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The aftermath: Week 2 – Bucs vs. Bears

Stylez White



Sept. 17, 2023. Photo: Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 27, Chicago Bears 17 (Sept. 17)

You know what bothers me about this win? It’s that the team played well. It will cause me to think that the Tampa Bay Bucs are a good team! I saw turnovers, touchdowns, sacks, celebrations … Sunday was a glorious day.

Baker looked sharp, confident, and accurate, completing 76 percent of his passes. They rushed the ball moderately well. Raccad White (no relation to me) ran the ball pretty well. Seventeen rushes for 73 yards, about 4.3 a pop! The defense made it fun with their five sacks. Hell, two sacks were led by, believe it or not, Joe Tryon-Shoyinka. I know, right?! He finally came to the party. I will not talk about Mike Evans because well, he is Mike Evans. He can just play!

The Bucs won in a fashion that we all want to see often. They look like they could be a playoff team! I took a deep breath after I watched the game, because the Bears kept it somewhat interesting. Then I thought, after a pull of my cigar … fool’s gold!

The Bucs played the Bears. I should just stop there. Did the Bucs look good or were the Bears that bad? I saw in the game what appeared to Baker trying to throw the ball away. Somehow Mike Evans (I know I said I wasn’t going to talk about him) used his long, athletic body to contort himself to make the catch, stay in bounds, make a spin move off a defender and gain 20 plus yards. Sunday, everything that could go right, did. Baker looked great, but did he miss some wide receivers that were open? Yes, he did.

Mike Evans could’ve had about 250 yards. There was a play he was running down the middle of the field open and Baker didn’t see him. Did it cost the team? Not really, because the Bucs were playing the Bears. As great of a game the team had Sunday, I got excited about the possibilities. I saw the offensive coordinator, Dave Canales, calling some great plays. Towards the end when the Bucs were up I kept wondering why he chose to keep calling pass plays and allowing the Bears the chance to get back in. I didn’t see any running back or wideout or tight end screens, low risk types of passes. I wanted him to keep pounding the ball.

Did the playing calling cost them the game? Obviously not. The reason is because the Bucs were that good – or was it because they played the Bears?

Fool’s gold?

The defense had a day! Five sacks and a couple turnovers held the Bears to 17 points. As I said earlier, Joe Tryon-Shoyinka had two sacks to lead the way! That’s right ladies and gents, your 2020-21 first round draft pick, who has eight sacks in his last two seasons (to put in perspective, I had eight in one season and I was OK) now has two this year. Sunday he looked good, he looked solid. He also was playing the Bears.

I am not going to say he’s a bust, but I am looking forward to him putting it all together and having a great season this season. It’s not his fault he was picked in the first round, but there are high expectations that come along with it. It’s just what it is. I saw Shaq Barrett out there coming along, Veta looking great out there. I may be biased but realistically, the defense balled out! They were flying around! The Bucs’ D looked dominant against the Bears. I was excited. I feel the Bucs are ready to take on the world!

Well, they will be taking on the 2-0 Eagles, runners-up to the Super Bowl champs. This is why Sunday’s win bothered me. Not so much the team winning, but how they won. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers looked fantastic!

I want to believe the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are that good – but you have to ask yourself, were the Bucs that good or were the Bears that bad?

Was it the real deal, or fool’s gold to the untrained eye?

Former defensive end Stylez White played for the Houston Texans, Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons, Tennessee Titans, New Orleans Saints, Washington Redskins, Chicago Bears and Orlando Predators. He was on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ defense from 2007 to 2010.

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