It’s no secret that Tampa Bay’s defense has been horrendous since the arrival of Mike Smith. The secondary allows the opposition to throw all over the field and the pass rush….yikes! Everyone is talking about,” if the Buccaneers miss the playoffs again that head coach Dirk Koetter will be removed.” Let’s not forget Mike Smith was supposed to make this defense one of the NFL’s best.
Smith has been around the NFL for a number of years and is very familiar with the NFC South. He served as the head coach in Atlanta from 2008-2014. He broke the 10 win mark four times while in Atlanta, but was never able to secure a playoff victory during his tenure there. Eventually the Falcons would part ways with the long time coach where he would end up landing in Tampa Bay.
When Smith was introduced in Tampa he described his defense as a “flexible” 4-3. Does flexible mean allowing opponents to score whenever they want? At times it seemed like it because the Buccaneers had no pass rush, no secondary, and didn’t force turnovers, it became very hard for Buccaneers fans to be positive when talking about this defense. Now, we will cut him a little slack, since Tampa dealt with injuries and the fact the Vernon Hargreaves III was giving opposing receivers a cushion the size of Florida. But nevertheless Mike Smith has to be better.
This year the Buccaneers selected DT-Vita Vea, CB-MJ Stewart, CB- Carlton Davis, S- Jordan Whitehead, and LB-Jack Cichy. Three out these five draft picks are to help the secondary. Vea will help sure up the middle of the defensive line. The Buccaneers have also brought in veteran players like Jason Pierre-Paul, Vinny Curry, and Beau Allen. All of these guys are proven veterans that “should” get the Buccaneers over the hump, barring injury. The talent is here for the Buccaneers. The window in the NFL doesn’t stay open for long and with the current roster there is no reason we shouldn’t make the playoffs. The offense can put up points with anyone and now the defense will have the fire power to stop opposing offenses. The time is now Mike Smith. No more excuses!