How they did it wasn’t pretty, but at the end of the night the Bucs were victorious over the Giants by a score of 25-23 on Monday Night Football. Tampa Bay turned it on in the second half with two touchdown passes from Tom Brady, and just when it appeared the game would slip away, Antoine Winfield Jr. got the job done by breaking up a game-tying two-point conversion attempt. As they say, a win is a win.

With that said, these were the most disappointing players from the Bucs win on Monday night.

RB Ronald Jones 

Jones had a very costly fumble on the Bucs’ second drive of the game that gave the Giants great field position at Tampa Bay’s 10-yard line, which they took advantage of by scoring a touchdown to go up 7-3. It was an odd sequence as the pass from Brady was tipped at the line of scrimmage and wasn’t the easiest to corral, but once you have it in your hands, you can’t let it go. After the turnover he didn’t see a lot of touches as the game went on. Leonard Fournette ended up out-carrying him 15-7 as Jones finished with 23 rushing yards and 23 receiving yards on four receptions and a fumble.

C Ryan Jensen 

It’s starting to become a noticeable trend that Jensen has had some poor snaps to Brady in important situations. Jensen had a low snap to Brady in Week 6 against the Packers, and it happened again twice on Monday night. This time around on the opening drive, a low snap from Jensen got Brady out of rhythm, which caused him to miss his timing on a pass to an open Mike Evans. Had it been completed, the Bucs would have been down to the 15-yard line and in a better position to score, but the drive stalled and they settled for a field goal. An opening drive touchdown may have had a ripple effect that doesn’t see the Giants making it as close as they did. At the NFL level, those snaps by Jensen can’t happen.

Bucs’ Offensive Play Calling

Byron Leftwich has come under scrutiny over his first two seasons as the Bucs’ offensive coordinator, and Monday’s game didn’t do him any favors. The Bucs constantly ran the ball up the middle on first down with very little success that put them in second-and-long situations all night. I understand you can’t completely abandon the run, but the play-calling has become quite predictable and formulaic. The Giants were having success stopping the run and yet no adjustments were made. Tampa Bay just kept banging their heads against the wall with two-yard run (at best!) after two-yard run. Sometimes you have to mix it up and pass on first down to set up the run.

CB Jamel Dean

The Bucs were lucky that Daniel Jones made some poor throws, because Jamel Dean was torched on several plays. Dean was bailed out on an overthrow by Jones in the second half that would have been an easy touchdown for Sterling Shepard, who blew right by Dean down the field. Dean was beaten badly as well on Carlton Davis’ interception, and luckily the pressure got to Jones, forcing a bad decision. Dean tied for the team lead with seven tackles, but most of them were made from tackling the receiver that just beat him in coverage.

CB Sean Murphy-Bunting

Murphy-Bunting was able to get on the board with his first interception of the season. Though it was the play that he didn’t make that gets him on the list. Murphy-Bunting gave the Giants a chance to tie the game up after allowing Golden Tate to score with 28 seconds remaining. He had the coverage on Tate, but he mistimed his attempt to make play on the ball, jumping too early and giving Tate enough room to come down with it in bounds. Murphy-Bunting ended the game with six tackles and an interception.

Bucs’ Run Defense

Tampa Bay sure missed Vita Vea in this one. For the first time this season, the Bucs allowed over 100 yards rushing to an opponent, an even more surprising stat given that the Giants were down to their third and fourth-string backs, along with an offensive line that had struggled all season. The Bucs were overwhelmed at the point of attack as the Giants were able to run it north and south. It was an uncharacteristic performance from a group that entered the game leading the league in stopping the run by giving up just 66 yards per game, but I would chalk this up to more of an aberration than something to worry about in the coming weeks.

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About the Author: Matt Matera

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Pete Wood
Pete Wood(@littlebrownjug)
1 year ago

I’m going to break into the Bucs training facility and rip the page out of the playbook that contains “Run up the middle on first down.” When has that ever worked?
If I can come up with a better play on first, you know there is something drastically wrong with the play. I ain’t no Vince Lombardi.

drdneast
drdneast(@drdneast)
Reply to  Pete Wood
1 year ago

I think it was the Panthers game when Fournette burst through the line and went 49 yards for the game sealing TD. I could be wrong about the opponent but it was this season.

bucbradstill
bucbradstill(@bucbradstill)
1 year ago

Fournetteshould be on this list. Too much dancing in the hole and too easy to bring down. If was that good, why were kicking on 4th and 1?

The Wall
The Wall(@the-wall)
Reply to  bucbradstill
1 year ago

Maybe it’s the play caller being too cautious.

PatrioticChief
PatrioticChief(@patrioticchief)
1 year ago

It is pathetic how often Leftwich lands on this list. The OC is a liability for this team and it’s really hard to win playoff games when the guy making the playcalls is a problem. Hate on it. Downvote it. The problem will still arrive in the postseason and cost the team big.

