Mark it down, The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Bucs defense, have to be taken seriously again.

It was a cool November Sunday and the Bucs were playing a foe it doesnt see very often, with a dangerously hot Quarterback. The Bucs were a new defense, and had one of their best defensive efforts in its history. No first downs were made….until late in the 3rd Quarter.

It was Nov.16th 1997 and the New England Patriots and Drew Bledsoe were kept in check while the Bucs methodically added points here, and there. It was the last time I remember a home game the Bucs just shut down an offense. The Patriots head coach? Pete Carroll.

Fast Forward to 2 weeks ago, and the everyone in the NFL was telling you to play all temp161127_seahawks_bucs_25-nfl_mezz_1280_1024the KC Chiefs players against this horrible Bucs defense. That was a weak after you were told to go all in on Jay Cutler and sure shot Alshon Jeffries and the Bears offense. After two games, it still didn’t stop, so maybe now the Jokes on them, as the Bucs defense has proven itself in three straight weeks.

Tell your friends to sit down before you pass this on; the Bucs are a winning team right now..and at 6-5 and with a full stadium to spread the word, Tampa Bay set its self up for a playoff run, officially.

There was no sloppy play by the Bucs that beat the Seattle Seahawks as soundly as Kansas City was defeated. This wasn’t a bad game by the Seahawks, or the Chiefs the week before; this was the Bucs rolling up the Pewter selves and taking care of business.

And this was a Bucs team that DID NOT work like a well oiled machine on offense:

  • Rookie kicker Roberto Aguayo missed a 48 yard FG, although it was by about 1.5 feet   to the right!
  • Jameis Winston threw a pass to a Receiver to get a few yards closer for a FG because all time outs were used…but the Receiver was hit first, so the clock kept ticking, and ticking, and no FG attempt would happen.
  • Bucs Luke Stocker was called for holding in the end zone which resulted in a safety.
  • Bad call denied a Cameron Brate TD
  • Finally getting some offensive momentum in the 4th quarter, Winston let go a pass on 3rd down for Evans that had INT written all over it. It prevented a FG try that would have extended the lead to a 2 TD deficit.

temp161127_seahawks_bucs_31-nfl_mezz_1280_1024Of course when its all said and done, the Seahawks are a great team. When they were down 14-0 it was the first  time they were down by so much in the 1st quarter since 2010, and last I remember they being down like that was against the Bucs 4 years ago in 2013, when Mike James threw a pass for a Bucs 21-0 lead.

Nope, this win was all about the Bucs defense. Thomas Rawls got nothing today, Doug Baldwin caught 7 passes for 35 yards; nothing. 3 points from the Seahawks offense that was supposedly hitting stride in the second half of the season.

When Philip Rivers looks at Bucs film, he’s not going to just look at #93 film, for the first time in 10 years, since the 2005 season, the Bucs have an edge rusher; Noah Spence. Ex Giant Robert Ayers is the third now; three pass rushers the Bucs have that are pressuring the QB to provide the ball back to the offense.

The Bucs offense is one of the tops in the league in amount of plays per game. With Mike Evans having two less than stellar games, he took week 11’s and made it the record; Evans became the 4th ever WR to start out a rookie season and go the first three years with 1000 yard seasons.

Winston was 21 of 29 with 2 more TDs and that poor pick. Russel Wilson on the temp1_ap_16332765452932-nfl_mezz_1280_1024other hand was flustered by the Bucs defense, by the pressure, by the secondary.

Ill take this moment right now to say obviously I was wrong. This kind of winning wouldn’t have happened if we still had Lovie Smith as HC. Lovie had two years to get this out of players, Mike Smith gets it in 10 games. Yes he had Jameis Winston, who dont kid yourself, is galvanizing the defense as well as the offense.

There is no lack of tests for the Bucs coming up; @ San Diego, @ Dallas, home and away against New Orleans and their potent attack that almost hung a 50 burger on the RAMS! How they steer the course will determine how the Bucs are remembered in 2016. Remember last year the Bucs were 5-5 and 6-6 before losing 4 in a row. In 2012 the Bucs climbed in the standings to 6-4, the best record the Bucs have had since 2010, so far.

 

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