With the regular season just over a week away and the roster now down to 53-players, let’s take a look at this defense. Let’s go ahead and forget last season happened. Between the stats, Mike Smith, and our corners playing a mile away from receivers; let’s focus on the future.
Feature Image credit: TE Antony Auclair and DB Deone Bucannon – Photo by: Mary Holt/PewterReport.com
Enter Todd Bowles as coordinator
I know it’s never a good thing to get fired from your previous job, but I’m glad the J-E-T-S let this man, go. He is a brilliant man when it comes to defense. So here he is, bringing a 3-4-style hybrid defense to the table, and it seems to fit the players better. The players have bought into the scheme, and it showed this pre-season. Long gone are the days of the Tampa 2, we now have a scheme that can mix coverage with blitzes and a very capable pass rush.
Not returning this season are players such as Kwon Alexander, Gerald McCoy, Adarius Taylor, Brent Grimes, Chris Conte, Vinny Curry, along with a few other unknown players. Players like Kwon (San Francisco) and McCoy (Carolina) found homes right away, while others are still waiting for the call. Agreed or not, these departures were needed to help bring in a new era within the defense.
Now, not all things were bad this offseason. The Bucs were able to bring in some talent between the draft and free agency. Draft wise, let’s begin with 1st-round draft pick MLB Devin White(5th overall); this kid can be the future if coached correctly. He is fast, and he is mean. Coming with him are players like; Sean Murphy-Bunting (39th), Jamel Dean (94th), and Mike Edwards (99th).
The Bucs didn’t only load up on D in the draft, they hit it hard in free-agency too, bringing in players like Ndamukong Suh, Shaquill Barrett, Deone Buchannon, and Darian Stewart.
Now it’s time
We’ve been teased enough, this pre-season with how this D has looked. Many are aware that we didn’t get to see the full-scale, punch you, in your mouth defense that’s been advertised. We get it, it’s the pre-season, but now comes the real thing. Now it counts. Fans are ready to see how players like Devin White and Lavonte David look together in a game. We want to see what the starters can do after the defense as a whole wrapped up 14 sacks in 4 games (should have been at least 20) during exhibition games.
We are ready to see this defense take the league (and opposing offenses) by storm. It’s time to see this defense kick some a**. For the first time in over a decade, it’s time to get hyped over your Bucs defense; it’s time for Bucs football.