Looking back on the Bucs loss to Arizona

by Gary Shelton on October 17, 2017 · 3 comments

in general, NFL, Tampa Bay Bucs

Koetter needs to recover from being spanked./CARMEN MADATO

Koetter needs to recover from being spanked./CARMEN MADATO

Tuesday, 3 a.m.

5 Observations

1. Adrian Peterson was terrific. So was Larry Fitzgerald. Carson Palmer, too. But I thought the best player on the field Sunday was Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson, who shut out Mike Evans before leaving with a quad injury. Still, the Arizona media was all over the pass coverage of the Bucs. Aren't there supposed to be other options?

2. Remember when Bucs' quarterback Jameis Winston liked the idea of signing Adrian Peterson in the off-season. Here's another thought: When Greg Schiano was falling out of love with Josh Freeman, the quarterback who shall not be named, he was interested in Carson Palmer. Palmer chose the Cards, however. A shame.

3, Not to pick on a guy who scored a defensive touchdown, but Lavonte David had a total of three tackles. That's not enough impact.

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Winston has a sprained AC joint./CARMEN MANDATO

Winston has a sprained AC joint./CARMEN MANDATO

4. He mentioned "embarrassed." He covered "horrible." He was all over "disappointed."  Dirk Koetter didn't say his team was "wretched" or "an insult to the eyes." Then again, he didn't have time to think.

5. In two seasons, the Cardinals have scored 78 points against the Bucs.


(From Dirk Koetter's day-after press conference Monday)

(On Jameis Winston's shoulder): "Jameis had an MRI this morning and he's got a sprained AC joint. So he'll be day-to-day for right now. No structural damage, so X-rays were negative, had the MRI and he's sore. He's sore most weeks, but he's sore and of course it's his throwing shoulder so we'll just have to see how it goes during the week."

(On why the defense struggled so badly): "We didn't fit the run very well and we didn't tackle very well. They didn't do anything tricky that we didn't expect them to do. They changed out their running back and he had a big day but the way they scheme their running game, they pack it in there pretty tight and then he reads the middle linebacker and either bounces or cuts back. And if he bounces, your secondary has to show up. You have to fit your gap and you have to stay in there, and whoever the free, unblocked player is, he has to make the tackle. He has to make first contact. We just did a poor job of that, and that's something we haven't been [doing]. We've been good at that. The fact that we couldn't get it stopped…and then you're running the ball, every offensive coach in the league would love to be able to run the ball and then hit their play-actions off of it, and that's exactly what they did."

(On his team's slow starts on the road): “The lesson is we’ve got to start faster. We’ve got to execute better early in games on offense. We’ve turned into this team that looks like gangbusters in the fourth quarter, but does not look like gangbusters in the first quarter. It’s a four-quarter game. We’ve got to start faster. Our defense normally hasn’t had as much of an issue, but yesterday we had that issue on defense as well. That’s something as a coaching staff we’ve got to get figured out.”

(On his concerns regarding cornerback Vernon Hargraves III): "Extremely, extremely, I’m concerned with everybody’s play after the way we played the first half yesterday. Vern is not in a very good streak of games right now. We asked Vern to be more aggressive this year and to be more aggressive with his coverage and he started out doing that. He started out doing that in OTAs and training camp, but he has not played his best football these last three games.”

(On the one thing he wishes he could change about the trip to Arizona: “Miss the plane. If I knew the one thing that caused us to go down 31-0 I would try my best to fix it, but it’s not one thing. We didn’t tackle. We didn’t fit the run. We had three MEs (mental errors) in the run game that led to negative plays on offense. We dropped a pass on third-and-10. We did things that bad football teams do. Right now, we’re a bad football team.”

5 of the Best Lines

1. "Adrian Peterson just saved the season." -- Dan Bickley, Arizona Republic

2. It was more than run blocking. Palmer had all the time he needed behind a line that allowed just four hits and two sacks." -- Greg Moore, Arizona Republic

3.  The pass defense got shredded in the second half by… Ryan Fitzpatrick. You can accept Jameis Winston doing this to your secondary, but Fitzpatrick? Come on…Revenge of the Birds

4. “I told him ‘There is no way you’re 32, bro,’” left tackle D.J. Humphries said. “I think he’s been lying to all of us. It don’t make sense. There’s no way he’s 32. It don’t work like that.” -- Kent Somers, Arizona Republic

