FAB 5. SR’s Buc Shots

• It’s no surprise that the Buccaneers signed former Carolina and Detroit defensive end Larry Webster III to the practice squad this week. Webster fits the mold that defensive line coach Jay Hayes likes in his players – tall and long. At 6-foot-6, 275 pounds, Webster is identical in size to new defensive end Will Clarke IV, who is also 6-foot-6, 275 pounds. Clarke was drafted under Hayes at Cincinnati where he spent the last four seasons prior to coming to Tampa Bay after the final roster cuts.

In Cincinnati, Hayes had several big and tall defensive ends in Clarke, Carlos Dunlap (6-6, 280), Michael Johnson (6-7, 280) and Margus Hunt (6-8, 298). Now he has four ends that are 6-foot-5 or taller in Clarke, Webster, Ryan Russell (6-5, 275) and Will Gholston (6-6, 281).

Webster, whose father, Larry II, was a defensive lineman from 1992-2002 with Miami, Cleveland, Baltimore and the New York Jets, played basketball at Bloomsburg, a Division II school, for four years where he set the school record for blocks with 175. Webster averaged 11.1 points and 7.5 rebounds per game over his career and played football from 2012-13 where he recorded 88 tackles, 31 tackles for loss and 26 sacks, including a school-record 13.5 in 2012.

Webster, who only spent one year and one preseason on the Panthers’ active roster, didn’t see the field much in Carolina as he struggled to adjust to playing against better completion. He recorded just one sack, which came in the preseason this August. Webster came out of college weighing 252 pounds and running a 4.58 in the 40-yard dash, which was the second-fastest 40 time in the draft for defensive ends behind Jadeveon Clowney. The Lions drafted Webster in the fourth round in 2014.


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• Tampa Bay rookie tight end Antony Auclair was active for his first NFL game on Thursday night against New England. He played mostly on special teams, but did get one snap on offense, which was on running back Doug Martin’s 1-yard touchdown plunge.

“It was such a great feeling,” Auclair said. “I’m one-for-one!”

• I’ll admit it. The new Pewter Nation Podcast might be our funniest one yet, Pewter Nation. Hilarity ensues as PewterReport.com’s Mark Cook, Trevor Sikkema and yours truly delve into the Bucs vs. Cardinals match-ups, talk about new Irish kicker Pat Murray and start talking about Irish stuff like Gaelic Football, Guinness and Lucky Charms cereal, which might come in handy on Friday the 13th. Here is a link to the latest Pewter Nation Podcast – Episode 35: Luck of the Irish vs. the Buccaneer Curse.

If you haven’t listened to yet, do so on your lunch hour or on your way home from work. We’ll be taping another Pewter Nation Podcast Sunday night after the Bucs play the Cardinals in Arizona. 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.

 

• Tampa Bay’s offense has made big strides to start the 2017 season, ranking sixth in the NFL in total offense (374 yards per game) and passing yards (288 yards per game). Although the Bucs have the 27th rushing attack in the league (88 yards per game) that will likely change for the better with the return of running back Doug Martin.

“When you look at it statistically, we have improved,” said Bucs wide receiver Adam Humphries. “There are a lot of areas – offensively, special teams-wise, and defensively we are top 10 or top 5 in the whole NFL. It’s impressive. With the players we have there is a lot of potential. Overall wins and losses, we need to capitalize late in games to win the game. Statistically, we are doing well so far.

Bucs TE Cameron Brate and QB Jameis Winston - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Bucs TE Cameron Brate and QB Jameis Winston – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

The one area where the Bucs really need to improve is points scored. Tampa Bay is currently ranked 17th in the league, averaging 21.2 points per game, and ranked 18th with a 22.1 points per game average. In 2015 when the Bucs had the fifth-ranked offense, the Bucs were ranked 20th in the NFL, averaging 21.4 points per game. Scoring 21 or 22 points per game wasn’t good enough to get Tampa Bay into the playoffs over the last two years. The Bucs will need to get their scoring up to fulfill their postseason aspirations.

• Tampa Bay’s defense needs to pick up the pace in a couple of areas, such as completion percentage and sacks, as the Bucs have only generated four after posting nine through four games in 2016. Tampa Bay’s defense allowed opposing quarterbacks to complete just 60 percent of their passes for 1,077 yards last year. This year, the Bucs defense has surrendered 1,261 yards and allowed a 69.5 percent completion percentage.

