Well, not sure if the sky is falling but the Buccaneers’ positioning in several rankings across national media outlets sure is.
Tampa Bay dropped their third straight game due to poor defense. As the offense continue to put up points so does the defense which resulted in the firing of defensive coordinator Mike Smith.
It’s uncertain whether or not that’ll turn things around. But at 2-3, something needed to be done. And making a change at defensive coordinator was the right move.
26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Week 6 ranking: 22
Playoff chances: 14.5 percent. After a hot start led by Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Buccanneers have come back down to earth. Tampa Bay will hope to improve its defense now that coordinator Mike Smith has been fired. His unit ranked last in the NFL in points per game, yards per play and opposing QBR. The Bucs’ opposing QBR would be the highest single-season opposing QBR since the stat’s inception in 2006. -- Shah
25. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (2-3)
Last Week’s rank: 25
Points in poll: 65
Highest-place vote: 25 (3)
Lowest-place vote: 27 (1)
Last week’s result: Loss 34-29 at Atlanta
Next game: vs. Cleveland
Now 0-1 with Jameis Winston as the starter, and the 2-0 start feels much further in the rearview mirror.
26. Buccaneers (18): Defensive coordinator Mike Smith became first to walk plank. Dirk Koetter, Jameis Winston could be fitted for blindfolds soon enough.
Previous rank: No. 19
Say this for the Bucs: They showed a ton of character in Atlanta on Sunday. This NFC South matchup receives the Weirdest Game of the Week Award. It appeared as though Tampa had lost early when the Bucs fell behind 21-6. Then Jameis Winston and Co. fought all the way back, as Winston tossed three touchdown passes and the defense started making stops. That is, until the Falcons’ final touchdown on a pass to Tevin Coleman. Kwon Alexander and Lavonte David looked confused a second before the play, then David failed to get over into the flat to pick up the RB leaking out. Every bit of which would be moot if DeSean Jackson had scooped that lateral. Oy. Not sure Jackson scoring would have saved Mike Smith’s job. But Tampa’s defense is a bit of a mess right now.
And over at the mothership, SB Nation ranks the Bucs 26 and previously ranked them No. 18.