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September 22, 2009 12:24 PM

Buccaneer Defense Is One Big Nightmare

Tuesday is the traditional day off for NFL players, thank-you Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Some might argue that certain members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer defense take Sundays off as well.

This 2009 Tampa Bay defense has become youthful head coach Raheem Morris' nightmare.

The question was posed to him at his Monday press conference: "Is this defense getting out of hand?"

Morris, without hesitation blurted: "It's already out of hand!"

Morris pulls no punches, he doesn't sugar-coat, doesn't make excuses. He simply holds players accountable and there's lots of accountability to go around for a defense that ranks 31st out of 32 teams in the league.

Only the Houston Texans are worse. The Bucs have given up 67 points in two games and an average of 450-yards in offense.

Surely makes Buccaneer fans long for the days of Monte Kiffin. But Monte is long gone.

Raheem's nightmare began with a sequence of events, triggered by the suspension of standout safety Tanard Jackson when he failed to appear for a routine drug test.

Morris now has to face the incoming New York Giants with another safety, Jermaine Phillips, out six-to-eight weeks with a broken thumb. Can it possibly get any worse?

Sure, try these two words: Eli Manning.

No doubt Manning and the New York offense are watching game video of the Buccaneers with a "can't wait" attitude. They surely can't wait to get their hands on this stupefied Buccaneer defense.

Morris has a lot of fixing to do between now and Sunday. Sounds impossible at best.

There is virtually no pass rush and Morris has voiced total displeasure with the performance or lack thereof from defensive end Gaines Adams, the former No. 1 draft choice who plays like a seventh rounder.

Adams is not alone but he is the poster-child for a defense that cannot defend.

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