The Buccaneers were favored to win heavily against the Washington Football Team in Week 10. Instead, they dropped their second consecutive game by a score of 29-19.
Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians did not hold back his criticism after the loss. The veteran coach ripped the team’s performance, blaming both the players and coaches for a lack of discipline and energy during the game.
“It has nothing to do with ability,” Arians said in a news conference, per ESPN. “It’s about execution and being a smart football team. We’re a very dumb football team. And that’s a reflection on the coaches.”
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The Buccaneers came out of the gate flat despite having been on bye the previous week. Arians wasn’t pleased with the effort and energy put forth during the game, but the Bucs’ penalties were a bigger problem for the squad, in his opinion.
“Energy and passion are very fixable,” Arians said. “The penalties — they’ve gotta get corrected sooner or later. The first play of the game — they’re shifting and we jump offsides. They don’t even run a play and we jump offsides. The stupidity has to go away if we’re gonna go anywhere.”
Tampa Bay committed six penalties that gifted 43 yards of offense to Washington. Conversely, Washington committed just three penalties, though they amounted to 33 yards.
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The Buccaneers also lost the turnover battle. Tom Brady threw two interceptions while Washington receiver Dax Milne lost a fumble. Arians was critical of Brady’s two picks, placing the blame on the quarterback.
“It has nothing to do with the receivers. It was him,” Arians said.
Most damning of all may have been the time of possession battle. Washington ran 71 plays and held the ball for 39:08. That included a 10-minute fourth-quarter touchdown drive to help close out its victory. The Buccaneers ran just 47 total plays in 20:52 time of possession.
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The Buccaneers now sit at just 6-3 after their second straight loss. They still lead the NFC South by a game over the Saints, but they have minimal room for error and have fallen behind teams including the Cardinals, Rams and Cowboys in the race for the No. 1 seed.
“It’s very disappointing,” Arians said of Tampa Bay’s performance. “It’s very alarming to watch the energy at every practice and show up with a lack of execution and energy that it takes to win on Sunday. We’ve got a lot of soul-searching to do.”