The Buccaneers can’t adjust on defense
It’s hard to speak badly of Todd Bowles when he has accomplished so much for this team, but his performance this season has been far from ideal. The defense has been without key playmakers every week, but that still doesn’t excuse the inability for this unit to adjust to the same offensive looks week in and week out.
The Rams are perhaps the lone outlier on this front, but every other team has attacked the Bucs in essentially the same way. The quick passing game is eating the Buccaneers alive. Mac Jones, Trevor Siemian, Jameis Winston, Matt Ryan, and even Jalen Hurts at times experienced far too much success against this defense, and it isn’t like these quarterbacks are making great throws.
The book is out on this defense. Again, it would be disingenuous not to bring up the various injuries, but it’s not like they’re a surprise at this point in the season. Todd Bowles is a better coach than this, and Tampa needs to do better as a whole adjusting to the same offensive game plan each week.
A defense with this many stars has to be better, especially when facing inferior competition like rookies, backups, and journeymen.
Todd Bowles has shown that he can create the right scheme to face even the best teams in the NFL, but the current plan isn’t cutting it. Hopefully, when the rest of the defense returns, this game plan will start to work again.