The Good, The Bad And The Ugly From Buccaneers 20-6 To Lions


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers dropped their second game of the year following a 20-6 loss to the Detroit Lions. It was an incredibly frustrating game to watch and was equally disappointing to see the Bucs lose in the beloved creamsicle jerseys. However, there was no doubt that the Lions were the better team on this day.

Obviously, there were a lot of take-aways in a game like this. Unfortunately for Bucs fans, most of those are negative for the Buccaneers. Here are my instant reactions of the good, the bad and the ugly in this game.

The Good

Luke Goedeke

It was another week with a difficult challenge for Goedeke and another week where he passed with flying colors. This time facing off against the NFL’s leader in quarterback pressures in Aidan Hutchinson. However, you wouldn’t know it watching this game.

Goedeke kept Hutching in check at every turn. Never did it feel like Goedeke was beaten or out of position to take Hutchinson out of the play. In this battle between second year players, there was a clear and obvious winner and it was the guy in the creamsicle.

Hutchinson is just the latest of pass rushers to be shut down by Goedeke. This year he joins the likes of Danielle Hunter, Cam Jordan and Hassan Reddick to be locked up by the Bucs right tackle. At this point we have to start asking if the Lions replaced the best right tackle in the NFL with the best right tackle in the NFL.

Young Defensive Linemen Shine

The defensive line played well overall. However, two guys continuously flashed over and over again. Those guys were third year edge rusher Joe Tryon-Shoyinka and rookie defensive tackle Calijah Kancey.

Tryon-Shoyinka was all over the field in this game. He played the run well, had a sack, as well as a pass deflection in this game. It might be fair to call this the most impressive, well rounded performance of his career.

You could say the same of Kancey, although his career is much much shorter. Kancey had a sack of his own in this game (the first of his young career). He also forced pressure into the lap of Lions quarterback Jared Goff which led to a pair of incompletions.

These two first round picks are the future of the Buccaneers defense. Tonight they certainly looked the part.

Lavonte David Is Still Incredible

In case you haven’t heard, Lavonte David is really really good. The future hall of famer was all over the field tonight and made plays in every aspect of the game. He helped limit the Lions to just 40 rushing yards, which included 12 total tackles and 9 solo tackles. He also played great coverage of star rookie tight end Sam LaPorta and he even had a sack in this game.

David is now 33 years old, but he hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down. He is arguably the best linebacker in the NFL and got a chance to remind the world of that in a nationally televised spot. Enjoy watching him while you can because players like him don’t come around very often.

The Bad

Baker Mayfield

Mayfield had his worst day as a buccaneer today. He missed a pair of deep shots to Trey Palmer that could’ve changed the outlook of this game. He also struggled to find the open man despite having comfortable pockets to work from.

Mayfield had played black one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL leading up to this point. However, to put it in his own words “he sucked today.” I’m not sure if it was rust coming out of the bye week or just water finding its level, but Bakker has to play like the guy he was the first four weeks of the season if the Bucs are going to go where they want to go.

Ryan Neal

Neil also had his least impressive day with the Bucs. He allowed several completions to Amon-Ra St Brown as well as a long touchdown passes did Jameson Williams. Granted, this was a difficult assignment, guarding one of the fastest receivers in the NFL, but he was in relatively good position if he would’ve just turned his head around to play the ball.

Neil is yet to make the impact we had hoped when the Bucs signed him. After receiving all pro consideration with the Seahawks last year, we were expecting much of the same with the Bucs this season. Sadly, he is highlighted more for his mistakes than the plays he’s made on the field.

At this point, I am led to wonder if Dee Delaney could do a better job given the opportunity. We’ve seen him play well, particularly in the Saints game when Neal went out with a concussion. Todd Bowles will have to find a way to best utilize both of these players in the future. 

The Running Game

It was another week and another lackluster rushing attack for the Buccaneers. Granted, this Lions run defense is very good. However, there were no positives to build on in this game for the Bucs. 

Rachaad White still looks like he doesn’t always trust what’s in front of him. Ke’Shawn Vaughn has me thinking about undrafted free agents who could replace him. Every aspect of this running game needs to be examined and improved.

Part of this goes into the offensive line. Part of this goes into coaching (more to come). Regardless of the root cause, the Bucs won’t succeed if this isn’t changed. 

The Ugly

Dave Canales

Let’s keep in mind that this is only Canales fifth game as a play caller. I believe the design of his offense is good and that he is a very bright young coach. I still believe in Dave Canales as much as I did a week ago at this time.

Yesterday was as bland and lifeless of a game plan as we’ve seen since Byron Leftwich. The running game was not creative in any way and running directly at this Lions front was like running into a wall. The usage was even worse, featuring Ke’Shawn Vaughn for several plays that killed the drive.

The sequencing of play calls was also bad. It seemed like whenever the Bucs were moving the ball through the air, Canales would shift to the run. When the Buccaneers needed to pick up a yard or two to extend a drive, Canales dialed up a deep shot. I’m all for zigging when the defense expects you to zag, but in a game where the offense couldn’t stay on the field it was difficult to watch.

Todd Bowles

The word that haunts the Todd Bowles tenure as head coach is conservative. The game was just another example of that. From game management to the way he ran the defense, it felt like Bowles was scared of this moment.

In the fourth quarter with the Bucs down two touchdowns, Bowles couldn’t pull the trigger on a fourth down call. Instead he punted the ball away from near the Bucs 35 yard line with 12:00 minutes left. The Lions drained most of the clock after that and the Buccaneers never really had a chance to mount a comeback. 

Jared Goff is not a dynamic down field passer. He thrives in the short and intermittent passing game and is more of a game manager than anything. It felt like Bowles was willing to give Goff exactly what he wanted all day to try to prevent the big play.

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