Tampa Bay Buccaneer Offense to Blame for Debacle in Dallas

Tom EdringtonSenior Writer ISeptember 23, 2012

Michael Bennett mauled Tony Romo. (photo courtesy Buccaneers.com)
Michael Bennett mauled Tony Romo. (photo courtesy Buccaneers.com)

Someone needs to apologize for this one.

Someone needs to apologize to the fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Someone needs to apologize to the Buccaneer defense. Those guys who played their collective butts off Sunday in that 16-10 loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

This one was as bad as it gets when it comes to offense. The easy way to put it is that this offense was flat-out offensive to anyone who had to watch, anyone who kept up their hopes that the Bucs would find a weird way to win this one.

This might be a good time to play the blame game because there is a lot of blame to go around in this one.

First and foremost, Josh Freeman needs to apologize to every fan in the Tampa Bay area. There are no excuses for play like that from a guy who is supposed to be a franchise quarterback, a guy who has had more than 40 starts in his career, a guy who has some offensive talent around him.

Yeah, start with Freeman. He was flat-out horrible; in fact, he would have had to play better to be horrible. Consider that his offense had less than 100 yards total, for the afternoon, with two minutes to play in the football game.

Finished with 166, he finally found Vincent Jackson late, in desperation, the only time he hooked up with the $55 million man all day.

And while we're throwing those connected with the offense under the bus, let's throw offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan in there too. With time running out in the football game, Freeman was handing off to Doug Martin. and that threw Fox analyst Troy Aikman into a tizzy.

"You have to be kidding me!" Aikman blurted when Freeman gave Martin the football.


Probably made a lot of you want to throw something at that expensive television screen.

After watching Freeman look like a third-stringer from Slippery Rock, maybe these home game blackouts aren't such a bad idea.

Freeman needs to apologize to every member of the defense.

The defense put up an incredible performance, and in the process, Adrian Clayborn may have been seriously hurt. The front seven pressured the daylights out of Tony Romo. They sacked him three times, hit him more than a dozen times, including that helmet-to-helmet belt by Gerald McCoy that made Aikman wince and nearly knocked Romo out.

McCoy will no doubt be sending a portion of his ample paycheck to the league when they review that hit.

The defense got the day rolling when Aqib Talib picked off Romo on the first Dallas series and set up the first and only touchdown of the day for the Bucs. It set the tone, a tone that shut down the Dallas running game and forced Romo to scramble for his life.

The Bucs won the turnover game, but there were two crucial plays that really hurt.

We'll go ahead and throw Jordan Shipley under the bus; he belongs there. His punt return fumble set up the only Dallas touchdown. Throw D.J. Ware under there with Shipley; a pass bounced off his chest and into the hands of a Cowboy defender and that set up a field goal.

Shipley and Ware combined to give Dallas 10 points. Throw those bums in the bay!

Give Greg Schiano credit. He came up with two great challenges on fumbles that those horrible replacement refs didn't call correctly. Two more turnovers forced by the Tampa defense.


Give defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan credit. After last week's travesty in New York, he came up with a gem of a game plan.

"Bill Sheridan, he's really put a nice plan together here against the Cowboys," is how Aikman put it during the telecast, late in the game.

The Bucs made one last gasp with a late field goal then missed getting the onside kick.

That set the stage for some more Schiano controversy.

Dallas was prepared for Schiano's "sneak attack" on the kneel-downs. But this time, there wasn't one, there were three, a time out after each one so Schiano could force his defense to re-load.

Didn't like the looks of that.

Schiano won't apologize for that.

But Freeman, Sullivan, Shipley and Ware need to apologize.

To all of us.


This loss was truly offensive:  OneBucSite.com