After a scary start that is apropos for Halloween, the Buccaneers woke up from the dead and thrashed the horrid San Francisco 49ers 34-17. It was a great three quarters of football for the men in Pewter, but what about that start?
What I Got Right
The first 15 minutes were about as bad of Buccaneer football as you can get. The defense let the 49ers march right down the field like they were Tom Brady and the Patriots….or the Jim Harbaugh 49ers when Colin Kaepernick was called “The greatest quarterback in the history of the league.”
The Bucs did their typical protect Jameis from Jameis conservative approach in the first quarter…but unfortunately, Jameis still found a way to turn the ball over and hand it to the Niners in point blank range.
Winston is shockingly terrible in the first quarter of games, completing just 57% of his passes with 0 TDs and 4 of his 9 ints, he has a 37.2 QB rating. Get Jameis into the second half and he’s a different quarterback, throwing 7 TDs and just 2 INTs with a 92.2 QB Rating.
After that first quarter of horror though, the Bucs dominated the football game. The Niners would just score 3 points the rest of the way, turn it over 3 times and Kaepernick would be sacked 4 times. The Bucs would roll off 27 unanswered points and the game was never closer than two scores the rest of the way.
What I Got Wrong
Well, the most obvious thing I got wrong was while I was live tweeting the football game.
— JC De La Torre (@jcdelatorre) October 23, 2016
That’s right folks, ole DLT had given up the ghost with a classic first quarter panic tweet. Thankfully, that most obvious overreaction was inaccurate and the Bucs proved to be a much better football team the rest of the way.
Well, we all know Chris Myers and Ronde Barber from their work during the Pre-Season with the Buccaneer television network. Barber has gotten a lot better since his first year as color analyst, but I still feel he’s not quite at the level of teammate John Lynch or some of the other analysts FOX brings to the table. He’s definitely in the top half of their crews, but not among the best.
Myers is a Pro’s Pro. He knows when to add excitement in his voice and when to leave it understated. I’ve always enjoyed his call of games.
The What the Buc Moment of the Game
The Bucs had hoped to duplicate Week One by scoring on their last possession of the first half and the first possession of the second half but Jameis and the boys were forced to punt. That’s when Bucs punter Bryan Anger skied a moon shot of a punt that allowed the coverage to get down the field and a 49er blocker ran into his own return man, forcing a muff that was recovered by Tampa Bay.
The Bucs would just get a field goal out of the drive but it got the Bucs defense fired up, who would force a Kaepernick sack fumble and it was katy-bar-the-door from there.
Around the Dirty South
Just when the Falcons had me convinced they were legitimate, the go and blow a 17 point lead at home to the mediocre San Diego Super Chargers. Don’t look now folks, but if the Bucs win their next two games, guess who’s alone in first place at the halfway mark? The Saints fought hard in KC but were eventually dusted off by the Chefs…er Chiefs, great googly moogly. The Panthers were off this week to lick their wounds.
Were the Bucs really as good as they looked?
Anyone who watched that first quarter would say no. However, the Bucs did what they had to do and pounded an inferior opponent. The 49ers are really a terrible football team, folks. We’ve seen our share of rotten football in Tampa Bay (Lovie’s first year comes to mind), but man, you almost have to feel for Niners fans. That’s a football team going nowhere with no hope of a revival at this point.
I think the next two weeks will tell us if the Buccaneers are a contender.
The Raiders are coming. This should be an interesting ball game. Oakland made the trek East to play the Jaguars this past week and decided to stay in Florida rather than travel all the way back. They will be practicing at the IMG Center. Oakland is a very Saints like team, excellent on offense, not so great on defense but the big difference is Derek Carr doesn’t turn the football over like Drew Brees does.
I think this is a game the Bucs will need to control the clock running the football and Jameis simply cannot turn it over. If the Bucs play a clean game, they have a great shot of getting their first home win of 2016.