It was 1990, Fred Bruney was the defensive coordinator and the Bucs were running off the field after losing to the Jets 16-14. That was the last time Bucs walked off the field a 3-4 defense. Next year the late great Floyd Peters was installed as Bucs DC and the franchise has been a 4-3 ever since… through the immortal Rusty Tillman, and some guy named M.Kiffin… until now.
New DC Todd Bowles has installed a 3-4, But if you take a closer look at the formation… look at those two outside linebackers that will be rushing when time calls for it: Carl Nassib and Noah Spence. Those are DE edge rushers!
Thats one defensive lineman for each Offensive Lineman, that can lead to a lot of sacks for Bucs Defense, or at least pressures, hurries, etc.
Former Bucs OG Ian Beckles said it plain; “if Jameis goes down, your looking at two wins”. Id like to put an addendum to that statement….
We know what Blaine can do in the NFL, but the statement that Ryan Griffin hasn’t played one snap in the NFL is meaningless, every QB has that moment. Griffin has progressed to the point where he looks sharp in every preseason game running the offense.
Yes, its preseason, and its against future Publix grocery baggers, but that also makes up his supporting cast too. It’s even.
In a regular season game, Griffin would have the Bucs starting offensive line to allow him to get crushed, er, protect him while he passes the ball.
Mike Evans would be catching balls. So would Howard.
While were at it, just give Bucs TE Tanner Hudson a spot on the roster. The NFL is moving toward receiving Tight Ends as passing rules open up the passing game. Hudson or Brate would give Bucs trade bait.
Under the heyday of Buccaneers football, DC Monte Kiffin would preach all 11 Bucs running to the ball. NO LOAFING was the sign, preached by Tony Dungy and Kiffin.
That ideology was lost after 2008, and it shows in the W/L column and defensive statistics. Last year the Bucs were in the bottom 10 in defense, the year prior the worst defense in the NFL. 10th worse the year before that.. HC Lovie Smith’s Bucs were the 10th ranked defense in 2015 his last year, improving from another bottom feeding year before. Greg Schiano’s last season and Raheem Morris’ 2nd are the only middle of the road finishes for a once proud defense that ranked in top 10 or top 5 annually from 1996-2005.
Last season, once DC Mike Smith was fired, the defense improved leaps and bounds. It was reported on JoeBucsFan.com that Smith at one point called the same defensive play for 27 plays in a row! Where was the coaching?
Its a tough question to ask of someone who never coached before. Dirk Koetter was hired because of his familiarity with Jameis Winston, Bucs QB who for some strange reason is beleaguered from Bucs fans after one disappointing season. Something tells me thats about to change.
Unlike every previous Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach in HISTORY, the Bucs have brought in a proven winner to lead the franchise out of an 11 year playoff drought… and he has proven it more than once.
Bucco Bruce as he is now know around these parts, brings back a winning mentality, which is done by getting rid of a losing mentality. Talent will get you so far in the NFL, but getting the most out of that talent, well, that never gets old.
Even the Bucs O line looked invigorated Friday night when it played the Steelers, and perhaps a test vs the Dolphins will be more formidable.