Finally this Bucs team has showed us that the main concern of the season isn't talent, nor one individual person, but rather the teams ability to come week in and week out and perform. Now I know a team can be inconsistent and still be a good team, but Tampa Bay is dreadfully inconsistent. Not just from week to week but rather quarter to quarter.
Look at this weeks game against the 49ers, in the first quarter we let Gore and Kaepernick run all over us but only allowed one score, a one possession game. Then see to the next quarter where again we held San Fran to a minimal ten points, but also fired back with a score of our own to make things close, 17-7 at the half wasn't too shabby for how the offense was playing. Heading into the third our offense continued to spurt and sputter showing no signs of life, but neither did the 49ers. The fourth and most important quarter, the whole game it seemed Tampa was out of it but with a quick strike it was 20-14 all of a sudden, then the Bucs fell apart, letting more points then they did in any quarter, when it mattered the most all in a matter of two minutes. After a San Francisco field goal Tampa fumbled on the ensuing kickoff, and allowed another field goal, ultimately losing the game 33-14. Now what does this have to do with consistency? Look at the whole game, Tampa looked to stay within reach always allowing points but not many, and having the explosiveness to fire back but never to take the lead. The game was just frustrating to watch.
Now changing the talk to consistency over different games, going from playing cupcake teams we've beaten to the Panthers and the 49ers you are going to expect some differences in the outcomes, but the teams don't even look the same, and it begins with the play-calling. Everyone saw how Schiano played against the Falcons, the Bills, the Dolphins and the Lions, with wreck less abandonment. Onside kicks, deep shots down field, going for it on fourth, bringing heavy blitz's the whole package, and it has worked and brought new life to this Bucs team. Then when we play big ticket teams, like the Niners, and the Panthers the coaches retract back into their shell of check downs and runs up the middle, resulting in three and outs. Then just when you are about to fall asleep watching the game Schiano dials up a deep passing play and Glennon hits Jackson for a touchdown to pull withing reach, all Bucs fans now have hope. Then the coaching staff immediately go back into our tentative offense that has no fire-power whatsoever causing fans hair pulling agony as they watch our star studded offense go to waste. Look when we played the Lions, the offense had all sorts of deep balls and big runs because they opened up. It works, the Lions are a good team and the Bucs won, because we weren't afraid. Now you may ask what's this have to do to with consistency? EVERYTHING. The coaches are sending the offense mixed signals, letting them open up and have fun while doing good one game, then shutting down and losing the next.
Finally it's time to actually talk about play inconsistency. Bobby Rainey against the Bills had and eighty yard scamper on his first carry, then he only finished the game with one hundred and twenty seven yards, that's only forty seven more yards the whole rest of the game. Talk about inconsistent. It doesn't just stop there I've already mentioned the defenses performances throughout games. The offense also does it though, often jumping out to an early lead (Seattle game) only to not score the rest of the game. When all these factors come together you get a talented team heavily under-performing. Just imagine how good this team could be if they were consistent!