The Tampa Bay Buccaneers failed to execute any kind of offensive or defensive presence in their final preseason game Thursday night — a 30-12 losing effort to the Washington Redskins.
Let’s start with the offense.
Mike Glennon played most of the game, but managed to only complete seven of his 17 passes for 63 yards losing two turnovers in the process (an interception and a lost fumble). Peyton Hillis lead the team in rushing, but that’s not a good thing; he recorded just 33 yards off nine carries. Eric Page lead he Bucs in receptions… with two.
This, my friends, is not good.
I don’t care that it’s the preseason, and I don’t care that our starters, according to Josh Freeman, have “moved on and are focusing on the Jets.” We better hope that when Da’Quan Bowers said the team is not even showing their real stuff that he meant it, because 142 yards of total offense in a full national football league game is not encouraging, regardless of how you spin it.
On defense, things weren’t much better. Tampa let Pat White impose his will — if Pat White has such a thing — with a 13-for-22, 181 yard performance. They also couldn’t seem to contain Washington RB Evan Royster as he averaged more than 5 yards per carry and added a touchdown.
In an article from Bleacher Report, writer Knox Bardeen raises the question: why didn’t Freeman play Thursday night? It’s true, Freeman has only thrown 26 pass — many of them not too pretty — but I didn’t see the need for Freeman to play. At this point, Josh is what he is; either he’s going to deliver or he isn’t. One extra preseason game would not have helped him.
And with that, the preseason comes to a 1-3 end. The team now sets their sights for week 1 and MetLife stadium. A lot of questions have to be answered as time inches forward, but I’m excited. Excited for the season, excited for a new year, and excited to raise the flags once again. Let’s hope we leave our struggles where they belong, in the games that don’t count.