Buccaneers Can't Be Sluggish Barnacles In Seattle
By Christopher Scali
What unfolds for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this week? This Sunday, the Buccaneers have an intense matchup in Seattle against a tough Seahawks squad. This is definitely not going to be an easy matchup for Tampa Bay as the Seahawks are a powerhouse. The big hype surrounding this game is that Seattle WR Percy Harvin is expected to make his debut against the sinking Buccaneers after having missed every game so far this season following hip surgery. Head coach Pete Carroll is expected to slowly ease Harvin back into the offense because he missed so much time, but that does not mean the fragile Buccaneers should be relaxing like a bunch of barnacles when Harvin hits the field. Harvin can't only be a fierce wide receiver, but is also an astonishing kick returner. He actually holds the NFL record for the longest non-scoring kick return at 104 yards. The Bucs have to worry about Harvin's speed and agility because if he gets in the open field, it could be lights out!
The Buccaneers coaching staff should pair CB Darrelle Revis with Harvin, who may be vulnerable when he takes the field the first few times. Tampa Bay needs to get Revis out of zone coverage and stick him to only a man defense. When Revis is in one on one coverage, the receiver is almost non-existent. The Bucs have one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL and they are not using Revis to his full potential.
Did head coach Greg Schiano finally realize that his defensive scheme is not working? In today's press conference, Schiano finally said he would put Revis in more man coverage. What was he waiting for, a talking parrot to give him some sort of secret code from his shoulder? There is no great secret to this situation. When Sunday arrives, Schiano better tell Revis to lock onto Harvin.
In order for the Buccaneers to win this game on the road in one of the loudest stadiums in the NFL, they must have a turnover free offense combined with an impeccable defense. First, the Bucs have to disrupt Seahawks QB Russell Wilson and get in his face, much like the St. Louis Rams did on Monday night. If Wilson is unsettled in the pocket, he has the tendency to throw wild passes or to take off and try to make a play with his legs. Tampa Bay needs to prevent Wilson from getting in the open field, where he can break some ankles.
Secondly, the Buccaneers need to hold off RB Marshawn Lynch, who already has 601 yards and six touchdowns on the year. Lynch and Wilson make some team in the backfield and Tampa Bay has to watch for Seattle's Spread Option offense.
Finally, Tampa needs to keep an eye on WR Golden Tate in addition to Harvin. The Buccaneers must be on them like glue, as the Seattle offense has many loaded cannons and the Buccaneers must toss all extra weight overboard to come out fast and win this game.
Tampa Bay needs to do everything it can to get the infamous 12th man out of this game or things may be over before they even get started. Will Week 9 be a magic one for the sinking Buccaneers? The Bucs have to avoid being the lazy barnacles on the underside of Seattle's ship at any cost in order to sail home with a win.