The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a very strong statement in their preseason opener. The Bucs are ready to kick things into gear after a resounding 25-0 win in Kansas City. From the outset of the game Tampa looked like a team with big goals in 2011, managing to score points on three of their first four drives, including a Josh Freeman rushing touchdown after a Chiefs fumble inside their own 20.
While it’s still a ways until the games count, the Buccaneers look like a young team with confidence and direction. The Bucs used Friday night’s game to test themselves, the team utilized aggressive playcalling on both sides of the ball, blitzing regularly and running offensive plays and packages typically reserved for the regular season on their way to a sound 25-0 win. The Bucs got plenty of good looks from young players, Dezmon Briscoe led the way with four receptions for 60 yards. Daniel Hardy had a couple of nice grabs for 37 yards and Josh Johnson looked impressive.
Defensively Bucs fans had to breath a sigh of relief about the MLB position the moment that Mason Foster leapt on a fumbled snap inside the Chiefs 20. Foster didn’t play a ton, but seemed to have a good nose for the ball in the time he did get. I had never seen Foster play live before and I have to admit he’s impressive, time will tell if he can grasp all the nuances of the MLB role in the Tampa-2, but this was a nice start.
I’ll have much more in depth analysis tomorrow after I can break down the game. But for now, the Bucs looked stout in their preseason opener and hopefully big things are in the Bay Area for 2011.