Last edited 1 year ago by PatrioticChief
The Wall
The Wall(@the-wall)
1 year ago

Finally, someone is calling out Leftwich’s play calling. I’m surprised our offensive genius, Bruce Arian, isn’t doing it.
I think it’s time to face up to the fact that Jones is a one dimensional back.

76bucsfan46
76bucsfan46(@76bucsfan46)
Reply to  The Wall
1 year ago

Jones 1 dimension is better than Fournette

Toucan
Toucan(@toucan)
Reply to  The Wall
1 year ago

Maybe we have a no dimensional O line. Where were the holes to run through? The Giants were in the Bucs backfield all night.

Honey Bear
Honey Bear(@honeybear)
1 year ago

Byron Leftwich

Ted in Tampa
Ted in Tampa(@tedintampa)
1 year ago

Without a doubt, #76 Donovan Smith proved again why he is the worst OLT in professional football. For running plays, he just throws out his arms and then stands there while the running play piles up behind him. NYGiants’ Williams edge rusher owned the slow and awkward Smith. Smith gave up 2.5 sacks all by his poor blocking ability and cement-like feet. Also, one of the coaches should tell Smith that its not okay to just stand around your position as you watch your GOAT Quarterback running for his life toward the far sideline trying to keep the play alive… Read more »

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  Ted in Tampa
1 year ago

Well he is not the worst but he is a very average O linemen; which is not good when you are paid like an all pro. he’ll be gone next year and replaced with a better and much cheaper model!

StPeteB
StPeteB(@stpeteb)
1 year ago

Jensen doesnt belong on this list for a bad snap or two…but D Smith does…hes a turnstyle in critical situations and might get Brady killed before the season ends..JPP Suh and Nacho got their asses kicked by rookies!!! Devin and David were a step late on several run fits that got us gashed…We underestimated the Giants and kinda got exposed…

Ted in Tampa
Ted in Tampa(@tedintampa)
Reply to  StPeteB
1 year ago

Well said, StPeteB.

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  StPeteB
1 year ago

Luckily the Bucs have a QB who doesn’t panic and force things. No mistakes and they win. And if the play calling was better and less conservative they win comfortably.

drdneast
drdneast(@drdneast)
1 year ago

How can you charge Don Smith with 2.5 sacks when the Giants only had 2 total sacks in the game. BL was calling the game like Jameis Winston was still behind the center on the final drive. Aggravating.

Ted in Tampa
Ted in Tampa(@tedintampa)
Reply to  drdneast
1 year ago

DRDNEAST, On two different plays, Donovan Smith allowed the edge rusher lined up on his nose to run right past him and nail #12. A third time, a NYGiant LB ran right around the edge rusher lined up on the nose of our left guard and past Smith as #76’s head was spinning. Problem was it was already two seconds into the play so D. Smith had already quit the play. Since the NYGiant who tackled #12 was technically an OLB, Smith can only get credit for allowing half of that sack. He is so slow and the fact that… Read more »

Donkey_Hunter
Donkey_Hunter(@donkey_hunter)
1 year ago

White should be on this list.

skyrider
skyrider(@skyrider)
1 year ago

I’m not seeing why Brady gets a pass, missing Receivers down the field. I agree with all above, but Brady missed on a few throws.

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  skyrider
1 year ago

yes he missed on a couple with some being on the receiver as well. BUT he was great in the 2nd half and didn’t make a mistake throwing a pic. He played far better then virtually everyone else on the offense outside Gronk and maybe Evans.

drdneast
drdneast(@drdneast)
Reply to  RW
1 year ago

Well said, Somme people really don’t have a clue.

Dave
Dave(@bucball02)
Reply to  skyrider
1 year ago

Yeah he was missing throws all over the field. God damnit Brady. You’re going to have to do better than completing 70% of your passes, if you want to win in this league!!

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  Dave
1 year ago

I guess some people expect Brady to be perfect. How soon they forget that Winston probably would have thrown for 375 yards ……… but had 3 picks as well.

Toucan
Toucan(@toucan)
Reply to  skyrider
1 year ago

Sometimes it is timing. If the receiver is obstructed off the snap by a Dback he will not be where Brady expects him to be.

Horse
Horse(@horse)
1 year ago

Forget this game now!
We are facing a must win game on Sunday. You can bet the Saints are a short catch and run team. We better play tight and no deep zone coverage because Brees arm can’t accurately throw anything over 25 yards. Saints just got the best tape example as to how to beat us. Not having Goodwin hurts; hopefully Brown has something in his tank immediately. Saints are dirty players and get away with murder, so we have to keep our composure.

