Upon Further Review: Bucs Week 2

September, 16, 2013
9/16/13
12:00
PM ET
An examination of four hot issues from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 16-14 loss to the New Orleans Saints:

The soap opera continues. If you thought last week was bad with rumblings flying about coach Greg Schiano and quarterback Josh Freeman not being on the same page, wait until you see what’s next. Things are only going to get uglier after Freeman threw an interception, lost a fumble and again failed to complete even 50 percent of his passes. There is some sort of dysfunction going on between the coach and the quarterback, and that’s why the Bucs are 0-2. There has been a report that Freeman might demand a trade. The rumors aren't going to fade away. Instead, they'll keep growing.

[+] EnlargeJosh Freeman
Kim Klement/USA TODAY SportsAfter another subpar game, quarterback Josh Freeman is on the hot seat.
No trust? Schiano didn’t even have enough trust in Freeman to throw a pass on third-and-6 late in the game. Instead, the Bucs called a running play and Rian Lindell then missed a field goal. In short, Schiano showed more trust in a kicker who was signed off the street than he did in his quarterback. If the Bucs go into their bye week at 0-4, which looks like a real possibility at this point, I think there's a very good chance Schiano will pull the plug on Freeman and hand things over to rookie Mike Glennon. And, based on what I saw from Glennon in the preseason, I don't think he's going to provide any sort of instant solution.

The vanishing tight ends. The Bucs targeted their tight ends just once the entire game. That resulted in a 34-yard completion to Nate Byham. But the Bucs need more than that out of their tight ends to take the pressure off receivers Mike Williams and Vincent Jackson. Tampa Bay has been playing without the injured Tom Crabtree. But the lack of production from this position so far makes you wonder if the Bucs should have added another pass-catching tight end in the offseason.

The defense isn’t bad. For the second straight week, the defense played well enough to win. Linebackers Lavonte David, Dekoda Watson and Mason Foster, defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, defensive end Adrian Clayborn and the secondary are all playing well. If you can hold Drew Brees & Co. to one touchdown, you should be able to win. The Bucs came up with four sacks and two interceptions, but it all was for naught because the offense didn’t do its part.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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