It should come as no surprise that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense ranked 2nd on defense in “missed tackles” says Arron Schatz of the renowned FootballOutsiders.com. According to the metrics of Football Outsiders game charting stats the Bucs defense missed 94 total tackles in 2009, but based on a per play basis the once proud swarming defense that prided itself on sound technical tackling, topped the charts with an 7.5%. The reason for being one of the worst tackling teams in the NFL is attributed to the secondary as three out of the top 12 players, in missed tackles roamed aimlessly in the defensive backfield.
The number one culprit was S Sabby Piscitelli (19 missed tackles), 2nd CB Ronde Barber (15 missed tackles), 12th S Tanard Jackson (12 missed tackles in 14 games). Jackson who missed .86 tackles per game would have checked in with 14 missed tackles, if he would have started all 16-games, but because he was suspended for the teams first four games after missing a league mandated urine test, he gets a bit of a reprieve.
Compounding matters, was the fact that on offense the Bucs were the lowest ranked team in terms of braking tackles, with a mere 41 broken tackles.
If you’re going to miss tackles or allow opposing offensive players to run through would be arm tackles in the NFC South, then allow the blades of grass to trip you up on offense. The chance of you keeping drives alive or getting three and outs is going to be damn near impossible.
Let’s hope Raheem Morris and his assembled staff is going back to the basics – teaching players the proper fundamentals and technique of tackling. If not the Bucs might find themselves on the wrong end, once again in ’10.