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)

two cents

Tom Jones' Two Cents on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Washington Redskins game

Strangest play calls

I'm still trying to figure out the Bucs' play-calling. They throw when they should run. They run when they should throw. And while coach Greg Schiano and offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan put in way more hours than I do concocting ways to move the ball in the NFL, here's the deal: The Bucs are 1-3 with the three losses coming by seven, six and two points. In other words, they keep coming up one score short.

On their final offensive drive Sunday, the Bucs were down by two and had second and 9 from the Redskins 33. They tried a pass that resulted in an incompletion, stopping the clock with 1:52 left. A wide receiver screen on the third down produced only 5 yards, and the Redskins called their second timeout with 1:47 left. The Bucs kicked a 47-yard field goal, but the Redskins got the ball back with 1:42 left and one timeout.

So if the Bucs' plan all along was to kick a field goal (Schiano suggested as much in the postgame), then why not run the ball on second down and force the Redskins to use up all of their timeouts?

Either the second-down call was too risky or the third-down call was too conservative. But leaving the Redskins with 1:42 and a timeout wasn't the best idea anyone ever had.

Worst sight

The announced attendance was 58,191, but it was stunning just how many empty seats there were, especially in the upper decks. Hey, maybe if the Bucs could schedule Florida State, they could get a sellout.

Worst labor agreement

The Bucs were penalized 10 times for 107 yards. Safety Mark Barron was called for a sketchy personal foul for tackling Redskins QB Robert Griffin III too hard. Bucs linebacker Mason Foster was called for a not-all-that-rough roughing-the-passer penalty. The officials missed what appeared to be an illegal forward pass that gave the Redskins a big first down.

Is it too late to bring back the replacement officials?

Best quote

Schiano bemoaned all the penalties, particularly those for illegal blocks on punt returns, a couple of offside infractions and those personal fouls on Griffin.

"That's me," Schiano said. "I got to get them to understand the situation."

It's admirable that Schiano wants to accept responsibility, but if NFL players need to be taught critical moments, perhaps they shouldn't be NFL players.

Three things that popped into my head

1. Good thing the Bucs are not in the NFC East, eh?

2. If, before the season, I told you the Bucs would be a game ahead of the Saints after four games, you'd probably think the Bucs were off to one heck of a start.

3. What a weapon kicker Connor Barth is. He has made 25 field goals in a row, and we're not talking chip shots here. Of those 25, 12 are from more than 40 yards and five are from at least 50 yards, including a 57-yarder Sunday. With Barth, the Bucs are practically in scoring position when they cross midfield.

Final thought

I don't know who is worse at closing out wins — the Bucs or the U.S. Ryder Cup team.

Tom Jones' Two Cents on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Washington Redskins game 09/30/12 [Last modified: Sunday, September 30, 2012 11:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning: Jon Cooper takes unusual tact to create mismatches

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Tyler Johnson is about to swing his left leg over the boards for his next shift alongside linemate Alex Killorn and ... whom else?

    Stamkos? Kucherov? Point?

    Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper argues the called as his team gets a faceoff violation, leading to penalty and #Caps PP goal, during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (10/09/17).DIRK SHADD   |   Times
  2. A buzz-worthy look at the Astros-Dodgers World Series matchup

    The Heater

    Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel is congratulated by Jose Altuve after scoring during the fifth inning of Game 7 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip) TXMG170
  3. Florida, FSU try to ignore death threats, angry fans


    GAINESVILLE — Frustration over uncharacteristically down seasons at Florida and Florida State has started to spill over from message boards and start crossing real-world lines.

    Fans watch the Florida Gators game against Texas A&M, at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, in Gainesville, Fla. At the half, Florida was up 10 to 3.
  4. Fennelly: Would you take Jameis Winston over Cam Newton?


    Factoring out futures, it wouldn't be a short list if I picked NFL quarterbacks I'd take right now over Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston (3) calls a play during the first half of Sunday's game. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  5. Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast: What went wrong on defense?


    Greg Auman is back from Buffalo, going back over a difficult finish and tough loss for the Bucs, in his latest Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Buffalo Bills tight end Logan Thomas (82) makes a touchdown catch over Bucs defensive back T.J. Ward (43) during the second half. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]