Bucs Begin New Era With Win
The Tampa Bay defense on this Sunday looked like the 2003 Superbowl defense beating the Carolina Panthers 16-10.
It’s clearly only week one but first year head coach Greg Schiano had his team poised to win and they looked impressive in the process.
Old timer (and I mean that with the utmost respect) Rhonde Barber finished the game with an interception and sack on Newton.
This was Barbers 200th straight start as a Buc, and the only remaining member of that Superbowl team from nine years ago.
“This was fun to watch this defense go out and play the way they played,” Barber said post game.
Tampa Bay held Cam Newton to just one touchdown pass, forcing him into two interceptions and only gave up four yards rushing to the sensational sophomore QB.
Which is a compete 180 to what happened last December, Carolina outscored the Bucs 86-35 in two games with Newton throwing for four touchdowns and running for four more.
Like last season Newton found himself with over 300 yards passing but looking at a loss in the process. Cam’s ceiling could be the highest of all the young quarterbacks in the NFL but he must learn how to win close games.
The Bucs young stud Josh Freeman didn’t have jaw dropping numbers but a solid performance none the less. Finishing 16 for 24 with one touchdown most importantly no interceptions.
If the Tampa defense can continue to swarm the quarterback and force turnovers it won’t be up to Freeman to play “hero” but to not make mistakes and play efficient.
“It’s all about the players, their commitment to doing what we ask them to do,” Schiano said of the defense.
The swarming Tampa defense held Carolina to 10 yards rushing.
“They showed us some different things that we didn’t have a chance to prepare for,” Carolina coach Ron Rivera said.
Tampa’s next game is this Sunday when they visit the defending Superbowl Champions, the New York Giants.
This will be a good measuring stick for the young Bucs.