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Bucs historically bad in loss to Ravens

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Kamar Aiken catches a 17-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Joe Flacco while being covered by Bucs strong safety Mark Barron  in the first quarter. [DIRK SHADD | Times]
Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Kamar Aiken catches a 17-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Joe Flacco while being covered by Bucs strong safety Mark Barron in the first quarter. [DIRK SHADD | Times]
Published Oct. 13, 2014

TAMPA — It was an ugly day, coming just three weeks after absorbing a stunningly similar lopsided loss.

So after the Bucs' 48-17 defeat to Baltimore in which Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco fired five touchdown passes in the first 16:03 of the game Sunday, players and coaches were left only to compare massacres.

Was trailing the Falcons 56-0 on Sept. 18 at the Georgia Dome worse than trailing the Ravens 35-0 just 1:03 into the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday? How do you compare your worst flu viruses? Or flat tires?

Heading into the bye week with a 1-5 record, Tampa Bay coach Lovie Smith sounded stunned by the completeness of another defeat.

"One-and-five says we're not a good football team," Smith said. "And we're not a good football team. It's as simple as that. … It's total domination on their part.

"Without giving excuses for how we're playing, we're not as talented as we need to be in some areas. Sometimes you can pick on that a little bit. … We're taking our moments not to play our best ball."

In fact, Smith's team has played historically bad ball. By allowing 165 points in a four-game span, the Bucs matched the most points allowed in any four-game stretch in the team's 39 seasons.

Flacco took advantage of a secondary weakened by the absence of two starters, including cornerback Johnthan Banks, who missed the game with a neck injury. Flacco hit 10 of his first 13 passes for 196 yards and five touchdowns.

The Ravens (4-2) scored on their first six possessions while the Bucs offense didn't turn off the snooze button until the third quarter, after Smith challenged the players' pride in the locker room at halftime.

"It was definitely a fun day," Flacco said. "You don't get those too often in this league. … It was pretty crazy."

Quarterback Mike Glennon, who was intercepted by Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith on the first series, threw touchdown passes to rookie Mike Evans and Louis Murphy in the second half — long after the issue had been decided.

It's a good thing the Bucs have a bye week to dissect their problems, because they could only grasp at straws for an explanation after the game.

"First, it starts with us. What you see is what you coach," Smith said. "So for us, we've got to do a better job of coaching up what we have. Talent-wise, it's becoming a habit, and it's happening too many times, so we do have to make improvements and add to our roster."

Offensive tackle Demar Dotson had his hands full with Ravens defensive end Elvis Dumervil. Glennon was sacked five times and Dumervil had 1½ of those. The Ravens also had 15 quarterback hits while the Bucs had none on Flacco.

"Dumervil presented me with a challenge like I've never seen before," Dotson said. "That's probably the worst half of football I've played in my career."

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Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who had a broken hand and did not play in the 56-14 loss to the Falcons, said the Ravens' blocking scheme took him out of the game.

"We're just not as good as we should be at this point," McCoy said. "That's the facts. We're just not as good as we should be. We didn't play well today, and we're not good enough. There is no secret formula why it happened. It's just we're not where we should be."

While the Bucs still are struggling with the nuances of the Tampa 2 defensive scheme, which Smith said he wouldn't abandon, McCoy insisted the problem lies with players.

"What happened today was a lot of guys just doing their jobs," he said. "In the NFL, there has to be more than that. Doing your job is good in little league and high school. As the talent level goes up and the competition goes up, you have to do more than that."

The Bucs have averaged 4.5 points per game in the first half of their six games. The 38-point halftime deficit Sunday was the largest for a home team in NFL history.

"This is a bad loss and we never want to be on that end of history," Glennon said.

The Bucs offense was so bad Sunday, at one point it had 12 consecutive plays of zero or negative yardage.

By the two-minute warning, Ravens fans filled the lower bowl of RJS behind the Baltimore bench. The Bucs cheerleaders danced to Taylor Swift's Shake It Off:

"Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play

"And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate …

"I shake it off, I shake it off."

"It's unacceptable," McCoy said. "Any fans or anyone who is angry, what are we going to tell them? Don't be angry? I'm angry, too."


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