There’s a lot of words that could be used to describe the Buccaneers’ performance against the Panthers. Pathetic. Uninspired. Inexcusable. Demoralizing. Go ahead - take your pick.
Jameis Winston traveled all the way to England to turn the ball over six times, including a career high five interceptions. Mike Evans had crucial drops. The secondary can’t stop a nosebleed (still). The offensive line might as well be five upturned mops with buckets for a head because inanimate objects would be just as effective.
They flat out sucked.
Now the Bucs - and the fans - have two weeks to stew over this before the road trip resumes with a trip to Nashville.
Let’s get this over with.
Six Topics Suitable For Conversation
1.) Jameis Winston was crap - and there’s no end in sight. I’m not going to dive too deep into this. I have plenty of my thoughts on the situation here, but you all saw it. There’s no excuse. No, the pass protection didn’t do him any favors, but the stupid decisions and forcing passes reared its ugly head and Winston just absolutely crapped all over the field of a $1.2-billion dollar stadium live on national television.
2.) Oh-no line. Sweet jebus. We knew protection would be minimal with Alex Cappa and Demar Dotson out, but the early pressure resulted in panic from Winston early and often - much of the reason the turnovers, sacks, and poor decisions were so prevalent all day long. Again, no excuses for some of the idiocy we saw from Winston, but these long developing plays need something - anything - resembling competent protection. The Bucs certainly don’t have that.
3.) *Sigh* - the secondary. Vernon Hargreaves is not improving. He’s reached his ceiling and - spoiler alert - it’s low. Another stellar outing from an opposing quarterback against the NFL’s worst pass defense.
4.) But that run defense is still stout. Christian McCaffrey was held, yet again, to less than 100 total yards. That’s only happened twice this season and both times were against the Buccaneers. Gotta find a little silver lining, don’t we?
5.) Officiating stays garbage. How many times did Jameis Winston need to get hit in the head/face before the referees finally threw a flag? I’ll help you - five. And it was called on the fifth time because Winston’s facemask was nearly ripped off. And since when did “forward progress stopped” no longer become a thing? McCaffrey was stuffed on 4th and Goal early in the game, but the refs gave him all day to stretch his arms out and extend the ball. We all saw it. He was stopped. He had nowhere to go. But alas, no whistle. And let’s not forget Hargreaves being shoved by Curtis Samuel, giving Samuel five extra yards of cushion as the ball arrived. Officiating this season has been every bit as bad as Winston’s week six performance. Week in, week out, these refs are just awful.
6.) Mike Evans is not elite. At least not until he stops dropping passes that he has no business dropping. You want to say you’re top five? That you’re an elite receiver in the NFL? You can’t drop sure touchdown passes that hit you square in the hands. You can’t slow down or stop at the top of a route and just “turn it back on” to regain the edge that you lost. You can’t sit and wait for the ball to come to you, you have to go get it. Evans told the media after the game that he “played like s***,” and quite frankly, he did. Nine receptions for 96 yards is great and all, but it should have been thirteen or fourteen for nearly 200 and two scores. That’s what he left on the field and that just can’t happen.
Six Numbers To Consider
5 - Interceptions by Jameis Winston, a career high
5 (again) - Quarterbacks in NFL history to reach 100 passing touchdowns by age 25, which includes Jameis Winston (Dan Marino, Peyton Manning, Matthew Stafford, and Drew Bledsoe)
1 - Quarterbacks in Buccaneers history to reach 100 passing touchdowns - Jameis Winston
1,126 - Receiving yards by Chris Godwin and Mike Evans, the most of any duo in the NFL
2.5 - Sacks by Gerald McCoy on Sunday
662 - Receiving yards for Godwin, most in team history through six games
Six Things To Do On The Bye Week
1.) Spend time with the family on Sunday. Take them on a “family fun day” without the stress of what or how the Bucs are doing.
2.) Watch college football. It’s rapidly becoming draft season at the rate things are going.
3.) Get caught up on housework. Knock out the “honey do” list in one day so you don’t have to worry about it the rest of the season.
4.) Binge watch “Breaking Bad” then watch “El Camino.” Turst me. It’s worth your time.
5.) Watch the Lightning - though they’ve been pretty disappointing so far, too
6.) Watch the Red Zone channel and just enjoy football without the stress of your team winning or losing
Six Best (Or Worst) Tweets
Remember when I said that Winston gets hit in the head every game and it never gets called?— Luke Easterling (@LukeEasterling) October 13, 2019
Arians, asked why Bobo Wilson has kept punt return job despite lackluster numbers and then two muffs, one lost, today: "Nobody's taken it from him yet. That's the problem."— Greg Auman (@gregauman) October 13, 2019
Man, these whistles are fast when not on the goal line...— What the Buc (@WhatTheBuc) October 13, 2019
Jameis Winston now has 5 games of at least 4 turnovers since entering the NFL in 2015.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 13, 2019
No one else has more than 2 over that span. #SCFacts pic.twitter.com/jAZ0eL0lFD
You have one of the better running attacks in the league, but muster only 13 rushing attempts. RoJo got four carries. Four. 54 pass attempts by Winston. I realize a lot of people hate the "run on 1st down" stuff, but it's worked. Abandoning it in this game killed the offense— Bucs Nation (@Bucs_Nation) October 13, 2019
Me waking up every Sunday thinking the Buccaneers will win: pic.twitter.com/sxiUvuqRZn— ️ig Slime (@king_jelly97) October 13, 2019
Six Super Bowl Bets
Per usual, completed before the Sunday night game was final
1.) New England Patriots - Still unbeaten, still untouchable
2.) San Francisco 49ers - Okay, I give in. They may just be the real deal
3.) Kansas City Chiefs - Two straight home losses. Yikes.
4.) New Orleans Saints - No Brees, but they keep on winning
5.) Green Bay Packers - Clipping along and may have a lethal run game in the works
28.) Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Outside Washington, Miami, Cincinnati, and the Jets, are you confident this team can beat anyone right now?