We've seen the grade(s) the offense got. What about the defense, did they do much better?
Another clean sheet for the Bucs defense. Wait, that's a bad thing. No sacks for the Buccaneers line. There were a few hurries here and there, but Manning had pretty much all day to throw. Watching the Giants run game just gash us up the guy was painful. The reverse angle of the Jacobs touchdown run showed how our defensive line just got moved out of the way like it was nothing. Adams didn't do much, White got beat up, the men in the middle didn't provide much. An all around bad performance. You either stop the run or the pass, but to not be able to stop either is flat out awful. Grade: D-
This just in, we have a Barrett Ruud sighting. Ruud played a better game but still not great. Was more visible on the field, was quick to the ball carrier and made some good stops. Missed tackles and was just pushed aside on some plays. (Grade: C-). Geno Hayes and Quincy Black showed well again. These guys aren't changing the game, but they are doing an decent job of learning while playing. Hayes continues to show up at the ball and make plays, but more missed tackles this week (Grade: C+). Quincy Black still shows promise, but he is far away from the year I thought he'd have. Looked ok in coverage, but will have to learn to position himself rather than rely on raw talent. Grade: C Overall, not shabby, but nothing great. Grade: C
Another long TD pass. Hooray? Ronde played well but will continue to be victimized by bigger players. Was just boxed out on the Steve Smith TD catch. Did decent in coverage from my point of view. Grade: C+ Talib looks good for 75% of the game, but the other 25% results in him being in position and not finishing. He tends to have good coverage but can't leverage that into an incompletion. Grade: C The safeties played decent and Sabby didn't give up a long play. Improvement. He made a few key tackles also. Grade: C+ Will Allen didn't make any big plays, and missed tackles just like Flip did. But he wasn't the cause of our issues. Grade: C
I will say that the overall grade isn't a sum of all previous grades. As individual players, the defense was a bit below average. As a unit, that turns into a disaster. You can't fail to generate pressure while allowing guys to run free and then miss the tackle. If it happens once, it's not a big deal. Twice and a player needs to be coached up, but this is a game long event. We can not get pressure on the opposing QB's, we miss too many tackles at the point of attack and the long ball still is an issue. It's more than just understanding the scheme, it's stuff taught in JV football. Keep your head up, attack the ball carrier, run to the ball, wrap up. For the millionth time, I don't have an issue when we have inferior talent (which we do), but when we can't perform the basics, it becomes a bigger problem that falls on the coaching staff. Grade: D