Looking back on the Bucs loss to the Falcons

by Gary Shelton on December 31, 2019

in general

Has Winston thrown his last pass for the Bucs?/© JOE MESTAS

Tuesday, 4 a.m.

5 Thoughts

  1. Isn't it interesting that the thought of re-signing Jameis Winston is the "win now" option. Winston has won 28 of 70 games. Wouldn't that be "win someday...maybe?"

2. I found it amusing that Mark Dominik, former General Manager in charge of Oops, is giving Jason Licht advice on where to waste his money. Dominik, of course, was an expert when it came to wasting money.

3. Winston threw seven touchdowns to the other team. Who else is weary of the lip service when he says "I gotta get better." When? When he's playing for the Chargers?

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Ndamukong Suh puts pressure on Falcons' Ryan./ © JOE MESTAS

4. Yes, it is true that the Bucs could stick the "franchise" tag on Winston. But only if that franchise is the Frankford Yellow Jackets.

5. I think a lot of Todd Bowles and Byron Leftwich, too. But I don't think the world is looking for assistant coaches who lost nine games to give their franchise a new start.

Coach Bruce Arians talks to official./ © JOE MESTAS


(From Bruce Arians' Monday press conference)

(On the future of Jameis Winston): "You can all save your breath about asking me about Jameis [Winston] because there’s not going to be a decision made for a while. That’s a moot point right now and we had a good exit meeting with the  guys, and I’ll meet with them all individually here this afternoon and tomorrow and talk about the future. I would think in a few weeks, yeah. We’ll have a decision on which way we want to head. Will we let it out? Probably not because you lose your leverage on that one too. Stay tuned."

(On his final message to the team): “The biggest message was I think the difference between us and the New Orleans Saints – in September they knew they were going to win the division. We thought we might, but we weren’t sure and it was too late by October. You lose playoffs in September sometimes. A lot of people don’t like talking about that. When you start losing games in September they come back to bite you in December and some of those did for us. I think it was just maybe we’re good enough, not really knowing. I think next year when we step on the field we should know we’re good enough.”

(On bringing back the defensive front seven): "Suh is one of the top three. You can start with Shaq (Barrett), JPP (Jason Pierre-Paul) – either one – and Suh. I want to keep this front seven together. They’ve proven to be pretty dominant.”

(On winning with another quarterback): “With another quarterback? Oh yeah. We can win with this one [and] we can definitely win with another one too because we’re going to have this defense.”

(On his message to the fans): We will quit beating ourselves and then we’ll be hard to beat. The penalties, the turnovers, there were very, very few missed assignments anymore. The accountability is there. They play extremely hard and we’ll be a tough out.”

Running back Ronald Jones had his first 100-yard day./© JOE MESSTAS

5 of the Best Takes

It was fitting that in a season of big plays, both good and bad, Jameis Winston saw his come to an end with a game-decider. Winston's day was littered with plays that didn't match up with the stat sheet — an interception saved when his receiver turned defensive back, a pass turned interception with a miscommunication, and a touchdown on what resembled more of a Hail Mary than a pinpoint pass. Ultimately everything about this game encapsulated his year with plenty of good, plenty of bad, and plenty of mystifying.

-- Pro Football Focus

Step forward  Breshad Perriman. The one-time first-round pick turned first-round bust showed his pedigree by continuing his strong finish to the year. Though a nonfactor in the second half somewhat, his first half was about as good as you'll see from a receiver as he bailed his quarterback out and made a number of big plays. The talent he has displayed the past six weeks of the year, especially the last two, suggests a decent-sized deal and starting spot await him in free agency.

-- Pro Football Focus

A fantastic year for  Shaquil Barrett, but much like most of his year the sack numbers didn't really indicate the consistency of the pressure he was generating, or the nature of how he was getting the sacks he got. It will be telling what kind of deal Barrett gets in free agency, and whether his NFL sack title gets him a boost.

-- Pro Football Focus

First-round pick Devin White looked to set the Buccaneers on their way to victory with his scoop and score, but outside of that he was largely a non-factor other than a couple of missed tackles. His rookie season hasn't hit the heights Bucs fans would have hoped for.

-- Pro Football Focus

"Watching linebacker Deion Jones so perfectly dissect the classically flawed Jameis Winston, pick off the Tampa Bay quarterback on the first play in overtime and return it for a 27-yard walk-off touchdown had to make even the most cynical, beaten-down Falcons fan smile.

In a season so lacking in keepsake moments, Jones managed to come up with a play that will reside in a special, cool corner of his memories. “Man, because of the season we had, yeah, for sure it will,” he said afterward. “We finally got our defensive score this year, we finished on top, with the ball, we won, finished it off the way we wanted to. Yeah, for sure.”

-- Steve Hummer, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Barrett sacks Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan/ © JOE MESTAS


Offense: Ronald Jones finally ran like he had a clue. He attacked the Falcons and had 106 yards.

Defense: Shaq Barrett had three sacks and five quarterback hits. Wouldn't you love to be his agent?

Kicking: A lousy day all around. No one gets a game ball.

Breshad Perriman is taken down by Atlanta's Blidi Wreh-Wilson./© JOE MESTAS


Quarterback: Most quarterbacks who have thrown for 5,000 yards have been in the discussion for MVP or Offensive Player of the Year. Was there a Least Valuable Player in the NFL OTHER than Winston? Grade: F.

Running back: It's easy to scoff at Jones' production a lot of weeks. But he finally looked like an impact player Sunday. Grade: A.

Offensive line: Too many penalties, again, but one sack and a 6.5 yard rushing average is good. Grade: B+.

Wide receiver: Where were they in the second half? Still, Perriman had another great day.

Defensive line: Six sacs leaves no doubt. A great day. Grade: A.

Linebacker: Not a great day, but White did score a crucial touchdown. Grade: B-.

Secondary: They were competitive against the wide receivers. Offensive tackles baffle them, however. Grade: C.

Safety Andrew Adams takes down Atlanta Falcons running back Devonta Freeman./ © JOE MESTAS

Unsung Heroes

  1. Andrew Adams led the Bucs in tackles with seven.

2. Carlton Davis had five tackles and pass breakup.

3. M.J. Stewart had five tackles and a pass breakup.

4. Justin Watson caught two passes for 27 yards.

5. In his only touch of the day, James Franklin III ran for 11 yards.

Running back Peyton Barber has a short gain./© JOE MESTAS

Winston by the Interception

5 0-1

4 0-2

3 1-1

2 2-2

1 2-1

0 2-2

Winston couldn't protect the ball in 2019./© JOE MESTAS

Winston Stats

Interceptions 1

Yardage 1

Touchdowns 2

1st Downs 1

Rating 53

David takes down Atlanta running back Devonta Freeman/© JOE MESTAS

Random Stats

Sacks Shaq Barrett 1

Receiving Yards Chris Godwin 16

Running Yards Ronald Jones 37

Tackles Lavonte David 16

Passes Defensed Carlton Davis 5

Jamel Dean makes a tackle for the Bucs./ © JOE MESTAS

Mock Drafts

Bleacher Report Grant Delpit S, LSU

NFLmocks.dom A.J. Epenesa, DE, Iowa

Foxsports Paulson Adebo CB, Stanford

Draftwire Jedrick Wills T, Alabama

Draftsite.com Trey Adams T, Washington

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