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  Horse
1 year ago

Brees will throw 9 passes in a row that travel 5 yards or less downfield. On the 10th he will throw one 20 -25 yards. Rinse and repeat. If the Bucs can shut down Kamara they will win the game.

compewterpirate
compewterpirate(@compewterpirate)
1 year ago

By FAR the most disappointing aspect of the game for me was the offensive play calling. To be fair, I like Byron Leftwich, he seems like a really genuine guy, sincere, likeable personality, but he’s a lousy play caller. He is way too predictable, too conservative, not creative enough and yesterday was one of his worst games. It’s said the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results”. Well, running the ball up the middle on first down, into the strength of the Giants defense and getting stuffed every time, is the… Read more »

The Wall
The Wall(@the-wall)
Reply to  compewterpirate
1 year ago

Well said! Imagine being out coached by Jason Garrett.

SenileSenior
SenileSenior(@xpfcwintergreen)
Reply to  The Wall
1 year ago

When Bruce Arians came out retirement and agreed to take charge of the Buccaneers fate for a while he had to make some compromises. It has never been stated publicly to my knowledge publicly, but he had to delegate responsibilities in a way he had not done previously. His age and previous ailments had dictated this to him in an unmistakable manner. He had to reduce his day to day stress somehow. One thing he decided to do was turn over game calling to someone else and reduce his own function to big picture game management each week. I am sure Byron Leftwich is making… Read more »

BC
BC(@bcetour7)
1 year ago

I’m tired of Rojo getting pulled for the ENTIRE game after a mistake. Yes he fumbled. He also had to work very hard to try to catch an AWFUL pass from Brady, then was hit as he turned trying to gain extra yards. A series out? Yes. Rest of game? Ridiculous. Jones shouldn’t be on this list. BA should for the poor game plan (Mickens more targets than Gronk or Evans?) and for placing Rojo in the doghouse for the entire game

DT25
DT25(@dt25)
Reply to  BC
1 year ago

gotta agree…the fumble happened on a fluky tipped ball and RoJo was trying to make a play (impressive he made the catch to begin with). Got hit awkwardly as he was jumping up to his feet and the LB made a good play to punch the ball out. Hardly a bonehead mistake or anything. Really is frustrating seeing Fournette plod his way to the line on 3rd and 1 late in the game as we’re trying to seal it when RoJo has been so successful on those short yardage carries all season. Just poor game management from the coaching staff… Read more »

Dave
Dave(@bucball02)
Reply to  BC
1 year ago

AWFUL pass? Did you even watch the game? The ball was tipped at the line genius. Any other top notch analysis?

BC
BC(@bcetour7)
Reply to  Dave
1 year ago

Care to speak to the multiple wide open receivers that Tom either completely missed or underthrew, allowing Giant CBs to break up the play? He was off last night until the later part of the second half.

RW
RW(@rwp111)
Reply to  BC
1 year ago

Multiple? You are delusional. He was off in a few in the first quarter but on after that. Ever heard of a back shoulder pass? Good receivers make plays. How about Scotty Miller actually catching a ball in traffic? He can’t! Watch when Brown and Godwin play and see how many “misses” Brady has.
Oh and the temperature in New York last night was in the high 30s;maybe that’s why the whole team looked slow and out of sync in the 1st half.

tman_1006
tman_1006(@tman_1006)
1 year ago

I agree 100% about the playcalling we run up the middle on first down and then most likely we are in an empty set next play. Jones is a speed guy how many tosses have we seen run with him ? Also why is Mike Evans playing in the slot so much and Miller on the outside ? You have scheme better to get him involved.

76bucsfan46
76bucsfan46(@76bucsfan46)
Reply to  tman_1006
1 year ago

I have been wondering if we know what a toss play is, we have speed at RB and constantly run up the middle. The old Packer sweep would be great as wood more draws and better blocking in the screen game.

AC25
AC25(@ac25)
1 year ago

Whole Team was flat, (few exeptions) as a whole, bottom line this is a game we usually lose. A win is a win!

McKay Curse
McKay Curse(@mckay-curse)
1 year ago

Can someone explain to me why our DB’s play 10 yards off the ball every time? We were getting nickel and dime and Todd B. did not make one adjustment to it. It is our scheme or just bad play calling?

76bucsfan46
76bucsfan46(@76bucsfan46)
Reply to  McKay Curse
1 year ago

It’s obvious Todd Bowles does not trust our corners to play tight man coverage. They don’t flip their hips well and aren’t very physical for their size.

Spitfire
Spitfire(@spitfire)
1 year ago

We didn’t almost beat ourselves with penalties so much it was just some of the little things. Jones stays down after catching the tipped ball and the game isn’t even close. Play calling needs to get better, Defense needs to study this one to learn what to do when a team resorts to constant fake hands off to try and fool them. It was an off night yet the Defense got Sacks at crucial moments and turnovers when they needed it. All they can do is learn from the good and the bad and keep moving forward. We play a… Read more »

76Buc
76Buc(@76buc)
1 year ago

How about all you PR guys and Buc fans clamoring for more Jamel Dean. Now you know why he doesn’t play more.

cgmaster27
cgmaster27(@cgmaster27)
1 year ago

Watchout calling out the predictable play calling. Naples will tell you its not a bad idea to predictibly run into 9 man fronts.

