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Final Grades: Buccaneers vs Bears

That was bad. Really bad.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Chicago Bears
It wasn’t a good day for Jameis Winston and the Bucs
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Soooo, who’s ready for the bye week?

I certainly need a week off after that excuse for a football game. From the moment that both teams took the field, the Bucs had no chance to win.

Now they get two weeks to try and figure out what went wrong and how to stop it.

No one wants to relive this past Sunday, but we are going to do so one more time in this week’s final grades.


Easily the worst offensive performance of the season, Tampa Bay couldn’t get anything going outside of a couple of big passes to DeSean Jackson and one touchdown drive in the fourth quarter after they were already down 45-3.

It was a shell of the offensive powerhouse we had seen over the last two and a half games. Now, a lot of that has to do with the Bears’ defensive excellence, but it also feels like Tampa Bay didn’t make the necessary corrections after their loss to the Steelers.

Questionable calls such as the decision to pull Ali Marpet in order to block him one-on-one surrounded the coaching staff. The result of the play was an interception after Mack destroyed Marpet and was able to hit Jameis Winston’s arm as he threw the ball, causing the ball to flutter in the air.

The Bucs couldn’t get a ground attack going for the third straight game. They only converted 33% of their red zone trips. For the second straight week, they were negated in the turnover department.

These were all issues that cropped up against the Steelers and then magnified by the Bears.

Brian Baldinger does a great job breaking down Tampa Bay’s ineptitude on offense with a good mix of when the Bears’ defense was responsible for blowing up plays. I highly recommend you give it a watch.

It was an all-out catastrophe that took a group effort on Sunday.

If this offense continues to perform like this, then it’s going to be a very long season.

Final Grade: 0.0 (F)


Did you watch the game? If you weren’t able to, did you look at the score?

This isn’t lazy writing, this is pure honesty. Tampa Bay’s defense was garbage in every facet of the game.

That’s all you need to know.

Final Grade: 0.0 (F)

Special Teams

When the special teams got their chance to play, they did well.

Catanzaro made all of his kicks for the second straight week. Even though he only had two opportunities, each made kick is a boost of confidence. Two of his three kickoffs went for touchbacks, as well. Do I dare say he is becoming - gasp - reliable?

The coverage units did a very good job, but the return game lacked for the second straight week. Not that it will lose you games, but the Bucs need to find some sort of spark in that area in case they run into another trap like they did in Chicago.

Bryan Anger had a decent day, averaging a net 40 on his punts, but he still has a long way to go if he wants to break into the top ten.

Final Grade: 3.0 (B)


Dirk Koetter said it best after the game that he thought everyone on the staff should be fired, starting with himself.

This staff - especially the offensive side - got off to a pretty good start for the first two games of the season, but it seems like now they are right back where they left off in 2017.

Mike Smith’s scheme is terrible and needs to be fixed. What’s even worse is that the players seem like they don’t even know what the hell is going on most of the time. There were at least four blown coverages against the Bears.

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Is there any hope left for Mike Smith?
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The offense, while still the backbone, has now struggled for six of the last eight quarters. Todd Monken and Koetter must find ways to elevate the offense.

The bye week couldn’t have come at a better time. They will get an extra week to regroup and try to fix the issues this team currently has.

What will be even more telling is what happens in Atlanta next weekend. If the Bucs blow this game in the usual fashion that has been witnessed over the past two and a half years, then there may be some major shakeups sooner rather than later.

Final Grade: 0.0 (F)

Overall Grade: 0.75 (F)

Without a doubt, this is the lowest grade I’ve given in two seasons of writing for SB Nation.

This was one of the worst games for the Bucs in recent memory and there have been a ton of bad ones to recount. Bad coaching, a lack of execution, and miscommunication all played a pivotal role in an embarrassing loss.

There was a lot riding on this game. If you’re a fan, you have to be wondering about whether this team really wants it or not after watching them play like this after a tough loss.

Overall Grade For The 2018 Season: 2.38 (C)