Coach Duffner has taken point on the Buccaneers’ defense for two games now. In the first game against Cleveland, his defense gave up 215 yards through the air and 119 on the ground. Whilst these weren’t outstanding stats to concede against the Browns, it was a marked improvement in the defensive performance.
Next on the schedule was the Cincinnati Bengals. This is where things got ugly in some regards. Penalties came at the worst possible times, and when the Bucs needed a stop they couldn’t get it. But I’m giving this game a bye. Why? Sometimes the play was outstanding from this unit, and despite conceding 30 points (I’m not counting the pick 6 against them) and 402 total yards, Duffner’s defense showed definite improvement.
The stats in these two games show that 736 yards of total offense have been surrendered with 60 points conceded. One win and one loss. Averaging 368 yards and 30 points a game isn’t going to win a whole lot of football games.
Why do I bring this up? Already there are some murmurs that maybe Coach Duffner should be given the job of Defensive Coordinator full time. I’m not convinced just yet. Should the D continue to show signs of improvement on the field and in the stat column, then sure, give Duff his chance. Until then there’s still much improvement needed on this defensive unit.