Madman
Madman(@madman)
1 year ago

D. Smith got pancaked several times. Devin White was disappointing as well.

tpeluso
tpeluso(@tpeluso)
1 year ago

I’m cutting Jones some slack for the fumble. Ball was tipped, he did well just to corral it, and if the contact had come just a split second sooner he’s either down by contact or it’s ruled incomplete.

And Dean should be way higher up the list. Giants abused him all game (easily his worst of the season) and the only reason the stat sheet didn’t look worse was because Daniel Jones missed a few and/or the front seven bailed Dean out (as happened on the Davis pick).

PewterPose
PewterPose(@pewterpose)
1 year ago

Last night’s game was a line-by-line list of weaknesses previously identified by Ledyard for PR: Fournette as an overrated between the tackles runner who hesitates and makes bad reads – way too many two yard gains and two yard losses. RJ is the better back but a liability catching the ball. Devin White is a risk in coverage. He was totally lost on that first TD. Questionable offensive play calling. I don’t care that Godwin was out and we no longer have OJ – we should have dictated the pace and flashed creativity, but it was Jason Garrett who had… Read more »

Dman
Dman(@dman)
1 year ago

I’m not sure about RoJo on this list. I get the fumble, but the guy’s on his knees making a great catch digging a ball out of the dirt and a split second later gets slammed. He’s rattled off multiple 100 yard games and this write-up is questioning his ball security and whether Fournette should replace him based on that play. Again, I don’t think so. He’s a solid back.

DT25
DT25(@dt25)
Reply to  Dman
1 year ago

Yeah his ball security has been among the best in football. They even mentioned it after the fumble. It was clearly a fluky play and bad timing on the hit as he was trying to get to his feet. But I’ve come to expect every tiny mistake will result in clamoring for Fournette to take over permanently, despite him dropping a pass himself and looking slow and indecisive on 90% of his runs.

jongruden
jongruden(@jongruden)
1 year ago

Dean played horrible! Probably his worst game since Sea Game he was constantly getting beat on double moves, you play like that against Wilson and he will find Metcalf or Lockett for tds. The play calling sucked big time I found myself yelling at the tv saying ” STOP RUNNING THE EFFING BALL UP THE MIDDLE, EFF ME” and we are down at like 15 yd line on 3rd down and Brady instead of throwing a high fade to Evans in corner where Bradberry was getting torched and created penalty after penalty we throw a 3 yd pass to Evans… Read more »

DT25
DT25(@dt25)
1 year ago

SMB really shouldn’t be on this list. He gave up the TD late, yes, but it was a well placed ball by Danny Dimes. His PFF coverage grade was actually the best in the entire secondary last night…and his INT was huge for momentum. RoJo probably shouldn’t be on here either based on his fumble coming on a deflection and being in an awkward position when he was hit. Then he was needlessly benched for most of the game while Fournette did a whole lot of nothing himself. But I just expect RoJo to always get shit on by Tampa… Read more »

MojoU
MojoU(@mojou)
1 year ago

The number of runs up the middle on first down was ridiculous. Setting up 2nd and long and then 3rd and medium the whole game will produce a lot of field goals and fewer touchdowns than we would like. I have no idea what BL was thinking in the second half with those 1st down calls. It’s not like we were nursing a big lead and just wanted to run out the clock. I thought there were a lot of disappointing performances in the game. The D-line and LBs giving up so many rushing yards was the biggest surprise. The… Read more »

Eddie
Eddie(@oct62020)
1 year ago

The Buc coaching staff were simply outcoached. They enter the game complacent to win while the Giant coaches were determined to throw in new wrinkles to their game plan. Worse, Buc coaches were not able to adjust as the game progresses. On top of that, number 76 was just horrible. Brady may not last the whole season because of him

Toucan
Toucan(@toucan)
1 year ago

The RoJo fumble was an awkward situation. I suppose the next time RoJo has a ball where the throw has him on his knees he will just fall down. The tipped ball barely was within his reach. I cannot blame him to the extent he was punished.

Ron Potter
Ron Potter(@finalsorbust)
1 year ago

I wouldn’t put SMB or RoJo on this list.

Cesar Del Fierro
Cesar Del Fierro(@cheechdf)
1 year ago

I like Fournette but he should be for third down and late in the game, with fresh legs. Rojo is still the best runner we have, still dont understand the punishment that the coaching is working with, ok its a fumble, but when we runs he normally gets a 4 yard gain, Fournette its either 1 or 2.