Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Eagles pull away 31-20, send Bucs to 0-5

TAMPA — DeSean Jackson was right: Darrelle Revis can't run with him.

The Bucs cornerback owned up to that again Sunday after watching Jackson catch two touchdown passes in the Eagles' 31-20 victory.

"That's my fault. I man up to my touchdowns, which usually a lot of them are not scored on me," Revis said. "That's my man. I've got to do what I've got to do."

But to be fair, no man is an island; not even Revis. He was playing zone coverage when Jackson caught his second touchdown.

And the truth is the Bucs had little chance of slowing down the oxygen-depriving, no-huddle, uptempo offense of the Eagles under former Oregon coach Chip Kelly.

Need proof?

The Bucs used a plodding, methodical, 90-yard drive of 16 plays that took 7:57 and ended with Rian Lindell's 27-yard field goal that pulled them to 21-20 4:12 into the fourth quarter.

Seventy-six seconds and three plays later, Jackson was in the end zone, capping an 80-yard drive that averaged 26.7 yards per play every 25 seconds from snap to snap.

Eagles-Bucs on Sunday was microwave versus the charcoal grill. The difference between the autobahn and driving through Times Square on New Years Eve. Hockey players coming over the boards and a slow walk to the mound to change pitchers.

The Eagles needed 3:14 to get into the end zone on the game's opening drive with backup Nick Foles scoring on a 4-yard quarterback draw. Two other scoring drives took 3:20 and 1:58.

And unlike Kelly's success over four seasons with the Ducks and his success Sunday with the Eagles, the Bucs are still wondering if this program under coach Greg Schiano will ever fly.

The loss dropped the Bucs to 0-5 — joining the Jaguars and Giants as the NFL's winless teams. Even more concerning to Bucs fans might be Schiano's 1-10 record over his past 11 games.

"I don't think tempo was really the issue," Schiano said. "We just gave up … four explosive plays, and we haven't done that. Balls haven't gone over our head in the first four games, and they did today.

"That's a good offense, obviously. They're going to get the yards. But if you can avoid giving up those explosives, especially the two touchdown passes over our head. … What we've been able to do is make people go the long, hard way by playing sound and solid. Today, we had a couple go over our head and kind of change the whole complexion."

Prior to Sunday, the Bucs had surrendered only one pass play of more than 31 yards. They surrendered four to the Eagles. Former Clearwater Central Catholic and Florida Gators star Riley Cooper had a career game with four catches for 120 yards and a touchdown. LeSean McCoy rushed for 116 yards and gained 44 yards on a swing pass to start the game.

"They played faster than we antici­pated and marched it right down the field," Bucs linebacker Jonathan Casillas said. "But I think we got a good hang of it after that. We can't replicate that in practice."

Rookie Mike Glennon was better in his second start, passing for 273 yards and a pair of touchdowns to Vincent Jackson (nine catches, 114 yards). That gave Doug Martin enough room to carve out 67 yards on 16 carries.

But the Bucs had four holding penalties and were flagged eight times overall for 72 yards.

"That comes back to right here. It's my job," Schiano said.

Last week, Jackson said Revis couldn't run with him. But he might as well have been talking about the Bucs' entire secondary.

On Jackson's first touchdown catch, a 12-yarder that put the Eagles up 14-10 in the second quarter, he lined up outside and ran a post pattern. Safety Mark Barron appeared to vacate the hole over the middle after a pump-fake by Foles.

On the second touchdown, a 36-yarder that put the Eagles up 28-20 in the fourth, Jackson lined up in the slot. He hoped to be mismatched against a safety and blew past Revis, who was in zone coverage.

"He has a job to do, which is to cover me regardless of if it's zone or man," Jackson said. "He still has a job to do, which is not letting me score.

"And I scored."

A dejected Revis was among the last to leave the locker room Sunday.

"It's our reality right now. We're 0-5," he said. "We have to find a way. I never expected this coming here.

"But at the same time, this is my team. This is my family. This is who I belong to. I have to do a better job. We as well as everybody else have to do a better job of playing and executing."

Rick Stroud can be reached at [email protected]bay.com.

   
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