After a pedestrian performance throughout three quarters by the Buccaneers offense against the Bengals, in Who Dey Nation, Josh Freeman and his cast of young receivers made enough plays to capitalize on two Carson Palmer interceptions late in the fourth quarter to escape the hostile confines of Cincinnati with a 24-21 victory.
Cody Grimm – Grimm played much better in his second NFL start, intercepting his first NFL pass and returning it 11-yards for his first touchdown. He was also much better in the run game and tackling in general as he lead the Bucs with 9 tackles and even had a nice open field tackle of Terrell Owens in the open field.
Mike Williams –Even though Williams fumbled the football late in the second quarter as the Bucs were driving inside the Bengals five yard line he atoned for his mistake later in the game as he caught the tying touchdown on a fade route between two Bengal defenders. He finished the game with 7 receptions for 99-yards and 1 touchdown he best receiving day as a pro.
Bucs Secondary – On a day when the Bucs front seven had problems containing Cedric Benson the secondary held the Bengals duo of Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco to just 122 yards on 10 catches with 1 touchdown as they forced three interceptions returning one for a touchdown.
Carnell Williams – After four games Williams has failed to show any burst and is averaging 2.6 yards per carry on 66 attempts. While he not to blame for all of the Bucs running woes he’s definitely a part of the problem. Things were only made worse when Williams failed to haul in any of the three passes thrown his way against the Bengals .
Run Blocking – As stated with Williams all the teams’ failure in the ground game is not that of just the offensive line, but they do share some culpability as far too often they are allowing the running back to be met in the backfield by multiple defenders. The lack of any kind of push or holes is concerning to say the least.
Pass Rush – Four sacks in four games, with all four coming against the Carolina Panthers is comical and setting up a disastrous situation the longer the team goes without putting consistent pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Whether it be by smoke and mirrors, schemes or individual effort someone needs to step up. After a bye week in which defensive line Coach Todd Wash calls out the manhood of his down lineman they unanimously lay an egg.