This is the year that Jameis Winston and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were supposed to take the next step. They went 9-7 last year, had a great defense, and added offensive playmakers in the offseason. This was their year to make the playoffs for the first time since 2007.
Instead, the Bucs (2-6) – losers of five straight – have woefully underperformed. Is this more on Winston or head coach Dirk Koetter?
“There’s a lot of blame to be spread around right here because you’ve got to include what’s going on defensively here, too,” NFL Network analyst Steve Wyche said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “This is a team that, last year, finished with one of the most dominant defenses in the NFL over the back half – and they’ve been a train wreck. They’ve had some injuries, but they have shown nothing in terms of trying to be a competitive defense.”
The Bucs have allowed 30+ points in four of their six losses this season. Winston, meanwhile, has been subpar, with 10 touchdowns and six interceptions.
“Jameis, I know he’s hurt – and maybe they’re not letting on as badly as he’s hurt – but he just has not been accurate. He has not been great,” Wyche said. “But Koetter has not put him in great situations. If you watch them, they don’t have tempo. They’re a seven-step-drop passing team. They don’t run the ball all that much.”
In fact, the Bucs are only running the ball 36.7 percent of the time.
“There’s a tendency teams get to scheme for right out of the gate, so there’s a lot of blame to be spread around,” Wyche said. “From what I’m hearing, Dirk Koetter and that staff could really be vulnerable.”
Elsewhere in the NFC, the Giants (1-7) have been a (1-7) have been a dumpster fire as well. They started 0-5 and gave up 51 points at home to the Rams on Sunday.
Is there any way Ben McAdoo keeps his job?
“I can’t see how he survives,” Wyche said. “The fan reaction is horrible. We know that market tends to overreact, but they’ve got every right to go ahead and start shoveling dirt on what’s going on right now. When you see DRC (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie) get suspended and a week or two later you see Janoris Jenkins not even show up on time for the bye – does that happen in New England? Does that happen in Green Bay? We used to always say to ourselves, ‘That doesn’t happen with the Giants.’ Well, it’s happening with the Giants. To me, more than the fact that they’re getting their butts kicked and they’re not creative on offense, the fact that now they’ve been added to some of the dysfunctionality to some of the bad franchises we see in the NFL, to me, that’s the straw that finally breaks the back.”