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Bucs went soft on critical snap

Posted Nov 29, 2011 by Ira Kaufman

Updated Nov 29, 2011 at 11:13 AM


TAMPA—One week after coaching aggressively at Green Bay, Raheem Morris ordered up a conservative defense on Tennessee’s game-winning touchdown Sunday.

Morris, who doubles as Tampa Bay’s head coach and defensive coordinator, had the Bucs playing a soft zone with a 17-13 lead and the Titans facing fourth-and-goal from the 2-yard line with only 3:08 remaining.

Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck rolled right and drifted back to the 15-yard line, surveying the field for six seconds as the Bucs used a three-man rush that was handled easily by Tennessee’s offensive line. No Buc defender was within five yards of Hasselbeck as he pointed to a spot in the end zone and eventually found Damian Williams, his third option on the play.

“Their tendency was to be an all-out blitz, cover zero team,’’ Hasselbeck said after the 23-17 triumph. “All throughout the field, especially on critical situations, they didn’t bring pressure at all with us. We were really anticipating it. They just came out and played a soft zone.’‘

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