It’s Still A Simple Game – – Tampa Bay Bucs Blog, Buccaneers News

Bucs coach Todd Bowles.

Joe guesses folks could call him a new school football guy in that Joe likes passing and fully understands without a quarterback, an NFL team has no shot.

That’s all there is to it.

But Joe is also rooted in old-school football fundamentals. Regular readers over the years know how much Joe salivates over sacks and rails incessantly about defenders not wrapping up and sloppy tackling.

At the end of the day, no matter how shiny and cool your Star Wars offense may be, the game comes down to blocking and tackling. It always will so long as the NFL doesn’t turn into flag football.

To hear Bucs coach Todd Bowles speak in a sitdown with Dan Lucas of WFLA-TV Channel 8, the Bucs may not have been blown out like they were against the Chiefs (the game wasn’t as close as the score indicated) if the Bucs’ defense did one simple thing.


The most glaring example came early in the second quarter when Kansas City took a 21-3 lead the Bucs never recovered from. Pat Mahomes did one of his Houdini acts and had a short jump shot along the right sideline to Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

That play may never have happened if Devin White didn’t pull a Kwon Alexander and whiffed badly on a tackle which allowed Mahomes to escape along the right sideline.

“We’ve got to get him to the ground,” Bowles told Lucas of how you defend Mahomes. “If you can’t get him to the ground and a guy misses a tackle on him, you should expect some fireworks for that.

“But we have to get get more people to him to get him to the ground.”

In Joe’s mind, “more people” means gang-tackling. It’s a beautiful thing and a hallmark of a good defense.

But it is not fair to single out White. Joe’s just pointing that play out because of Mahomes’ wizardry, that play likely will be shown in his highlights when the guy makes the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Tackling seemed to have been an issue all game as Bowles pointed out to Lucas.

One reason the Bucs struggled to slow down the Chiefs, Bowles said, was the Bucs let the Chiefs have too many third-and-shorts. That was set up, Bowles said, by bad tackling and defenders being out of position on first and second downs.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve had our butts kicked like that on defense,” Bowles said. “I think everything went wrong.”

As far as the run game that seems stuck in the mud, Bowles thinks with the passing game now clicking with both Mike Evans and Chris Godwin back, that may help open up the run game.

This content was originally published here.

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