I've been asked, "How come you haven't done a Bucs blog spot yet?" and my answer is simple: because they are an extremely bad team with little unity, no direction, zero leadership, and I'm seriously confused as to what this organization is trying to orchestrate and build upon.
Oh, and they're just not that interesting. Until a couple of weeks ago...
Look, I'm not here to bash Tampa. I've been an avid Buccaneer supporter since early high school (I was too much of a skater punk to worry about sports in middle school). I can go on and on about how Raheem Morris wasn't the right head coaching candidate, how Morris should have hired a Tampa 2 guru to be his defensive coordinator, and how it was a dumb move to dump Derrick Brooks. But why do any of that? That's all we read about and hear on talk radio. Are the critics wrong? No, because it was stupid to move away from the Tampa 2 and this team is begging for leadership, yet the Buccaneer's organization is too scared to admit they were wrong and won't bring Brooks back.
This team looked completely down for the count and Bucs fans should be embarrassed. A head coach who allows his players to walk all over him is pathetic. A team who plays competitively for about 15 minutes then lays down is garbage. Owners that want to focus more on a lavish soccer team in Europe than their local product is ridiculous. That's like some hoity toity, London Lord buying the Yankees and ignoring his English Premier team. I wish the Glazers would just sell the Bucs to the Outback guys. I digress...
My attitude has changed a bit. No, I'm not jumping on the, "Josh Freeman is our savior" bandwagon; although, I think the kid has great potential, as long as this distant organization builds around him and brings in solid athletes. My attitude changed when I witnessed this meager ball club clawing their way to a win over Green Bay and nearly beating Miami. I know moral victories count for squat, but the grit of the Bucs in the 4th quarter against the 'Phins, in Landshark Stadium, was impressive.
We can cry all we want about the horrible call at the end of the 1st half (and it was an awful call), but that game was in Tampa's grasp and they let go.
Not to get all nostalgic, but when Lynch, Brooks, Sapp, and Ronde were in their prime balling, it was lights out for opposing offenses, especially in those key situations where they needed to stop the opposition's game-winning drive. I'm in no way comparing this ragtag group to our legends, but legends are made. Brooks and Sapp did things to make their name's stand out above the rest. They didn't throw their cleats on, step out onto the field, and all of the sudden scare the jock's out of teams. They buckled down and got the job done by making memorable plays and heart-pounding stops.
Presently, this Tampa defense is trash, but they're on the brink of becoming a solid foundation. Forget being young. They're fast, hungry, learning quickly on the fly, and have evolved from their 1st game of the season. Miami's final drive was their opportunity, their chance to show the rest of the NFL that they are on their way and make a name for themselves.
They came up short though and, as atrocious a call the Bucs received at the end of the 1st half, the team overcame it and the defense should have stepped up and buried that game. I'm not blaming the D, but we had it.
I truly believe these kids are on their way. I think it's a matter of time before it all clicks for them and we start seeing a winning product again.
I'll go ahead and give Coach Morris the benefit of the doubt for the time being. The team seems to finally buy into what he's preaching. There hasn't been any incidents as of late and the players aren't talking smack. I think this team has a shock or two up their sleeves. Only time will tell.