5. "Our flick began with the Cardinals passing on Peterson way back in 2007. Instead, Arizona selected Levi Brown with the No. 5 overall pick. The disappointing Brown struggled for seven years in the desert. Meanwhile, the star of the show, Peterson, built a Hall of Fame resume in Minnesota, overcoming several hurdles along the way ..."I wish he'd have been here 11 years from the beginning," Fitzgerald said, via the team's official website. "I'd have a Super Bowl ring already. -- Kevin Patra, NFL.com

                                                       Game Burns

Offense: Okay, he threw two interceptions, which hurt. But when Ryan Fitzpatrick entered the game for the Bucs, no one had an expectations at all. Instead, he threw for 290 yards and three scores.

Defense: Brent Grimes was the only member of the secondary who seemed to realize that you're supposed to cover opposing receivers. It wasn't the best day for Grimes, but it was better than anyone else's.

Special teams: Patrick Murray. He didn't miss a kick. Yay.

5 Imported Receivers

(After five weeks)

Player                          Targets   Rec.   Yds.   TDs

Bert Emanuel                61         24       371      1

Alvin Harper                39          21       290     1

Keyshawn Johnon      26          21     233      1

DeSean Jackson          35          17    287       2

Joey Galloway             20          10     111        0


Quarterback: Fitzpatrick ended up with a lot of yards, but he had two interceptions in a half, too. That's why his rating wasn't very good. Grade: C.

Running back: The Bucs simply couldn't get going. Doug Martin had seven yards in his first five carries. The Bucs aren't built to win like that. Grade: D.

Offensive line: They didn't run. And they got their quarterback hurt. Grade: D.

Receivers: In the first half, DeSean Jackson had one catch and Mike Evans none. That's not the work of a great corps. Grade D.

Defensive line: What defensive line? Grade: F.

Linebackers: It wasn't a strong point Sunday. Grade: F.

Defensive backs: They had great views as Larry Fitzgerald caught everything and Adrian Peterson ran past. Grade: F.

Coaching: This team wasn't ready to play. Grade: F.

5 Other Lopsided Losses

1976 -- Pittsburgh Steeles 42, Tampa Bay 0

1985 -- New York Jets 62, Tampa Bay 28

1999 -- Oakland 45, Tampa Bay 0

2012 -- New Orleans 41, Tampa Bay 0

2014 -- Atlanta 56, Tampa Bay 14

5 top Bucs' tacklers

Player                          League rank         Tackles

Kendell Beckwith                19                    41

Vernon Hargreaves III      73                    30

Chris Conte                           96                   28

Adarius Glanton                149                    23

Justin Evans                       185                    20

5 Receivers

Player                           Catches        Yards         League rank

Mike Evans                      27              371                      21

Adam Humphries          23               258                     45

Cameron Brate                21               261                      55

DeSean Jackson              17               287                      88

Charles Sims                    13                  99                  125

5 ex-Bucs playing well elsewhere

1. LeGarrette Blount -- He's eighth in the NFL in rushing with 390 yards and has a 5.4 average.

2. Josh McCown -- So far, he's 12th in the NFL in passing yards, and he's led the Jets to two wins.

3. Austin Seferian-Jenkins -- Caught a season-high eight catches against New England on Sunday in the Jets' loss. For the season, he has 23 catches, more than Martellus Bennett, Cameron Brate and Jimmy Graham.

4. Aqib Talib -- Still playing well for the Broncos. Had a 103-yard interception return against Dallas earlier in the year.

5. Russell Sheppard -- Has caught eight passes for 99 yards for the Panthers.

The Week Ahead

5 Great Bills.

1. O.J. Simpson

2. Jim Kelley

3. Bruce Smith

4. Thurman Thomas

5. Joe DeLamielleure

5 Favorite Bills

1. Steve Tasker

2. Kent Hull

3. Andre Reed

4. Bob Kalsu

5. Ray Bentley

Best Game

The Bills were driving for the winning points in 1982 when Hall of Famer Lee Roy Selman forced a fumble by Roosevelt Leaks at the Bucs' 17 with 36 seconds to play. Cedric Brown recovered, and the Bucs won. It ignited a three-game winning streak for the Bucs, which edged into the playoffs with a 24-23 victory. Question: Why were the Bills running the ball at that stage of the game?






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