Tampa Bay Buccaneers: What We Know, What We Don't Know

Tom EdringtonSenior Writer IOctober 5, 2012

Greg Schiano needs to make some major adjustments to his team.
Greg Schiano needs to make some major adjustments to his team.Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Hopefully, somewhere, your favorite Tampa Bay Buccaneer is on a mini-vacation, chillin', hanging out with friends and family, clearing his mind, resting his body.

That's what bye weeks are for.

Back at One Buc Place, there is no rest for the relentless. You know Greg Schiano is grinding, looking for solutions to problems. And there are more problems than anything right now after just four weeks of football.

Here's what we know and don't know about the Buccaneers after their first quarter of the 2012 season.


What We Know

Schiano will continue to have his defensive line plow into opponents in the game-ending "kneel down" mode.

Schiano still likes to talk about "what we did at Rutgers."

Schiano has made huge strides toward improving a Buccaneer defense that was flat-out embarrassing over the final 10 games of the 2011 season.

Schiano's record is 1-3 and this isn't a league where you gives "grades." This is a pass-fail proposition. Every week 16 teams pass, 16 teams fail, if all 32 play. You either win or you lose. Schiano has failed 75 percent of the time to start his tour of duty in Tampa.

The offense was supposed to be the strong unit of this football team. So far, it's not.

The defense was supposed to be the weak unit of this football team. So far, it's not.

Lavonte David is off to an incredible start. He may be the first quarter MVP on defense.

So is Mason Foster.

Gerald McCoy has learned how to tackle.

Doug Martin has nowhere to run.

LeGarrette Blount has few chances to run.

Michael Bennett knows its a contract year. 

Josh Freeman looks "unsure" most of the time.

Carl Nicks and Donald Penn are fine.

Ted Larsen is horrible at right guard.

Demar Dotson is in over his head starting at right tackle.

Dallas Clark and Luke Stocker can't block.

Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams are up to the task.

Mark Barron loves to knock the poop out of receivers and anyone who gets near him.

No third receiver has stepped up on offense.

Connor Barth, with 25 straight field goals made, is the team's most effective offensive weapon.


Questions With Answers We Don't Know

Can Schiano can fix what ails the offense?

Can Bill Sheridan can come up with better schemes other than reckless blitzes against quarterbacks who know what to do with a reckless blitz?

Will this offense will be able to run the football?

Will LeGarrette Blount get more than 10 carries in a game?

Why does Josh Freeman play so well early and late, but in-between he struggles?

Why can't the play calling show more imagination and understanding of NFL play in the 21st century?

How will they adjust for the loss of Adrian Clayborn?

Will they try and bring Da'Quan Bowers back this season?

Are they really serious about trying Jeremy Trueblood at guard?

How many games will this team win, with 12 left to play?

What happened to the team that beat Carolina?

Will Eric Wright miss half of every game?

Does Aqib Talib understand this is a contract year for him?

And finally, will this defense finish in the top half in the league?


This could go on and on and on.

The deal is, and it was the same before the season started: There is so much more we don't know than we know about this football team.

When all is said and done, it's up to Schiano and his staff to provide the answers.

And finally this note to all the vacationing Buccaneers:

Stay out of trouble!