In one of the craziest days in the history of the franchise, the Bucs beat the Jets 28-24 on Sunday. Two players had a private flight delayed and didn’t get there until noon, Antonio Brown quit on the team and left in the third quarter, and the Bucs didn’t have their first lead of the game until 15 seconds remained. It was a highlight play as well, as Tom Brady hit Cyril Grayson Jr. for the go-ahead touchdown.

Here are the most disappointing players and moments from the game.

WR Antonio Brown

I say this with no hyperbole: this was one of the most bizarre things I have ever seen in football. Brown straight-up quit on his team and left the field early in the third quarter. Following an outburst, Brown tossed his shoulder pads to the seat, threw his undershirt and gloves into the stands, then walked shirtless to the end zone. He waved to the crowd before heading into the tunnel. That’s his last game with Tampa Bay. Bruce Arians said after the game that Brown is no longer a Buc. I’ve never seen a player just leave in the middle of a game, especially while the offense was on the field. Brown’s tenure with the Bucs was a wild ride.

Bucs Coaching Staff

Bruce Arians, Byron Leftwich and Todd Bowles should all shoulder some blame for a lackluster performance in the Bucs’ win. Arians had some questionable decisions, especially late in the game. He decided to kick a field goal to make it a 24-20 game instead of going for it deep in Jets territory. You still needed a touchdown anyway, and if you don’t convert there, the Jets are still backed up in their own territory. Arians also made a puzzling decision to go for two after getting the go-ahead touchdown with 15 seconds remaining. They converted it on a Le’Veon Bell run, but had he been stopped, then the Bucs would only have a two-point lead. Meanwhile, the Jets still had two timeouts and needed just a field goal to win rather than a tie.

Leftwich runs an offense that has little creativity and can be predictable at times. The Bucs rely heavily on their talent winning battles because they are more skilled. But the offense wasn’t winning their matchups due to so many injuries. Leftwich constantly ran the ball on first down without much success. He continued to do that even with Ronald Jones out of the game. There hasn’t been enough play action or finding other ways to get their best players the ball either.

Bowles had another game where the blitzing wasn’t getting home and the Bucs continued to play soft coverage. Zach Wilson hasn’t had the best rookie season, but he was carving up the Bucs in the opening half. They couldn’t get off the field on third down and their once intimidating run defense has crumbled lately. I understand that the Bucs were without important players on defense, but the Jets were missing even more and moved the ball down the field easily.

Bucs Run Defense

There have been multiple failures by the Bucs run defense of late. They’ve been the best run-stopping defense over the last three seasons, yet they didn’t look like it on Sunday. The Jets gouged the Bucs in the ground game, to the tune of 150 yards on 26 attempts. The worst part of it all was that Jets ran on them from beginning to end. It started when Michael Carter ripped off a 55-yard run on their first drive, right after the Bucs made it a 4-point game late. New York moved all the way down the field mainly running it down the Bucs’ throats. Make no mistake about it, Tampa Bay got the stop on fourth-and-2 because the QB sneak was a bad play call. The Bucs didn’t do anything special.

LB Kevin Minter

A big reason why the Bucs couldn’t stop the run was because Minter was missing tackles. Minter looked slow and a step behind on many plays. Even after the defensive line would get a good push up front, Minter wasn’t there to clean it up and get the stop. It was the same in his pass coverage as well. The Bucs sure do miss Lavonte David. Minter finished the game with five tackles.

C Ryan Jensen

Bucs fans love Jensen for his aggressive nature, and it’s usually a good thing for Tampa Bay. It wasn’t in this case, though, as Jensen was penalized for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on the Bucs’ first drive of the second half. It set them up with a third-and-20, essentially ending the Bucs chances of scoring on the opening drive. Jensen knows that he’s a target for the refs and can’t put himself in those situations.

CB Pierre Desir

Desir got some extended playing time due to Jamel Dean and Sean Murphy-Bunting’s wild ride to the stadium today. With a huge opportunity in front of him, he didn’t deliver. Desir had a really bad missed tackle that would have been a tackle-for-loss on a run play. Also, he was picked on in the passing game as well. He recorded five tackles on the afternoon.

P Sterling Hofrichter 

It was his second game as the punter for the Bucs, and in three punting opportunities, Hofrichter didn’t kick the ball particularly well on two of them. Kicking from the 48, he barely got the ball inside the 20, landing at the 17. Then he had the whole field ahead of him on his next kick and only punted it 39 yards. Not the best game for the interim Bucs punter with Bradley Pinion out.

Share On Socials

About the Author: Matt Matera

Subscribe
Notify of
32 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Knightrider79
Knightrider79
5 months ago

Too many times this year we’ve seen this team play flat, uninspired football. That is a direct reflection on this coaching staff. When Brady’s tenure is done in Tampa Bay I would suggest that the Bruce Arians tenure be done as well. For having the biggest staff in the NFL they sure can’t make adjustments very well. The game plans they have are uninspiring to say the least.

Spitfire
Spitfire
Reply to  Knightrider79
5 months ago

Arians won’t be staying after Brady leaves anyways, despite any fans suggestions. And, he’s not the ones calling the plays. If anything Leftwich needs to wake up.

