The remainder that is left of the year of 2023, and going well into the 2024 calendar, could well turn into a time of crucial and key decisions for the Glazer family – not just on a Tampa Bay Buccaneers front, but also their interest in English Premier League side Manchester United.
On both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, the family owners of both clubs are currently facing calls for a total change of management following a double poor start to their own relevant sporting campaigns. In the case of the Buccaneers, we have now lost four straight games and sit in third place in the NFL South, and over in England, The Red Devil’s sit in eighth place with six wins and five defeats from their opening eleven games. Florida sportsbooks would have given long odds on both of the Glazer’s sporting investments faring so poorly in each of their current campaigns.
Making matters worse is the fact that head coach Todd Bowles, and manager Erik ten Hag, are now into their respective second seasons in charge of the sides, and fans have arguably seen very little improvement in their play, game management of the over all development of players in their chosen systems. In fact, it is very easily arguable that in some ways their progress has actually gone backwards after more promising debut campaigns.
The Bucs topped the division and made the Wild Card Round of the NFL play offs as fans know, and for United’s efforts, they finished third in their season and qualified for the Champions League. There is also heavy speculation that the Glazer family are now ready to off load the Manchester club for the right price, and Buccaneers fans will be wondering whether those protracted and ongoing discussions could actually be serving as a distraction from the eye they should be keeping on the Raymond James Stadium.
Bowles himself, is now facing further questions following another damaging defeat to the Houston Texans, especially as with less than a minute left on the clock in the fourth quarter, we had a four point lead but managed to throw it away with the Texans scoring a touchdown with seconds remaining in the game.
The week before, we of course also lost 24-18 to the Buffalo Bills despite being 10-10 midway through the second quarter, and the less said about our defeat to divisional rivals, the Atlanta Falcons, back in October to a last second Younghoe Koo 51 foot field goal is probably for the better.
With five defeats from the last six, it looks increasingly likely that we will now miss out on making the post season for the first time since 2019, and that was despite starting the gridiron season in good form with consecutive victories.
Fans kind of knew that the 2023 season would be a bit of a mixed year for us as we adjusted to life without legendary quarterback Tom Brady following his retirement during the off season, and fewer still thought that with all the changes that had taken place we would somehow repeat his debut campaign of going all the way and becoming Super Bowl champions, but even though Bowles was involved in that success as our defensive coordinator, taking the step into Bruce Arians shoes was always going to be a huge step and adjustment, and sadly his lack of experience seems to be showing.
With that said, he is certainly feisty and is not ignoring the obvious.
“It’s a devastating loss, no doubt about it. We gotta eat it, and all of us feel the same way, especially me. I’ve been coaching a long time; I haven’t been involved in too many of these where its been back and forth like that and came down out on the other end, with a few things happening. We gotta eat it, and we should be ****** off all week. We own it. You know, they scored more than enough points on offence to do it. Defensively and fundamentals of the technique, the breakdowns at the end of the ball game and the start of the third quarter are unacceptable.”
Let us see what happens against the Titans, with the 49ers soon to be up.