It might not be that bad after all for Bucs
Tom McEwen, The Tampa Tribune, published 20 September 2010

These new Tampa Bay Buccaneers seemed to establish Sunday with their 20-7 victory over a decent Carolina team at Charlotte, that this 2010, this second team of Coach Raheem Morris is one of a new era, one with a chance to eliminate the negatives of this franchise and return to the good favor of Buccaneer fans hereabouts.

The Buccaneers beat Carolina 20-7 and thoroughly. They played better offense, they played better defense, played better on special teams, they played with more imagination and frankly, with fewer errors.

It was a solid victory, well beyond the 20-7 score that should assure their fans that this could be a massive turnaround. Their coach produced his most significant win here so far, the team was superior to Carolina in every way and appeared to eliminate those lingering concerns that these Bucs may be on their way down.

They now appear to be on their way up. They clearly have found a quarterback in Josh Freemanóa big, resourceful, 6-6 248 pound playmaker out of Kansas State who can pass, run, break tackles, and lead the team well for Coach Morris and the hungry Buc fans around here who can, so far, have renewed confidence that this may indeed be turn around time.

These Buccaneers just didnít do very much wrong Sunday, indeed all phases of the game seem to be improved. Donít want to go overboard here, but remember these Buccaneers won at Carolina, in a hostile environment against a quality division rival led by Josh Freeman on offense, and a defense clearly playing as their leader, Ronde Barber, and his sidekicks wants the team to play, as those of the special teams unit all expect them to play as well.

Only this kind of performance could have produced the solid win that it did. Carolina is no slouch team, instead a team the Buccaneers will have to play again but here in Tampa. Not so sure many of us would have expected the game of the solid quality, of the complete quality that developed.

Not so sure many of us could have expected the kind of game quarterback Freeman, running back Cadillac Williams, wide receiver Mike Williams, tight end Kellen Winslow, field goal kicker Conner Barth and a solid all around game from the defense, that played out in front of us from Charlotte.

In fact, if there is one overriding group to be singled out whether it is the Buccaneer defense, up front and in the secondary. This defense was so reminiscent of the past when the Big D and the Tampa Two came to be representive of the best that there is on defensive side of the ball.

Need to single out, however, the solid place kicking of Connor Barth, and those goal line stands presented Sunday. This is early, the Buc record of 2-0 is to be celebrated, if briefly. But few could have predicted this record after the doomsday forecast for the Tampa team. Now the Buccaneers can return to the support that playing at home provides.

Rest assured this win can boost mightly the confidence of quarterback Freeman and those who count so heavily on him playing well. Most have thought that Freemanís future was bright but now the future can seem a tad brighter with the win at Charlotte. Charlotte was a favorite and the Buccaneers pretty much have been ignored, as is customary in early evaluations.

When the Bucs play Pittsburgh now at RJS Sunday, the game will be rated a toss up for favorite Pittsburgh by a slim margin, but that is the longtime appraisal of the Buccaneer chances of the past. What the conclusion after that third game can only be, well, maybe the Bucs have a chance at a decent season after all.