Spitfire
Spitfire
Reply to  Spitfire
5 months ago

The way we play during the season compared to the playoffs, I seriously suspect Bowles and Leftwich agreed to both play basic as long as they are winning games for the sole purpose of changing it up in the playoffs and lighting things up and giving teams no tape to work off of. Honestly, that’s the only way I would be ok with their decisions. They refuse to adjust except for the post season, it’s strange. Bowles needs to know when to pull back the blitz and leave guys in coverage, blitzing every down is not special, QBs know how… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Knightrider79
5 months ago

NFL coach’s job is not to inspire players. That is 100% on the players themselves, never the coaches. These players aren’t Pop Warner kids, and they aren’t teen aged high schoolers or college players either. They’re all men, professionals all, in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. If they don’t play inspired, then they’re simply not doing their jobs. Per the best coach in NFL history: “Just do your damned job!” Besides, how much more “inspiration” are you looking for in a road game up north in the cold, besides making a game winning stop by the defense on 4th down… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Naplesfan
drdneast
drdneast
5 months ago

I may be wrong but I didn’t see the Bucs blitz much at all in the first half and not much more in the second. Like teams did in the first half of the season, the Jets mainly threw short timing patterns during the entire game. Hard to see you critisize BA when his decisions turned out to work for the win. Going for a TD in that situation where we got the FG with the way Lefty calls play is like slitting your wrists. And finally it’s about time you realized the limitations of Lefty. His biggest weakness is… Read more »

Knightrider79
Knightrider79
Reply to  drdneast
5 months ago

No sir, the decision by the Jets to do a QB sneak on 4th and 2 won us the game. BA had nothing to do with that. My son who lives in New York texted me after the game and said “Tom Brady vs. the Jets” and I couldn’t say anything because he was right.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Knightrider79
5 months ago

Right, the coaches don’t win games, players win games. However, that was not the point made by drdneast, which is that you can’t seriously criticize the coach of a NFL team that just won a tough road game up north in the cold. Matera didn’t like the decision to go for a field goal .. well, Matera can go find himself a real NFL team, and get the general manager to hire him as head coach, and then he gets to make his own decisions. His job is not to pretend that he’s a real coach. The decision by Coach… Read more »

Pete Wood
Pete Wood
5 months ago

I liked the two point conversion. No risk it, you know. That took guts and it worked.

drdneast
drdneast
Reply to  Pete Wood
5 months ago

I agree with you. I’m sure BA remembered that Colts game where they ran the ball back 7o yards and didn’t want to get into an OT game in New York. Like I said, hard to throw darts at the coach when all of his decisions were successul. Only in PR land.

cgmaster27
cgmaster27
5 months ago

Uninspiring scheme and constant runs up the gut on first down from Leftwich? Shocker. But im sure Nipples will rave of his brilliance.

chefboho
chefboho
Reply to  cgmaster27
5 months ago

Of course he will. That’s what the clown does. Defends this staff and puts it in the players because coaches don’t make mistakes in his eyes. Leftys play calling is pretty damn vanilla. There’s no scheming our guys open. It’s just letting the talent work. It can’t always happen so easily with all these injuries.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  chefboho
5 months ago

Of course you being the King of the Beclowned would agree with the other clown that our Bucs coaches are so stupid that they merely won a road game in the NFL in the cold, late in the season. I’m sure you and the brilliant cg master of nothing would have done far better than that, such as by scoring a thousand points. You two peas in a pod are certainly Legends in Your Own Minds … but the rest of us just know you as the bitching clowns who fuck up the threads at PR with mindless whining and… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  cgmaster27
5 months ago

I’m sure that asshole cg master of nothing will take a shot at me because he’s too stupid to get that the coaches and their players of this NFL won the game on the road, idiot.

What a moron!!!

Kramerica Industries
Kramerica Industries
5 months ago

He decided to kick a field goal to make it a 24-20 game instead of going for it deep in Jets territory. You still needed a touchdown anyway, and if you don’t convert there, the Jets are still backed up in their own territory. Arians also made a puzzling decision to go for two after getting the go-ahead touchdown with 15 seconds remaining. They converted it on a Le’Veon Bell run, but had he been stopped, then the Bucs would only have a two-point lead. Those are two strange things to criticize. a) He did go for a 4th-and-goal earlier… Read more »

aredsoxfan1
aredsoxfan1
Reply to  Kramerica Industries
5 months ago

Totally agree on the FG. There was quite a bit of time left in the game and it was a low % fourth down. I get the logic on the 2 point play, I just don’t agree with it.

Horse
Horse
5 months ago

Devin White misses David for sure. Disagree about the coaching; it’s still on the players to perform.

scubog
scubog
Reply to  Horse
5 months ago

Absolutely right Horse.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Horse
5 months ago

Sure hope that Lavonte is back for the playoffs, along with Fournette. We can win regular season games without them, but in the playoffs it would be tough.

surferdudes
surferdudes
Reply to  Naplesfan
5 months ago

In the meantime, Minter needs to be replaced. What good is knowing the defence when you’re to old like Minter to make a play? Next game would be a good time to give a younger faster play a chance.

