1. Tighten up the secondary
It was a somewhat uneven year for Arians’ club despite the fact that the Buccaneers were tied with the Green Bay Packers when it came to the best record in the league (13-4) in 2021. There were two losses to the New Orleans Saints and a setback to the Washington Football Team. And the loss to Los Angeles was the second to Sean McVay’s club in ’21. In both of those games,
The Tampa Bay defense was a bit of a rollercoaster ride throughout the season. And a club that led the NFL in run defense in both 2019 and 2020 suddenly looked somewhat vulnerable. Todd Bowles’ secondary has always been a bit up and down and injuries this season didn’t help that cause.
It’s still somewhat inexplicable that Rams’ quarterback Matthew Stafford and wide receiver Cooper Kupp exploited this unit during the final minute of the teams’ divisional playoff match-up. Then again, McVay’s team did score 30-plus points in each of their clashes with the Bucs.
The league’s 13th overall defense did rank 21st vs. the pass. Tampa defenders did pick off 17 passes but allowed 26 scores through the air in 17 regular-season outings. This despite a pass rush that produced 47 sacks.