But through four games, there has been some improvement from a year ago, too. The Bucs have 23 quarterback pressures as compared to 18 from a year ago, have three interceptions this year compared to one at this juncture last year, in addition to having one more pass breakup (17) than the team did in 2016.

Tampa Bay has also forced three fumbles and recovered two, which is an improvement over a year ago when the Bucs had just one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in four games.

Tampa Bay also has only allowed seven passing touchdowns as opposed to nine through four games a year ago, and has only surrendered 83 points, which is a big improvement from the 114 it allowed in the first quarter of the 2016 campaign.

• We are well on our way to 28,000 Twitter followers for our @PewterReport Twitter account thanks to you, Pewter Nation! If you want to stay current on the latest Bucs news, observations from the PewterReport.com staff, reports from Bucs press conferences and notifications of the latest PewterReport.com stories, I encourage you to join the other members of Pewter Nation and 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.

• Football season is well under way, and the place to buy Bucs gear, college football apparel and gear for the NHL and NBA is Fanatics.com. When you make those purchases through the link below, you’ll be supporting our efforts here at PewterReport.com at the same time! PewterReport.com has partnered Fanatics.com, the leader in sports apparel and fan gear and receives a commission from each sale made through our site.

You might have seen the red Bucs Gear tab on PewterReport.com’s menu bar at the top of the website. Clicking on that link or any Fanatics.com banner on PewterReport.com, including the one to the right contributes to the continued development of our website.

Fanatics- NFL_TampaBay_Buccaneers_300x250Now you know where to go if you are looking to buy a new DeSean Jackson or O.J. Howard Bucs jersey. And remember this when it comes to the holiday shopping season, too. Visit PewterReport.com first then click on the Bucs Gear tab.

We appreciate your support, Pewter Nation. It’s help like this that continues to fund our efforts to provide you with the best Bucs coverage on the Internet.

• And finally, if you are ever in an accident or are injured due to someone else’s negligence, there’s only one person to call – attorney Jim Holliday of the Holliday Karatinos Law Firm, which is the official personal injury law firm of PewterReport.com.

I’ve known Holliday for years and he’s a personal friend of mine. He’s an incredibly knowledgeable, personable attorney and I highly recommend him. He’s a big Bucs fan, too. Check out the video below for more information on his practice. Call Holliday for a free consultation at (813) 868-1887 or visit the Holliday Karatinos Law Firm on the web at HelpingInjuredPeople.com

 

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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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Horse
2 years ago

Why is most of your Article about the Offense and it’s the Defense which is clearly the main concern? Our offense is fine as long as Koetter utilizes all the tools he has and lets Winston loosen up with some short easy 5 yard passes with hooks and comebacks to help get him in sync. The Defense is a whole other story. We’re short on healthy DE’s from the get go and we don’t seem to put enough pressure to actually force the QB to throw earlier than planned; usually the QB has plenty of time and then some to… Read more »

macabee
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

Horse, I share your sentiment, but as you know the kind of DE help you describe is not walking around out there. The Bucs have heard you. They’re trying to get DE help as DE Ryan Russell is hurt and will be MIA for a few weeks. They brought in Lamarr Houston for a look, but no deal, signed with Texans. There is DE Owa Odighizuwa, but he is coming off a 3 game PED suspension. Was a highly rated DE coming out of UCLA as 3rd pick, but has been released several times – worked out for the Pats,… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  macabee

Macabee, thank you. It’s hard for me to let this go especially when Coach Smith isn’t taking more responsibility about his pass rush. I didn’t realize there were so many DE’s on the PS; I hope it’s a revolving door and we luck out and find someone. What’s your thoughts on Alexander, David, Ward, Russell actually being Active on Sunday?

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macabee
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

No harm Horse, just a devoted Buc fan that wants to win. I get it! Re LBs Alexander and David are back at practice although limited. I think David plays, Kwon a game time decision because of the excellent play of stand-in MLB Kendell Beckwith. LB Adarius Glanton is also playing at a high level. I’m not too worried about LBs our deepest position. Aside from CB Grimes, I’m a little concerned about cagey old QB Carson Palmer picking on the other CBs especially if they play off their man. Let’s hope VHIII has a good game. Here is Greg… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  macabee

Macabee; Thank you, I always enjoy your posts. I am a loyal fan since 1976, but I also know how difficult it is in the NFL to win. We need some luck at times and not wait for it to happen; sometimes we have to show we aren’t predictable in the game both on offense & defense. I know it’s easier to say than do. Surprised Marpet has an injury. I’ll keep an eye on Clark, thank you for the info.

