After arguably the strangest four quarters I’ve ever seen, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Los Angeles Rams by a score of 55-40. The Bucs rebounded after a tough loss against the New York Giants in week three, with a strange yet convincing win on the road against the Rams.
Let’s jump into the stock report:
Every defensive player
Where do we start? The defense was absolutely putrid, all game long. Outside of a handful of okay plays like the pick-six from cornerback Marcus Peters, this unit was horrendous. The defensive line applied damn near no pressure all game, the linebackers couldn’t stop a nose bleed in the run game, and the secondary was horrendous. Every guy in the secondary was abused in coverage, repeatedly. This was the worst performance since the Kansas City Chiefs game in 2018, and was even worse to be honest.
QB Jared Goff
Jared Goff did not have a good game today. At times he actually looked very sharp and threw some darts, though sandwiched between some great passes were some incredibly questionable decisions and a total of four turnovers. Not only that, but Goff missed two wide open players (Brandin Cooks and Gerald Everett) for automatic walk-in touchdowns. Goff set himself a career high with 517 passing yards, though this is one he’ll want to forget about.
The OL wasn’t great, though they weren’t terrible either. The Bucs blitzed a massive amount of the game and the Rams were able to make them pay on a lot of those decisions. The issue was Goff being sacked twice and pressured a handful of other times, mainly by edge rusher Shaquill Barrett and defensive tackle Vita Vea.
*UPDATE: After recalling the high count of penalties on the OL, I’d like to retract the “weren’t terrible” statement. They were really bad, and another part of the team that helped lose the game.
Usage of Running Backs
The offense had no issues creating yardage and points today, though it’s not sustainable to do what Head Coach Sean McVay did today. The strangest part of it all was the lack of any running game early in the game prior to going down 21-0, though it was generally understandable once the Rams fell behind a large amount. Still, you want your best offensive player in running back Todd Gurley to touch the ball more than 12 times, seven of which were catches (some on dump offs).
WR Robert Woods
Robert Woods was damn near uncoverable as he pulled in 13 receptions for 164 yards on 15 targets. Woods’ routes and hands looked as sharp as ever, pulling in multiple passes along the sidelines and tip-toeing prior to going out. Woods also showed his prowess as a complete player, gaining large chunks of yards after catch and blocking downfield for fellow receivers (see: Cooper Kupp touchdown).
WR Cooper Kupp
As if one receiver wasn’t enough, Cooper Kupp also joins this column alongside Woods, with both putting forth incredibly productive and efficient games. Kupp pulled in nine receptions for 121 yards and a touchdown on 15 targets. Starting out slow in the first half, Kupp absolutely blew up on the scene in the second half, collecting nearly all of his yardage in the final two quarters.
TE Gerald Everett
Somewhat randomly, tight end Gerald Everett came alive in this contest with five receptions for 44 yards and a touchdown on eight targets. Everett also had a wide open route down the right sideline that would have went for a 40-yard touchdown that Goff simply overthrew. Everett oozes potential, and games like today prove just how underused he is.
K Greg Zuerlein
GZ was 2/2 on field goals and 4/4 on extra points. One of Zuerlein’s field goals was good from 58 yards. GZ also had a 46-yarder go through the uprights, though it was wiped off the board because of an accepted penalty by the Rams.