Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Week 15 Bucs Post (@ Seattle, W 24-7)

So, that was totally and completely awesome. Not only did the Bucs play their fist truly solid game of the season, but I was there to see it in the 9th row at the 50-yard line. (Well, maybe the 49...)A couple shots from our seats, just to try to impart an idea of how close we were to the field and how gorgeous the day was in this kick-ass stadium. Here's one of my very favorite Bucs on the sideline:Barber and Hovan coming back to the sideline after the toss:It was an absolutely beautiful day in Seattle for the first half of the game, to the point where we couldn't wait for the sun to set and get out of our eyes. (My dad had jokingly brought sun glasses, then was glad to have them...)A few raindrops started to fall by the fourth quarter, but I wouldn't expect anything less during winter in the northwest.The game started out a bit rough on the offensive side of the ball, with Freeman failing to complete any passes to Buccaneers (though he completed one to a Seahawk), but the defense (and a bit of luck) kept Seattle off the board as well.That's a 128-6 yardage advantage for Seattle... Wow. After Seattle got on the board with a touchdown late in the second half, the Bucs offense pulled it together, and got those lopsided numbers a little more even by the time they scored the go-ahead touchdown midway through the third quarter,and from there they never looked back. After the atrocious games by Freeman the two previous weeks and the early interception here, I was worried about him. Fortunately, Freeman stepped up and looked very solid after the early mistake.I love seeing this kid scramble, and (even though it scares me a bit), I love seeing him show the heart and toughness to do whatever it takes to move the chains.The running game started looking pretty good, too. I feel like Earnest Graham is being badly under-used this year, but a huge silver lining on this 2-12 season is how fantastic Cadillac looks coming back from his second torn patellar tendon.Caddy put up 66 yards rushing on just 12 carries to go with a 22-yard reception for the touchdown that put us ahead for good at 13-7. Derrick Ward looked better than he has in a while, as well (but I still think we should trade him this off-season and get Graham back in the lineup).The defense showed a lot of pride this game, picking up four interceptions and forcing a fumble. I think this unit has a lot of potential if we can just shore up the linebacker position a bit, and maybe bring in another safety.
The tackling was much more solid this week, and the unit looked fired up against a Seattle team that looked downright listless. Despite the 2-12 record, these players love their coach and know that they're playing for his job. Call me crazy, but I actually hope Coach Rah is back next year, with the lessons learned from this season helping to make him the coach that the Glazers thought he could be.Bring on the Saints!

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