Tampa Bay Buccaneers Season Review (4-12)
It was a disappointing season for Greg Schiano and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They started off the season 0-8, despite half of those losses being by 3 points or less. They did have a good 5 game stretch, winning 4 out of 5, which gave a glimmer of hope to possibly bringing back Schiano as head coach, but losses in the last 3 put an end to it.
They were 30th in the league in scoring at only 18 point per game, while giving up 24.3 point per game, which ranked them 21st. They also were last in the league, offensively, in total yards, last in offensive passing yards, and 22nd in the league in rushing yards. If they want to turn their team around, they need not only be healthy, but they also have to change the mentality of the franchise. They will be hoping that their new coach Lovie Smith will be able to do just that.
The 2 biggest stars on the Buccaneers are RB Doug Martin and CB Darrelle Revis. The latter did a good job in coming back from his knee injury and should be even better next year, which is scary, since he was still very good this year, as long as it was man coverage. The former went down with a torn labrum in his left shoulder, a devastating injury for a RB that takes so many hits. He hopes to return next year to his 1900 yards, 12 TDs form that he had as a rookie in 2012.
They also will be heading into 2014 with a different opening day starter and Josh Freeman was jettisoned after just 3 starts and the Mike Glennon era began. For someone that was considered to be raw, Glennon played well with over 2600 yards and 19 TDs with only 8 INTs in 13 starts. He did have the typical rookie ups and downs, but overall, the Bucs think they have found their QB of the future.
The biggest needs on offense for Tampa Bay, other than health, are getting a consistent WR to go with Vincent Jackson and improving their offensive line. Behind Jackson, Mike Williams was supposed to be a strong #2 WR, but with him being injured, they never really had a dangerous 2nd playmaker.
Their offensive line gave up 47 sacks, which was the 6th highest in the league, and they only averaged 3.8 yards per attempt on the ground. On the defensive side of the ball they were good against the run, giving up 4.0 yards per carry and only 10 TDs, but they couldn’t get to the QB with only 35 sacks. They will be looking for another pass rusher in the offseason as their leading sacker was DT Gerald McCoy. LB Lavonte David should have been a pro bowler, but in most 4-3 defenses, you got to get pressure from your DEs.
In the NFC it’s tough to make the playoffs, so the Bucs are probably looking at 2 years, minimum, to contend. However, if they are right on Glennon, we all know that QB is the ultimate equalizer in the NFL. If he has a big 2nd year jump and they get a pass rusher, they can surprise.
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