Benjamin
Benjamin
5 months ago

Yes the predictability of the offense is maddening. They should be using play action way more than they have been and you know it’d work because of how many times they run it on first down. I don’t understand why they continue to leave that out of the offensive game plan. It’s one the biggest mysteries to me. Of defense missing your top 2 pass rushers and you best MLB will leave the defense vulnerable but they have got to play better than they have. I am not mad at Ryan Jensen, he’s an aggressive, mean, and nasty player so… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Benjamin
5 months ago

Contrary to you and Jon Ledyard, the entire rest of NFL world gets that play action passing doesn’t work well when a team does not run well. The Bucs running game is generally anemic most of the time, and particularly so when Leonard Fournette is on IR. So in these final Fournette-less games, the Bucs play action game is not going to fool anyone. It’s just amazingly ridiculous that so many of the commenters and writers at PR are so stupid as to bitch about a road win late in the season in the NFL, especially in a season of… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Naplesfan
Spitfire
Spitfire
5 months ago

Granted the QB sneak didn’t look like it was planned very well but the way we filled the middle, that would have been a stop no matter what. Half the plays that happen in a game aren’t special, in the end we stopped them and I give our Defense credit for that. They got greedy and they failed.

aredsoxfan1
aredsoxfan1
5 months ago

I put much of the blame on BA. Maybe it’s because he was out most of the week, but they just didn’t seem to have any game plan. It’s like he was trying to make Brady win the game with one hand tied behind his back. Seemed like the first 3 quarters were, run it into the line twice and see if you can make a third and long. Oh ya, and we’re not gonna hardly play our 2 best WR either. On top of that he has no control of the team. Guys get out of control way too… Read more »

Captain Sly
Captain Sly
5 months ago

Blaming the Head Coach for kicking a FG when that decision setup the game winning drive is what’s Most Disappointing to me. I’m not sure what all of the characteristics of losers are but I have often wondered what it says about the other person when a successful decision disappoints them. Maybe you were Impressed with the Jets Head Coach not to kick a FG.

scubog
scubog
5 months ago

Sometimes I have to wonder if people actually watch the games, review any of the statistical data, or have any clue what other teams do. Here in Bucville, some have gotten this misconception that we have a totally inept coaching staff in spite of being 2020 Super Bowl champions, 2021 Division champions, 12dash 4 record, # 3 seed and top 5 offense) because they believe not enough play-action passes are called. What’s surprising is that in this game the offense put up nearly 500 yards with the “Idiot” calling plays. My goodness, I remember the days when our best play… Read more »

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  scubog
5 months ago

Scu – my theory is the bitchers are motivated by fantasy football and Madden Football, which convinces millions of non-professional players every week that they would be far better coaches than any actual coach in the NFL, so brilliant are their startem/sitem decisions that wins their local league or a few bucks on a gambling website. They lose all sense of reality and humanity. “In the old days” fans just watched the games, researched the players and coaches and learned to understand the Xs and Os of play design, and after that cheered or moaned the results on the field.… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Naplesfan
Horse
Horse
Reply to  scubog
5 months ago

Spot on Scubog.

Mike Pengelly
Mike Pengelly
5 months ago

The Jets used multiple play action formations which allowed them to run or pass to get easy gains vs our top run defence. We used empty backfields or off tackle runs which did little to confuse the Jets lowly defence. Then with 3rd and six, let’s throw the deep ball when our receivers were creating little or no separation. Very few crossing routes , no play action to speak of and the only guy creating separation was our speedster Gronk!

fredster
fredster
5 months ago

Once again Leftys play calling left lot to be desired. There is never any misdirection or anything. They are predictable. He has no vision other than basic plays where our talent wins when healthy. We could do lot better imo. First half he went for deep pass again on 3rd and6. He loves low percent shit when losing instead of just moving chains and better better rhythm. They still do not use play action enough. Second half we had another crucial 3rd down and he didn’t try to throw deep and we actually converted. He is not a great coordinator.

scubog
scubog
Reply to  fredster
5 months ago

And yet the results tell a different story. Guess results don’t count.

BucFan circa76
BucFan circa76
5 months ago

I agree with your “disappointing Bucs”, Matt. I might have added Devin White because he’s not the same player with David not on the field. He’s a stud and future star & we need him to shine especially when David is unavailable. This is the kind of game that we lose (and we have, more times than I dare recall). In our history, we have sucked against the Jets, no matter whether it’s played here or there (yesterday was win #1 for us against the Jets on the road). The Jets played inspired football for 3 quarters, moving the chains… Read more »

Buc stops here
Buc stops here
5 months ago

Ryan Jenson was a trooper. He had a bad shoulder and still for the most part protected Brady for the majority of the game. Was his performance great, no. Did he do a reasonable job, yes. Also, note that more has come out about Antonio Brown. Arians asked him to go into the game – twice. He refused, threw a fit, and left the game. It is obvious at this point that AB is not well and probably has what is called CTE – Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. It is when the brain has too much trauma. AB was knocked out… Read more »