Josh Freeman

So The Lions Are Better Than The Bucs Now

September 12, 2011 at 11:49am by Scott   •  14 Comments »

Can't let the post go by without a little patriotism.
This entry is a little late in coming, partly because I’m having a hard time sorting out all the things that went wrong with this game. There’s just SO much that sucked. You know how you’ll see something that sucks, and you’ll go “Holy shit, that really sucks!” But then it gets worse and you don’t think it can possibly suck anymore? But then it does and you just stare at it with your mouth agape wondering if you’ve reached the maximum allowable suckitude in the physical universe? But then it continues to suck even more and you consider writing your Master’s thesis on how you just witnessed the breaking of the Universal Suck Limit? Yeah, that was yesterday.

You know what the Bucs missed most of all about this offseason? Live tackling. Did they conduct even one practice this year with live tackling? I don’t think so. And they still didn’t do much of it yesterday. Tackling was sloppy as shit and every time I looked up, the Lions were breaking tackles and juking Bucs out of their jocks. The stat line says the Lions only rushed for 3.6 YPC, which I find unbelievable. I must be thinking of yards after a reception because it seemed like they would have double that the way they were bouncing off tacklers.

Still, the Lions ran the ball 35 times for 126 which is still getting the job done. The Bucs gave LeGarrette Blount the ball five total times. Earnest Graham, their third-down back, got six carries. Three of those came on third or fourth down with one yard to go and Graham missed all three, fumbling one of them away. A lot of that has to do with the blocking of the offensive line, which couldn’t open up any holes for the backs. Still, one yard. A good running back can’t pick and pound his way for one yard without fumbling? Everyone knew the Detroit defensive line was going to be tough, and it seems like the Bucs went in unprepared for what they saw. Pass-protection wasn’t bad but those pockets seemed to get smaller and smaller.

Calvin Johnson is a fucking monster and the match-up between him and Aqib Talib was one-sided. Talib got his pick six off of Will Heller, a guy he has no problem guarding. But against Johnson, forget about it — at least for now. Johnson had six catches for 88 yards and 2 TDs. He was such a no brainer on draft day that even Matt Millen took him.

The Bucs spent the last two drafts on defensive linemen. Yesterday, the Bucs got zero sacks and zero quarterback hurries. Chew on that for a couple minutes.

On a happy note, did it seem like Sean Jones kind of came out of nowhere yesterday? I saw more of him in the Lions game than I remember seeing all last season. He led the team with eight tackles and one of them looked like he almost killed the dude. He did miss on that long TD by Johnson, though. He was supposed to provide help over the top but was out of position.

I suppose we have to get to him eventually. Josh Freeman did not look sharp. He was constantly scrambling when it didn’t seem necessary, he was off target on several throws (including an overthrow to Luke Stocker which would have been a touchdown) and looked more like a rookie than he has in a long time. He looked like he found his groove in the last two minutes of the first half, but the Lions were giving up a lot of those passes up the middle to keep the clock running. So Freeman found a rhythm against a Cover 2 shell — everything else seemed to give him a hard time. I thought maybe he had shaved his head again, but evidently not.

Freeman's wildcard fro.

It’s not to championship length, but it’s adequately funky enough to beat the Lions. I’d say it’s wildcard hair right now.

Highlights: Kellen Winslow, Sammie Stroughter, Mike Williams‘s ridiculous touchdown, Quincy Black in the first half. There was some good stuff to take from the game, but overall it was a poor first showing and does not make me optimistic for the rest of the season. The good news is that the rest of the NFC South lost, so we’re still tied for first!

14 Comments to “So The Lions Are Better Than The Bucs Now”


manbearpig (September 12, 2011 at 12:15pm:

Good thing we got rid off caddy. He was pretty useless. (sarcasm at it’s peak)


toolman (September 12, 2011 at 12:17pm:

Let’s face it, the Bucs are happy to “train up” good players only to let some other team pick them up when they get expensive. Maybe they need to “train up” a new offensive co-ordinator and let this one go…they couldn’t get any worse. Very POOR game plan.


Glen_Runciter (September 12, 2011 at 12:45pm:

manbearpig is right, the only positive thing this week was that neither Caddy, nor Ruud were any use to their new teams. Im really glad I turned out to be right when didnt worry about letting them go.
oh, and at least all our rivals lost too.

it all started good when Clayborn almost kicked off his carreer with a tackle for loss, but missed the runner, and… he kept doing that. almost making the play, but being a yard late.
god, it was obvious before last season that this Detroit team is gonna be good real soon, but still, this was a terrible game.


manbearpig (September 12, 2011 at 12:56pm:

Caddy ran for 93 yards on 19 carries and had like 50 yards receiving. What did ruud do? I’m sure he had a big day too. And to add to my shitty day I ordered Sunday ticket on my ps3 since I live in Virginia beach and never get to see the game unless I go to a bar….didn’t work. Complete failure for the low price of $340.


Darren47 (September 12, 2011 at 12:59pm:

It was obviously a very disappointing showing for the Bucs, but I actually think it’ll serve as the proverbial wakeup call this team desperately needs…

Our special teams play remains solid, the D had a few impressive goal or near goal-line stands, and the offense was able to move the ball in the second half. What if Graham converts on that 4th and 1 AND we score immediately afterward? We’re all talking about Freeman’s amazing comebacks, etc… If we start fast, and utilize the run game efficiently, we win this game. Don’t be surprised to see a fast start to the game this weekend; I fully expect a win in Minnesota.


