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Buccaneers were historically bad on defense in 2011

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Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

It's the offseason, which means analysts toy around with new ways to measure statistical performance in the NFL. The latest has Chase Stuart of Football Perspective estimating the points allowed per drive (yes, there's a reason why estimation is involved), ranking the historically best and worst defenses.

Oddly enough, no Bucs teams appear in the top 20 defenses by this metric. The 2002 Bucs come in at number 28, while the 1999 team is 72nd. I would've expected them to be ranked much higher.

The Buccaneers appear on the list of worst defenses twice in the top 20: the 2011 Tampa Bay Buccaneers allowed the fourth-most points per drive in the history of the NFL, while the 1986 Bucs come in 15th place. Those 2011 Bucs were something special, starting 4-2 before collapsing and losing every remaining game in the season by increasingly embarrassing scores, with the low point coming in a 41-14 loss to the Blaine Gabbert-led(!) Jacksonville Jaguars. I still can't believe they actually lost that game.

I'm not sure I quite like this metric -- it has rather the unfortunate consequence of punishing defenses that, which likely explains the low ranking of the 1999 and 2002 Bucs defenses. But it's a good reminder that as bad as the Bucs' defense was last year, it wasn't historically horrible at all.