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Buccaneers need to cut down on three-and-outs

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Last season, the Bucs were one of top teams that had one of fewest three-and-out drives. It was ranked third on in the league. That was how effective the Bucs' offense was at generating yards to keep drives alive. A low three-and-out was also the driving factor for highest amount of yards in Bucs' history last season!

Coming into this season, year two of the offense, I have come to expect the same or better efficiency of keeping drives alive. That is not the case so far after three games.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Three-and-Out Drives
2015 v 2016
Year Games Total Drives 3-and-out Drives 3-and-out %
2015 16 176 26 14.70%
2016 3 39 8 20.51%
Projected to 16 games for 2016
2016 16 208 42.6 20.51%

In the first game against the Atlanta Falcons, the Bucs had back to back three and outs in the second half, after putting up 31 points in the game. The offense could not do much thereafter as well as not score. There were a total of four 3-and-out drives in this game.

The second game against the Arizona Cardinals, they had only one 3-and-out drive. That sounds great except for the fact the offense gave up five turnovers in the same process. Thus, effective until the offense turned the ball over.

For the last game, game three versus the LA Rams, the Bucs had three 3-and-out drives. They opened the game with two consecutive 3-and-out drives.

This offense needs to be better at sustaining drives as well as not turning the ball over as much. If the offense can do that, then it can help the team increase its chances to win more games. If the offense can do that, then it can help the defense  to round into some kind of competent form as it is trying to establish its own identity.

We truly need the offense to step up early so that our defense can somehow regain its bearing after losing two top players on its defensive line in pass rushing DE Jacquies Smith and dual threat DE Robert Ayers.

Just my opinion here, but I think Jameis Winston might be pressing too much because he understands so much more this year than last year. Jameis might be too hyped up.  He needs to slow down. He does not need to power the ball on every throw. He needs to follow former Super Bowl winning quarterback Kurt Warner's advice of not needing to throw the football hard, but throw it so that the receiver can catch it.

After three games, we know the reason we will win games will be because of the offense. So let us hope to keep the ball in the offense's hands more than the defense can see the field.