Posted in General News

Slow Starts Debilitating Too Young Bucs

by Roland Johnson on August 21, 2011

Under head coach Raheem Morris the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have compiled a record of 13-19 since 2009 and have been outscored in the first quarter 181-77. It breaks down to an average of 2.41 points scored in the first quarter of football games compared to the oppositions 5.66. But digging deeper, past just the first quarter and looking at the first half of games the Bucs have been outscored 415-277, it’s a 4-point deficit the team routinely finds itself in before opening the second half. That’s problematic, even for a veteran laden team to over come.

The Bucs average roughly 9-points in the first half, while the opposing team is averaging 13 points in the first half.  In the second half of games the Bucs have outscored the opposition 305-290 or an average of 10-points to 9-points.  Giving way to an average total of 19 points by the Bucs and 22 points scored by the opposition per the game.

The difference by game per first quarter is 3.25 points that the Bucs have been outscored by. During the previous two seasons the Bucs have only had 3 of 32 games decided by 3 points or less (2009, Redskins & Dolphins, 2010, Lions).

So while the youngry Bucs are playing catch-up there able to somewhat harness youthful energy to overcome the odds and secure a victory even after a sluggish start. As noted by Josh Freeman and his 25 starts, his record is 13-12 with 7 come from behind wins.

But if the Bucs are going to take the proverbial next step in their respective maturation process the team must figure out a way to become the aggressor and dictate the tempo and action at the onset from the opening whistle.

With a tougher schedule on the horizon falling behind to quality teams will only put more on the shoulders of Freeman to snatch a victory from the jaws of defeat, late in games. Putting so much onus on Freeman, could have a negative impact and see him regress rather then taking that next step.

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