The Dungy-Gruden years marked the Bucs as a tough-nosed, grind-you-down team that characterize the Beast. The Buccaneers gave the Redskins the toughest games of anyone outside the division.
If you take Washington's problems and triple them and you would have Tampa Bay.
The Redskins are a .500 club that could reach 10-6 if they get lucky. Strike that. The Redskins could reach 10-6 if they execute. For all the complaints about play calling, it wasn't so bad that it cost wins in New York and Detroit.
It would help if our stars would to show up, but at least the team intact. The 0-3 Bucs are a mess.
Malcolm Glazer blew the team up when the Bucs blew it's first place lead with four losses to close the 2008 season, proving that rash moves by brash NFL owners are not exclusive to Redskin Park.
Buccaneers head coach John Gruden, re-signed at the beginning of the season, fired. GM Bruce Allen, son of George, swept from office along with his deputy, Mark Dominik. Veteran stars, including QB Jeff Garcia, let go.
Highly regarded defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin resigns to join his son, Lane, on the University of Tennessee Volunteers coaching staff. Or maybe he saw the writing on the wall.
Then, stop me if you've heard this before, newly appointed DC Raheem Morris was elevated to head coach after a few weeks as coordinator.
One of the first moves by Tampa Bay's front office? Trade for disappointing tight end Kellen Winslow II. Winslow threatened to make Washington pay for not selecting him in the 2004 draft. We took Sean Taylor instead. Winslow gets another chance to carry out his threat today.
Gaines Adams, Finally in Washington
Redskin fans get an up close look at DE Gaines Adams, the object of man-lust by a fan base hungry for front four defensive pressure. The Bucs selected Adams with the fourth pick of the 2007 draft. The Skins selected S LaRon Landry. Our hunger for a first round D-lineman would not be satisfied until the Skins' selection of Brian Orakpo this year.
Gaines Adams should be coming into his own in his third season. He, like Clinton Portis, is questionable for today's game. Questionable starters always seem to start.
It would be good for Skins fans to consider Adam's career trajectory: 34 games; 24 starts; 58 tackles; 1 INT TD return; 1 forced fumble; 0 sacks.
First rounders don't begin their pro careers where they left off in college. Quarterbacks maybe, but everyone else needs time to grow. Something to keep in mind as we watch Brian Orakpo.
Blache Stands Up So Snyder Doesn't Have To
Redskin defensive coordinator Greg Blache raised his hand this week and said he was responsible for the poor defense against the Lions and in general this season.
Blache's move relieved pressure for Daniel Snyder to stand up and take one for the team. That's a lost opportunity for Snyder. If the team turns it around Sunday, it will be no credit to him. If they lose, he'll be blamed anyway.
Reading between the lines, it sounded like Blache believed he had the wrong people starting in the wrong positions. He concurrently announced the fan favorite Reed Doughty would start at safety in place of fan favorite Chris Horton.
I wouldn't want to be on the wrong side of Mr. Blache, so the defense surely had a rough week.
Josh Johnson Scares The Bejebus Out Of Me
Greg Blache, speaking of Matthew Stafford, said that spread offenses make college quarterbacks better prepared for today's NFL offenses. As an old-schooler who believes that pro quarterbacks need a season or three before starting, I'm skeptical.
The Bucs turn to second year man Josh Johnson to start, replacing veteran and DC homeboy Byron Leftwich, who came off the bench for the Steelers to torch the Redskins last year. This scares me shirtless. We have no tape on Johnson.
Johnson has thrown all of 10 passes and has a 50.4 QB rating. He supposedly has a quick release in a three step drop. Look for short, timing passes to exploit the cushiony Redskin secondary.
Johnson is mobile, too. That means the defense won't so much as act against him as react to him.
I don't think we react so well. Quarterbacks we've never seen before do bad things to the Redskin defense and to its coach.
The line at gambling site bodog.com has the Redskins seven-and-a-half-point favorites over the Buccaneers. Sheridan's Line at usatoday.com has the Redskins by seven.
Not beatable, but ripe.