Looking back on the Bucs’ win over Chicago

by Gary Shelton on October 26, 2021

in general

Tuesday, 3 a.m.

Donovan Smith consoled Khalil Mack./TIM WIRT

5 Thoughts

  1. It's silly to argue what a fan might have gotten for the football from Tom Brady's 600th touchdown pass, but a lot of us would be willing to bid for a replica of that cap Brady gave to the cancer survivor. That was his best moment of the day.

2. One of the reasons I like Bruce Arians is that his expectations are as high as anyone's. Never met another Bucs' coach who would admit disappointment after a 35-point win.

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3. Of course, not many Bucs' coaches have had 35-point wins.

4. I didn't know Cade McKown was still playing for Chicago.

5. Wait'll Jameis sees us! Jameis loves us.


(From Bruce Arians' day-after press conference)

(On the lingering feeling of leaving points on the field): "For us, it's finishing. Offensively, we ran the ball probably the best run-efficiency we've had until we got to the two-[yard line] and we allowed penetration a couple times on basic plays. We went no-huddle on one of them but it's still a base play and we should never allow that much penetration."

(On sudden-coach Richard Sherman): "Sherm" did a great job. ‘Rock’ (Ross) should be back hopefully Tuesday – Tuesday or Wednesday. A.Q. Shipley was also out with [COVID]. But, no, ‘Sherm’ did a great job all week. He's such a bright guy and he knows what we're doing now. He can pick up those little things. He did a great job during the game talking to those guys."

(On protecting Tom Brady): "We're doing such a great job of keeping him clean. They're not going to throw anything at him he hasn't seen. It's just whether or not he feels like he can fit it in there. There were a couple of balls I think he was real careful with in that one. But such a great job – those balls in the red zone were great throws. I get a little upset, 38 points, a few years ago I would have been jumping up and down. It's nice to be able to get 38 and come in and coach hard."

(On maintaining a defensive mentality with a constant flux of players): "This has happened so many times. In Arizona we lost our offensive line twice, and our quarterbacks, all three quarterbacks. It's a little bit easier for defensive backs than tackles or quarterbacks. It's always the next man up, and if you don't believe in it, if you just say it, it won't happen. We truly believe it and we talk to these guys – when you're on this team, you have a role. Accept your role. At any point in time, that role's going to change; the level of play and expectation level doesn't change. "

(On looking ahead to the Saints): "The first thing I see is great defense. Dennis Allen does a hell of a job and they've got really good players on defense. Then offensively, they're leaning so much on [Alvin] Kamara. After what we just did in the run game (on defense), it's a little scary because he's going to take it to the house. And he does a great job in the screen game. They just continue to get him the ball. And when he gets going, Jameis [Winston] has always been a really good play-action quarterback and he can put it down the field. [Marquez] Callaway and those guys that they have, they've got some weapons. So, we've got to stop the run. We can't go down and let Alvin Kamara run like [Khalil] Herbert did on us."

Game Balls

Offense: I don't know how much good it will do to give Mike Evans a game ball -- he'll just give it away. Seriously, three scores is a good day.

Defense: A lot of people expected more out of Devin White this season. But he was everywhere Sunday, with 10 tackles, a quarterback hit, a tackle for loss and a fumble recovery.

Special teams: Jaelon Darden's first punt return Sunday was for 43 yards and set up a quick touchdown.


Quarterback: Tom Brady set a record, but he wasn't as sharp as he usually is. Grade: B.

Running backs: Both Leonard Fournette and Ronald Jones II averaged more than five yards a carry. Grade: A.

Offensive line. Could have been tougher around the goal line, but a very good afternoon. Grade: A.

Defensive line: A swarming pass rush that kept its discipline. Grade: A.

Linebackers: White was solid. Grade: A-.

Defensive backs: It helps that Justin Fields struggled so, but a nice effort. Grade: A.

Special teams: Nothing unforgivable. Nothing off the charts. Grade: B-.

Unsung Hero

Donavan Smith must be tired of hearing about Khalil Mack. Mack had one tackle.

View from the Other Side

Former Bears' running back Matt Forte: "What upset me the most about the last two weeks is that our guys are very talented. Again we’re never really outmatched when it comes to talent but they looked so unprepared and out coached it was embarrassing."

Chicago Sun-Times columnist Rick Morrissey: "Rather than show up for the game, the safer bet for (Justin Fields) and the Bears would have been to pick up a hitchhiker who was carrying a chainsaw and had a hook for a hand, then drive home.

NFL Passing Yardage Leaders

1.              Tom Brady (TB)                                                2,275

2.              Derek Carr (LV)                                                 2,269

3.              Matthew Stafford (LAR)                                      2,172

4.              Patrick Mahomes (KC)                                       2,093

5.              Kyler Murray (ARI)                                             2,002

NFL Touchdown Passing Leaders

1.              Tom Brady (TB)                                                  21

2.              Matthew Stafford (LAR)                                        19

3.              Patrick Mahomes (KC)                                         18

4t.             Joe Burrow (CIN)                                                 17

4t.             Kyler Murray (ARI)                                               17 

All-Time Touchdown Passes

(Regular season)

Tom Brady. 602

Drew Brees. 571

Peyton Manning. 539

Brett Favre 508

Aaron Rodgers 427

NFL Playoff Touchdown Passes

Tom Brady 83

Joe Montana 45

Aaron Rodgers 45

Brett Favre 44

Peyton Manning 40

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