Buccaneers game plan for attacking and defending the Giants

TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 08: Eli Manning
TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 08: Eli Manning /

The 0-3 New York football Giants hobble into Raymond James Stadium looking for answers on both sides of the ball. How can the Tampa Bay Buccaneers exploit these question marks surrounding their opponent and get a victory this Sunday.

The Giants are dead last or close to it in a couple of major categories that are tried and true indicators on how well a football teams year is going. However, after the defensive stinker the Bucs put on tape last week against Minnesota nothing is for certain. Every week I develop a game plan for the Buccaneers that will go a long way in ensuring a victory. This weeks team. The winless New York Giants.


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New York is last in the league through three weeks in stopping their opponents run game. Giving up a whopping 153.3 yards per game. If you asked any defensive coach in the NFL what are the top 3 things you need to do to win games. Stopping the run would appear on every ones list.

The Buccaneers aren’t lighting the world on fire when it comes to running the ball. Averaging only 71.5 yards per game. Which places them in the bottom third of the league at 27th. The Bucs can not abandon the run like they did last week if they want to be in control of this game going into the 4th quarter.

Back in week two the Bears defensive line noticeably wilted in the Florida heat during the second half. Tampa went on two different run pounding clock eating drives in the 3rd, one featuring running back Peyton Barber that put the Bears away for good and coasted to a 29-7 win.

I expect an almost series by series rotation from Jacquizz Rodgers and Peyton Barber this game. The Buccaneers will want to keep both backs fresh for the 4th quarter, where Tampa will look to shorten the game by pounding the rock and  further demoralize the leagues worst run defense.

Jameis Winston will be going up against another very good secondary Sunday. Keep the chains moving, protect the football and take your downfield shots when the opportunities present themselves. Are the three things head coach Dirk Koetter should be whispering in Winston’s all week long.

Winston is always going to target Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson, but when the team needs 7 yards for a fresh set of downs. The match ups that Adam Humphries, O.J. Howard and Charles Sims create and the ability of Winston to exploit said match ups will be the difference between scoring touchdowns or having to punt and kick field goals.

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As bad as the Giants defense is at stopping the run the Giants offense is just as bad in gaining yards on the ground. A pitiful 48.7 yards per game and you guessed it, last in the NFL. New York is also struggling to put points on the board. Only averaging 12.3 points per game, which lands them next to last for the entire league. To finish the trifecta of ineptitude their offensive line is one of the worst in football.

Minnesota ran for 125 yards on the Buccaneers defense last week, but it took them 37 tries to do it, for a respectable 3.4 yards per carry against average. The Giants offensive line has some injury issues this week and I’m confident that the Bucs defensive line will do a good job against the run.

New York arguably has the best three man receiving corps in the NFL. The Giants, like the Bucs, run a deep route passing game. After the first two games where Giants quarterback Eli Manning was sacked 8 times and the offense only scored 13 points total. A change was needed and needed quickly. Last week head coach and play caller Ben MacAdoo unveiled his new short, quick route, get the ball out of his QB’s hand ASAP offense. After three quarters of more of the same, Eli and the Giants exploded for 24 points in the final period. This new found offense comes just in time to test a Bucs secondary that was torched by the Vikings for 369 yards and 3 touchdowns.

This is going to be a risk vs. reward game for the Buccaneer defense. Manning was getting the ball out on average last week in under 2 seconds, 1.87 to be exact. If MacAdoo and the Giants go with the same game plan this week, Tampa corners can sit on/jump routes all day long. However, the Giants receivers can create space on almost any route and jumping routes is the fastest way for a 4 yard gain to turn into a 40 yard gain.

Defensively this game will hinge on the chess match between MacAdoo and Buccaneer defensive coordinator Mike Smith. The Giants will try to take a shot deep when MacAdoo and Manning feel like the Bucs are pressing their receivers, while Smith tries to balance taking away Eli’s short passing windows and not leaving the backside of the defense vulnerable to a big play.

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Not much to say on this subject. Make your kicks, pin the other team deep on punts, blah… blah… blah…

One thing to watch for is the Giants kickoff coverage. New York is fond of the mortar style of kickoffs. Landing the ball around the 5 yard line, forcing their opponent to field the kick and hopefully, for the Giants, tackle the ball carrier inside their 25.

I say please try, every time you kickoff. The Bucs return man Bernard Reedy had a very good preseason returning kicks and when he got his shot last Sunday he responded with about a 50 yard return. You know when you just get a feeling about a player. I have that feeling about Reedy this Sunday. So yes please New York, mortar away!


Offensively the Bucs should be able to run the ball and control the clock. Keeping Eli Manning and their three headed monster of a receiving corps on the sideline. A herculean effort from Jameis Winston will not be need Sunday. Keep the chains moving and protect the ball is all Winston needs to do against the Giants to secure a win.

Defensively I don’t expect much trouble from New York’s run game. The Giants aren’t a disciplined enough of a football team to methodically move the ball down the field without shooting themselves in the foot. So the game is going to be won or lost on 5 chances the Giants take though the air. If the Buccaneer secondary thwarts 3 of the 5 Bucs win, if not…

Thanks for reading

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You can find me on Twitter @Ren_Daxt and I’m always down to talk Buccaneer football.

Until next time fans… GO BUCS!!!