For players and coaches in the NFL, there are many ways to spend a bye week.
When it comes to Bruce Arians and the Bucs, preparing for opponents on a weekly basis was a focal point during the break.
Arians was asked about his message to the team’s captains over the bye week during Monday’s media availability. “It’s about our preparation, making better adjustments – in-game, halftime and on the sidelines – studying maybe a little more film,” he said at the podium. “It’s just all about preparation.”
At 2-4 and coming off the bye, the Bucs have had plenty of time to prepare for their next opponent, the Tennessee Titans. Sunday’s results will go a long way in providing context for answers to questions that currently surround this team.
Jameis Winston elaborated a bit on his coach’s comments Tuesday after practice.
“Just overall preparation – putting more time into the playbooks [and] going over and beyond in terms of what can we do to pull wins off as a team,” Winston told reporters.
It seems vague and simplistic, but maybe the reason for Tampa Bay’s struggles over the last two games has just been a lack of preparation. At the same time, if that is the actual reason, it’s also disturbing to think that a coaching staff with this much experience - and a roster with the majority of its back against the wall in terms of a future in the NFL - wouldn’t be prepared for a NFL game.
Whatever the reason, the Bucs need a find a way to win on Sunday, or they better prepare themselves for another long offseason.