this team nowadays. Even in the old days folks would complain about yet another loss. Now, no one seems to really care. No longer do I go to work on Mondays and hear, “What happened to the Bucs?” I actually miss that.

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  scubog

The Bucs fan base has ALWAYs been dominated by a combination of fair weather fans and the “ticket brokers” who gladly buy season tickets simply to sell them off to the enemy. It’s always been that way. People in Florida simply do not have the longstanding sports culture that northern cities do. Even perennial losers like Cleveland still have rabid fans and sell their tickets mostly to the home crowd. Perennial winners like New England or Green Bay, you better be the son or daughter of a lifetime season ticket holder, because inheriting those tickets is the only way you’ll… Read more »

Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  Naplesfan

Correction – “Peyton”

I threw up a little in my throat while writing that last paragraph above

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  scubog

Scubog Yes, once again I admit i called McCoy a bust after two years of injuries. I was wrong like I have said numerous times. Yu pretty much play it safe in your writings. Yes I speak out; sometimes too soon like many fans and yes we aren’t coaches or past professional players. I’m waiting until after our 9th game because if we can’t beat the Jets, then we have to go back to the drawing board. As to the fans who aren’t attending the games, but are still fans; accept the thought many don’t want to sit in the… Read more »

scubog
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

I never mentioned your name Horse. You weren’t the only one down on McCoy.

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surferdudes
2 years ago

Scu, I’m sure the fans would’ve been into the game if the team gave them something to cheer about. The stands would’ve been full if we were riding a winning streak instead of a losing one. Can’t blame people for not wanting to spend good money on season tickets for a team that’s been flailing along for the last 10 years. As far as player acquisitions, and the draft, most weren’t happy drafting a kicker in the 2nd round, letting guys like Penn, or Bennett go, and myself, and Horse have been calling for building in the trenches for years.… Read more »

EastEndBoy
2 years ago

I find it hard to blame Koetter – the mistakes our players are making are not what he’s (or their college coaches for that matter were) teaching them. I can find blame in Smith for sticking with a system that relies on the weakest aspect of the players he has (1-on-1 pass rush). But most of all Licht’s neglect of the two lines is criminal for a GM…that’s got to be GM 101, and he’s failed it miserably. Not a single 1st rounder or top-tier FA on either line in his whole tenur – a recipe for disaster. He also… Read more »

Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  EastEndBoy

SMH Guys like you claim that Licht “neglected the two lines”, which is complete balderdash. The entire O-line that we have was brought in by Licht, using both high draft picks and expensive free agents. Other than McCoy, the entire D-line was brought in by Licht, and he’s made multiple high draft picks (2nd round counts as “high”) and expensive free agent acquisitions, every year he’s been here. And, uhhh, we had many needs beyond the lines. Virtually 100% of all Bucs fans agreed that quarterback, receivers, tight ends, linebackers, and defensive secondary were ALL top needs too. One can… Read more »

EastEndBoy
2 years ago
Reply to  Naplesfan

SMH Our best OLineman was brought in by Dominik. And if Licht hadn’t cut him, our second best OLineman would still be a Dominik pickup. Our best DLineman was brought in by Dominik…as was one of our starting DE. Who is this amazing high priced talent Licht brought in…Cousins? Collins? Johnson? Johnson? .. Just bringing in cast offs is not particularly helpful. If you want to give the guy credit, that’s fine, but find somebody on the roster that he should actually be able to count as a win…Cameron Brate…but no, there is nobody on either line that he can… Read more »

EastEndBoy
2 years ago
Reply to  EastEndBoy

…in the 1st round or FA….yes Marpet in round 2 is a win.

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damian_thompson
2 years ago

Scott, LONG time reader/subscriber of PR and LOVE these articles. Your writing and analysis is deep & well thought out… (ready for it?) most of the time. BUT, you have to get off this soapbox about hitting in preseason being a big cause of their poor play in regular season. This team is mismanaged, underprepared, & lacks accountability, ALL true. But the no contact preseason = sloppy tackling regular season argument fails in week one. By the logic of lack of tackling drills and contact in preseason then week one would be the worst example of this, but it wasn’t.… Read more »