Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs' good vibes are gone

Good vibes gone

Bucs coach Greg Schiano was in a sour mood Sunday, more irritated than normal after a loss. He called the 33-14 thumping by the 49ers "disappointing." A better word, perhaps: discouraging. All the good vibes built up over the recent 4-1 streak were erased in the three hours it took for the 49ers to manhandle the Bucs.

The offense was abysmal again. The defense couldn't stop the 49ers when it mattered most. Even the special teams goofed up and cost the Bucs a touchdown.

And I don't want to hear how the Bucs were playing a good team. We're not grading on a curve. This is life in the NFL. The 49ers are the type of team you have to play and beat when you're a good team.

After Sunday, it's hard to say this team is making progress, especially on offense and especially at quarterback.

Biggest play

Down only 20-14 early in the fourth quarter, the Bucs forced the 49ers into third and 12 from the San Francisco 29-yard line. QB Colin Kaepernick scrambled around, found receiver Michael Crabtree for a 14-yard gain, and the 49ers went on to ice the game with a gut-punching 17-play drive that chewed up more than 10 minutes and ended with a Phil Dawson field goal to make it 23-14.

Number of the day

22 Ten-loss seasons the Bucs now have after dropping to 4-10 on Sunday. Forget moral victories. Forget injuries. Forget opponents. Forget how they got here. Bottom line: a double-digit loss season. Again. Those don't do much for job security, whether it be for players, coaches or executives.

Not the worst call

If there was a lowlight that epitomized the loss — and just maybe the Bucs' season — it was the bumbling fumble that turned into a 49ers touchdown when the Bucs botched a reverse on a kickoff return late in the fourth quarter. The execution was horrible, but the call was not a bad idea. With the Bucs down nine points with fewer than five minutes left and needing two scores, trying a little razzle-dazzle is worth the risk, particularly when an offense is struggling to score.

Three things that popped into my head

1. An ominous tone was set when the Bucs' Brian Leonard dropped what would have been a first-down catch on the first series of the day. When an offense is struggling, you can't just gift a three-and-out on the first series.

2. If you paid to see Kaepernick, you got your money's worth. He threw for 203 yards, ran for 39 and generally looked like what an elite NFL quarterback is supposed to look.

3. Bucs LB Lavonte David is the best player on the team right now.

Final thought

Does this not feel like the longest season in the history of the NFL? And two games are still left.

Bucs' good vibes are gone 12/15/13 [Last modified: Sunday, December 15, 2013 11:25pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. St. Petersburg's Sebastien Bourdais vows to return for IndyCar finale

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Sebastien Bourdais was in one of the best race cars he'd ever had, so fast that most of his competitors thought he would win the pole for the Indianapolis 500.

    Sebastien Bourdais does physical therapy at the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana in Indianapolis. Bourdais broke his pelvis, hip and two ribs in an accident during qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 on May 20. He plans to return home to St. Petersburg soon to continue therapy. [Associated Press]
  2. Yellow cards stall Rowdies offense in tie with St. Louis


    ST. PETERSBURG — It's not the result they wanted, but it certainly could have been worse. Neill Collins' 87th-minute header off a corner kick was the reward the Rowdies settled for Saturday night during a 1-1 draw with St. Louis before an announced 6,068 at Al Lang Stadium.

  3. Calvary Christian routs Pensacola Catholic to win state baseball title


    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian left no doubt as to which baseball team in Class 4A was the best in Florida this season. The Warriors defeated Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium to claim the school's first state championship in any team sport. It also solidified a 30-0 season. …

    Matheu Nelson celebrates after scoring on a wild pitch during the first inning, when Calvary Christian took a 6-0 lead.
  4. Numerous lapses add up to frustrating Rays loss to Twins

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — While the Rays made some good defensive plays, threw a couple of big pitches when they needed to and got a few, and just a few, key hits, there were some obvious things they did wrong that led to them losing Saturday's game to the Twins 5-3:

    Rays reliever Tommy Hunter says the Twins’ tiebreaking homer came on a pitch that was “close to where I wanted it.”
  5. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. laughing right along after comical dive

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Souza being Souza.

    That seemed to be the best way to describe the entertaining — and comically bad — dive Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. attempted in Friday's game, and the good humor he showed in handling the fallout, including a standing ovation his next at-bat from the …