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Offensive stability creating confidence for Buccaneers

Vincent Jackson AP

The Buccaneers finished in the top half of the league in both points and yards from scrimmage in 2012, a big improvement over the 2011 performance in Mike Sullivan’s first year as the team’s offensive coordinator.

Members of the team’s offense are expecting even more improvement this time around. Sullivan has said that quarterback Josh Freeman looks smoother in the offense than he did last year and each of the team’s starting wide receivers believe that a second year in the same system has seriously boosted the unit’s confidence.

Vincent Jackson says that Freeman looks more comfortable and that the offense will be hard to stop when it gets clicking. Mike Williams stresses the deeper knowledge of the offensive scheme and how that will allow him and his teammates to play more instinctively in 2013.

“We know this offense,” Williams said, via Ira Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune. “We know when to break off routes and what zone to read. It’s a knowing instead of reacting to something. Josh Freeman’s got this offense down pat. The big problem last year was we couldn’t get on the same page, knowing when to break our routes off.”

The offense was the priority for Tampa last offseason and the moves for Jackson and running back Doug Martin certainly paid off. Now the plan is to use that as a foundation for even greater growth in Year Two under Sullivan, something that will undoubtedly become a referendum on Freeman because of his expiring contract and the strength of his supporting cast.

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34 Responses to “Offensive stability creating confidence for Buccaneers”
  1. wilson1914 says: Jun 18, 2013 11:24 AM

    All we need is our defense to be in the top half of total points and yards per game and we’ll have a team that can go deep into the playoffs with a high octane offense (minus the crucial turnovers from last year) and a stout run d and above average secondary play is all we need, which isn’t hard to do from last year’s play

  2. valentino8100 says: Jun 18, 2013 11:33 AM

    On a good day, Freeman is serviceable. In a league where winning it all, and winning it all now is all that matters, you need the big game QB, and he is not that.

  3. tommysaint1 says: Jun 18, 2013 11:35 AM

    Every year I think PFT recycles the Tampa story.

    Always seems have the potential to be a really good team but there is a long deep 5 game slide lurking somewhere in the season.

  4. floratiotime says: Jun 18, 2013 11:35 AM

    Checkdowns. Very stable.

  5. talkingheadsknowall says: Jun 18, 2013 11:35 AM

    Doug Martin is more “Stable” the rest of the offense depends on that.

  6. 6ball says: Jun 18, 2013 11:37 AM

    .

    There may not be a player in the NFL with more pressure to produce than Josh Freeman.

    He’s going to need a good start as Tampa’s first three games are :

    @ Jets
    New Orleans
    @New England

    .

  7. andrejohnsonforpresident says: Jun 18, 2013 11:42 AM

    Those buc’s season tickets are starting to look worth it for the first time in awhile.

  8. butterstone84 says: Jun 18, 2013 11:47 AM

    if only we knew what TO was up to

  9. fredbull337 says: Jun 18, 2013 12:00 PM

    is this the same offense that got shutout by the 2013 New Orleans Saints defense?

  10. bucnblood says: Jun 18, 2013 12:15 PM

    Hey Valatino what are you basing his big game ability on exactly? You can’t put all the blame on Freeman for this team not making the playoffs. Freeman is a much better QB then people give him credit for. He finally has some stabilty in schemes and coaching not to mention a ton of weapons…he will shock people this year.

  11. evilglazers666 says: Jun 18, 2013 12:17 PM

    ESPN has the Bucs at 19th and finishing 7-9!

    The Bucs inched up a couple of spots after adding CB Darrelle Revis through a trade with the Jets.

    So excited!

  12. pb420 says: Jun 18, 2013 12:20 PM

    It’s going to be a tough stretch, especially in the division but this team will be turning some heads. Go ahead and knock the Bucs now, but I have a feeling those critics will be singing a different tune deep into the season.

  13. ColtsWinColtsWin!! says: Jun 18, 2013 12:24 PM

    I am confident Josh Freeman will continue to be great some-days and Sanchez like on others. Another disappointing season filled with moments of hope for yall Bucs fans!!!