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

Horse, I beg to differ with you on the current state of offense vs. defense. On offense, we may be top 10 in yards, but the scoreboard doesn’t count yards, only points. Being 17th in PPG is not sufficient given the offensive talent we have. We should be well up in the top 10 in points scored, but we’re far from it. The thing about piling up yards is that many or most of them seem to come in the second half or fourth quarter, as we’re scrambling to catch up. Just as it was last week vs. the Patriots… Read more »

Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Naplesfan

Naplesfan, I hear you. I thought Pats had a good game plan: don’t make it an offensive contest when you don’t have to. Arizona will play the same way. This is the reason why I am suggesting to give Winston more short pass options in the beginning; Brady does it all the time. Do I think we are going to win? Yes I do. The reason is I don’t believe we will be out coached on offense and defense 2 games in a row. It’s the good to great coaches who adapt to the players they have for each game.… Read more »

Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  Naplesfan

Totally agree with you. People keep using yards to illustrate how effective Winston is. Bottom line- he does not put the ball in the end zone enough. It’s not just on JW, Koetter desires some blame as well. I think our defense plays ABOVE it’s talent level and our offense plays BELOW it’s talent. That falls on both JW and DK.

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Horse
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

I agree with that analysis.

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

Yup, Bucnut. My analysis of the offense is not focused on Winston, though he is the leader and most important member of the offense. Last week it was a combination of his off target throws, dropped passes (inexplicably by Cam Brate, of all people!), not running Martin enough (that’s on Coach Koetter), penalties (that killer penatly by Gholston .. geez that was horrible). Just a lot of things not clicking on the offense for three of the four quarters. That’s not the kind of performance that anybody should settle for, let alone celebrate by pointing to total yards gained, but… Read more »

Jake from state farm
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

I don’t know what games you’ve been watching, but the defense has been doing their job. Regardless of who’s playing and who’s not playing. They just limited Tom fuckin Brady to 14 points while Winston played like a rookie, as he has all season long. This is going on 10 games now, including preseason, that he looks like crap. He had a messily 100 yards going into the fourth quarter against a garbage defense. The two glaring issues he still hasn’t improved on are the two more important traits for a QB: accuracy and decision making. How the hell do… Read more »

Bucnut2
2 years ago

you are spot on! D- is not the problem. It’s the offense and our “franchise QB”!

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Glen Davies
2 years ago

Another thing about JW is his play action has really slipped since last season. There’s 6-12″ air showing. He still doesn’t look off his receivers. His coach has 2 players !! 1st three games, like yrs past, we ran on 1st down approx 3/4 time. 4th game, we actually passed on 1st down in 1st quarter. BUT, w/o play action. This is Pop Warner stuff. I really appreciate all the articles and the comments. My nephew and I have a bet on Cardinal game as he lives in Az. We’ll meet o’er Thankgiviang. I can taste my gin/tonic already Aloha… Read more »

ryan24
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

D held the Pats to 19 points. That was a game on the Offense in general and QB in particular.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  Horse

horse- I agree with some of your comments, but here are some facts. 1- the Bucs have spent a ton of money and draft picks to buy “weapons for Winston” at the expense of investing in the defense. The D- is playing fairly well given the talent level and investment. The offense is 26th in the league in scoring. In my mind this is ALL on the offense, Koetter and Winston. They just have not delivered, period. The reason I am not optimistic about this team is because I don’t believe that Winston is an elite QB. He is an… Read more »

Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

I meant to say that we have the look of an 8-8 team. I have a question for PR and any other posters. Please name me 2 Winston signature wins. He’s been here 2 1/4 years and I can think of 1. On the other hand, I can think of 5 blown end of game opportunities. Is that elite QB play?

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cgmaster27
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

He has 7 game winning drives and just one last week! But as usual, you’re invisible from the boards after those games. You’re trying too hard at this point, just pick another team.

