That was painful.
An old-fashioned butt kicking.
At one point my wife said to me, “you better wait to write your game recap for a while.” Good advice.
The Saints found their Super Bowl form and took out whatever bitterness they had about last week’s upset loss on the young Buccaneers. It may have been sunny in Florida, but a dark cloud was hanging over the team in the form of a 31-6 beat down.
THE DARK CLOUD
Where do you begin?
Drew Brees exposed the Bucs’ swiss cheese secondary. He hit all the holes. He threw deep over Aqib Talib (who appeared confused on the route). He beat Cody Grimm who failed to go over the top in Cover 2. Across the middle, down the sidelines, swing passes, seam passes, whatever Drew wanted Drew got. And why not? He had all day to throw. Once again no sacks, and not even a hit on the QB by Tampa’s D-line.
And if you thought it was bad through the air, it was even worse on the ground for the Bucs D-line. Chris Ivory had 158 yards on the ground on 15 carries, that’s a whooping 10 yards per carry. You can’t win when you let the opponent pick up a first down on every carry. You just can’t. Even Julius Jones (JULIUS JONES LIVES!), who’s been in New Orleans for about 10 minutes, had 32 yards.
Tampa’s run game was very similar to New Orleans’… except exactly the opposite. Once again Cadillac Williams was a non-factor, 18 yards on 10 carries (to be fair, he did lead the team in receiving). And when Kareem Huggins was finally getting involved, his knee was destroyed (this just in, he tore in ACL and is done for the season). No LeGarrette Blount in this game, which was surprising especially in the few short yardage opportunities in this game.
In my preview I gave Tampa a slight edge in the kicking game because Garrette Hartley is bad. Turns out I was right, Garrette Hartley IS bad. Unfortunately, Connor Barth was worse, missing two field goals to Hartley’s one.
THE SILVER LINING
There’s got to be a silver lining right? Right? RIGHT?!?!
Um… well… Josh Freeman looked good at times. He missed a couple of throws that could have made for some big plays. He didn’t turn the ball over so that’s good. I guess the best part was getting a lot of the receivers involved. Arrelious Benn had a couple of nice catches, Kellen Winslow and Sammie Stroughter were more involved, and Mike Williams continued to show why he should be offensive “Rookie of the Year.”
I’ll be honest… other than that there was very little to celebrate in this game. (What about our new punter? Yes, he looked good.)
THE WRAP UP
A friend texted me and compared the Bucs to the original “Saturday Night Live” cast or the “not-ready-for-prime-time players”.
I’d agree, but only if the SNL cast could make Chris Ivory look like Jim Brown.
Next week, Steven Jackson and the St. Louis Rams come to town. Uh oh.
About the Author
Written by Justin Chechourka
Born and raised in California, I inexplicably became a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan. Now I bleed red and pewter. The best part of being a Bucs fan in California... I never have to worry about blackouts.