  14. anpsteel says: Jun 18, 2013 12:35 PM

    MUSCLE HAMSTER!

  15. sethb222 says: Jun 18, 2013 12:36 PM

    Mike Williams also said last week, the Receiver were at fault for a lot of turnovers.

    Freeman had 9 int’s in final 3 games. Before that he was at 25 TD’s and 8 int’s. 5 of those turnovers were batted balls and drop Int’s. His accuracy is off at times because of bad footwork but the dude is still pretty serviceable.

    About to take the next leap.

    Younger than Kapernick, Bradford,
    Same age as C. Ponder, R. Wilson
    A year older than, A. Luck, C. Newton, RG3

    Threw for over 4,000 yards last year. Came out of College as a True Junior. Still Developing.

    Lots of potential, at worst he’s Joe Flacco.

  16. bucnblood says: Jun 18, 2013 12:44 PM

    Yeah cause those idiots at ESPN always get it right! Wonder where they picked the Lions to finish before last year…or the redskins…or the cowboys.

  17. valentino8100 says: Jun 18, 2013 12:59 PM

    @bucnblood

    For starters, his propensity to throw the pics in pressure situations that he is directly responsible for. He does not play within himself, and it’s worse under pressure.

  18. evilglazers666 says: Jun 18, 2013 1:12 PM

    CBS has us moving up 2 spots to 18th after the Revis trade!

  19. cheapglazers says: Jun 18, 2013 1:15 PM

    Last year we only beat one team above .500! Maybe this year we can beat more then one! Most media outlets have us projected between 17-22th in NFL, but I think if we play half decent, we could finish 16th? Crazy thoughts, but if we keep playing through victory formations, we might get an extra win or two!

  20. gotampabay52 says: Jun 18, 2013 1:23 PM

    We will shock all the Buc Haters cant wait

  21. thememyselfandiguy says: Jun 18, 2013 2:02 PM

    all that hate. it is so funny. i think this team is looking really good for next season. when i need to bet on a order of the nfc south next season i would wager on 1st failcons, 2nd bucs, 3rd aints, 4th kittens

  22. vbhall78 says: Jun 18, 2013 2:49 PM

    Freeman will be better than any ESPN analyst can predict because we all know all the ESPN analyst never get it wrong…

  23. uglyglazers says: Jun 18, 2013 2:50 PM

    It’s true. We have a long way to go. Last year we got two wins against the Panthers and beat the Raiders, Chargers, Chiefs and Vikings. Not going to count the week 17 game against the Falcons as a win, because the Falcons were playing at half speed as they were reading for the playoffs. We can’t play like the 41-0 game against the Saints, because now their players and coaches are back from suspensions. Go Bucs!

  24. shaggyjeff says: Jun 18, 2013 3:20 PM

    freeman is on his way to being one of the best in the league….just look at what he did to the panthers last year….or look at the fact we were winless his rookie year and he came in and beat he Packers….

    FYI we had the 28 th ranked pass defense last year.
    And the 9 th ranked offense ……Free is not the problem

  25. tpa43 says: Jun 18, 2013 4:10 PM

    I love how Bucs fans disown their team and then when they sign a couple free agents they start jumping on a bandwagon (I would say bandwagon, but they are just a middle of the pack team with their new contracts – might not be best word to use here.) But I’m commenting, because some of the posts here have absurd expectations. One post said the Bucs would beat out the Saints in the division? I have news for you (not really news I suppose) The Bucs lost to the Saints 41-0 last time they played without their head coach and some key players! Take it back a notch. You will just be disappointed…

  26. pftmaniac says: Jun 18, 2013 4:19 PM

    I’ve lived in Tampa and been a Bucs fan since 1989, so I’ve seen a lot of quarterbacks go through the mill. Some have gone on to have great success elsewhere (Doug Williams, Steve Young, Vinny Testaverde, Steve DeBerg, and Chris Chandler.)