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cgmaster27
2 years ago
Reply to  cgmaster27

two weeks ago I meant.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  cgmaster27

Sorry that’s just wrong. Look at his pedestrian play during the winning streak last year. In the two biggest games of the year at Dallas and NO he was horrible

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cgmaster27
2 years ago
Reply to  cgmaster27

Just wrong? How do, because t doesn’t fit your trolling? You asked for two games I gave you 7 and then you want to focus on your specific two games. One of them when our right guard was getting thrown around like a rag doll. Jameis isn’t going anywhere get used to it or get a new team.

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Buc 1976
2 years ago

Speaking of DE has anyone head Gholston name called in a game this year? I know he is not counted on for sacks but I have not heard his name on a running play.
He really needs to step up IMO.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  Buc 1976

not his role

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gafikdetail
2 years ago

just goes to show turnovers & explosives are important but scoring & making your damn kicks is the most important

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inspecto
2 years ago

I would really love to see Winston hit some guys ON THE RUN. Lets get some YAC !!
Like the one ball to Desean last week. YAC baby YAC.

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inspecto
2 years ago
Reply to  inspecto

And Martin needs at least 20 touches a game.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago

We need to start using the phrase OVER RATED to talk about Winston. MOST of hi stat come in garbage time. Bottom line, he is a GREAT leader, but average QB. All Bucs fan should get ready for an Andy Dalton type of career for Winston.

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cgmaster27
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

Bucnut, you are such a clown.He hasn’t been perfect, but you were invisible as usual after games like he had against the Giants. You can’t wait to throw complaints and bitch very sub par game he has. Move on already.
And statements like your last one are clear troll attempts that fail.
Average QB is your boy down in Tennesse, who probably won’t play again this week.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  cgmaster27

Look at some facts, like his QB rating. go back and look at the games, which I have and he picks up a lot of his yards during garbage time. The guy is an ok QB, GREAT leader but NOT someone who can carry a team on his back. My point is that we need to forget about more weapons on offense and build a GREAT D, get a GREAT RB and O-line and turn JW into a game manger. We should limit his decision making, have him hand off a lot, and use play action with the great tight… Read more »

XpfcWintergreen
2 years ago

Here I am chiming in from the back of the train again. I am late to the party again. Maybe someone will read this on Saturday. :-J I just listened here on the internet to the last couple of sessions Dirk had with the press. Here are a few thoughts to throw out. ________________ On the game against the Cards: Mike Evans will do much better against Patrick Peterson this year. The 100+ yards from DeSean Jackson bodes well for this week. Also, we now have four receivers with 200+ yards in the first four games. This is a first… Read more »

Alldaway 2.0
2 years ago

Winston is fine. People are seeing what they want to believe and not what is in front of them. Winston’s progress is remarkable given the circumstances.

People saying defense isn’t an issue are ignoring the Bucs pass defense is ranked 31st in the NFL and total defense is 30th. Bucs are also ranked 32nd in the NFL in terms of sacks with four. The 31st ranked team (Jets) have seven sacks.

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Jake from state farm
2 years ago
Reply to  Alldaway 2.0

He’s not fine. That’s the thing! The people who are looking at it realistically, and not with bias can see exactly what the issue is here. Winston is holding this team back. There are no excuses for his play this year. All the weapons he has, the oline has done a good job of keeping him clean and giving him time to find open receivers, and the defense has kept games manageable for him to win the game for us. He just hasn’t done it. We should’ve blown out the Giants and the Pats, but Winston barely got it done… Read more »

Bucnut2
2 years ago

you are spot on. An average NFL QB( think Case Keenum) with these weapons would be putting up 28+points per week

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Naplesfan
2 years ago
Reply to  Alldaway 2.0

Bucs D is 14th ranked in points against, which is the ONLY meaningful stat for defenses. Bucs O is ranked 17th in points for, and that is the ONLY meaningful stat for offenses.

Ws and Ls are the only meangful statf for teams, and points for being more than points against, game after game, is what delivers Ws. Everything else is just explanation for the points for and against., and fodder for internet argument.

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ryan24
2 years ago

“Winston already has had three consecutive 300-yard games over the past three weeks”

….and played poorly to below average in two of them. It’s not just numbers.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  ryan24

Right- he gets most of his stats in garbage time.

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cgmaster27
2 years ago
Reply to  Bucnut2

It’s good to see the WInston haters in full force stroking each others comments.

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Bucnut2
2 years ago
Reply to  cgmaster27

I have no hate for JW. If he starts playing like an elite QB, I’ll be leading the parade in saying so. At this point, he is nothing more than an average NFL QB

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