SGBuc (September 12, 2011 at 01:08pm:

If we don’t beat the Vikings, then we have little to no chance for success the rest of the season.


bassoon75 (September 12, 2011 at 01:47pm:

Here we go:
Here we go:

1) Forget the fact the Bucs couldn’t tackle the Lions. They could tackle anything that was moving. This seems extremely odd, especially that during one of Rah’s press conferences he said he has to “calm the team down” when they get in pads because they play and hit so hard.

2) if you had a running back that played only eight games last year and was still able to rush for over 1,000 yards, why would you only give him the ball five times? I think I heard Dominick say that they wanted more of a running back rotation and for LB not to have to “carry the load.” First, he is built to and more than capable of carrying the load. Second, look behind him. Do you really want to rely on the other guys as a constant source of rushing offense?

3) I know that CJ is beast and am willing to concede that he will always get his. However, I do not expect that the defensive backs can not handle the rest of the receiving core, or players breaking free in the open field. Rah needs to spend a lot more time with these guys.

4) The receivers actually did well considering that both Freeman and the OL were not in sync. Overall, however, the offense had no flow or consistency. Are we a throwing team that runs (colts), or a running team that throws (vikings)? The play calling was bad overall. Where are all the different looks with two tight ends and receivers?

5) The DL, while not showing up in the stats, actually played well. There were numerous times that they came close to getting to Stafford. We need to settle on a starting four and stick to it, only bringing in the other guys as part of third and longs or other special situations. Okam needs to be out there as much as possible.

6) Lastly, we have to stop playing from behind. I know Feeeman has the magic touch, but every quarterback only has so many of those in him until he runs out and self-destruct (favre). We need to start playing ahead, faster, and with a sense of urgency. Push the tempo and start playing instead of thinking.

I really hope next week goes A LOT better than this week.


Ryvers (September 12, 2011 at 02:30pm:

Awful, just awful. 3 things in particular:

-Tackling was as bad as I’ve seen
-The D-Line got blown off the ball routinely – the Line of scrimmage moved 2-3 yards at the snap. I watched McCoy a couple of plays, and he was embarrassed. Stafford did not get hit once, ALL DAY.
-Run blocking was absent.

The Bucs were flat out not ready to play – this was as one sided (and disappointing)a loss as I’ve seen since Ray Perkins was coach.


Louie (September 12, 2011 at 03:13pm:

This was a PERFECT game to gauge the Bucs progress. The Lions and the Bucs both have been rebuilding since 2009. Both head coaches started at the same time. Morris was handed a 9-7 team and Schwartz an 0-16 team. The Bucs were playing at home on a VERY hot day (which they should have been able to take advantage of) and they had the added incentive of having the Lions to thank for not making the playoffs last year.

So, how do the teams compare to date? The Lions look like a playoff team and the Bucs looked like shit. The Bucs better turn it around next week against the Vikings or this season will go to in the toilet real quick.

To me, yesterday was a complete failure of the coaching staff to get those guys ready to play. Schwartz and his staff completely outcoached Morris & Co!

Mark S

Mark S (September 12, 2011 at 04:16pm:

I was so disappointed. I saw it coming in preseason, and I was still disappointed. From the first series you just knew the Bucs were going to lose. They were totally outclassed. Whatever Raheem dreamed up last year, the league is ready for it. Back to the drawing board for the game plan.

Thanks to DirecTV Sunday ticket, I was able to watch some tidbits of other games. I saw Ruud stop three goal-to-go rushing attempts. Too bad he can’t play the run, huh?

worker b

worker b (September 12, 2011 at 04:18pm:

Anyone else think maybe the Tennessee goggles have affected Scott’s take on the Stocker play? I thought he clearly should have caught that ball and possibly waltzed into the end zone.


Scott (September 12, 2011 at 04:26pm:

The ball was overthrown, but Stocker still got a hand on it. Winslow might have been able to catch it, but it would have been a remarkable, highlight reel catch. I’m not going to blame Stocker for that one.


campyone (September 12, 2011 at 05:27pm:

That was a horrible outing, especially for a team that’s trying to build up the fan base and sell some season tickets. The Bucs will have far more demands for refunds than they will new orders after this fiasco.


bootypirate (September 13, 2011 at 11:48am:

*We should have kept Cadillac Williams and released Earnest Graham.
*Blount needs more carries, no matter how the O-Line is playing… but the line was seriously, very, extremely inept at opening a single hole, all day long.
*It’s really too bad that we are STUCK with Greg Olsen again this year. He is a terrible offensive coordinator, and seemingly the one component that is really holding-back our offense and the many weapons that we have. I am picturing the NYG offense from 3 years ago, with Plaxico=M. Williams, E. Manning=Freeman, Derrick Ward=Blount, etc. All we need is the right type of offense and playcalling.
* Defense wasn’t too bad. They should have no trouble shutting down the Vikings next week. That Youngry d-line needs to show us what they’ve got.

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