Who Really Lost the Game Against the Saints?

Aaron ShawContributor INovember 24, 2009

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 25:  Raheem Morris head coach of Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the NFL International Series match between New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Wembley Stadium on October 25, 2009 in London, England. This is the third occasion where a regular season NFL match has been played in London.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Currently the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a NFL worst 1-9 on the season. The only other team that has an equal or worst record in the NFL is the Cleveland Browns and St. Louis Rams.

Seems that the young Tampa team is undergoing an aspect of the NFL that leaves them only room to consider making moves to improving the actual production of the over-all team assumption rather than an individual perspective of a losing franchise. First year coach Raheem Morris is under plenty scrutiny as the Bucs have just played maybe their worst game on the season against undefeated New Orleans Sunday at Raymond James Stadium.

Raheem Morris, who made two of the worst decisions made by a NFL coach during a game (the challenge of a incomplete pass that was viewed as being an interception and wasting precious time off the clock in the final two minutes of play Sunday) has just released Defensive Coordinator Jim Bates and take over the play calling of the defense. The Bucs have been unable to stop the run and have given up big plays in the passing game. Opposing quarterbacks have a 94.0 rating. Under Bates, the Bucs defense has yielded 378.3 yards per game and a whopping 5.9 yards per play. Almost every area of the defense has fallen well short of the Bucs' standard under Bates.

On the other side of the ball, Josh Freeman played his worst NFL game yet as a Buccaneers quarterback. In the game against the Saints, Freeman went 13/33 with 126 yards passing, 1 TD and 3 interceptions. 3 game changing interceptions that cost the Bucs field position, momentum, and costly points. As the game went on, it seemed as though Freeman only got worse in the passing game as his passes went unquestioned into the open hands of defenders. How? Have the expectations that the team had of Freeman as a first round draft pick diluted them?

Defensively, the Bucs allowed the Saints to produce 370 total yards offense with 5 touchdowns on the day. A small chuck for the NFL’s number 1 over-all offense but a bigger set back for the Bucs defense as a loss was put up for the Bucs. For the most part, the defense seemed out of place the majority of the game against the saints and were viewed as being to small to handle the efficient ball handling skill the Saints have come to have as a undefeated team.

So how is this horrible loss to be expressed?

A team loss? A failed offensive attempt? A defensive nightmare?


As Coach Morris comes to consider what is left of a diminishing favored Buccaneers team, his options are becoming limited. Settling for what is at hand as the Bucs sit 1-9 on the season with no hope of any future wins in sight or trying to pursue what most view as a misconstrued broken-down Tampa Bay Buccaneers team.