Special teams is still a major weakness for the Buccaneers. This needs to change if this team wants to live up to its potential.
It has been years since it felt like the Buccaneers were good with their special teams.
Ryan Succop was able to help with an initial turnaround a few years ago, but there are still some glaring issues with kick returns and their defense.
The Bucs have been through dozens of kick returners in practice and in games to no luck. Shifty players have been brought in. Speedy players. Guys made the team solely off their abilities to return the football better than the other guys on the team.
None of this worked.
The first preseason game didn’t tell us everything, but those reps are usually pretty genuine. Most teams don’t hold special teamers out of the preseason. Those snaps are are a pretty great comparison for what we will see in the regular season.
While the reps were limited, it looks like the Bucs are back to dealing with the same problems in this area as before. Most returners should’ve put their hand up. Guys that brought the ball out usually ended up on the wrong side of the 25-yard line. Coverage on kicks looked shaky and as if a long touchdown could come against them.
The whole night on special teams felt a lot like what we have seen before.
It’s not like the Bucs aren’t trying. It feels like every capable defensive back, wide receiver, and running back has gotten a shot. None of it really changed.
It is starting to seem like the Buccaneers may have to start looking outside of their current roster if they want to see a positive change and it doesn’t come in the next few weeks.
One way or another, this team needs a change in that stage of the game. Until then, every return man should probably just sit in the end zone and never leave.
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