    Josh Freeman feels more like Trent Dilfer than any of the other guys I mentioned. Granted, Dilfer was on a Super Bowl winning team (when the game was held in Tampa, no less,) but one could hardly make an argument that he played well that year.

    I see the same types of mental mistakes, lack of leadership, and mind-boggling inaccuracy in both Freeman and Dilfer. I think he’ll be playing somewhere else in 2014.

  27. evilglazers666 says: Jun 18, 2013 4:52 PM

    Here are my personal projections for 2013 based on a native Tampa resident and Bucs fan’s observations.

    Projected Division Winners
    Atlanta Falcons
    San Francisco 49ers
    Green Bay Packers
    Washington Redskins

    Projected Wild Card Teams
    San Francisco 49ers
    New Orleans Saints

    Projected Non-Playoff Teams
    Minnesota Vikings
    New York Giants
    St. Louis Rams
    Chicago Bears
    Tampa Bay Buccaneers
    Dallas Cowboys
    Detroit Lions
    Carolina Panthers
    Arizona Cardinals
    Philadelphia Eagles

  28. pb420 says: Jun 18, 2013 6:16 PM

    @pftmaniac:
    Comparing Josh Freeman to Trent Dilfer shows that you have questionable football knowledge. You do know that Freeman set a franchise record for passing yds in a season this past yr right?! And that was the 1st yr offense under Sullivan with an incomplete OL. Being a longtime Buc fan myself I’ve seen so-called ”fans” crucify our QBs for years. This one shows promise and there are plenty of teams that would take him and do well. Time for all the faithful ”fans” to shut it and give this guy the support he deserves.
    @evilglazers666:
    Personal projections are great but they hardly dictate how this team will perform this season. I hope you plan on going to games as opposed to sitting home and criticizing the local team like so many transplants do. These types really have no business complaining imho.

  29. rbaiz says: Jun 18, 2013 6:51 PM

    Hey evilglazier,
    Frisco must be really good to win their division and the wild card spot. According to you. Lol

  30. petedutcherjr says: Jun 18, 2013 9:11 PM

    “…a big improvement over the 2011 performance in Mike Sullivan’s first year as the team’s offensive coordinator.”

    Article author should do better research. 2012 was Sullivans first year. He was hired the same year as Schiano. Can’t believe no one caught that. Greg Olson was OC for the Bucs in 2011. Raheem Morris was head coach.

  31. petedutcherjr says: Jun 18, 2013 9:27 PM

    Evil, cheap & uglyglazers all the same troll? I think so. Creating alts just to thumbs up yourself, lol.

    Josh Freeman is on the verge of ecoming a top 6 quarterback and the Bucs will surprise many because they are about to become one of the top 4 teams in the NFL.

    The Bucs got their superbowl…now they want to become a dynasty and will multiple titles in a decade. They want to dominate and if/when Freeman turns it on this year the league will be shocked.

    They have top talent on oth sides of the ball. Very well balanced.

  32. evilglazers666 says: Jun 18, 2013 11:03 PM

    We taxpayers paid for 100% of Raymond James Stadium under the condition that the greedy Glazers at least use the facility to shelter homeless when not in use. They refuse to shelter homeless now and actually create most of the homeless people in the city.

  33. jermonology says: Jun 18, 2013 11:34 PM

    There is tons of talented players on the team such as Da’Quan Bowers, Adrian Clayborn, Gerald McCoy, Mike Williams, Vincent Jackson, Mark Barron, Dashon Goldson, Darrelle Revis, Doug Martin, Lavonte David, Mason Foster, Donald Penn, Davin Joseph, and Carl Nicks. If they can stay healthy, the Bucs can be the surprise team of the NFL. And People want to talk about Freemans inconsistency but I think all but two games that they lost were only by 7 points or less. He’s always putting them in a position to win, it was our atrocious secondary that gave away those games. So I predict big things from these young bucs in 2013. Only time will tell though.

  34. winstonpark says: Jun 19, 2013 3:59 AM

    Freeman will lead the league in passing this year just like he did for most of the season last year. Bucs had the #1 offense until the last 3 games, and these haters are just jealous.

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